It's been a strange few months and over the past number of weeks for us at Keyhole it's started to feel a little more like normal!
We are now all pretty much back at the office with new measures in place which we touched upon in one of our previous blog posts. We have returned to weddings and even picked a camera up after the longest drought in our history! We have also started taking new bookings and this is what has lead us to create this article.
These are uncertain times and it is a little different now booking a wedding compared to pre pandemic. Booking your wedding has become a little more difficult due to the fact that if you are looking to book a wedding for 2021, a lot of suppliers and venues will have limited availability as they have transferred the majority of their 2020 clients to this particular year. As couples set out on their wedding planning journey, they may find that there is very limited availability for 2021 and a lot of prime dates for 2022 will be getting booked up far in advance.
This is leaving a lot of clients looking to book 2, if not 3 years in advance. Under normal circumstances this wouldn’t be of any concern, however 2020 has been the year of the unknown and who knows what’s going to happen by 2023 if we have to continue on this rollercoaster.
We have put together some thoughts about booking your wedding during these strange times, hopefully giving you some advice and guidance.
First and foremost there is a need to be cautious when booking a service 2 or 3 years in advance. However, there is no suggestion at all that you should not do this, especially given the pace of which 2021 is booking up then in a lot of cases it's recommended. However, one problem you may encounter at present is that new wedding insurance policies have been suspended and are not available.
If wedding insurance isn’t available you need to make the decision on safeguarding the deposits you are paying or risk losing the date to another couple who have a different strategy.
Personally in this instance I would recommend you looking at each booking one by one. For example, if you were booking a wedding car and the deposit was £50. If something unforeseen was to happen and the deposit was lost how would the loss impact you personally? Should you secure the car you want against a possible risk of losing £50?
If you are booking a wedding venue and the deposit is £5000 and wedding insurance isn't available then this could be a different case. Again, personally if this were me I would take a few things into consideration. Firstly, could the deposit be reduced? Can I pay a fraction of the required deposit on the understanding that when wedding insurance is available I will instruct a policy and make the further payment?
Ask the question about the security of the deposit, what happens if the booked date can't go ahead? How large is the company and is there an argument that if I were booking a venue that is a part of a global chain, is my deposit more secure….?
It's a difficult decision to make, but we all need to start getting back to normal and you can guarantee if you wait too long to book your desired date, then someone else will swoop in and take it! For us, we take a 20% booking fee but if a client wanted to split this payment over a period of time or suspend part of the payment until a reasonable date when wedding insurance is available then we would be more than happy to consider it.
We have been explaining to all of our new clients what we have been doing to keep ourselves busy during this time where few weddings are taking place. As a business we have the wedding portion and a commercial arm. Since the vast majority of our weddings have been postponed this year we have simply been doing more commercial work. This has helped us sustain the losses and ensure all of our team are busy until 2021.
This simple explanation hopefully provides some confidence to new clients when booking services with a company which on the surface may have no income for an entire year. it's information such as this I would ask - Is your wedding venue still open for business, diversifying, running spa days, restaurant open etc. If so then this would be a great sign of confidence that even though you can't take wedding insurance out, there are positive signs of business.
Without couples booking services, suppliers simply can't survive. This dilemma of a situation can and will have a massive effect on small and large business' alike. That doesn't mean you should feel any additional pressure when booking services for your wedding. Always take your time and make the right informed decision.
It's been incredible to see signs of our industry getting back to life and if we all proceed with a little common sense and caution I think we will be on the right track to throwing the confetti once again!
Call us on 0151 708 7077 or email us at email@example.com to arrange an appointment with us and we can discuss your special day.