In the scouts, our motto is “be prepared” (I’m a leader – I’m not 12). And this is so true for wedding photographers. For every thing that can go wrong with a wedding I can tell you what we do to prevent that problem. Backup equipment, Ordnance survey maps for every wedding location, emergency plans, even snow chains for the car in winter. But I guess none of us anticipated this situation.
Over the last few days I’ve spoken to several of my couples who are having to postpone their wedding plans and my heart breaks for them. So far it seems that all of them will be able to rearrange with their venue and almost all other original suppliers. From talking to lots of people in the wedding industry I can truly say we are all working together to take care of our wonderful customers.
I’m sure you’re already aware that a lot of small businesses are in for a hard time now. Some are facing months with no income, and some already know they won’t make it. We’re lucky that the wedding industry rebounds very well. If people wanted to get married this year they’ll still want to get married next year. But coffee shops? Once the quarantine is lifted you don’t go out and catch up with the coffee you missed while you were away. Spare a thought for those lovely independants near you. And buy a gift card for later as your vote of confidence.
I suppose in one sense we actually were prepared for this situation. By using emergency savings we’re able to keep going for a very long time during this lockdown. Remind me to tell you about YNAB soon. I’m happy to say the rest of the year is looking really good, and 2021 even better. So long term we’ll be more than fine. But I think if you’re self employed you need to know that you have to do a lot better than your colleagues who are earning a salary. Without statutory sick pay, etc. you have to have a backup. Six months full salary tucked away in a bank is a good start.
So if you’re looking at your wedding date and wondering what to do please do get in touch. Or with your photographer of course, if it’s not me. Get in touch early and just let them know what’s going on, what discussions you’ve already had with your venue, how long you’re going to wait before making a decision, etc. If you need to reschedule, you’ll want to get as many possible dates from them to rebook. And if you have wedding insurance (if you don’t it’s too late!) read it carefully.
I’ve been married for five years now to my best friend, and whatever bits and pieces went wrong at the time we’ve forgotten them, and we just look back with very happy memories. You’ll handle this too, don’t worry.
This global emergency is going to cost every one of us something. We were naiive a few weeks ago to think it might not. But postponing your wedding is particularly hard, and the whole world thanks you for playing your part and protecting all of us. When you do finally hit that dance floor, hit it hard, look at the faces all around you, and be very proud of all you’ve done.
Sending you actual love and an elbow bump, vulcan salute or curtsey as appropriate.