Due to unforeseen circumstances, some of life's most significant events can change or be canceled altogether — and that's no more apparent than in 2020 because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. In fact, throughout this year, 63 percent of engaged American couples have had to postpone their wedding, according to a 2020 LendingTree Survey.
If your wedding plans have changed, due to COVID-19 or any other reason, keep your guests updated so that they can cancel airline flights and hotel accommodations and/or seek refunds. Indeed, it's important to maintain clear and constant communication with guests. Here are some tips on how to communicate your wedding date has changed.
Update Your Wedding Website
If you and your significant other have created your own wedding website, know that it has the capability to send notifications to subscribed guests about any and all plans. Of course, this makes it much easier to keep your invited guests in the loop of your evolving wedding plans. Whether you’ve set a new date or it's still up in the air, detail where you are in the process online so your guests can keep tabs on the developments.
Email All Your Guests
Another easy way to keep guests updated on your plans is to send out a mass email to all invitees. Indeed, since the average person checks their email upward of 15 times per day, emailing guests is certainly a great — and oftentimes preferred — communication tool. To maintain the privacy of your guests, make sure you enter every email address in the Bcc field. Then again, you could always turn to your wedding website to send secure communications, without the potential of exposing people's email addresses.
Send Out New Save-the-Dates
You may have sent out save-the-date cards when you first scheduled your wedding. Now, experts recommend sending out so-called change-the-date cards to let guests know the new date of your rescheduled wedding. These cards, perfect to hang on the refrigerator or to-do list board, will serve as physical reminders to your guests about your updated plans. The silver lining here? It's possible that some of your guests who weren't originally able to make it to your big day now can attend your impending nuptials.
Keep These Best Practices in Mind
Even after nailing down a date, planning a wedding can no doubt be stressful. When plans change, clear and consistent communication can ease any and all disruptions. Use these tips to alleviate any hassles for you and your guests.
- Communicate quickly and frequently: Let your guests know ASAP about any changed plans so that they can cancel whatever they’ve booked on their end. Additionally, be honest about where you are in the process. If you don’t have a concrete new date, that’s OK, but make sure your guests know your plans are likely to change.
- Be empathetic: Postponing a wedding can be painful for guests, too. In that vein, smooth over any negative emotions by offering empathy and positivity.
- Offer advice and facilitate a sharing community: If you know your guests are scrambling to make new plans, posting relevant tips and advice on your wedding website can go a long way. For example, you may want to create a social outlet for guests via WhatsApp or a private Facebook Group to share updates and tips.
If you’re postponing your wedding due to COVID-19, it’s because you have safety in mind — and there's no need to apologize. Emphasize that you care about each and every guest via your communications and are postponing because you want to keep everyone safe on your big day.
You and Your Guests are in This Together
When you’ve planned a wedding, it’s important to keep your invitees alert to any changes you’re making. Be quick, transparent, and frequent in your communications. It’s OK for plans to change, especially because you’re prioritizing guest safety. Ultimately, however, it's all about keeping guests in the loop — online and in the mail — so they can plan accordingly.