Your wedding is affected by COVID-19? Confused how to postpone your wedding? We feel you and we hear you and we created an in-depth guide for you right here! Watch out for our free infographic guide and template below we and Ram Marcelo Photography prepared for you!
We’ve collaborated with Save Events PH, a group of top wedding coordinators and we went live on Facebook to give you answers. We had Kutchie Zaldarriaga of Getting Married Wedding Coordinators & Event Planners / Getting Married Bridal Fair and Voltaire Zalamea of Events and Concepts by Voltaire Zalamea who gave us valuable insights that are so helpful. Thank you so much! Thank you also to Ayie Tuates of Imbitado Events and Darlene Salazar – Tan of The Wedding Tip Sheet for hosting and facilitating the discussion.
If you were not one of the 12K (!!!) who benefited and went live with us and completely missed it, worry not as we’re here to give you a recap / cliff notes of the step-by-step guide how to postpone your wedding.
Disclaimer: Note that these advices are not one-size-fits-all solutions. It’s a case-to-case basis every time. Best to consult personally with your wedding coordinator. You can also send out your specific questions to Save Events PH and they would love to help you out. 🙂
#1: Should I cancel my wedding altogether?
Darlene advises us ask ourselves:
1. Is my wedding a milestone I would rather not mark with family and friends?
2. Do I want to look back on every anniversary thinking about the problem that caused me to cancel my planned wedding?
3. Do I want to keep thinking of when I can do our renewal of vows and finally walk down the aisle and celebrate with loved ones?
4. Would I be ok with waiting a bit more and rescheduling at a date that’s better for me, for the groom, and the people supportive of our union?
Answering these questions will help you make a decision you won’t regret in the long run.
#2: Should I postpone my wedding? When should I start making a plan B?
For weddings scheduled after the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) period (June, July, and onwards): First, Kutchie calls us to ask ourselves, “What are my non-negotiables?”
The answer is different for everyone. For couples who are based abroad or have VIP guests who are based there, be updated on travel restrictions. Do you want to push through your date even if there’s a big possibility that your guest list would be downsized? Is your date a special one that you don’t want to let go of?
At any point, I think it’s safe to say there will adjustments more or less anyway. So let’s be ready to adapt. The government may have new announcements. Your suppliers might have new policies that support social distancing even long after the ECQ. Your guests may still be worried about their safety with mass gatherings. If you do consider keeping your original date, be ready to provide alcohol / sanitizers for your guests and all that precaution. Everyone’s safety should be a top concern.
To help, we created this guide to help you decide if postponing your wedding would be best for you right now! Click here to download a full copy.
“The name of the game is flexibility.” – Kutchie Zaldarriaga
#3: How do I postpone my wedding? What are the exact steps?
You’ll need a table like this (You can download this FREE template here):
1. List down 3-5 new date options. These dates should be based on:
– availability of important guests / family / entourage / feng shui
– travel restrictions of countries you’re based in and also the travel restrictions of family members, principal sponsors, and entourage, etc.
– availability of church / venues and legal documents (allot time for processing since some churches and civil registries have no office so they can’t give definite answers at the moment)
Consider weekdays to increase chances of availability of your suppliers. Consider contracts and any added fees (there are usually fees for 2020 turned 2021 weddings).
2. Inquire on the availability of your suppliers and tick off their availability on your table. Ask if they have a second team that can serve you (Just in case they’re not available and just so you don’t flush that downpayment down the drain).
3. Decide on the best date depending on which fits most people, if not all. Prioritization is key here. Accept that you’re gonna have to let go of some suppliers (and your downpayment/s, depending on your contracts).
4. Inform your suppliers formally re: the new date, time slots, and venues — even those who aren’t free so they know their services won’t be needed anymore. Better to do this via email and put everyone on cc. Again, be ready for the possibility that you will not get a refund of your reservation fee and be ready to pay any extra fees based on the contract.
5. Transfer any payments required for changing the date and request from each supplier a new contract or an official addemdum to your contract that includes your new date and other changes to your event — Just so everything’s sealed.
6. Once the new date has been finalized, inform your family, entourage, and principal sponsors and the guests of the new date. You may send personal messages first or via FB event page or group chat. You may follow through with a printed invitation (first page details only). If you haven’t had them printed yet, have them revised and ready for printing with the new date.
#4: The big question: Can I get a refund from my wedding suppliers?
– Suppliers already reserved a slot for you, so definitely there is an opportunity cost that needs to be covered there.
– Even if the wedding can’t happen on the original date, the supplier could have gotten a different couple more willing to reschedule and not to cancel.
– Most contracts state that reservation fees are nonrefundable. Go back to the contracts you have and check on each of your suppliers’ terms.
According to this official letter from DTI (c/o of Ms. Lia Del Castillo), clients and wedding suppliers are to honor the original legally-binding contract. However, wedding suppliers encouraged to extend goodwill and leeways to their clients. You have to remember that there are losses for everyone here, not just you.
#5: How about the validity of our marriage license and other legal / church documents?
As of yet, we cannot speak for sure in behalf of these offices as most of them are closed at this time. They also have different policies for each city. Let’s be optimistic that they will be able to give leeways as we are in a national pandemic. Worst case is you just need to apply for a renewal which would be easy.
#6: How can I move forward with wedding planning while on lockdown?
1. If your list of suppliers is not complete: now’s the time to research and complete it. Join a reputable community like Weddings at Work so you can read feedback regarding suppliers. Read The Wedding Tip Sheet for things you need to watch out for or things you can do.
2. Encode your guest list. Separate surname and first name for alphabetizing. Include contact details for RSVP purposes later on.
3. Plan the contents and design of your invitation.
4. Select and plot the songs you’d like to use for major parts of your ceremony and reception.
5. Hold online meetings with your suppliers. Get to know them and discuss your wedding. This is the time that they have a wide free schedule!
6. Follow Save Events PH for helpful planning tips. The events industry is united to share happiness and positive planning tips to soon-to-wed couples.
For more tips and wedding planning tasks you can do while in lockdown, download our free guide below.
Let’s remember that this too shall pass. Don’t panic. The key here is resiliency, flexibility, patience and focusing on the task ahead. Have faith and pray hard. And as we say again and again, we’re here for you. We’re all in this together.
You can rewatch the FB live video right here: