We recently shared six insights on safety precautions and inspirations from our recent webinar. Now we are answering even more of your questions! Keep reading for Terri Baskin of Terri Baskin Photography, Alexandria Hammond of Get Plated, Julia Henning of Wedgewood Weddings and Lauren Schaefer of The Get Together Events Co.’s advice on preparing for what’s next in safety as local and national guidelines continue to change.
WeddingPro Question #1: How are you providing proposals for quotes for future weddings that might be over the guidelines? If a couple wants 200 guests but the current regulations are 100, how do you handle that?
Julia’s team is booking into late 2021 and 2022 and booking those events as they would have pre-COVID. She’s updated the Wedgewood Weddings contract to reflect that local regulations will be followed if the pandemic continues. Her team is optimistic about making adjustments while cases are going down.
WeddingPro Question #2: Any advice on keeping banquet servers safe when they’re passing food while people are mingling, dancing or in line for the buffet?
Alex provides her staff with masks, gloves and personal shields. Although guests cannot necessarily be masked while standing and eating, the Get Plated team passes out individual boxed food items to keep the spreading of germs to a minimum.
WeddingPro Question #3: Have you noticed any shift in timelines for the typical length of events?
Lauren’s team hasn’t see a shift in the length of the event, but rather in the order of the day. Lauren and team have been rearranging so that all of the “formalities” (think: the cake cutting, the newlywed game, bouquet toss and wedding party toasts) to the start of the event so guests are free to leave earlier. Lauren also feels that we’ll see a lot more shorter, daytime, outdoor events in the future.
WeddingPro Question #4: Any advice on setting up dance floors in venues in areas without dance floor restrictions?
Julia’s team sets up giant dance floors to create additional space. She also leans on her DJ and creates dance floor signage to keep guests dancing in the groups they are seated with. The Wedgewood Weddings staff also moves tables further from the dance floor to make as much space as possible. The formalities that don’t require open mingling are also a great way to keep guests together and dancing at their table.
WeddingPro Question #5: When adding safety regulations, is that an additional cost to the couple or is it being absorbed by the wedding pro?
If couples had signed a contract prior to COVID, Alex’s team at Get Plated is absorbing the cost. If they signed a contract more recently, she has adjusted her staffing ratios to account for the additional safety measures. Her team takes on the cost of PPE.
Lauren gets COVID tested before and after every wedding. Although her local testing center is free, she would pass on the cost of testing to the couple if there was one. Consult your finances to determine what’s right for your business.
WeddingPro Question #6: How are you communicating with couples to align on a safety plan for day-of?
Terri sends her clients a pre-wedding questionnaire asking for all details of the wedding day: locations for getting ready, ceremony and reception, the vendor list, the guests in the wedding party and the family photo groupings. She then holds a final consultation with the couple where she goes through the questionnaire and points out anything that needs attention.
WeddingPro Question #7: What are pros including in the waiver that they’re having couples sign before the event? Are any of your locations doing contact tracing?
Julia has her clients sign a liability waiver 10 days before the wedding. This waiver includes standard liability language, a high-level overview of safety precautions, and an ask for guests who aren’t feeling well to stay home. She looks to the local regulations to determine whether to do contact tracing for guests.
WeddingPro Question #8: I love the idea of asking for the guests’ comfort level on the RSVP card – how should that be worded?
Lauren would play into the tune of the wedding (formal, in a backyard, etc.) and follow suit. She suggests including a preface for why this question is being asked, such as making sure guests feel comfortable and are able to celebrate safely. We’ve also seen couples offer guests red, yellow or green wristbands to help guests open up about their comfort levels. Remember to check your state guidelines no matter your comfort level is.
If you weren’t able to join us live for the webinar, or if you want to brush up on the content again, you can view the recording at any time. COVID-19 regulations and guidelines are changing rapidly, and vary by location. Before putting your safety plan and precautions into place, make sure you check the federal, state and local regulations applicable at the time of your event.
Photo Credit: Donenko Oleksii/Shutterstock