I asked my sister to share her story of how she and her fiance rescheduled their wedding within 24 hours. Here is Hali’s story!
Monday afternoon, I received a call that I had been dreading for over 24 hours.
It was my venue updating us that they would be cancelling all events prior to May 11. Our wedding was scheduled for April 18 in Richmond, Va. When the frenzy over COVID 19 started, my fiancé and I were in the midst of preparing for our bachelor and bachelorette parties, my bridal party, my bridal portraits, our rehearsal dinner, our wedding and our honeymoon. We have been engaged for over 2 years, so to say that we were eagerly anticipating these events and our big day would definitely be an understatement. However, in that moment on the phone with my venue event coordinator, I knew that none of what we had planned was going to happen the way we had envisioned it.
I am an anxious person by nature, and I knew right away that I had to get a plan in place so that I would not be swallowed by the overwhelming sadness and disappointment that I was feeling.
5 Steps to Quickly
Replan your Wedding Day:
- Call the Important people.
To my fiance and I those people were my mother, my mother-in-law, my father-in-law, and my sister. I cried a lot. Immediately, we started discussing options.
2. Look at all of your options.
It was important for me to have a clear understanding of what options we had. We knew that we basically had three options.
- One option was to change the date. This, at first, seemed like the hardest thing to do. It meant more time between now and our wedding. It meant that some of our vendors may not be available and that some of our guests may not be able to attend.
- Our second option was to keep our date and find a new venue. At first, this seemed like the best option. We could keep all of our vendors, all of our guests would be able to attend and there would be no extra time spent planning and waiting.
- Our third option was to do a small ceremony on our original date and reschedule an actual wedding with our current venue. This was by far my least favorite option. We felt like we would lose special moments and the authenticity of our wedding day with this option. Ever since I can remember, I have wanted to have that “AH-HA” moment as I walked down the aisle, and I was not willing to sacrifice that magic.
3. Choose your Favorite Option
My fiancé and I both loved our venue so much. It was completely us, and I started to realize that the date was not as important to me as the place was.There was a possibility, if we kept our original date, that some of the people that we love the most, like our grandparents or out of town family, may not be able to come to our wedding. The combination of feeling strong attachment to our venue and the uncertainty of the situation our world is facing lead us back to option one.
- Plan the logistics of Changing your date
A major concern for us was that our guests and/or vendors would not be available. My fiancé and I immediately began reaching out to our vendors, immediate family and bridal party. We asked the vendors for what dates they still had available for May, June or July.
We asked our family and friends what days they were not available for that timeframe. Based on these dates, we started making a list of date options. It immediately became clear that a Saturday wedding was going to mean that we would lose vendors and/or guests. Because of this, we reached back out to vendors to clarify their availabilities for Fridays and Sundays. After all of this communication, it became clear that we had about 5-6 date options (most of which were Fridays or Sundays).
Knowing that I was going into a meeting with my venue the next day having mostly Friday or Sunday options was not my idea of a perfect situation. However, in these situations, you really have to start to prioritize what means the most to you and your fiancé. For us, we are paying for our wedding. This meant that we really could not afford to lose vendors. We also realized that having our wedding at our venue and making sure that our closest family and friends could be there meant the most. I had to let go of all of the small details that I would be losing having a Friday or Sunday wedding and focus on the fact that my fiancé and I were still getting everything we wanted out of our big day.
I was able to keep all of my original vendors which means that we are not losing any money by rescheduling our wedding. We have also ensured that all of our immediate family and bridal party are able to attend the new date.
- Communicate the Change to your Guests
For communicating with guests, my coordinator suggested making a Facebook group and adding all of our guests there to announce changes. She said that this was the most effective way to handle the change since everyone receives notifications for Facebook. Our parents also helped us spread the word by communicating with family members.
In order to get new RSVPs, I updated our website and activated the RSVP function there online. I then posted that information in our Facebook group so that everyone knew where and how to RSVP for the new date.
I want to emphasize that all of these changes were made in a matter of 24 hours from when I learned the news that our venue was closing and cancelling events.
I could not have rescheduled everything so quickly without the help and support of our vendors and our friends and family. Our vendors all responded extremely quickly which allowed me to make the best decision when rebooking our venue. They were also so gracious and understanding of our situation. Our friends and family have been understanding and flexible. Most of them will have to take an extra day off work since we are having a Friday wedding, and some of them had to rearrange their existing plans for our n
ew date. With all of the uncertainty in our world right now, it was amazing to have this support and understanding.
Even though the rescheduling of our wedding went fairly smoothly, this has still been very hard. I am still mourning the loss of the perfect day that we spent years planning and saving for. We are having to also reschedule an overseas honeymoon (which has not been as smooth as rescheduling the wedding). There are also aspects of getting married that I am not sure will happen for us like a bachelor/bachelorette party or a bridal shower; however, we are truly trying to focus on the positives and acknowledge that situations like this are happening to a majority of people right now (often situations that are far worse than postponing a wedding).
The best advice I can give to brides (oranyonetrying to plan anything right now) is to set clear options for yourself and prioritize what means the most to you and your fiancé. This whole situation has been somewhat of a blessing in disguise because it has allowed my fiancé and I to truly think about and reflect on what matters most about getting married which is our relationship and commitment to one another. Going through this stressful situation with each other has only reaffirmed for us why we are choosing to spend our lives together. Our day is going to be different in a lot of ways, but the commitment that we are going to make (and really have been making for years at this point) will not change or diminish in any way.