6 Key Things to Know When Planning A Wedding During COVID

Start planning your 2021-22 wedding now and here's what to consider

Planning A Wedding in 2021

Admittedly planning a wedding during COVID has become all the more challenging when the pandemic doesn’t seem to want to go away.

Even if your wedding date isn’t happening until 2021 or 2022, you should still start your planning process now. This is because there will be a significant increase in demand for all wedding vendors in 2021 and 2022 with many couples having postponed from 2020.

While it is extremely difficult to predict into the future, the best way forward is to understand the risks and plan for them accordingly.

Here are our 6 top things to consider or include when planning your 2021-2022 wedding during COVID:

  1. Be flexible with wedding dates and guest numbers
  2. Be well informed about and comply with current government rules and guidelines
  3. Communicate with guests regarding their wellbeing, with the possibility of live streaming for guests who cannot attend
  4. Consider digital options for Wishing Wells and Guest Books and alternatives to wedding traditions
  5. Ensure appropriate physical distancing
  6. Seek quality wedding vendors with flexible postponement and cancellation terms 

1. Be flexible with wedding dates and guest numbers

Given the increase in demand for wedding vendors in 2021, particularly the second half of 2021, you may have to opt for a weekday wedding. However, if you decide to push your wedding date back to 2022 this will open up even more availability for your suppliers and guests. Plus give you more time to prepare for your wedding!

Small weddings can be more casual, less stressful and feel more like you and your partner. The more intimate weddings allow you to heighten your guest’s experience where you can afford more customisation than before such as an additional floral install or upgrading to more premium services.

Morever if you keep your wedding small, you’re less likely to have to un-invite some of your guests should restriction rules tighten.

2. Be well informed about and comply with current government rules and guidelines

Keeping local with your wedding location will reduce the complexities of managing the risks involved with travel-related restrictions, particularly if you’re planning for a wedding in the first half of 2021. 

As corona trends are expected to stay around for a while, a COVID safety plan should generally be in place for your wedding. Check if your vendors such as marriage celebrant, venue and photographer are registered as COVID Safe and have an approved Weddings Industry COVID Safe Industry Plan.

For the most up-to-date information on government rules and guidelines of the following states:

New South Wales

https://www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19/covid-safe/wedding-ceremonies-and-receptions

Victoria

https://www.healthdirect.gov.au/covid19-restriction-checker/weddings-funerals-religions-services/vic

Queensland

https://www.qld.gov.au/law/laws-regulated-industries-and-accountability/queensland-laws-and-regulations/fair-trading-services-programs-and-resources/fair-trading-latest-news/disaster-assistance/covid-19#weddings

Tasmania

https://coronavirus.tas.gov.au/families-community/gatherings-density-and-physical-distancing

South Australia

https://www.covid-19.sa.gov.au/restrictions-and-responsibilities/activities-and-gatherings

Australian Capital Territory

https://www.covid19.act.gov.au/what-you-can-do/faqs-changes-to-restrictions/weddings-funeral-worship

Northern Territory

https://coronavirus.nt.gov.au/business-and-work/business/guidelines-for-events-and-gatherings#/100_to_500_people

3. Communicate with guests regarding their wellbeing with the possibility of live streaming for guests who cannot attend

In your invitations, ensure your guests are aware they should only attend if they are feeling well and do not have any respiratory or COVID-19 symptoms. If they have even mild symptoms or have been in contact with a known carrier, they must not attend. 

Keep your wedding guests informed of any updates by having a wedding website. This helps to field any questions or address concerns guests may have about the day.

Discuss options with guests particularly those with conditions affecting their immunity on the possibility of attending the ceremony and not the reception. There are lower risks of developing complications while attending the ceremony compared to the reception.

For guests who cannot attend, explore options with the wedding planner or venue to see if there is any possibility of live streaming the event.

4. Consider Alternatives to Wishing Wells, Guest Books and the Bouquet Toss

Some digital options as wishing well alternatives include electronic funds transfers or online gift registries such as My Gift Registry or The Gift Aisle

You will also need to consider the hygiene around the guest book. Any shared pens should be cleaned.

Or think of the possibility of a digital guest book that can be filled from home. For example, Wed.tv is a digital guestbook where guests can connect from mobile to wed.tv with the code you chose and send their photos and messages. Find out more about the service (which is currently free) from their website

And if you’re an introvert and have never been a fan of the bouquet toss, now’s the time to ditch this wedding tradition! Instead you could split a second bouquet into several pieces to give to the important women in your life or use the bouquet as an arrangement to remember those who are no longer with you.

Planning a wedding in 2021

5. Ensure appropriate physical distancing

Areas to consider include:

  • Seating Arrangements: Consider how many people you sit at each table and find out about the restrictions like maximum numbers per table from your venue. Seat guests from the same household next to each other
  • Music – singing (including group singing), wind instruments, ensembles and other musical groups
  • Dancing: while dancing restrictions are slowly easing, it’s probably worthwhile planning for a more open dance floor which has plenty of ventilation and space
  • Traditions: Traditions like tossing the bouquet should be avoided or modified
  • Photography: Consider having photos taken before the ceremony rather than between the ceremony and reception. Decrease the amount of time between each
  • The microphone for speeches, announcements etc: ensure it’s properly sanitised between guests.

6. Carefully read your vendor agreements, in particular the postponement and cancellation sections

Seek experienced, well established vendors for reliability and consistency in quality if you have concerns whether they will still be in business come wedding date. 

For your peace of mind (moreover wedding insurance policies do not cover COVID-related claims), please make sure you:

  • have written agreements in place with your vendors
  • carefully read your vendor agreements, particularly the postponement and cancellation sections
  • engage vendors who have as much flexibility as possible with postponements and cancellations. 

So go ahead with planning your 2021-22 wedding even while COVID is still lingering. If you identify and address all possible risks, your planning process will be a whole lot smoother and less stressful (or you can hire a great wedding planner!)

OUR OFFER TO YOU IF YOU'RE planning A WEDDING DURING COVID

Given the risks associated with paying large sums of money upfront to vendors, Flowers by Gwyneth have made it easier for engaged couples to book their Sydney wedding flowers with us. We are reducing our non-refundable deposit from 20% to 10% of our quote – that is to secure your date – and no further payment is required until 3 weeks before your wedding date. So enquire today if you’re planning a wedding in Sydney, Blue Mountains or Lower Central Coast for 2021 or 2022.

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