COVID PROTOCOL WEDDINGS
Didi, our question is how do we deal with COVID during our upcoming wedding weekend? We’re in the midst of planning our wedding and I’m a May bride, after a year long postponement because of Covid. We thought Covid was on the wane, but apparently it’s not.
Last night we were at a dinner party with ten other people and today we were told that one of the guests tested positive for Covid. Not only do we feel badly for this person, but now we’re worrying: What if one (or many) of our wedding guests test positive after our May wedding?
This Covid isn’t really going away! It’s too late to postpone our wedding again and, of course, there are all the deposits, etc. Please HELP us figure out how to handle this Covid menace.
Our families are all vaxxed and boosted, but we don’t know about our hundred, or so, wedding guests?
–May Bride & Groom, New England
Dear May bride and groom, thank you for your question about COVID wedding protocol.
Understandably, you are awfully concerned and we, of course, are hoping you both test negative now after the dinner party. Sadly, this is a major problem for many. You are not alone in your concern.
This is what I want you to do:
- Two weeks before your wedding send out an email blast to all the guests on your wedding website who accepted your invitation to your wedding with this request under the subject COVID. "On your phone, please, send a photo of your CDC vaccine card to this number: _____ by such and such date" (before the first date of an event celebrating the wedding couple).
- Then make it clear that on the day of the first wedding event they are attending (perhaps the welcoming party/rehearsal dinner), all guests have to report to the below address to be tested for COVID before joining the wedding festivities. At that time they will also be asked to show their actual CDC card.
- Those who test negative will go forward on the guest lists for all the wedding activities. It's awful to have to do this, but in order to protect all of your guests testing negative, obviously, those who test positive won't be admitted. (In other words, they won't find a place card with their name on it.)
I know this sounds harsh, but it's a crazy world out there and there are those who think they'll never get COVID but, truth to tell: COVID is everywhere. You don't want your wedding to be known as the COVID wedding they went to in 2022 -- where even people vaxxed and boosted got COVID.
As you know, COVID variants keep evolving. The best you can do to ease your worries is to follow the simple safety protection procedures above. It will all be fine, when you both know that you've protected your family and guests to the best of your ability during this brutal pandemic. The rest is up to them -- your guests.
How do you politely handle the many various attitudes about COVID? You can't assume all your guests will comply. We've all learned a lot over the past two years about masking, testing, tracing and self-isolating, but not even one of the most protected people in the world, the Queen of England, is immune from COVID. As with all good manners, you want to minimize asking too much of your guests. By having clearly stated your concerns, your guests will know your concerns and will honor them.
I've not included mask wearing here because I think mask wearing should be up to the individual guest. By asking for a texted photo of the guest's CDC card and testing each and every guest under your wedding planner's guidance, you've set protocol for a wedding in the time of COVID.
Most of all, May Bride and Groom, you've got this! Our recommendations sounds brutal, but COVID is brutal. At least, you won't have photos of masked family and guests -- which would be your only other alternative, and which we would not recommend at this point in time.