Postponing a wedding is never easy. Make it easier on the guests by notifying them as soon as possible.

Postponing a wedding used to be something that didn’t happen very often. Most of the time, it was due to an illness in the family or some type of disaster that impacted the wedding venue. But 2020’s coronavirus pandemic has forced couples to postpone weddings en masse, without knowing when it will be possible to reschedule. The normal rules include sending out correspondence with the new date, but what do you do if you don’t have a new date? We have some tips on when and how to tell your guests about the postponement of your wedding.

Let Them Know as Soon as You Can

As soon as you know the wedding is off, make sure you let all of your guests know as soon as possible. You can send an email, make a phone call, send out a letter, or any combination of the three. Luckily during the pandemic, airlines and hotels have been flexible about canceling and refunding fares, but you still want to let people know at least six weeks ahead of the original wedding date.

What if I Don’t Have a New Date Yet?

Let your guests know when you send out the cancellation notes that you don’t have a new date set, but you will keep them updated. If possible, use your wedding website or a special social media group to keep them updated and send formal invites when you have the new date nailed down.

Save the Date card

Courtesy of Pexels, photo by Olya Kobruseva

How to Compassionately Scale Down the Guest List

Restrictions on capacity at wedding venues have forced a lot of couples to reduce the number of people on their invite list. This may cause some hurt feelings but it’s best to be as upfront as possible when you send out invites. Inquire with your venue about a live stream of the wedding so those guests can still be included on the big day.

Dealing With Health and Safety Concerns of Your Guests

Every state and locality has different health and safety restrictions when it comes to the coronavirus. Be sure to let your guests know if masks are required and what type of safety protocols will be in effect at the wedding venue. Make it a point to let them know they can contact you or your wedding venue or coordinator for more information if they have questions or concerns. Don’t take it personally if they decline the invite for health reasons.

Should I Return Wedding Gifts That Have Already Been Received?

If your wedding was canceled on the fly and you already received gifts in the mail, don’t worry.   

As long as you are planning to reschedule your wedding, it’s fine to keep the gift. Even if you have to scale back and the guest isn’t invited to the micro wedding, it’s probably still okay to keep it. This year has been challenging for people in many ways and your family members or friends still want to support the couple.

Have you been among the many who have had to postpone a wedding? Share your tips and lifesavers in the comments.