Yes, the pandemic has had some pretty varying effects on our relationships. While some partners have been tested, others have grown closer to each other. It may seem like an odd time to get engaged, but actually, that’s been the experience for a lot of couples, either kept apart or thrown together through lockdown procedures. It’s great to hear that the wedding planning industry won’t be affected for too long then. And while there’s little else to do, socially, lockdown and isolation may be the perfect time to knuckle down and plan your wedding. Here are some things to think about.
Step one — Think about your budget
The first step is always determining what you can afford, which will guide much of the planning process going forward.
List down all the possible expenses you might incur.
You can then choose appropriate caterers, venues, bands, and photographers, etc.
Research appropriate costs and you can split up your budget accordingly.
For instance, the trend for flowers is to spend about 5% of the total wedding budget on arrangements for the big day.
Step two – Choose the time of year and day you want the date
Select a time of year and day of the week you’d like to host your wedding.
This is about pinpointing the season, but also the month and the day of the week you think would be best for your guests to attend.
You might even narrow it down to a particular week or day, but it’s important not to get too attached to a specific date, so you can have at least a flexible element to your planning, particularly as venue searching begins.
It’s good to have a ballpark figure in mind, however, so it will give you pricing and availability indicators and ultimately help you narrow down options.
Another factor to think about when it comes to wedding dates is that COVID-19 could add some fluidity to your plans.
A lot of venues are now offering back-up dates as a contingency for last-minute restrictions or local flare-ups.
That’s something to keep in the back of your mind if you’re hoping to get married before the end of the year.
Step three — Book a venue
Venue restrictions are the biggest hurdle to jump with planning your wedding.
While you’re in isolation, so are others, including businesses who have had to curtail operations while things get under control.
This can delay your own plans and planning process.
However, if you’ve got a date in mind, it’s possible the venue can give you a tour.
Doing a reccy is the ideal option, as it gives you the best sense of space and places where you want speeches, cake cutting or ceremonial elements to take place, as well as potential photo opportunities.
However, if they can’t give you a physical tour, ask for a virtual one instead.
Venue operators and agents can FaceTime you while they explain the venue’s characteristics or they might even have an online tour already set up.
As the latter half of 2020 and 2021 dates are getting popular, you should lock-in that date at your venue of choice now, particularly if you want to get married before the end of the year.
Step Four — Start hiring and shopping
As with the venues, photographers, florist companies, caterers and other contractors may be starting to get requests earlier.
If you’re planning on getting a professional to plan your wedding, now would be a good time to snap one up.
Having someone to plan your wedding at these uncertain times, whose job it is to keep things running smoothly, may actually be well worth it.
For that reason pick a longstanding professional photographer too, who can advise on all the best, and sometimes secret, locations and angles to make your wedding memories last extra-special long.
For wedding dresses, there’s probably no other more fun pass time than browsing for fancy frocks online.
Many boutiques will ship these to your address and offer try before you buy options.
Step Five — Celebrate your engagement
If you’ve just got engaged, then remember that’s a celebration in itself.
Maybe you haven’t had the chance to celebrate with family or friends — or perhaps you’ve already had a virtual party to mark it — but ahead of the actual date why not throw something smaller as a precursor to the big day.
It will help you ease into celebrations and get used to socially distanced table arrangements or contactless services like buffets and self-service.
And it will help you feel that one step closer to making your dream wedding a reality.