Well, 2020 is off to a crazy start. Everywhere we look, there is a new update on the Coronavirus and what it means for everyday life. It’s enough to make anyone nervous, and I can only imagine how stressful it is to anyone planning a wedding in the near future!
My desire with this post is not to encourage worry or panic, but simply to let you know what options you would have if you felt the need to change existing plans, and hopefully ease your minds a bit. 🙂 I want photography to be the last thing that’s stressful for you during this crazy time!!
How I will help:
As of right now, I’m not planning to cancel or reschedule anything on my end, unless I actually become ill! That said, here are some things I can do to help ease your mind, and make sure we all stay healthy!
1. I plan to be even MORE flexible about rescheduling/postponing anything than my contract states.
2. I will wash my hands thoroughly before each wedding/shoot and bring hand sanitizer along with me that anyone is welcome to use!
3. I won’t shake your hand or hug you (or any of your guests) – even though I want to! We can awkwardly wave, haha.
4. I will keep a 5 ft. distance if possible during sessions unless you request a specific shot that requires me to get closer. I can use lenses that allow me to be a little further away!
5. We can Skype/Facetime rather than meeting for coffee in the time leading up to your date.
6. I will be honest with you about my own health and travel, as well as limit my own exposure to large events and crowded places!
Postponing your wedding due to Coronavirus:
I completely understand if you feel the need to delay your wedding due to any travel restrictions or uneasiness about the health of family members, and while I hope you don’t have to change your plans, know that I am here to support YOU, whatever you decide!!
What if I have to change my wedding date? If you move your wedding to a new date, your deposit will transfer over to your new date as long as I am not already booked. (I am happy to coordinate with you about all my available dates later on in the year!)
If you move your wedding to a date that I am not available, I will refund you 50% of your retainer and help you to find a new photographer! If I can rebook your wedding date, I will refund the rest of your retainer!
What if I have to cancel my wedding? If you feel the need to indefinitely postpone or cancel, I can give you back 50% of your deposit, and if I can re-book your date, I will refund the rest!
ANOTHER option is eloping! You can have an intimate ceremony somewhere in nature, far away from the virus. You could keep your original date and invite a small number of guests. I’ve photographed several intimate elopements over the years and it is still incredibly special.
What happens if I get sick before your wedding? (or get quarantined and am unable to make it)
– If I feel sick (cough, fever, body aches etc) before your wedding, I will let you know as soon as possible and ask how you would like to move forward! I promise to be open and honest with you about my own health!
– If you still want me to shoot the event, I will wash my hands frequently, carry hand sanitizer, and avoid all physical contact with you and your guests. (I could also wear a mask if you wanted me to.)
– If you want me to stay home, I will help find a talented associate replacement to photograph your wedding day. I will still edit all your photos myself.
– If you want to find another photographer yourself, I will refund you in full, minus any engagement sessions or work already rendered. I can also help you find a replacement photographer if need be!
TIPS & ADVICE
– Don’t panic! We will get through this together. 🙂
– Look into wedding insurance! Are there any policies for situations like this? (acts of God, epidemics/pandemics etc.)
– Utilize your wedding website to share updates about your wedding! If you haven’t made one, Zola and The Knot are free and would be a great resource for keeping your guests in the loop!
– Send a message to your guests, and request that if they are ill to consider refraining from attending your event to protect the rest of your guests.
– Include creative CODVID-19 precautions during your wedding. Cute hand sanitizers, or hand washing stations! Consider renting an extra large dance floor so people aren’t as close together. These are all creative ways to be as hygienic as possible and make people feel safe!
– Get creative about ways to include people who can’t be there. Find a way to live stream your ceremony, so they could watch from afar if need be. Or talk to your videographer about options for quickly being able to share your ceremony/speeches!
– Confide in your wedding vendors, whatever your decision may be. If you are considering postponing, be sure to reach out to all vendors immediately – our availabilities are limited and we want to do everything in our power to work with you! (if you have a wedding planner, they would be a good person to reach out to first, since they likely have contact info for everyone!)
Last but not least…
This is a weird and unnerving time for everyone. Please know that I am here to support YOU in any way I can, whatever you decide to do! Be kind, be understanding. Let’s move forward being wise, but not in fear! Remember, we are all in this together. And we’re going to be okay! 🙂