Planning an event in this Corona virus situation is now becoming the biggest challenge for any couple/family. The ones who wanted a fancy wedding/engagement or the ones who wanted a simple one, the challenges a couple would face is daunting.
Lets get into the primary driving points.
- Avoid calling in guests, literally, just keep the event to close family and friends only. This has multi-fold impact.
- A lesser crowd means lesser number of people to be managed by your wedding planner or by your family which is always a good thing, COVID or no COVID.
- Lesser crowd also means you save a large chunk of your expenses and you can use that savings for creating a unique COVID wedding in terms of other guest experiences.
- Have an open air wedding. It is clear that the virus does have the ability to float around a patient especially if the air is still. So, having a open air wedding keeps the wind doing it’s job and moreover, an open air wedding is always a much more better wedding, any day, Unless you are planning a wedding in the monsoon time or during the peak of summer in the day time.
- Keep your wedding/engagement stage absolutely crowd free. Your immediate family, the shoot team and the priest, let them be the only people to hang around the main staging area. Rest of the guest must be prompted to sit in their seating area for them to not only see the proceedings but also to ensure good social distancing protocols are maintained. It may be prudent to check with your photography to team to arrange for a Television set-up so that the guests can see no matter how much of the stage is blocked or how far they are seated away from the stage.
- If you are not aspiring for a multi-day wedding and can do away with Sangeet, Haldi, Reception, Shukrana, etc, then that’s best. Keep the event just to the wedding and get done with it. Guests will understand the reasoning.
- Avoid the customary group photography thing that Indians are notoriously famous for doing after the wedding and for the receptions. Most couples often don’t end using any of these photos anyway for the memories or wedding album. It is one thing to shoot family and important guest group photos but having to pose endlessly for every guest who attended the wedding is time-wasting futile people pleasing exercise.
- If at all you want to do this due to pressure, you can consider creating a life size cut out of the both of you so that guests can stand on either side to take group photos (pun intended)
- For the bride or the groom, avoid going to a salon for your pre-wedding grooming session. For the groom, this may be a tad bit easier, but for the bride, it is prudent to hire a good make-up artist who is into good safety practices, e.g., sanitizing their equipment, working with lesser number of clients and in general much more cautions as this is their own business rather than working for another business.
- Calling in a photography “team”? It is almost fashionable and many a times a requirement too to have a fairly large team to document the event. Think about how many people will come in. A large team is required only when you want multiple things to be captured at once and when there is a candid video required. So, check with your photography team to see if the least numbers will do. Also, check with the team to ensure that everyone wears a mask and maintain social distancing demeanor.
- If you plan to get married at home, avoid fancy decoration, this non-only saves on money but gives additional space for movement which is always a challenge for small space or home based weddings. Instead, use the falls or the ceiling to create interesting design structures based on your discussion with your wedding planner.
- Last but not the least, hire a wedding planner instead of a flower decorator or a tent waala. A wedding planner can give you a much more holistic experience which is more end to end than just doing up your wedding venue. The stress that a good wedding planner will take off from your loved ones head is just priceless.
- For e.g., a vendor that I know personally did an excellent home based wedding which included the following COVID specific features:
- An employee took temperature reading of all guests who come in, this ensures that a possible COVID patient is not allowed in and can get immediate medical help.
- All guests were given a small packet of hand sanitizer and a face mask.
- An employee was always there to guide people around so as to avoid crowding at one place.
- All decoration work was done an hour prior to the first set of guests could come in, and this ensured that no outside crowd when the guests start to roll in.
Keep these basic tips in mind to have a fairly enjoyable wedding/engagement/public event. Stay safe!