Today we’re talking about navigating your destination wedding during Covid-19. Never in a million years did I think I’d be writing a blog post about wedding planning during a pandemic. It’s nuts!
You’re engaged! It should be the most exciting time of your life. You’ve made the decision to have your destination wedding on the gorgeous Outer Banks of North Carolina. And then comes along Covid-19. We know this is an uncertain and stressful time, not just for couples planning their OBX wedding, but for couples all around the world.
So at this point you’re probably thinking….well now what? How in the world do I move forward? First and foremost, try not to panic. We know, it’s easier said than done, but we’re all in this together!
Have you already planned a spring 2020 wedding?
If your wedding is planned for March or April of 2020 you’ve likely already made the decision to postpone. With most non-essential businesses being ordered to close the likelihood of this clearing up in time for those early spring weddings is pretty slim. If your wedding is planned for June, many of us are holding out hope, but it’s better to be prepared.
First things first, reach out to your vendors.
Even if your wedding is still a ways out and you aren’t ready to postpone your date yet, please go ahead and contact your vendors. One of your first calls should be to your wedding planner. If you don’t have a wedding planner it’s going to be up to you to coordinate with all your vendors. It’s important to review your contract and discuss options with them so you’re prepared if you do need to move your wedding date.
Go ahead and pick an alternate date.
This is the situation no couple wants to find themselves in but it’s better to be safe than sorry. The reality is we just have NO IDEA how long this situation is going to last. Discuss with your fiance and VIP guests about the possibility of moving your date and talk about what would be best. Next, reach out to your venue and see what they have available in the event your date needs to be moved. From there you’ll check with your vendors and coordinate what date everyone is open.
It’s very important to remember that you WILL likely have to be flexible about your alternate date. If you aren’t interested in pushing to 2021 you might find you’re going to have to choose a Friday, Sunday, or even a weekday. Rest assured this is NOT a problem here on the OBX. With 99% of all our weddings being destination couples, many of our weddings are already on weekdays as guests are typically arriving on a Saturday or Sunday and staying an entire week anyway.
If you decide it’s best to move your date, do it, don’t delay.
The OBX Is a hot wedding destination, and right now a lot of couples are in the same situation as you. As venues/vendors share their availability with couples needing to move their date it’s important you don’t delay. A lot of couples are also trying to shuffle their wedding around and we’d hate for you to spend a week or more deliberating on a date only to find it went to someone who was ready to make the move right then.
It’s gonna be OK. We’re all in this together.
I’m going to say it louder for the people in the back who really need to hear it…..it’s gonna be OK. I know it doesn’t feel like it right now, but it will. It’s ok be mad, sad, upset, frustrated. It’s ok to cry and feel a little selfish about having to change your plans for the biggest day of your life. It’s OK.
The Outer Banks Wedding community is fiercely loyal and committed to our couples and one another. We always have each other’s back and we’re all doing everything in our power to make sure all our couples get to have the day they’ve dreamed of. We are on weekly (if not daily!) phone calls and video conferences to keep ahead of this thing and make sure we’re there to step in when needed.
So where do things stand for our CHP couples?
Firstly, I just want to give a big high-five to all of our couples who have been affected by this. The kindness and grace they’ve been showing not only us, but all their vendors has been incredible. We know this is stressful and upsetting, but they are a constant reminder of why we do what we do.
At this point all of our spring weddings who needed to move, have been moved. Some are ready to go with an alternate date penciled in should we need it. We are determined to making sure our couples get their dream day, even if it’s not on the date they originally planned! Some couples have opted to try for later in 2020 while others have opted to just go ahead and push to 2021. We want you to know either option is fine! We are completely committed to your day, and are fully prepared to take on fewer 2021 weddings if it means making sure our couples get their day!
What about those newly engaged couples who were just starting to plan?
We feel for you! If you’re on the fence about having a big wedding with everything that’s going on, an intimate elopement is just as amazing. We photograph events of ALL sizes – from just the two of you to just your nearest and dearest. This is the perfect solution for couples who don’t want to wait and still want to be married in 2020. We absolutely LOVE to travel and if you decide the OBX isn’t for you, we’re happy to come to wherever you choose!
If you still want to plan a big Outer Banks wedding, we’d suggest avoiding the stress and go ahead and plan for 2021! You won’t be competing for dates with couples who’ve had to move their wedding, and you won’t have the fear of potentially still needing to move your wedding.
PURCHASE WEDDING INSURANCE!!!!!!!
Those of you who are current CHP clients know this PSA is part of my info forms, my conversations, and even part of my contract. I preach about this all.the.time. Obviously we can’t require that you purchase it, but it’s so important to have. Yes, we know as of now underwriters still haven’t decided if CV-19 is going to be something they cover. We know it won’t cover new policies, but we are very hopeful for couples who purchased insurance at the start of their planning, something will be covered should part of your wedding need to be reimbursed. We know this is out of a couple’s control and something they never planned for. But, in our 10+ years of photographing weddings we’ve never had a cancellation that a couple “planned for”. 😉
We hope this answers some questions and brings a little hope to couples that no matter what, they WILL get married and it will be wonderful! ❤️