Weddings by their very nature are an event where close proximity occurs with numerous people for a sustained period of time. Greetings, congratulating, drinking, dancing, kissing and hugging are all part and parcel of the wedding day.
It would be naïve to think that when the lockdown is lifted that everything will go back to normal straight away. There’s no getting around it, Covid-19 unfortunately will continue to have implications for all of us, including the events industry and in particular weddings until a vaccine is widely available.
You may be one of the lucky ones who is still able to get married in 2020, albeit later in the year. The government will share updated information about this. But it is feasible that there may still be restrictions on the number of guests who can attend, as well as specific advice for elderly and vulnerable guests. That being said we know Covid-19 does not discriminate and sadly victims have been young, fit and otherwise healthy.
Weddings bring together the most important people in your lives, so we have some suggestions on how to make sure your wedding is SAFELY filled with joy, love and happiness!
Before you do anything, you need to do the following:
• Speak with your venue(s) – When venues and places of worship re-open, they are more than likely going to have new health and safety guidelines for them to adhere to. Some of these may affect the way you intended to have your ceremony or the day itself. Check with your venue what their new safety precautions are. Ask what you and your guests can do to help maintain these guidelines, so you are all on the same page. This may be small things like keeping a certain distance when queuing for the bar.
If you are getting married in a religious building, they will also have their own regulations. Individual Churches have their own preferred way of working, some allow no photographers/videographers within a certain distance of the ceremony itself. It is important to check protocol with who is conducting the ceremony before the date and relay this information back to your suppliers and guests.
• Speak with your suppliers – Your suppliers are the crucial figures in how your day will pan out. From make-up artists to magicians. There will be a whole host of health and safety precautions which need to be considered. Ask each of your suppliers how the Covid-19 situation will affect the way they supply their service to you. Will anything change? How will they work differently on the day? What further measures will they put in place to ensure they work as safely as possible?
• Check the most up to date advice on the government website and NHS England. Make sure you are fully aware of how your day can go ahead safely. Read the advice carefully and distribute it to your guests ahead of the day so they understand fully.
Makeup Artist: Make sure you and your bridal party are honest with your MUA. Are you all fit and well? Is there a possibility to use more disposable applicators? They will have their own system for sanitation whilst working in-between clients. But perhaps your MUA will need a longer amount of time on the day to fully sanitize all brushes and applicators between each person? Make sure you have enough time in the morning. Liaise with your MUA and let them guide you on best practice.
Switch Up Your Exit: We get it, you’ve just got married. Everyone wants to come and congratulate you. Perhaps switching up your exit could be less risky? Instead of lots of kissing, face touching and hand shaking with a receiving line. Consider exiting straight into confetti. Guests can then shower you in petals instead of showering you in kisses.
Seating Plan: Speak with your venue and check the recommended guidelines at the time of your wedding. Do you need to move certain guests away from others? Do you need to space out guests on the tables more? Round tables would allow guests to sit slightly further apart, could this be an option on your day?
Communal Food: Weddings often mean lots of eating and drinking. But how could communal food be safer? Speak with your venue about the health and safety. Perhaps food could be protected and covered up for longer? Could catering staff supervise and distribute safely. Candy buffets are a popular option at weddings, however how hygienic are they? Maybe only having wrapped sweets on offer could help to reduce risk. Also if children were being supervised at these stations this could also reduce risk.
Guests using the same glass: Perhaps your guests could use the same drinking glass for the duration of the day? This would help with staffing, glass collecting, and significantly reduce risk on your day. Also, when cheers-ing avoid glasses touching. More Salut! than Cheers ‘clink’
Cake: The traditional wedding cake is still as popular as ever, but it doesn’t need to be left out all day? Think how many people in the course of the day come in close proximity to it. Over the years we’ve witnessed the occasional kid poke it and guest sneeze nearby. Your cake could remain covered and kept in the kitchen safely, then brought out making an entrance for the traditional ‘cutting of the cake’. Then back into the safety of the kitchen for it to be cut by staff for your guests to enjoy.
Bubbles: Lots of people all blowing at the same time in a confined space. Maybe best to keep the bubble blowing outside or better still switch it up for confetti or sparklers’.
We hope these tips were useful, to just make you think a little more about the precautions we could all take to ensure a safer wedding day. We are not medical experts, but have many years experience filming and photographing weddings. So these are just a few ideas which we hope can help. It would be great to hear any further suggestions you may have.
If you have any questions feel free to get in touch.