A wedding should always be a fun occasion, full of laughter & happiness on what will undoubtedly be the happiest day of a couple's lives. The current Covid-19 pandemic, however, has caused huge disappointment to couples that were forced to postpone their day and has left them confused and unsure about how to rearrange their date. Likewise, the current situation has caused huge uncertainty to wedding suppliers as they consider in what way they will need to adapt their business when weddings resume again.
There is good news however. We have seen couples and suppliers working together to accommodate date changes and, although the countdown clock may have been reset, we will still have magical weddings to look forward to. We are in this together and by working together we can ensure that future weddings will once again be full of joy & happiness, the way they should always be. Over the last few weeks, Wedding Suppliers have been busy helping couples with date changes but a lot more has been going on behind the scenes. Suppliers have been busy networking online to keep up to date with current developments, and many are adapting and planning for when weddings resume so that they can operate as safely as possible for themselves, their couples, and the guests. We surveyed 50 wedding suppliers in Ireland to find out what their main concerns are and what they are doing to alleviate those concerns. Some key points from the survey can be found below.
65% of Suppliers surveyed said they will need to adapt the way they operate their business/service when weddings resume again.
Some examples include wedding car hire companies fully sanitising their vehicles after every journey. Makeup & Hair Artists have said that they will bring a sanitisation kit with them and sanitise their equipment between every customer. Photographers could wear facemasks indoors close to people, while bridal shops may replace sofas with armchairs and restrict bridal visits to small numbers only. These are just some common sense examples taken from the survey.
74% of Suppliers surveyed are up-skilling to align with the new changes.
Some examples include online sanitation and Covid-19 awareness courses, for the beauty industry Barbicide COVID certification courses, hygiene safety courses, and others. Included in this is keeping abreast of Government guidelines as they are being published, and also adhering to the Return to Work Safely Protocol issued by the Government.
60% will be wearing PPE while performing their service.
A lot of this, of course, will depend on the setting. For example, a videographer may wear a face mask indoors when near people, but remove it when outdoors and filming from a distance. Makeup Artists could wear masks & gloves as well as hairstylists, while florists might wear PPE when making a delivery of flowers. The general consensus is that PPE will be used when it makes good common sense to do so.
77% are concerned about their own personal health when they resume work.
It's a worry for us all, however, a few practical steps can be taken to ensure we are all safe. Everyone at a wedding, whether it be a supplier, a couple, or guests, have a responsibility to stay away if they know they have any symptoms. No one would complain about any guest that got in touch to say they could not attend if they had symptoms, that guest would in-fact be applauded. For a supplier the onus is on them to decide in good time before the wedding date and if needed find a replacement supplier to cover their services for the day. Suppliers are great, and many network with a team of professionals that can cover them on the day if needed. For a couple, of course, it's a different story, as the day can't happen without them. It's hoped a scenario like this would never happen but it's good to consider the possibility and be prepared for the eventuality if it should.
What can be done to be COVID ready for your wedding?
Take 30 minutes to consider some possibilities and eventualities and think about what you could do in those scenarios. It may never happen but it's always good to think ahead.
Chat with your venue's wedding coordinator regarding numbers and get clarity on what's allowed on the day.
If you have concerns about a service chat with your wedding supplier about it. Your wedding is a supplier's business and they will be happy to talk with you about any concerns you may have.
Email guests and kindly ask that if any of them are unwell leading up to the day that they don't attend. Guests will understand and most will be relieved as they otherwise might fear letting you down by not showing up.
Ask guests to bring hand sanitisers or provide hand sanitiser stations at locations throughout the day.
Prepare the area where you are getting your hair & makeup done by allowing lots of room for people to keep a distance. This may mean moving a table or sofa but it will allow for much more freedom of movement in the morning. Only allow 4 people into a room at any one time, for example, a bride, makeup artist, photographer, mum, etc.
Coronavirus has changed the way we think and interact with one another, but it will not defeat us. If anything we have learned that by working together we can beat it. Preparation and good communication are key. We're in this together and by working together magical weddings will happen again, and they will be full of laughter & happiness.