Planning a wedding in lockdown

Planning a wedding in lockdown

Couples across the world are in lockdown at home due to COVID-19, which dramatically affects the way we are planning weddings. However, you don’t need to wait until things return to “normal”, here’s how to plan your wedding during a lockdown.

Firstly, whether you are newly engaged or have decided to use your time in lockdown to plan your wedding day – congratulations! Things may be different, but you do not have to twiddle your thumbs, you can plan a wedding in lockdown.

The UK’s average wedding takes 200 hours to plan, so it is easy to see why it can feel like a part-time job. From writing checklists, creating spreadsheets and researching suppliers, use your time in lockdown to make sure you are prepared.

Are weddings allowed during COVID?

When we are in full lockdown, or Tiers 4 and 5, wedding ceremonies have been banned. If your wedding is booked during these strict restrictions, you will have to reschedule – so it is something to be prepared for. 

However, weddings can go ahead when parts of the country are in Tiers 1 to 3. Churches, religious venues, registry offices and hotels will let you know how many people can be invited to witness you exchanging your vows. This is determined by the capacity of the venue when physical distancing measures have been taken into account.

When in Tiers 1 and 2, wedding breakfasts are allowed to take place. This is limited to 15 guests and social distancing rules. This means that you can not sit on one table to eat. Tables will need to be split between households and support bubbles. 

The Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, has said with the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine and rapid lateral testing by Easter, this should allow weddings to return to normal by the summer of 2021. “My hope is by summer it really will be a different world for the weddings and events industry. I hope that your potential customers will be full of confidence and optimism as well and will be getting hitched in the normal way. I think you should be able to plan for a much more active summer and lots of happy nuptial events all over the UK.”

Wedding venues and wedding suppliers

With thousands of postponements across the country, venues and suppliers will be booked more in advance than ever before. Suppose you are looking to get married sooner rather than later. In that case, you may have to consider a winter wedding or even a weekday. Five reasons why you should consider a weekday wedding.

If you are searching for a wedding venue, there may be visiting restrictions. Many wedding venues are currently offering virtual showarounds so you can view your shortlist from the comfort of your own home. Make sure you check out wedding galleries online too. When speaking to your wedding photographer, it is a good idea to ask if they have been to your wedding venue before – and ask to see the photos.

Wedding planning tasks you can do during Coronavirus 

Don’t know where to start when planning a wedding? Here are some things to consider:

  1. What is your budget? How much are you going to spend on the venue, food, drink, wedding dress, suits and accessories, décor, how you are getting to the venue, cake, flowers, photographer, videographer, invites, makeup and hair, entertainment, favours, hotel bedrooms, as well as the donation to the church or religious house, or payment to the registrar?
  2. Put together a shortlist of dates for when you would like to get married, as many venues are busy with postponements over the next two years.
  3. Make a rough list of attendees. How many people will be at your wedding?
  4. Consider your wedding timeline; what time do you want to get married? Your wedding venue can then advise the best time to start your wedding breakfast and wedding reception.
  5. Research wedding venues. Don’t forget to look at their reviews and wedding gallery.
  6. Find out what packages they offer, from ceremony only, wedding breakfast, evening reception, or all-inclusive, and ask what their COVID-19 weddings looked like.
  7. Ask what décor is included at your wedding venue.
  8. Consider your wedding theme and colour scheme.
  9. Find out what suppliers have worked at your venue before. They will know which of their products and packages will work best with your theme.
  10. It is always recommended to take out wedding insurance, which usually costs between £25-60. An acceptable policy will cover your wedding ceremony and reception against cancellations, additional rearranging costs, and venues or suppliers going out of business. Our friends at Hitched, have put together a complete guide to wedding insurance.

Lockdown wedding ideas

If your wedding date looks like it will have local restrictions, it is best to be prepared. 

Guest lists

It may not be what you want, but you might have to consider cutting your guest list. If your wedding date means that you have to have a reduced number, be ready, and have that reduced list to hand. 

There may be a few guests that will be disappointed that they can not make it. The important thing to remember is, it is not your fault. Try to organise with your wedding venue, or with one of your guests, to live stream the wedding ceremony. This means no one has to miss out.

Wedding breakfast on Zoom

If you cannot get everyone together after the wedding ceremony, consider a wedding breakfast at home. Ask your friends and family to join you on Zoom. You can encourage them to dress up and perhaps order a takeaway or have an afternoon tea delivered. It also means that those who expected to do a speech on the big day still can. 

Time to plan your wedding in lockdown

When planning your wedding during the lockdown, the main thing to remember is that it is ok to feel overwhelmed. Everyone is in the same boat. Please be patient with your wedding venue or suppliers, as many are still on flexible furlough and may only be working part-time. Planning should be fun, so doing as much as you can whilst in lockdown will help you feel organised and ready to celebrate your big day.

Get married at Future Inns

Weddings at Future Inn Bristol

From an intimate feel to a grander affair, the wedding suites are on the hotel’s top floor with fantastic views over Bristol city centre. There is even a small balcony to take in some air and enjoy the scenery. Speak with our wedding planners Aaron or Seyran who can advise you on post-lockdown weddings in Bristol on 0117 304 1010 or

Weddings in Bristol

Weddings at Future Inn Cardiff

Our wedding venue in Cardiff Bay has various suites to choose from, all of which are on the ground floor. Choose from an all-day wedding celebration, wedding breakfasts, or evening only events. Virtual or in-person appointments need to be booked in advance with Martin, who is up to date with all of the current legislation. He can be contacted on 02920 487111 or

Weddings in Cardiff

Weddings at Future Inn Plymouth

You are more than welcome to speak with our highly experienced Wedding Co-ordinators Jodie or Ellie on 01752 701000 or Our wedding venue in Plymouth has been nominated for several wedding awards over the last few years, so you are in knowledgeable, safe hands. The wedding suites are all on the ground floor, and guests love the outdoor space for photographs in the summer months.

Weddings in Plymouth

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