Wedding planning is always overwhelming and stressful but Planning a Wedding during Covid adds a layer of uncertainty as well. How can you be expected to plan a wedding when you don’t know when your state will open up or if it will close down again the future. This blog will arm you with all of the questions you should be asking your Venue and your Vendors to plan a Wedding during uncertain times.
POSTPONING, RESCHEDULEING AND CANCELLING
One thing I saw happen when Covid first caused Venues to shut down was Couples loosing their deposits, through no fault of their own. It’s standard practice for Vendors to have Non-Refundable Deposits and Non-Transferable clauses in their contracts. Typically a Deposit holds a date for the couple, that means the Vendor cannot offer that day to any other Client. So in the event that you cancel your Wedding the Vendor keeps the deposit because they were unable to offer that date to any other potential client. One thing I saw happen when Covid first caused Venues to shut down was Couples loosing their deposits, through no fault of their own. Vendors will not return deposits for cancelled Weddings and may even require a fee or new deposit to Reschedule the date. So my biggest piece of advice is to check with your Vendors and ask what their policies are on Postponing your date, Transferring Deposits to the new date and if they charge Reschedule fees. Then make sure that these policies are stated in the contract as well.
I have advised all of my clients to Postpone first. If they reschedule the date and I am not available, I have a group of Photographers that will cover any dates I cannot make. I feel like my biggest job is to make sure the wedding day is stress free, so if I can prepare for the worst it’s one less thing that my clients have to worry about. But I also think that Wedding Photography is very personal so I will definitely refund the deposit to any couple that does not want to Reschedule with one of my Photographer friends. I have also decided to refund any client that has decided to cancel their wedding altogether.
Talk to your Vendors about how they will ensure your safety and that of your guests. First decide if you will require your guests to wear masks. If you decide not to ask guests to wear masks, make sure that your Vendors feel comfortable being around maskless guests. Please respect peoples decisions here, we do not know what their personal lives are and if they are at risk or live with people that are at risk. Next make sure that your Vendors will wear masks. This is really for your safety, since they may have worked a Wedding the weekend before. Vendors come in to contact with lots of people at the many events we work each month. I put together this list of things I will be doing to ensure your safety during photo sessions.
1. I’ll do my best to ensure we stay 6ft a part as much as possible. I’m probably going to pull out my 85mm lens and use that a lot more.
2. I will always wear a mask and encourage you to do so as well (while we’re walking to a location, not while shooting). If for some reason you can’t hear me and I need to move my mask, I will ask you first if it’s okay.
3. I won’t be holding your stuff anymore. This is going to be the hardest one. As soon as I get out of my car I’m usually like OMG WHAT DO YOU NEED ME TO HOLD, but I will no longer be able to help you with stuff so I recommend bringing a large bag that you don’t mind putting on the floor, or getting dirty.
4. I normally love to show my clients the back of my camera to encourage you and give you confidence that you look bomb af, but in order to stay distant, and not have you touch my camera I won’t be doing that anymore.
5. I’ll have lots of hand sanitizer.