Contingency Planning for Postponed Weddings

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In the midst of the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19, couples have had to postpone their weddings and special events with no compass to guide them. Industry professionals have come a long way since the early part of 2020, but we are all still in the midst of developing strategies and protocols surrounding the pandemic.

Based on our experience, along with research, our team has combined supportive tips in this article, to share in an effort to provide knowledge for couples going through a postponement.

The following steps will hopefully give some clarity for couples struggling to figure out what to do in the center of uncertainty.

Step 1: Venue

  • Inform your venue contact of your decision to postpone your wedding and discuss new dates available.
    • Tips for discussion:
      • Confirmation of new room rates for guests.
      • Availability of pre-contracted spaces.
      • Cancellation and/or postpone policies for future concerns.
      • Contracted food and beverage minimum flexibility (as guests counts may not be the same for the new date).

Step 2: Guest Announcements

  • Inform your guests of the family’s decision to postpone.
    • Tips for announcement:
      • If you have a wedding website, ensure it is updated.
      • Place personal phone calls to those who are not tech savvy.

Step 3: Date Confirmation

  • When choosing a new date with your venue, ensure you receive at least three date options to start. Landing on a new date is difficult, and having more than one date option will support you in locking a new weekend in quickly.
    • Tips:
      • Confirm with immediate family and wedding party if the dates are available for their schedules.
      • Confirm the new date options with all your hired professionals.
        • Once all or the majority of your vendors confirm ask them for a ‘courtesy hold’ while you square up the addendum with the venue.

Step 4: Financials

  • Most venues and vendors have banded together to support their clients in making postponements as seamless as possible. Most of what our office has experienced, is clients deposits being shifted to the new date, and no additional fees incurred. There are exceptions to this, and it is important to consider the following:
    • Does your wedding fall under force majeure? Consider the location in which your wedding is taking place – what phase of opening up are they in?
      • Force Majeure clauses for some properties can get tricky and it is important to have conversations with your property and planner on the specifics to protecting your investment on you expected experience.
    • Discuss with your vendors regarding their deposits and expectations of new deposit schedules proceeding forward.

Step 5: Regroup

  • Once you have settled on a new date and the addendum is signed with your venue, it is important to circle back with your family, guests and vendors to ensure everyone is on the same page.
    • Family + Guests: Send out a formal announcement to request a new ‘save-the-date’. If you have a new room block link, ensure it is updated on your wedding website.
    • Vendors: Request addendums with the revised dates and contract details noted. This will be supportive of all parties, avoiding confusion when the new date arrives.

While no couple deserves to have to postpone their dream wedding, our team is committed to supporting anyway we can during the process.

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