So many Indian wedding couples have to reschedule due to COVID-19. After talking to 14 couples, who have successfully rescheduled their Indian wedding in North America, we are writing this blog to talk about their experience to reschedule their Indian wedding. We understand Indian weddings have their own nuances and to reschedule your Indian wedding due to COVID-19 can take a big toll on you. Indian weddings already have so many expectations from everyone and to meet them all at once is enough of a challenge.
Love is Patient
First thing, you are lucky to meet someone who loves you and is standing by you in these tough times. You are fortunate to find that perfect match for yourself. It’s just a matter of time until tie the knot. Whether it be in a gurdwara in Toronto or an outdoor Hindu ceremony venue, you will get married. God has just blessed you with a bit more time to cherish family time. This pandemic can only force us to postpone not cancel our celebrations. A wedding day is once in a lifetime celebration and we can’t let this situation take that away from us.
It’s Tough to Replan Your Indian Wedding
Before you start to reschedule your Indian wedding, acknowledge this fact IT’S TOUGH!! It’s tough on you to line up all the vendors you had hand-picked for your special day. It’s hard on the vendors who are small businesses dealing with almost 80-90% of income loss. We believe it’s even tougher for venues to survive losses due to operating costs of thousands of dollars every month.
Before we start to reschedule your Indian wedding, let’s agree that if everything went as planned each of these vendors would have given you their best service. Let’s try to separate people from the problem; couples and vendors should work as one team. We are in it together.
Steps to Reschedule Your Indian Wedding
1 – Start with your Indian wedding venue
Venues availability will be the most important thing to work with as they have the biggest deposits. Here are some tips to make this process easier:
- a) Ask for three Options – Always ask the venue for 3 date options so it is easier for you to get the availability of all the vendors as well as your families.
- b) Thursday-Friday Options – There are limited weekend dates in the calendar that venues can accommodate you. A lot of brides rescheduling were able to find Thursday-Friday dates with the venue. This way local guests still only have to take one day off – same as for a Friday-Saturday wedding. Guests coming from out of town will have more time with family after the wedding. Some of the grooms are excited about a Saturday post-wedding bbq with extended family. Check out our blog on Thursday-Friday weddings.
- c) November to April Weddings – Winter weddings are only an option. Considering there are three long weekends which you can plan your wedding makes it even more exciting. Venues, vendors, and family are easily available during this period. You may also save extra for planning a February or March wedding. This blog on 8 awesome reasons to schedule a winter wedding has more information.
- d) Sunday All-day Wedding – Sunday morning is likely to be more available for a lot of venues and vendors. Sunday all-day weddings are a great option as well as your out-of-city guests can fly on Friday and head back Monday.
- e) Skip Long Weekends – We understand long weekends might be something you may be interested in. However, trust us, it will make it hard for venues to reschedule your Indian wedding for a long weekend and the same goes for vendors. Even your guests might already have other invitations for the summer-long weekends you want to reschedule your Indian wedding to.
2 – Vendor Rescheduling
Once you have gotten the three dates from your Indian wedding venue, it’s time to line up your vendors. Now depending on if your vendor is someone who can support multiple weddings on a weekend or not, it will change things.
Usually, DJs, wedding planners, decorators can support multiple weddings on the same weekend where photographers and videographers, lead makeup artists can only be at one place at a time. Some Photography or Videography companies may have multiple lead artists so they may be able to serve more than one date per weekend.
- a) Survey – Create a survey with all three dates hall has given you an option to reschedule your Indian wedding using survey monkey or other online tools. Send it to all your vendors and see which dates you get most vendors available.
- b) Plan for the worst – It will be hard to plan all your vendors. You may not have gotten the availability of your photographer or videographer. In that case, we may have to make the decision of finding new vendors in that category. That is to reschedule your Indian wedding to dates like Thursday Friday or March-April wedding makes it much easier for couples.
What if some of your vendors are not available?
Trust us, it is possible that some of the vendors you really wanted to be part of your day may not be available. 2021 is a very busy year and some good artists get booked a year and a half in advance. Retainers you have paid towards your booking are used by vendors to reserve your dates, booking artists for your dates, and other expenses. Each vendor has their own process but for the most part, If they are not able to give you service they will refund any unearned payments paid after retainer. Vendors are going through very tough times and these are all small businesses so let’s work together.
Here is what you can offer to your vendors
– Some Service – Ask them if they can provide you some sort of service if not they are not available on that rescheduled day. Perhaps, maybe on another family event or pre-wedding event.
– Credits – If you can get some credit for an engagement shoot or pre-events or prints.
Alternative Rescheduling Plan 1 – Now, if you really want all your vendors to work, you can also ask the hall if they can allow you to use your deposit towards a pre-wedding event and find another venue for your rescheduled reception date. About 25% of rescheduled couples had to go this route. This way you get to work with the venue and not lose your deposits and get all your vendors.
Alternative Rescheduling Plan 2 – Some couples do not wait to wait for another year due to their work schedules or if they are starting to build a life together. Those couples have opted to continue with their wedding ceremonies with their close families only and will plan for their reception in the future when possible.
3 – Guests
Once you have got your most of your vendors and venues dates aligned. Here are the next steps:
- a) Consult VIP guests Send the survey to your most important guests if you wish to as well. These are few people you can never imagine getting married without. Don’t exceed this list to over 10 people in total. More people you will ask, the more opinions you will get. Your guest list may get smaller than expected on the original date so be prepared for that.
- b) Picking the date – Finalize the date that works with most of your wedding party. If not all, 80% of your vendors and most of the guests are available. You will have to make an online invitation to re-invite all your guests. This is the perfect time to move to an online invitation. No more going to guests’ houses for tea and giving invites.
- c) Manage time – Trust us Indian weddings can be very time-consuming. You have already spent probably a year planning your wedding. Now, another 6-12 months of planning time has to be used wisely. Don’t overthink it and focus this time with family.
From our experience talking to numerous couples who had to reschedule their wedding dates, it is hectic. Trust us, these are some unprecedented times and we are all in this together. Imagine 20 years from now, we will laugh telling stories to our kids as we show them our wedding albums. Although, if we cancel our wedding festivities there won’t be any memories to showcase to our next generation.
Wedding is the day when all your family gets together to celebrate your love, you really don’t want this pandemic to take that way from you.
Maybe this blog makes your life easier in these stressful times. Being a wedding photographer for 8 years, this is our toughest year. There have been numerous times in our wedding photography career, where we have given a hand to brides getting in a car and calmed anxious parents on the wedding day. We’ve also gone the extra mile to capture memories of our couples with the most important people in their lives.
Now during this pandemic, we seek a little bit of your support and understanding. The wedding industry is a seasonal business and we are potentially losing all income for 2020. Be compassionate when you reach out to your vendors. This is in everyone’s best interest.
Let’s hope we get to celebrate your wedding festivities together very soon.
Don’t forget to check out blogs section for more wedding planning tips – Here