A Luxury Wedding Planners Guide To: Will Coronavirus affect your wedding?

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Bride and groom walking down their mirrored aisle runner at Cliveden House

Will Coronavirus affect your wedding?

The first thing that you should know is that you are not alone in feeling the way you are probably feeling right now. We, as an industry understand that this is an extremely stressful situation for you with many difficult decisions to come. Currently, the government is releasing statements every couple of weeks from now about how COVID-19 is affecting the country and we’re seeing daily articles about the news from across the world and the updates are still hugely unpredictable, which is making some of your decisions extremely challenging.

If you’re newly engaged, I’m sorry for what should be exciting time has turned into a whole world of unknown, however you need to stay positive and know that there is light at the end of the tunnel! It may not be possible for you to book your dream venue or choose the date of your big day right now, but that doesn’t stop you from pinning away on Pinterest and making a few calls to suppliers to create your vision. Many suppliers are just waiting to hear from you to talk about how they can help you when your day does finally come around. Not having a date doesn’t mean you can’t start planning everything else!

For those of you who have already booked your wedding and are now at a loose end with what to do now, I recommend, as hard as it may be, to separate your emotions from the practical aspects until you get everything in line. To make it easier, I’ve detailed below a way for you to start.

Firstly, when is your wedding booked for? After speaking to other industry friends and keeping up with the government recommendations, if your wedding is from now until the beginning of June, I would start looking into the options around postponing. Currently I think it’s too early to make final decisions for weddings taking part during the second half of the year, unless your wedding is international and you have guests flying in from all over the world, with the uncertainty surrounding borders, it may be worth looking into options.
If you’ve made the decision to postpone;

 

Contact Key Suppliers

 

– First things first, speak to the most important suppliers, the wedding planner, venue and registrar. Speak to your wedding planner (if you have one) and work through next steps. A planner who takes on limited weddings a year shouldn’t have too much of an issue moving the date and can obviously guide you through this process and speak to most suppliers on your behalf.

 

Rescheduling 

 

– If you don’t have a planner, the next priority is the venue. If you have a popular venue, re scheduling a date may be more difficult which may mean you need to be prepared to be slightly more flexible on your date, however any venue should be understanding the current issues and will help you with the date move as much as possible. If the venue will let you, pencil in your new date whilst working through the other suppliers.

 

Penalty Fees

 

– When speaking to your suppliers; caterers, florists, production, musicians etc. it’s important that you work out exactly what the penalties and fees are for moving the date. It’s likely that most venues and suppliers will be sympathetic and waiver any cancellation fee, especially if your wedding will fall within the same financial year, however if not, you are likely to see a small administration fee.

 

Wedding Insurance

 

– Once you’ve spoken to the majority of your suppliers and found out about any charges in place, get in contact with your wedding insurance company, read through your terms and find out what elements are covered;

Wedding Plan Insurance have outlined the circumstances in which your wedding will be covered if cancellation and not postponement is necessary: “Our policy would only provide cover if your venue is unable to hold your wedding due to the outbreak of infectious or contagious disease, the venue is closed by the relevant authority, or the death, injury or sickness of you or your close relative that would make continuance of the wedding inappropriate, subject to the policy terms and conditions.” The policy is also only valid if insurance was taken out before any lockdown or venue closures are announced.

Wedinsure highlight that you will need to check the specifics of your policy as they do not cover certain situations related to Coronavirus restrictions: “The policy does not cover cancellation or rearrangement due to any claim resulting from issues relating to travel bans, flight cancellations or government acts, regulations such as a ban on public or social gatherings or any form of travel restrictions.” We recommend taking a look at the terms and conditions and phoning your insurer if you’re unsure.

 

Inform your Guests

 

– Lastly, inform your guests. Whether your organising personalised postponement cards or sending them out digitally, it’s important to let your guests know what’s going on so they have plenty of time to make the arrangements, especially if they’re coming from over seas.

If your wedding is due to take place is the second half of the year and you decide not to postpone and the country wide restrictions are lifted, that’s great! If you feel it is still your responsibility to ensure your wedding guests are safe, there are simple steps your can take to make them feel comfortable.

– Ensure there are plenty of soap dispensers in the bathrooms and speak to the venue about possibly having a bathroom attendant to keep them extra clean and tidy throughout the day.

– Why not have little personalised hand sanitisers as wedding favours on each place setting for the guests to use for the remainder of the evening and to take away with them?

– You could create personalised drink covers for each guest to cover their glass whilst they’re dancing to ensure nobody else takes a sip whilst they’re away.

Whatever you decide, the most important thing to remember, is that your wedding will happen. Everything will be perfect in the end. If you think you may need an extra little bit of support, feel free to drop us an email or pick up the phone and we’ll be more than happy to talk you through the steps.

Stay safe x

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Hannah Snowsill

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