The world is turned upside down right now due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With that being said, couples in love are still getting engaged. Amidst the sadness and uncertainty of this trying time, an engagement serves as a beacon of hope and is something to celebrate and look forward to. Once the initial excitement and (perhaps) shock of your significant other popping the question settles, you may be left thinking, “What now?!” as far as wedding planning goes in this strange time. Below is a guide that will help you navigate these uncharted waters and to take the next steps towards your walk down the aisle.
Set a Budget for Your Wedding
The first thing you can do from the comfort of your home as far as wedding planning goes is set your wedding budget. This is an important first step regardless of whether a pandemic is happening, so it’s fitting that this is the first measure you take. Figure out how much you can realistically spend on your big day and you can even roughly determine how much you want to spend on things like your venue, photographer, florist, entertainment, and other wedding must-haves.
Discuss the Wedding Day Vision with Your Fiancé
A fun part of wedding planning is determining what your overall vision is. Are you leaning towards a seaside beach wedding or do you envision a more traditional affair? Or, perhaps a rustic barn wedding is more up your alley. Discuss this with your fiancé to see if your visions align or if there is room for compromise to ensure you both get what you want. You can even create a vision board surrounding what you want your wedding to look like, which is a fun craft to do during quarantine.
Another important part of determining your wedding vision is prioritizing what’s important to you for your day. Decide which vendors are most important on your list. Perhaps you value having a videographer and want to carve money out of the budget for that. Alternatively, you may be set on having a band over a DJ, which can cost quite a bit more. Having a list of agreed priorities will definitely make planning easier.
Make a Guest List
A difficult part of wedding planning is creating a guest list. There are usually many opinions surrounding this topic, most likely from family members looking to make additions to the list. Start by creating a guest list with your fiancé. Mark some people you’re on the fence about as “maybes” or create a “B-list” of people you’re not sure you will actually invite.
Having a somewhat concrete guest list also gives you an idea of how many people you’ll need to accommodate at your event, which could rule out some venues.
Start a Short List of Potential Venues
Thanks to the internet, there’s so much content out there to help you create a short list of venues to consider for your big day. Since you already have an idea of what you’re looking for thanks to your wedding vision discussion, you can really zero in on some possible venues. Start a list or a spreadsheet that denotes the venue name, contact information, guest capacities, whether it’s an indoor or outdoor venue, and any pricing information you can find. From there, you can prioritize what venues you like the best and which you’re ruling out. Mark each as “interested,” “somewhat interested,” or “pass” as you narrow down which you like best.
To get a true sense of what each venue looks like since you likely can’t tour them right now, search for photography of a real wedding at each venue. This gives you a sense of the set-up of the weddings, what the venues look like in photographs, and can even help you find photographers that you want to consider.
Start Contacting Venues
Finally, you can start contacting venues to see what types of virtual touring options they might be offering during this time. You can also request more in-depth pricing information, brochures that denote packages, and available dates for 2020 and 2021. This information can help you further determine how interested you are in each venue without even seeing it, helping you to further narrow down your list.
While this may seem like a tough time to start planning a wedding, there are certainly many measures you can take from home to get the ball rolling on your special day.