THE IMPACT OF COVID-19 ON THE WORLD IS UNPRECEDENTED
There are no sets of guidelines or handbooks available explaining what couples who are preparing for their weddings should do.
It is incredibly confusing.
Following the most recent guidance issued by the UK Government, many couples have approached me with a sense of urgency for advice as they face no alternative other than to alter their plans as a result of the temporary closure of their wedding venue.
I really want to share my knowledge and experience and help any couple who need support at this incredibly difficult time.
EVERY WEDDING IS UNIQUE
Having planned over 250 wonderful weddings and events, I have learned that every couple’s expectation and vision for their perfect day is unique.
I can see compassionately what you are faced with.
Your wedding day is one of the most momentous occasions in your life. You envisage a day filled with joy that is truly personal to you. It is a significant landmark in your relationship, a culmination of so many experiences you have enjoyed together as a couple and an opportunity to create an unforgettable day with all of the characters in your life story who want to share in your happiness.
How could you possibly have imagined finding yourselves in a situation where you were forced to alter, postpone or even cancel your wedding plans at short notice, due to circumstances beyond your control?
You could have argued that it wouldn’t happen. Until now!
WHAT NEEDS TO BE CONSIDERED?
KEY STEPS TO SAFEGUARD YOUR WEDDING
Postponing your wedding involves a significant amount of work, which can be broken down into a step by step approach;
- Choose your preferred alternative time frame for your wedding. This could be determined by other plans or events you may need to work around.
- Check the availability of your venue and all your suppliers within your chosen time frame. This involves lots of effort!
- Understand your venue and suppliers’ policies relating to postponement. Are they willing to honour the original deposit payment against a different date (subject to availability)? Are there any postponement fees? Do their terms specify that any interim or balance payments must be paid in accordance with the original timeline or are they willing to defer payments to a later date?
Terms may vary from one venue or supplier to another. Although the vast majority will always try to be as flexible as possible, small independent businesses often rely on being paid on specific dates as they are entirely dependent on regular cash flow to guarantee their own continuity.
- When you have identified a date when all or most of your suppliers are available, inform them in writing of your intention to change the date and request that they update their booking agreements or contracts with you accordingly. Make sure the details are confirmed in writing.
It is possible not all of your suppliers will be available on the date(s) you want, in which case you will need to prioritise what is most important to you and what you can realistically afford to forego. For example, if Photography is high on your list of priorities but the Photographer you originally booked is not available on your new wedding date and their terms clearly state that a final balance payment is due in accordance with the original time frame, you could find yourselves with no alternative than to pay for Photography twice.
All of your suppliers – Florist, Caterers, Photographer, Stationery Designers and Cake Baker are likely to be people, like me, who love and care about what they do. Most Wedding Industry suppliers are small businesses; many are solo-entrepreneurs for whom the stakes are incredibly high. Unlike big companies, the vast majority won’t have large cash reserves to fall back on. As a general rule, they are almost always willing to be flexible and most will go the extra mile to deliver whatever they have promised whilst accommodating even the most unforeseen changes in circumstances.
The wedding industry is inherently resilient to respond to unexpected challenges. For example, a Wedding Planner’s job involves being constantly vigilant, anticipating and responding to sudden, often last-minute changes of circumstances such as;
· Extreme weather conditions impacting on outdoor wedding ceremonies and marquee weddings.
· Vintage vehicles breaking down.
· Best Men forgetting where they’ve placed the wedding rings for safe-keeping.
· Immediate family members falling ill just before or during a wedding.
· Bridesmaids dress fastenings malfunctioning.
Responding to and quickly resolving such issues with minimal fuss is a part of the everyday joy of making things happen. Never underestimate how resilient your team of suppliers will be or the extent to which you can expect to rely on them and what they can absorb, especially during the toughest of times.
I AM HERE TO HELP
For many people, wedding planning is a stressful undertaking, even at the best of times.
You need to have a high tolerance to stressful situations to be able to cope with the impact of a global pandemic in the midst of your wedding plans. It will almost certainly diminish your resilience and optimism. With this in mind, I would like to offer an hour of my time to any couple needing advice or guidance. This offer comes with absolutely no obligation and is entirely free of charge. Whatever stage of the wedding planning process you are at and whatever you choose to devote the time to is up to you. I am happy to share my wedding planning knowledge and experience with couples who would appreciate some support during these challenging times.
You are welcome to call me on 07561 107888 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.