Should I cancel my wedding because of Coronavirus – Part 2
In Part 2 of our Blog series on Coronavirus we’re going to talk about the options you have in adapting your wedding event. You can read Part 1 here – Should I cancel my wedding due to Coronavirus?
By now you’re probably well aware that the Government has enforced new Stage 2 restriction measures to slow the spread of Coronavirus.
Stage 2 of Australia’s Coronavirus lockdown is seeing most ‘non-essential’ services being closed. They have also issues stricter measures that mean gatherings between people are prohibited, both indoors and outdoors.
In situations where people are not able to avoid gathering, a distance of 4 metres must be maintained between people.
Additionally, no more than 5 people will be able to attend, as we can read in this article – Coronavirus wedding limits.
Unfortunately, for the large majority of weddings, this means they will need to seriously rethink how they are holding their event, if not moving to cancel it altogether.
This includes the couple, celebrant, their witness, and 1 more person. But not all is lost for couples who want to push on and get married. Read on for more.
Now, lets be clear – every state is different at this stage
Even though there is a national cabinet that meets regularly to coordinate each state’s Queensland has not yet matched the actions of New South Wales and Victoria.
Western Australia, the Northern Territory, and the ACT are also yet to bring the same measures into play. But is highly likely that similar actions will be taken over the next few days to a week.
Remember – always follow the health advice set out by the relevant authorities, but be sure to be mindful of your situation and those around you. We must all work towards beating this thing together.
Option 1 – Hurry up and get married
Some couples raced to hold their wedding before the new restrictions came in to play.
Getting married is understandably something a lot of couples want to get out of the way, so there were many reports of couples scrambling to move their date forward.
Sadly, if you have missed the cutoff, this is no longer an option. But it may be for the best considering that the safety of you, and your guests, is at risk.
Option 2 – Postpone your event
As we said in Part 1, this is the most sensible option.
This is easily done if you are at the beginning of the booking process.
But doing so may be much more difficult if you have already made some or all of your bookings.
Being able to take this option depends on the terms of your bookings.
Keep in mind that postponing does not necessarily mean you are cancelling.
We have been contacted by numerous customers asking if we were willing to work with them on changing the date, or even changing the nature of their booking.
Yes, some suppliers may be willing to work with you under these unusual circumstances.
But we’re also hearing mixed stories. Some suppliers are declining to offer any help, and we think its a real shame, even if somewhat understandable. You’d hope they’d at least be willing to try…
So, how do you go about asking to postpone your wedding?
Check the terms that you agreed to when you make your booking, get your ducks in order, and then contact your suppliers.
We’ll be writing an email you can use in the part 3 of our Coronavirus series.
Explain to them that the situation is not leaving you with much choice.
Then politely ask if they are able to work with you on changing your wedding date to one of a few options you have pre-selected.
The default position of most suppliers will be that they will be unwilling to d0 so. Most are also highly unlikely to want to return your deposits and payment.
This is understandable in light of the current circumstances, as they are a business after all.
We would hope that more suppliers can offer this to those in distress right now. But without knowing their unique financial situation, its hard to say whether it is even possible for them to do so.
We must all remember that we are all in a precarious position.
So, what you are looking for here is to reach a compromise. One where you can both move forward and feel positive about the decision.
Have your list of dates available and ask if any of them work for them first.
For example – we are more than happy to work with anyone who has booked with us on moving their date providing we have availability.
Many suppliers are currently making offers to work with their clients as best they can.
We are proud to say that we’re supporting date changes wherever possible.
We can only imagine the stress and sadness having to postpone your special day must cause, so it’s the least we can do.
Option 3 – Ask for a credit
As they say, those who do not ask do not receive.
Following on from the above advice on reaching a compromise, ask if the supplier is able to provide you with a credit.
You’d be surprised at how much easier this is to agree to than changing the date. And much more than cancelling and returning a deposit.
Just be sure to agree on the terms of the credit – if there are date or time limits involved. Aim for none if possible.
Also, don’t be afraid to negotiate.
Option 4 – Change your event
It might not be what you had planned, but perhaps you might be able to change the plan for your event.
Please note – we don’t recommend you gather socially at this stage. But in the coming months it may be a viable option for those who still want to get married ASAP. Remember, it’s always best to follow the health recommendations given to us by the government.
What is an elopement? An elopement is a much smaller event, sometimes with as little as 4 people – the bride, groom, a celebrant, and of course the wedding photographer.
Elopements are cost-effective in terms of value, very affordable for most people at a small fraction of the cost of a full wedding, and can be held almost anywhere in public.
or meet at an outdoor venue instead of holding your wedding indoors.
Option 5 – Cancel your event
If at all possible you should avoid cancelling your wedding.
Completely cancelling your event means you will lose out on your booking money and the chance to get a credit or postpone your wedding.
Understandably this is something that you will want to avoid at all costs.
So, go back to Option 2 and Option 3 In this situation you again have to contact your suppliers and ask them if they can do anything.
We’re unfortunately unable to cancel everyones bookings, as this would severely damage our business moving forward.
But we are determined to do our best, so we are offering all of our couples a credit to use for their future booking.
If they haven’t booked an engagement shoot we’re also offering them the option to enjoy one of those too as a nice positive thing to look forward to after all of this is done.
And if you have booked, had your engagement shoot, and then had to cancel or postpone – we can do another one!
It’s nice to do something small for someone who’s had a bad experience. One lovely lady who has booked with us told us she could almost cry at
Where to from here
We want to remind everyone that this too shall pass. We truly hope this horrible event is over as soon as it can be.
It’s also important to remember to do what we can to help those who are doing it tough. Even small things. Just be mindful that we’re all in this together.
Sending all of our best! Stay safe out there. Lots of hand washing and social distancing.
Also – look or Part 3 soon!
Tom + Abbie
We are specialists in Brisbane wedding photography, and are proud to say we’re here to help couples with their photo and video packages as Brisbane Wedding Photographers – before, during and after we get through these unusual times.