Houston Wedding Photographer | Half a Rice Studios – Covid-19 Wedding Houston
You are recently engaged, now what? I mean seriously, now what? When a normal couple would go find a venue, place a deposit and have the date to book other vendors, getting ready for their big days, doing all the fun stuff like cake tasting, dress fitting, you have to stay at home. “Can’t get anything done?” – you wonder to yourself. Even if you can have a date, you just don’t know what going to happen in the future, on your wedding date.
All of my Spring couples did not know there would be a pandemic, either. They had to reschedule their wedding dates! If you think about all the effort you put into planning a wedding with about 200+ guests, you would know that rescheduling a wedding is a pain.
But luckily, your wedding date is not within Spring 2020, so you have a lot of time. Time to put careful thoughts into your planning.
As a photographer in the Houston area, who have dealt with a lot of rescheduling for this season, I have a few advices for you. You don’t have to do this alone. Hopefully, at the end of this blog post, you will be able to have a better idea about how to plan your big day considerately. And don’t worry, I don’t think COVID-19 will last forever without a cure or vaccine.
1. Stay home!
I mean, “Duh!” Unless you have to go out because of your job, staying home is your best option right now. The first step in planning a wedding is to find a venue. A lot of venues offer virtual tours so you can always request for a virtual tour. And guess what? you can avoid the hassle of scheduling an in person meeting with the venue coordinators, or dressing up 😉
When the venues don’t have virtual tour, then you can schedule a Facetime meeting with the coordinator. You would still staying at home, in your PJ, in the comfort of your couch. And when you found a great place to host your wedding, all the transaction after that is totally doable online. If you are not so sure, you can always schedule a self-tour without any guide or have the venue coordinator on the phone with you while you walk through the property.
Kind of different than normal venue tours, but totally possible! And always wash your hands.
2. Plan far ahead and avoid flu season.
I know, Spring is the best time of the year for weddings! But I think you have an idea of why I said the above statement.
If you want to plan a wedding for December 2020 or February 2021, girl, I think you should not. The pandemic and lockdowns are crazy enough, and the vaccine is not ready until March 2021 (according to recent news). Now, I am no medical expert, but if I can say one thing basing on my common sense: it is the vaccine won’t be widely distributed within the public until at least May 2021. So for right now, if you pick a date in 2021 Summer, you probably can have good night sleeps.
Why do I say avoid flu season? Because it is flu season, the transmission of the virus from one person to another is inevitable. You don’t want your grandma or your 5 year old niece to get sick, do you?
Having said that, I do not mean to avoid Spring weddings at all cost. Like I said, spring is a beautiful season (people with allergies wouldn’t think the same). And in Texas, there are only 2 season where having an outdoor wedding is ideal – Spring and Fall. If you decide to have a Spring wedding, do it! Just remember to plan far in advance and take all cautions to protect your love ones.
3. Request Zoom meetings or at least phone calls with all vendors.
I understand that when vendors don’t offer face to face meetings anymore due to COVID-19, most of us are tempted to just finish the booking online (email, text messages…). But trust me, you still want some kind of human contact with your vendors, at least through a phone call. Here are some reasons behind that:
4. Always ask about plan B.
The most important things that this pandemic has taught my current brides is vendors should always offer plan B. You should ask your vendors what is the rescheduling process is like, how much their retainers, deposits are, what the cancellation policy is, how long can you reschedule your booking for… And if all of this information is in the contract. Yes, having it all in writing, you will know what you have to deal with in case something happens unexpectedly.
5. Dress fitting? Remember to limit your party.
I know this seems obvious, the reason why I have a whole different session for this is I want to offer some alternatives when it comes to dress fitting, not the dress fitting event itself, but the aftermaths.
Now, the traditional dress fitting party looks something like this: you ask your Mom, your Grandma, your best girls to go with you so they can give you opinion about the dress – one of the most important outfit of your life. But since the option of having the loved ones with you is not longer there, you can plan something special for them during your wedding day. We heard of first look with Dad and soon-to-be husband (and some funny alternatives going viral on social media), but have you heard of the first look with Mom, or Grandma, or your bridesmaids…? Yes, they can have the first look of the dress, too, if they are not with you on the dress fitting day.
Now I have to warn you that this is very difficult to do, you have to hold the secret about the beautiful dress that you picked out until your wedding day. But it will worth the wait! You will get some priceless reactions from all of them on the wedding day, and ALL OF THAT WILL BE IN PICTURES!!!
6. Communicate, communicate, communicate…
Last but not least, always communicate! When something unexpected happens to your big day, your vendors should know first hand, too (beside family and loved ones, of course). You are not in this alone! Planning a wedding is overwhelming let alone planning a wedding during COVID-19. Your vendors are very experienced and they are there for you, so reach out to them and they can sit down with you to brainstorm the ideas and alternatives. After all, you chose your vendors because you like them, they most likely like you, too! 🙂
Keep calm and wedding planning on!
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© Half a Rice Studios 2020
Houston, TX Wedding Photograper
I started my photography business purely with my passion for photography. A friend of mine asked me to do his wedding when I was in college and I fell in love. I love the emotions, the laughter, the tears, the chemistry between people in weddings.