Hello brides-to-be! While things are definitely looking up for me and my fellow #coronabrides, I thought it might be helpful to talk about how to communicate postponements. Obviously the pandemic has been the main reason why couples have been postponing their weddings, but there are circumstances beyond that, too. For us, we didn’t want to cut our large families (and friends!) to make it work with capacity guidelines this June. You might have postponed so you can be vaccinated. There are so many reasons! And beyond the pandemic, couples might postpone due to sickness, natural disasters, or other reasons outside of their control.
No matter what your reason, it is important to let your guests know about the changes to your wedding date. And trust me, I know how overwhelming that can be – especially when you’ve postponed multiple times and are weary of getting excited about a new date! But ultimately you need to let your guests know so that they can cancel any travel they booked and save your new date in their calendar.
Wedding Postponement Announcement
When To Tell Your Wedding Guests
Honestly, tell them as soon as possible. That can be easier said than done though – of course! Each time we had to let our families know, I was so grateful to my Aunt Mary Lou for managing our family email list and making sure it’s always up to date ? (You are the real MVP, Aunt Mary Lou!!!) While I definitely recommend getting everyone’s email addresses, you can also pick up the phone and make some calls and send some texts too.
Send Digital Change The Dates
If you are a super organized bride and you have everyone’s email addresses, you can also just skip right to sending digital Change The Dates. No printing or stamps required!
We had ordered our original invitation suite from Shine Wedding Invitations and we had the best experience with them. Since they had so many couples postpone last year (and because they’re such an awesome company), they have offered their digital Change The Dates to their couples who have had to change their wedding due to COVID-19 at no charge. Just contact them to find a designer to help you out! I am so impressed with their ability to make a digital announcement so chic and romantic. I mean, how pretty is this?!
Send Physical Change The Date cards
You could also send a physical card telling your guests to save the new date. We sent wedding postponement cards after rescheduling our wedding the 2nd time, but we didn’t bother this last time around. I think it really depends how much time you have.
Send New Invitations
Once you’re a few months out from your new date, you will also need to start thinking about wedding invitations. If this gives you anxiety because you already sent out your full invitation suite, I FEEL YOU. Luckily, there are options beyond starting from scratch and printing/sending a whole new wedding suite.
If you have everyone’s email addresses, you could go all digital! You could even use something super similar to the design above – just ask your designer at Shine to change the wording a bit and include the link to your website and any other relevant details in the body of the emails.
Now that we have digitally communicated the “Change the Date” we are looking at sending a physical invitation, without sending a whole wedding suite since we already did that. I will update you guys when I pick something out, but we are thinking of including the date, venue, wedding website, and digital RSVP instructions. Then I’ll update our website to include everything that would have been in the wedding suite, like transportation, hotel information, dinner options, etc.
Change The Date Wording
Okay you need to communicate all of this to your guests, but what do you even say?! I personally think that you can be super honest in any initial emails, texts, or phone calls. Don’t overthink it!
That being said, when you actually need write something somewhat official, it’s so easy to get writer’s block. I really love the text that Shine used in the Change The Date above because it’s really simple and to the point. I also like that they didn’t feel the need to say “we are postponing the wedding due to COVID-19.” Current events covers it at this point, don’t you think?!
Due to the current events, the wedding celebration of [Bride] and [Groom] has been rescheduled to [New Date]. Visit our wedding website for more information.
Don’t have a new wedding date?
What if you don’t have a new date yet, and you have no idea when you will get one? If that is the case, I think you can speak a little bit more casually. Something like…
Due to the current events, the wedding celebration of [Bride] and [Groom] has been postponed. We will update all of you as soon as we have more information!
Need to cut your list?
And lastly, what if you need to cut people from your wedding? This is such a bummer for everyone involved, but I think it’s important to remember that these are unprecedented times! You didn’t WANT to cut people you already invited! At the end of the day, no decision when planning a wedding during a pandemic is easy. You just have to trust that any guests you cut will be compassionate and understanding. I really love this approach…
While we had hoped to be able to celebrate this day with all of our closest friends and family, this year had different plans. We have made the difficult decision to downsize our wedding and proceed with an intimate ceremony on [Date]. We will miss you dearly and we hope you will join us in celebrating from afar. Thank you for understanding.
Before we wrap this post up, I have gotten a ton of questions recently about how to communicate safety protocols/concerns. I am not entirely sure how we will handle this yet, but I do think that you are absolutely entitled to ask your guests to help you ensure that your wedding is a safe event for everyone involved.
That being said, there are a lot of factors involved in this! Does your venue have any rules in place? Do you have any immunocompromised family members or young children who can’t get the vaccine yet? Is your wedding going to be indoors or outdoors?
The fact that our new wedding is outdoors makes a HUGE difference. Especially since the majority of our guests have already been vaccinated or are planning to very soon. However, since I am always thinking about the worst case scenarios now, I have considered what would happen if we needed to go indoors due to weather. And because of that, we’ll include something along the lines of “If you are not vaccinated, we kindly ask you to wear a mask and/or receive a negative COVID test in order to keep all of our guests safe.“
Where are my other postponed brides at? How are you planning on communicating everything to your guests? Let us know in the comments!