Wedding Planners Reveal: Effect Of Coronavirus On Destination Weddings
With the headlines reading ‘Another positive Coronavirus case found’ every other hour, an enmasse panic has tremendously hit the nation. People are not willing to move out of their houses. The tourism industry has come to a standstill. And just when we were reading thousand other implications of this deadly coronavirus outbreak, we wondered how it would have affected those who had planned their destination weddings in the recent time.
So we got in touch with some of the most renowned destination wedding planners to take their first-hand inputs & know how coronavirus is affecting the wedding industry. Scroll down to read out their comments, and plan your ‘I do’ wisely.
Neha from Foreign Wedding Planners shares,
“The whole Corona Virus threat is massively affecting the wedding industry. It’s a panic-stricken situation for all. Couples who had saved their dates & made their bookings for the upcoming months, are now postponing it to the next year. Such is the terror! We as planners are experiencing a lot of to-and-fro from the vendors, as well as couples’ sides. Even after making all the arrangements, there’s little to no clarity about whether we’ll be getting the business or not. However, we’re all in this together and are helping our couples get sufficient support in getting their refunds. While some vendors are being stringent about their contracts, there are hotels like The Marriott group and Dusit Thani in Thailand who are being extremely supportive in initiating refunds and have customized contracts to suit clients completely.
Going forward, with so many international bookings being canceled, we are left with no choice but to make pre-bookings of two locations for one couple (International as well as domestic) until the situation improves. Intimate weddings or private ceremonies are going to be the next big thing in the coming times, and we’ll be one of the biggest rooters of it. Our couples’ safety & their well being is our primary concern, for now, hence we’ll suggest each and every one of them to take precautionary measures, wherever needed.”
Manav from Sepia Events shares,
“The Wedding industry is affected very badly. Most people are canceling their weddings in Thailand, India, etc. No one wants to travel and so hosts feel like they need to change their plans. In some cases, the hotel themselves have canceled on the client and refunded the money. In many cases, though the hotel doesn’t refund the money if the client decides to cancel. However, it’s been better for us since a lot of international weddings are coming back to India. Not so great for clients since they have to spend almost double to plan celebrations twice.”
Shikha from Baraati Inc shares,
"It's quite a hit, recently we had a drop of an approx 75 pax at a destination wedding in Feb due to visa issues as they had travelled to China or to places which were a threat for the virus. A lot of couples are postponing their weddings or changing the destination. Moreover, those who were planning international weddings are reconsidering the plan and coming back to India.
It's an unfortunate state of things, prevention is better than cure. As planners, we are suggesting our clients to reconsider their dates and locations, keeping all factors in mind. Especially nowadays in weddings, guests travel from all across the world to be a part of the celebration. A lot of weddings are being postponed as families aren't getting the visas. For instance, we did a wedding in mid Feb where 80% were foreigners, we ensured before they boarded the flight that we had chartered for them, they all were handed out masks, essential kits which had sanitizers, wet wipes etc. Everyone was told how namaste is safer than shaking hands and hugging to greet each other.
Shahid from Maritus Events and Wedding Planners shares,
It has not affected Kerala till date as we keep receiving enquiries for destination weddings. Since the health administration in Kerala is doing a commendable job, out of the three positive cases reported in kerala are cured and got discharged, people are feeling safe. But in the case of destination wedding clients from out of state and abroad, it is a highly alarming situation and will affect the entire wedding industry for sure. Also at Maritus, we are facing uncertainity for all the imports(raw materials needed for decor production) which are on hold out of the virus alert. Periodic purchase visits are also getting affected.
We have faced similar situations when there was Nipah & Zika virus broke out in Kerala. In the current situation, We at Maritus, would extend our support in getting the refunds done from the venues and vendors for the bookings done through us."
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