Would you like me to elaborate?
OK, I will.
Covid-19 Weddings. Whoever thought that would be a ‘thing’ just a few months back?
I have been capturing weddings now for what should have been my 20th year.
I went full-time, ie, gave up everything else to become a wedding specialist in 2002.
To date, I have had the privilege of having captured over 700 weddings in total, 100 or so of which have been here in my adopted country of France.
I had big things planned for the 2020 season.
Well I don’t know if ‘big’ is the right word as there isn’t that much I can do these days that I’d describe as being revolutionary, but there was a whole series of refinements shall we say. Plus some new stuff.
But of course it’s all on hold now due to the global pandemic.
Normally, I would capture anything from 25-30 weddings in a season and the wedding season in France is May-Sep with a few bookend jobs, but mainly, just 20 Saturdays.
I started the year with 20 booked in and would have expected to pick up a further 5-10 as the year progressed, but news coming from China initially, but spreading to other countries, saw an equally diminishing volume of new enquiries for any/all weddings regardless of year.
At the time of writing, (end of May 2020), it’s been a somewhat bumpy ride so far and whether we are over the worst is hard to say as there are so many known and unknown repercussions.
On the negative side of things, of the 20x 2020 weddings that should have been happening…
1 cancellation plus 6 postponements with the other 13 as yet undecided.
Some more will inevitably cancel and in that regard, I am sorry for us both.
Some others will postpone, either to a known fixed date or in other cases, TBD.
For any/all small businesses, it is an exceedingly tough time financially because other than the booking fees of any future wedding booking, we have zero income but still have business overheads to cover such as; insurance, subscriptions, accountants fees, depreciation, marketing & advertising budgets.
On the positive side of the fence however, there are some fresh shoots of hope…
In the last couple of weeks, enquiries have begun to pick up again and I have actually booked a couple of new 2021 clients and if we can keep this going, we can just about scrape through.
But what chances for 2020 weddings? Is there any hope?
May, June and July for weddings in France is gone.
August is looking very unlikely. My personal opinion is it will not happen either because it will not be allowed (quite likely) or just won’t be possible due to a variety of circumstances.
September & October are actually 1/3rd of my entire wedding season so my best hope is these two months at least can be salvaged and this is the biggest question I have right now.
If you are one of my booked clients and have not already made contact, I would urge you to do so ASAP in order to discuss at least potential options and scenarios.
If you are a potential 2021 (or beyond) couple getting married, it is business as usual for the 2021 season but please note more than 50% of next season’s availability has already gone and every week diminishes as existing clients postpone or new couples book.
To conclude with a very personal note and that is my heart goes out to all couples who had a wedding planned for 2020. You didn’t want this and none of us expected or are set up for it, but by working together, we will get through the current situation and better times are ahead.