The global pandemic has brought about a new way of life, as well as a new form of wedding planning. Weddings during COVID-19 have been impacted immensely, and your wedding vendors know that all too well. From wedding dress designers offering virtual consults to wedding venues providing temperature checking and socially distanced set-ups, we now have to consider many factors that we never had to a year ago. Even caterers are shifting from plated meals to boxed suppers for the grand wedding meal.
From the wedding date, wedding shower, venue, ceremony, reception, size of the gathering, and/or even the wedding dress, your wedding plans have most likely changed, and your big wedding (and guest count) have probably gotten a little smaller. Your dream wedding might be out of reach, but the wedding industry is adapting to the times and is getting creative with its COVID-19 wedding options. Here’s a slew of new services being offered by traditional wedding vendors in the post-COVID-19 world.
Where venues were once giving you options for an increasing guest list, all venues are restricted now to local COVID-19 compliant guest numbers within a given space. In addition to an extra focus on cleanliness, they also offer sanitization stations around the venue and automated entryways, motion-detecting faucets, an ample supply of gloves and masks, and other avenues to reduce any touchpoints for infection. And, all this at no additional cost as it has now become a necessity.
To adhere to six-foot social distancing rules, guests are spaced out by household and time of arrival to the venue, and that dictates seating arrangements at the ceremony. Weddings are turning into intimate affairs by default, even within larger venues, as attendance capacity is limited by law. In terms of wedding pros, the removal of a large gathering does allow for, some involved design concepts as far as venue décor and other onsite arrangements now that the space is available to indulge in that facet of the wedding.
With more money to spend on a smaller wedding guest list, vendors are now offering additional services to make your loved ones feel special. From pre-wedding care bags accompanying wedding announcements to dinners delivered at home to enjoy with the couple while the wedding ceremony is live-streamed, vendors are ensuring that your guests are still a big part of your wedding. As a result, digital registries and options for cash gifting are more in demand now.
Buffet and family-style dining are a thing of the past as caterers now offer more distanced options, including pre-plated meals, boxed celebration dinners, and packaged snacks, as opposed to shared plates and passed bites. Even the wedding menu tasting is now pre-delivered. Open bars are giving way to a predetermined drink menu presented to guests across the duration of the event to reduce any chances of cross-contamination in handling multiple individual drink orders.
Sharing details of the day’s agenda is more important now than ever. Vendors are offering messaging services to inform guests of their arrival, seating, and departure times, the preferred mode of greeting (since hugs and handshakes are now frowned upon), and detailed instructions on how they can prepare and participate onsite or from afar. This includes information on safety measures, social distancing, face coverings, and temperature checks to address any concerns.
Dance floors are now provided in a designated spot close to your seating space, to restrict movement and overcrowding. Entertainment options, such as live music that can be enjoyed from a distance, are in demand. Photo booths with props and other interactive group options are completely off the table, but vendors are offering table games to be played within your party or quizzes and app-based games to be played between guests, but from their own devices.
Everything from shopping for the couple’s wedding day looks, as well as customization of the wedding party’s gowns and suits, are all being offered virtually. Fitting sessions are being provided at home and socially distanced, with the wedding garments being delivered to your doorstep. Where these services might have previously rendered a hefty fee added to your budget, this is now being offered as part of regular services, since visiting stores is somewhat restricted.
Previously this would have been the sound and music system and requirements for the photography and videography team, but now live streaming options, video chat, recording and live photography via webcams, as well as drone photography, are all being made available by wedding vendors when it comes to the technology aspect. Virtual reality solutions are making their presence felt with headsets giving guests a way to feel immersed in the wedding experience.
Planning a wedding is now a different process, keeping in mind local health and safety regulations. Vendors are doing their best to stay on top of the ever-changing landscape that is the global pandemic, while also serving customers and adhering to local laws. If you’re going ahead with wedding planning in the next few months, these post-COVID-19 services are at your disposal. Make the most of it in planning your special day.