COVID-19 & Your Wedding: A Guide to Rescheduling Your Wedding

by | Mar 19, 2020 | Wedding Planning Tips | 0 comments

Before you proceed, just take a deep breathe. Know that I’m here for you; your other vendors are here for you; and that we are going to make sure you get hitched!

I know that the prospect of rescheduling or postponing or re-imaginging your wedding is hella stressful. BUT, it can be done! I know it feels overwhelming and things are changing by the day. There are a lot of unknowns at this time, and we will likely know more about the long-term impact of this health crisis soon. This post is meant to prepare you or help you if necessary, not to scare you!

Just like I have a plan for your wedding day (no matter what), I still have a plan. And right now I am here to help you navigate this storm.

If you have to reschedule or postpone your wedding, here is a step-by-step process to help you navigate it!

1. Decide whether you need to reschedule or re-imagine your day.

We are all bound by the law and government mandate. Though the CDC or state may issue guidelines, guidelines are not law. Guidelines are meant to help guide decision-making. If there is a law or mandate by the government, we must follow it. If there are guidelines in place, you will have to decide whether you’d like to follow them. I implore you to try to reschedule or postpone, and not out-right cancel your day (in the name of saving all of your vendors’ small businesses at this scary time). We all ultimately want you to do what’s right for you, so some questions you can ask to help guide your decision:

  • What is the current policy on headcount?
  • Would you be happy with a wedding day with that headcount?
  • Are there elderly guests or guests with health conditions that would miss the wedding? Are they important to you?
  • Are any guests traveling from afar that would have to miss the wedding?
  • Would absent guests diminish your joy on your wedding day?
  • Would you consider a small elopement right now and a larger celebration with everyone in the future?
  • Can you livestream or record the event for those who can’t be there? (I can help with solutions for this)

Re-Imagining Your Day as an Elopement + Future Celebration

If you do decide to forego the reception at this time for an elopement in your backyard, your living room, your favorite park, etc. then reach out to your ceremony venue (you could have two ceremonies if you really wanted to – ha!) to check their policies. You’ll want to reach out to me as well to make sure I know the plan and we can discuss how to make this happen smoothly! I have a ceremony script, know great locations, and will split up your package to make this happen. Elopements and intimate weddings are amazing and a great way to still be married now while saving a big celebration for later. Think, you can wear your dress TWICE! You’ll want to follow the remaining steps if you choose to have a celebration at a later date.

2. If you decide to reschedule any part of your day, get in touch with your venue as soon as you can to determine open 2020-2021 dates.

You’ll want to identify a handful of dates that work for both of you, your families, and your venue. Don’t be afraid to keep weekdays, Fridays, or Sundays in mind. Your people will show up for you! The more flexible you can be, the more likely you can reschedule quickly and easily.

3. Send dates to vendors to see who’s available.

The goal, of course, is to ensure that you find a date that works for the majority, if not all, of your vendors. For my clients, you can see my open dates by visiting this webpage. For others, send an email with the dates you’re considering.

My open dates are updated every time there’s a reschedule or booking. They are first come, first served, but there is plenty of space for everyone! I can make photos in any season look incredible and have experience doing so (hello winter weddings!).

4. Talk with vendors to find a solution that works best for everyone.

If you have a lot of vendors, it might be hard to find a date that works for every single one. If you have only a few, try really really hard to find a date that works for everyone. This is why weekdays, Fridays, and Sundays may help since they’re less popular dates. Some vendors may be able to offer associates (I can do that if necessary!) or if they can make recommendations if that’s not possible. For my clients, I will take care of you either way if you reschedule! Don’t worry!

5. After you decide on everything, get reschedule contracts in place.

You’ll want to refer back to your original contract or your vendor’s guidance for this. There is no fee to reschedule in 2020-2021 for my clients impacted by COVID-19. We will just apply the retainer and any monies paid to a new date, keep the scope of work and package as is, and sign a reschedule agreement that just changes the date for you. Easy peasy.

6. Contact your guests.

This is a great time to post on social media with a link to your wedding website with more information, or send an email, or even print up a new invitation that lets everyone know the plan!

When things seem completely out of control, I hope this guide helps maintain a little control for your decision-making. At the end of the day, no matter what you’re going to be married! That’s what’s important. This is only one storm in a long, beautiful partnership. I promise I will do everything in my power to make this an incredible experience for you, no matter what happens or how you decide to tie the knot. If you need help at any time, please contact me! I am here for you.

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Hey there, I'm Madalyn.

I’m a Detroit wedding and family photographer who loves connecting with people and capturing their milestones in an non-intrusive way.