Hello lovely couples!
I hope everyone is staying sane and safe. With everything going on I wanted to try and answer some questions a lot of people are having and to try and alleviate some of the stress and anxiety you might be feeling leading up to your wedding day.
It’s been heart-breaking to see so many couples have to postpone or cancel their weddings. I know the amount of time, effort, thought, money and most of all excitement that goes into your wedding day and for things to change due to something out of your hands is incredibly frustrating and saddening.
It is also heartbreaking for us as your suppliers – most people who work in the wedding industry, whether it’s your photographer, florist, cake maker, dress maker or caterer will tell you that their job is more than just a career. We genuinely just LOVE weddings and love working with fantastic couples on what is such an exciting day in your life.
As the majority of people working in this industry are self-employed or working for small businesses, it is a stressful time for all of us too, so please bear with us all while we try to get to grips with everything going on!
Obviously we are in an unprecedented situation where information and advice is changing on a daily basis so I will try to update this page accordingly.
I’M WORRIED ABOUT MY UPCOMING WEDDING – WHAT SHOULD I DO?
Firstly, try not to panic. It is a strange and scary time but I’m confident that between suppliers and clients we can find a way through everything, one way or another.
Keeping checking government advice and announcements, particularly travel guidelines if you are having your wedding abroad. As of the start of this week (23/3), the UK Government announced a lockdown and a ban of weddings and any mass gatherings over 2 people, with a plan to review this in 3 week’s time.
Check your insurance and/or supplier contracts
Your first point of call should be your wedding insurance, if you have it. If you don’t, then I would suggest printing off all communication and any contracts signed from all of your suppliers and having a good look through them.
Given that this is such a unique situation, many contracts won’t have a clause regarding what would happen in the case of a pandemic, but many will have a ‘force majeure’ clause that may apply.
It’s a good idea to get in touch with your venue and suppliers if you haven’t already, even if your wedding is later in the year, and have an open conversation to see what the situation is.
WILL YOU STILL BE PHOTOGRAPHING OUR WEDDING THIS YEAR?
The straight answer is yes – if I am legally and safely able to. At the moment that’s not the case due to the current Government lockdown. All of my weddings happening in the next 3 months have been postponed, and I am simply remaining cautiously optimistic that my weddings from July onwards will go ahead as planned.
It’s very much a case of hoping for the best and planning for the worst however, and I realize the difficulty at the moment of whether you wait it out or act now.
Please know whatever you decide to do I will be 100% behind your decision!
CANCELLATIONS AND RESCHEDULING
If you do make the decision to change up your wedding plans, let me know as soon as possible. Even if you are just thinking about it, get in touch and we just have a chat about everything.
At the moment I am keen to focus the conversation on rescheduling rather than cancellation. This is for a couple of reasons – firstly, at the end of the day, I have a relationship with you and have been looking forward to capturing your day and would really love to still be there – wherever and whenever it happens!
Secondly, rescheduling is a much better financial solution for both parties.
My rescheduling policy is that as long as I am available for the new date, any monies paid will simply apply to the new date and that’s that. I know many photographers view rescheduling as cancellations but that isn’t the case with me.
If I’m not available for your change of date, if possible, we can look for a date I am free – otherwise I am happy to return your deposit.
With cancellations however, my current contract that you will have signed states that a percentage of the total fee will be due relative to how many days before the wedding the contract is cancelled. This means cancellations at the moment would result in loss of the deposit, as well as owing a % of the entire amount.
This is a really tricky one as I don’t want to be in a position where I am charging clients despite not photographing your wedding. I have this clause in my contract to protect myself financially as this is my only income like most other suppliers, but because this is a unique situation, I will be looking at each case individually in the event of a cancellation and to do my best to come to a solution financially.
Hopefully any weddings that need to be rescheduled will be, but in the case of you having to cancel we will cross that bridge when it comes to it.
The situation is evolving rapidly, and I expect most of you would prefer to see how things change and progress as time goes on. I imagine that the last thing you want to do is cancel or reschedule and I know that your choices will be largely dependent on so many personal factors: Travel plans of your guests, home location of your families and friends, the situation with your venue and vendors, etc.
There is no pressure to make any calls sooner than you have to and please know I am on your team whatever you decide! I believe the best way forward is through sharing of info and open communication in order to navigate through this!