Pandemic prompts engaged couples to postpone, cancel their weddings

Coronavirus

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) ─ On May 23, Alicia Arnold and Bryan Ricard were set to tie the knot.

But the coronavirus pandemic changed those plans.

“It’s two years of planning and all of a sudden it’s ripped away from you,” Arnold explained. “It’s just an awful feeling.”

Last week, the couple’s honeymoon to Italy was canceled and now, they’ve learned the hotel they booked for their out of town guests will be closed until at least June.

“We’re probably going to have to push our date back,” Arnold said.

But the new wedding date is up in the air, with the pandemic showing no signs of slowing down anytime soon.

“You don’t want to pick a date and then find out two weeks ahead of that, ‘Oh that doesn’t, work either,'” Ricard said.

Kaitlyn Haines, a wedding consultant with KH Weddings and Events, said she’s already had to reschedule 10 of her 25 weddings for the rest of 2020.

“April and May, we’re definitely telling our couples to reschedule their date,” Haines said.

For summer weddings, Haines is leaving the decision to postpone up to the couple, but she’s strongly suggesting not canceling. She says couples risk losing their deposit if they cancel and rob their vendors of income. Haines also said couples need to keep an open mind when it comes to rescheduling their big day.

“Look at Thursdays, a lot of Thursdays all of your vendors are going to be available,” she said. “If you have your heart set on June or May, have a small ceremony with immediate family and then do the party in November or October. Those are options as well.”

Haines said it’s also important to remember that couples can still begin a marriage even if the coronavirus is postponing their wedding.

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