If your wedding plans keep changing due to the pandemic, you might be wondering how best to communicate these changes with your wedding guests and vendors.
Our inboxes have been flooded with all of your COVID-related questions lately, so we thought it would be helpful to put together a comprehensive guide around COVID wedding messaging. Changing wedding plans is stressful enough, and if you need to postpone, uninvite guests or have difficult discussions around vaccinations, we’re sorry.
While we aim to lighten the load by providing you with some potential wording to send to guests and vendors, we understand this advice is not for everyone. The templates included in this article are great starting points, and we encourage you to adapt them where needed.
This is your wedding, and so every message you send — whether it’s a text, email, wedding website update, or printed invitation — should be done in your own way.
What’s included in this article:
How to ask your wedding guests about their vaccination status
As we move out of lockdown and weddings start to pick up again, it’s important to remember that everyone will have different comfort levels regarding getting vaccinated and attending events with large guest numbers.
Asking your guests about their vaccination status is a sensitive topic, and we recommend approaching the subject with compassion and understanding. It’s important to remember that your guests are your closest loved ones, and they may have differing opinions when it comes to getting vaccinated.
If you’re planning to go ahead with your postponed wedding and would like to check where your guests are at with their vaccination status, a simple text or email would be the most effective way to communicate with them. You can also update your wedding website with a health and safety section that tells guests what protocols you’ll be following.
Alternatively, if you haven’t yet sent your save-the-dates or wedding invitations, you could include an additional health and safety information card in your invitation suite. Guests can RSVP for their attendance and vaccination status, so you’ll know in advance if they plan to get the vaccine.
Sample text for your asking your guests about their vaccination status:
We’ve been waiting for this day for what feels like forever and can’t wait to finally celebrate our love with our closest loved ones. In accordance with the latest government guidelines, we want to create a safe and comfortable environment for our wedding celebrations.
In light of this, we ask that all attending guests be fully vaccinated (if you can get the vaccine) and follow local guidelines regarding wearing masks in indoor spaces. We hope you understand our request and would appreciate it if you could please only RSVP attending if you plan to be fully vaccinated by the date of our wedding.
We also completely understand if this means you’d rather not share this occasion with us, and we look forward to celebrating with you at another time!
What to do if your guests aren’t getting vaccinated
If your unvaccinated guests get upset at the prospect of losing their spot at your wedding, try to respond gently and calmly — and with lots of compassion. While it is ideal if everyone is vaccinated, many people are choosing not to get the jab just yet or can’t due to medical reasons.
Because of this, they will be missing out on quite a few events — which is no one’s idea of a good time after the couple of years that we’ve had. They are likely feeling hurt, excluded, and frustrated by the situation — after all, weddings are fun occasions!
Try to respond with understanding and regret at needing to make this decision, but gently reaffirm that, unfortunately, your wedding cannot go ahead unless you adhere to government guidelines. As much as you love them and are saddened that they can’t attend, you’ve been waiting for this day for a long time and want it to go ahead. You may like to organise a live-streaming option for those who can’t attend.
How to ask your wedding vendors about their vaccination status
Similarly to your guests, your suppliers are a crucial part of your wedding day. Whether you’re up to your third postponement and have been working with your vendors for months, or you’re just starting your wedding planning journey, you might be wondering how to ask about their vaccination status.
Sample text for your asking your suppliers about their vaccination status:
We are so excited to finally celebrate our love and can’t wait for you to be part of bringing our special day to life. As we know, this is a tricky time, and we want to ensure that we’re creating a safe and comfortable environment for our wedding guests and vendors, in line with the latest government guidelines.
Because of this, we wanted to reach out and respectfully ask whether you’ll be fully vaccinated (if you can get the vaccine) by the date of our wedding and if you’re happy to follow local guidelines regarding wearing masks in indoor spaces.
We hope that you understand where we’re coming from and ask that you please let us know where you stand with your vaccination status as soon as possible.
Wedding messaging for if you have to postpone
If you’ve already sent out your wedding invitations and your original date was affected by COVID, you have a few options for communicating with your guests. You could send a change of date card in the mail, via email or in a text.
Easy Weddings planning specialist Darcy Allen recommends creating a custom PDF with the updated details to email your guests. “For a quick and efficient way to communicate any date changes, check with your invitation designer to see if they’ll create a custom PDF that matches your wedding invitations,” says Darcy. “You could also email the PDF, then follow up with a mailed change-the-date.”
Sample text for your wedding change-the-date:
Due to the uncertainty of the current pandemic, we’ve decided to postpone our wedding to a later date when we can all celebrate safely.
Our new wedding date is Saturday, April 23rd 2022
All other details remain the same
We are hopeful you will still be able to join us for our special day and look forward to celebrating with you on our new wedding date!
Please let us know if you have any questions or if we can assist in rescheduling efforts in any way.
For more tips on what to include in your save-the-dates and wedding invitation details card, check out this article on how to write COVID wedding invitations.
How to sensitively uninvite guests from your wedding
For many couples, depending on the state you live in, you may need to cut your guest numbers to legally hold a wedding on your chosen date. Our hearts go out to anyone in this awful position, and we hope that your decision is made a little easier by the fact that your guests will, of course, understand that you had no choice.
We’d suggest messaging or emailing those people who you sadly need to cut from your guest list to explain the situation as soon as possible. To help with this task, we’ve put together some wording you might want to use when contacting these guests. The first option is helpful if you’ve already decided who to uninvite, and the second option asks guests to volunteer giving up their spot at your wedding.
Option 1 – Sample text for if you’ve decided who to uninvite:
As we continue to navigate planning a wedding in a pandemic, which as you can imagine is no walk in the park, we’ve had to reassess what our wedding day will look like.
In line with the latest government guidelines, we’ve made the tough decision to reduce our guest list and get married with a more intimate celebration.
Unfortunately, this means that we won’t be able to share the day with you, but we hope you understand the difficult situation we’re in and look forward to celebrating with you at another time.
If you’d like to join us virtually as we say our vows, we’ll be live-streaming our ceremony for all of our loved ones who won’t be able to join us in person on the day.
Option 2 – Sample text for if you can’t decide who to uninvite:
As we continue to navigate planning a wedding in a pandemic, which as you can imagine is no walk in the park, we’ve had to reassess what our special day will look like.
Due to government restrictions, we are in the heartbreaking position of having to reduce our guest list. With so many wonderful friends and family, we have to ask X number of people to join us virtually, rather than in person.
This is an impossible decision for us to make, so if you would be willing to give up your spot, please let us know, and we can start working on plans to celebrate with you again in the near future.
Other helpful COVID-related wedding resources
If you have any other questions that we haven’t covered in this article, feel free to reach out by sending us a message on Facebook or Instagram. We’re here to help and completely understand how overwhelming planning a wedding feels right now.
For more advice and guidance navigating wedding planning during COVID times, join our Wedding Planning Party Facebook Group. It’s a supportive space for couples experiencing similar challenges right now.
And if you’ve shifted your wedding date more than once, which so many of you have unfortunately had to do, chances are you’re suffering wedding postponement fatigue. If you’re in need of some helpful tips for dealing with postponement fatigue, we recommend checking out this article.
Our thoughts are with you as we all navigate this difficult time — you’ve got this!
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