Planning your 2022 Wedding
El Paso Wedding Photographer
Wedding planning is supposed to be a joyous and exciting experience, it can also be a test of your relationship and ability to compromise too. The planning experience these days looks a little different from the way that it used to. Now, we not only have the pressure of finding the right vendors, for the right price, but we also have to think about the what ifs that come along with planning a wedding during a pandemic.
As an El Paso wedding photographer who has worked throughout the pandemic, here are some planning tips that I pulled together. These are tips that come from experiences that I have had during this uncertain chapter of my own life. During 2021, I took on quite a few weddings that I like to call covid weddings, these are the weddings where the original vendor was not available, so I was able to step in for them at a moment’s notice.
1. Choosing your vendors
Choosing your vendors takes time, you will want to thoroughly review their contract to ensure that you are choosing a vendor that has a clause specifically pertaining to the pandemic and what happens should your vendor not be available. In most cases, your vendor will offer to find a substitute to take their place in case of illness, and transfer the money to the new vendor. In some cases, there is no mention of this scenario in the contract which would then leave you to find a last minute vendor to perform their job.
2. Lower guest count and early departures
One of the things I noticed happening quite a bit as an El Paso wedding photographer was… empty tables, sometimes from the beginning of the event even. Many guests would RSVP with the hope of attending the event but would end up being unable to make it. At the same time, I noticed quite a bit of the guests were leaving the events earlier than in recent years. For my brides, when I am creating the schedule of events, I normally like to create a nice flow to keep the day moving especially when it comes to the reception, it almost always goes: Grand entrance, dances, dinner (toasts during dinner), cake and then garter / bouquet toss and open dance. Guests want to see those sentimental dances, eat dinner and have some cake and make their exit. This can also help keep your costs low as far as how many hours of photography / videography coverage you will need.
Another thing worth noting on this point is – consider opting for a faux sparkler or bubble exit if you can, that way more of your family and friends can participate and feel like that is a good time for them to exit too without making things awkward.
3. Limited vendor availability
Many couples were forced to push back their wedding date for one reason or another maybe the local mandates didn’t permit gatherings, or the finances took a hit from being out of work from actually having the virus, either way – 2022 seems to be the year of weddings for those couples, which has created a shortage in availability for wedding vendors. This means your typical weekend dates may not be available as originally planned. So, as a Thursday bride myself – I always recommend checking out possible weekday dates to hold your event. Not only will you see more availability with vendors, but my husband and I actually chose a weekday on purpose because first, it was much cheaper – I’m talking like $10,000 cheaper and as an El Paso wedding photographer, I will tell you – I LOVE weekday events. Second, those who want to attend your wedding will take the time off of work to be there for you – you will without a doubt only have your most important people by your side on your biggest day.
4. Hire a planner or day of coordinator
I highly recommend working with a professional planner or day of coordinator; many El Paso wedding venues will have a coordinator built-in, this comes as an advantage for the venue as well as the couples because it just helps the day run smoothly. Your planner will be able to help you with anything that you may need, they’ll make sure you’re on time and they can be of emotional support if you should need it.
5. Consider hiring a videographer in addition to a photographer
Videography has come such a long way, I personally believe that a photographer and videographer are equally important. There are points in the day where I feel are more important for the photographer to capture, and then there are other points during the day where I feel the videographer’s role takes precedence over the photographer’s role. In my case, my husband really couldn’t care less about the photos – the video was definitely more his thing, it is something he still talks about and watches to this day.