10 tips for handling Cancellations & Wedding planning during COVID-19

Planning your wedding during CoronaVirus (COVID-19)

Weddings

bride and groom embracing their love for each other in a loving and sweet hug

Planning your wedding during CoronaVirus (COVID-19)

Holy smokes, right! This is crazy, and FAR from what you would ever expect when planning your wedding. We get it, we are here for you, and we want to help. Weddings are an opportunity to celebrate the union of two hearts. The day when things become official, and you get to say “I DO’s” and have that first kiss as a husband and wife. Most of you are planning a big celebration, while others prefer a smaller intimate elopement. In either case, wedding planning is the chance to finally bring your wedding dreams to reality. Just imagine the excitement of having a perfect celebration, where the flowers are blooming, the lighting is perfect, and the butterflies in your stomach have you smiling from ear to ear.

The sad truth is, Coronavirus is putting a damper on things, and weddings are getting rescheduled left and right. If your wedding is in that 8-week window that the CDC suggests (March-May), then you most likely have no choice at this point but to reschedule as cities are putting bans on gatherings over 10 people. We want to help you during this time because we know that stress and emotions are at an all-time high, but they don’t have to be! We don’t want your decisions to have to be driven or made from fear, but from a place that is informed and confident in your decisions moving forward! We can dream of having the perfect wedding celebration, but why should we stop there? Your perfect wedding day shouldn’t come to a screeching halt.

bride and groom walking down the isle as husband and wife while the groom has the sweetest smile of feeling complete joy

Here’s what you can do to help while planning during this crazy time!

1.) Communication is KEY!

You’re stressing, vendors are stressing as well. Not sure what the outcome is, but we find that the best way to help reduce the stress level is to communicate. At this point, we know that if your wedding is in March/April and even in some parts of May, you are going to have to coordinate your vendors all over again. As you consider this, there are a couple of things to think about.

  1. Your venue is going to be the most important date to nail down. If you can, try to work your schedule around your venue, or you may want to consider doing a destination wedding or elopement later down the road.
  2. Your Photographer is REALLY important. I may be biased in saying this, but it is extremely important to include your photographer in on the date decision. We have had a couple of our brides chat with us before our venue, so they know which dates they can choose from. The good thing about having a studio is that there is a high chance we will be available for your wedding if you need to reschedule. We have some people

2) Gather all of our contracts

This is going to be essential when having to consider rescheduling your date. You need to know what each of your vendors says about your deposit/retainer fee. Some of them may transfer your payment to another date if they are available, but most are non-refundable to expect to lose that money if you cancel the date. Unfortunately, if there is also a force majeure clause in the contract because this is an act outside of you or your vendor to control, they are protected and no longer responsible for giving you back that money.

Now, if they have not photographed your wedding, you will most likely be able to get anything outside of the retainer that you have paid, minus an engagement session, or any other sessions you have done with them. A lot of vendors empathize with you on this, but they also turned down work for your day, and they have businesses and families as well, so please, refrain from being mean to them!

3) Consider an elopement or destination wedding later

I know this may not be what you want to talk about AT ALL, but this may be the best, stress-free option. This will require a lot less coordinating of schedules and allow you to save a lot of the money you may have lost in retainers and having to change dates. This is always our favorite option. Here is an article we recently wrote on destination weddings vs traditional weddings.

Standing during their ceremony at Horseshoe Bend

4) Consider the time of year you reschedule your wedding.

If you have to reschedule your wedding, PLEASE CONSIDER THE TIME OF YEAR! If you want to keep the weather nice and cool, you will want to consider a fall wedding, that being said, there is a HIGH chance that your vendors will be booked as the fall is the busiest time of year for most vendors. If you reschedule for the summer, in some parts of the country, this is going to be really hot, and most people don’t book weddings during this time, so availability will be much better for you as you reschedule.

5) I am STRESSSEDD, and my anxiety is out of the roof, what can I do?

The biggest thing I can say is to lean into this moment and be there for each other. At the end of the day, it is what it is, and there is nothing we can do to control this. Be there for each other and trust your vendors. If it stresses you out too much, stay away from the media, they are really pumping this thing up. Now, it is serious, but you don’t need to be continuously reminded of that.

6) The date is significant to us, and we don’t want to change it, what should I do?

This is a great question because we hear this a lot. IF this is the case for you, we HIGHLY suggest a small elopement style ceremony, where only you and close family and friends are present. In some states, it has to be less than 10 people, and some courtrooms are closed down. Remember, you can always have a larger celebration later where you invite family and friends. It’s important still to get a photographer for your small intimate ceremony so you can remember the day and even play a slideshow at your celebration with family and friends, and they can feel like they were there!

7) Our venue is booked and now we have to choose another venue!

That’s ok; this will likely happen but know that the venue or location doesn’t make the marriage. A venue is only a place where you celebrate together. That being said, there are a lot of venues that will help during this time, and this may be a blessing in disguise. Here is list of venues in Charlotte you can look into the we HIGHLY suggest and know will be amazing for you. If you are looking outside of Charlotte, here are some great venues as well!

The goal would be to choose a date that can retain the most vendors. If you absolutely CAN NOT do that, then a new venue may be the way to go and you will just have to ask around!

bride and groom taking a moment to be close during their wedding reception

8) My wedding is in June or after, should I wait or cancel?

Great question! According to the CDC as of right now (March 18th) they believe that this “social distancing” phase will last about 8 weeks. Taking that into consideration, it seems like, if your wedding is in June, I would continue as scheduled and play it by ear but be ready for this to last longer. All of this is contingent upon everyone’s cooperation in making sure this virus doesn’t spread. As of right now, it looks like you should be fine!

9) Our wedding is on the “date bubble” what should I do?

You are probably wondering what I mean about that. Your date is right at the edge of the restrictions, either in size or on the date. One thing you can consider doing is keeping it smaller, so you aren’t exposing people to the possibility of getting sick. But you can also ask for a video team to come and live stream your ceremony for those who can’t be there. This is something that can help the people that can’t be there, feel like they ARE there, and they get to experience it with you. If it is too close, I would always consider postponing or rescheduling your date. I know you want to get married, but your marriage and wedding will still be there 2-3 months from now! There is no use to put our immunocompromised family and friends at risk because we think this thing isn’t “that bad.” 

10) Invest in the things that last.

As we have seen from all of this, things can change in an instant, and life is shorter than we think, so we strongly believe that the moments that you DO have with your family and friends should be captured beautifully and preserved permanently. Make sure you have amazing photography and get a gorgeous album to remember your day with! Our albums are hand-crafted in America and come with a lifetime warranty. They are the PERFECT way to remember your day in the most beautiful way!

 

Remember, at the end of the day, safety is the #1 priority. I know you all want to get married and have your dream wedding, AND YOU CAN! You may just have to wait a couple of months, but we can be here to help. If you have any questions at all or ever need anything, don’t hesitate to ask and let us know. This post will be updated often so if you have any questions, you can email us at info@anchorandveilphotography.com

If your photographer is booked for your reschedule date or you are interested in having us photograph your wedding, please contact us, we would LOVE to be there for you!

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