Australia’s leading wedding directory urges couples to postpone or downsize in light of new
restrictions on public gatherings.
18 March, 2020: Australia’s wedding industry, like many service-based industries, is coming to terms with the new government restrictions on public gatherings of no more than 100 people indoors and 500 outdoors.
The restriction of indoor areas to less than 100 people for non-essential events will have a large impact on weddings around the country. While the current average wedding in Australia will have around 97 guests there are still many weddings which will be impacted by the restrictions.
Easy Weddings is urging all couples who have a wedding scheduled in the next 4 to 6 weeks to consider downsizing or postponing their celebrations in light of this current crisis and to approach these new restrictions in a pragmatic and grounded way.
“The health and safety of yourself, your guests and the overall community is the most important thing at the moment. If you can go ahead with your wedding in a safe way then we encourage you to downsize to less than 100 guests,” says Elise James, Director of Trends & Insights at Easy Weddings.
“Your guests will understand if you need to cut down your numbers. If you are having an outdoor reception you might even be able to have more of your guests attend.”
“Make sure you are communicating with your guests and your suppliers to ensure the safety of all involved. Otherwise, we recommend chatting to your suppliers about postponing to a later date.”
A survey of more than 1900 couples conducted by Easy Weddings over the last few days has revealed that 65% of couples are concerned of the impact these measures will have on their
weddings. 21% of couples getting married between March and May will postpone their weddings and another 5% are opting to downsize. Just 2% have cancelled their day completely while 35% will go ahead with their plans. Another 35% will wait to see what other initiatives are put in place.
Of those getting married between June and August this year, 30% are waiting for further announcements and progress before making a decision on their day and 50% are planning to go ahead as normal.
Easy Weddings is encouraging those couples to keep waiting for updates as the situation progresses and make a decision 4 to 6 weeks out based on the recommendations at the time.
“Weddings are a fairly recession-proof industry as there will always be couples who want to get married,” says Elise.
“These next few weeks and months will be tough for small businesses in the industry. We are urging all businesses to have a conversation with their couples to postpone weddings rather than cancel.”
“We will likely see a negative growth in the industry this year and it will be tough. But with these postponements, 2021 will likely be a positive year for many vendors.”
“Most couples who are postponing their weddings currently are looking at rescheduling to October and November this year. So we hope to see the industry start to build itself back up towards the end of 2020.”
The majority of couples who are planning their weddings currently are planning for September 2020 and beyond. 74% of couples who are planning their weddings for this time will continue with their plans as usual.
“The best thing you can do if you’re planning your wedding for later this year or early next year is to keep planning. The industry will need a lot of support over the coming months and your future wedding will help businesses and vendors ride out this storm,” Elise says.
Wedding vendors should also advise their couples on what to do. Vendors should seek legal counsel about potential changes to contracts or cancellation policies during this time to ensure they can properly educate their couples.
Making sure couples and vendors are conversing with one another about wedding plans will ensure everyone can make an educated decision about altering their plans to ensure the industry is in a strong position for recovery mode later this year.
The Australian wedding industry has an economic value of around $4 billion per year, servicing approximately 120,000 weddings each year. It’s made up of more than 56,000 small businesses and employs more than 150,000 people.
“Above all, we urge all couples and wedding suppliers to remain calm and remember that safety comes first.”
For interviews or further comment please contact:
About Easy Weddings
Easy Weddings is Australia’s number one wedding website and the largest resource for couples planning their wedding in Australia. For more visit easyweddings.com.au.
Data from a survey of more than 1900+ couples about how they will change their plans in lights of coronavirus restrictions.
Couples getting married between March and May 2020 will:
Go ahead as normal: 35%
Wait to see what happens: 35%
Couples getting married between June and August 2020 will:
Go ahead as normal: 51%
Wait to see what happens: 33%
Couples getting married in September 2020 and beyond will:
Go ahead as normal: 74%
Wait to see what happens: 18%