Coronavirus & Your Wedding: What to Do & How to Prepare

March 15, 2020

The coronavirus has spread all over the world in a very short period of time. It’s affected travel, both small & large businesses, major sporting events, & even smaller, more local events & gatherings. If the coronavirus is going to affect your wedding or if it may affect your wedding, what can you do? Learn more about wedding insurance, travel insurance, reducing your guest list, rescheduling, & other options.

The Importance of Wedding Insurance

Just to be clear, wedding insurance won’t directly cover the coronavirus. It just really depends on the policy. If you have wedding insurance, definitely check with your policy about what it covers & doesn’t. If you have a wedding coming up in the next few weeks & don’t already have insurance, getting it now will probably not do you much good.

I highly recommend wedding insurance for most couples, even when there isn’t the coronavirus to worry about. Wedding insurance policies vary. But most wedding insurance policies will cover things that are out of your control. Wedding insurance will cover things such as event cancellation or postponing due to circumstances outside of your control, accidents that may happen, issues with wedding vendors, damage to venues or other property, lost or stolen items, as well as a variety of other things that could happen.

Wedding insurance usually won’t cover issues with people pulling out or getting cold feet. It will cost between $200-500. You can find policies through online insurance agencies that are wedding specific, but first you might want to check with local insurance agents as you may be able to add on to policies that you already have.

Learn more about wedding insurance options on Nerd Wallet.

Travel Insurance for Destination Weddings

Wedding insurance won’t cover everything, especially if you or guests are traveling to various destinations, near or far. Travel insurance is recommended for destination weddings because while wedding insurance might help you out if something happens to vendors or the location, it won’t help you reschedule or get your money back for things like flights, accommodations, rental cars, & other related things. Travel insurance will not only help if you need to cancel or reschedule but can also help with medical treatment, evacuations, & can even protect gifts & other valuables while you are traveling.

Learn more about travel insurance options on Nerd Wallet.

Working with Your Wedding Vendors to Reschedule

If it comes down to it & you do need to reschedule your wedding, due to the current situation, most vendors are willing to work with you to reschedule your wedding date if need be. Keep in mind that many wedding vendors do not take deposits (which can be refundable) but rather take retainers & initial payments (which are usually not refundable). So if you do need to cancel, that’s where wedding insurance can come in with helping you get your retainers & initial payments back.

If at all possible, it will usually work for more vendors to reschedule to a Sunday, Friday, or another weekday. For traditional wedding vendors, Saturdays are usually the first days booked. This coronavirus is going to affect a lot of the economy, especially small businesses & almost every wedding vendor is a small business. So working with your vendors to come up with a plan that works for both of you will be your best bet. We all want you to have an amazing wedding day & are always willing to work with you to make that happen!

What to Do if You Can’t Reschedule

The CDC in the United State recently release this statement on March 15, 2020: “CDC, in accordance with its guidance for large events & mass gatherings, recommends that for the next 8 weeks, organizers (whether groups or individuals) cancel or postpone in-person events that consist of 50 people or more throughout the United States.” This applies to weddings as well & they are recommending to scale down events to less than 50 people until May 10, 2020. Keep in mind that this can change at any time and you should keep an eye out for the latest updates & news from the CDC. 

There may be a variety of circumstances where you just can’t seem to reschedule. You may need to narrow down your guest list. To narrow down your guest list, make private notes of who absolutely, 100%, no matter what, needs to be there. Then make a list of who you’d really love to have there. And finally, of your existing guest list, make note of those who you could probably do without. Depending on what happens over the next few days, weeks, or months, you may have to drastically cut your guest list.

Coronavirus & Elopements

Coronavirus is having an effect even on small elopements. It is mainly affecting destination elopements & especially situations where there are photographers, guests, or couples coming & going from different countries. If you’ve hired an elopement photographer, make sure they have a backup plan in place. Many photographers can help you find someone to shoot your elopement but they’ll do the editing so you still get a similar style of photographs. For more local & domestic elopements, I don’t see coronavirus having as much of an effect. But things can always change. Elopements are much smaller events & many times just involve the couple, a photographer, & sometimes an officiant as needed. 

Elopements are a very valid option for getting married & if the situation calls for it, you can still have an amazing wedding with an elopement. If you are in a situation & you don’t know what to do, please reach out to your vendors, most are very accommodating. If you are leaning towards eloping & have questions about it, feel free to drop your questions in the comments & I’d be happy to help in any way I can.

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