The wedding preparations and plans of many couples have been changed by coronavirus. Whether it’s been virtual venue tours, digital dress shopping or remote meetings with suppliers, wedding preparations since 2020 have looked very different. Just as weddings, wedding fairs have also, inevitably, been affected by COVID. These events are often perfect for couples to tick off several items on their planning ‘To-Do’ lists. Here’s what you can expect from a wedding fair during coronavirus…
Are Wedding Fairs taking place?
Throughout the pandemic, as soon as venues and fair organisers were allowed to open their doors to couples, they were quick to do so. Fair organisers don't want to put exhibitors, couples, or venues at unnecessary risk so will carefully manage numbers on the day and may ask for a Covid pass to be shown on arrival.
As some fairs have had to be cancelled at short notice to accommodate last minute wedding bookings and changes to Covid regulations, we strongly recommend pre-registering for Fairs where you can, and checking the event is going ahead before you leave home.
Virtual Wedding Fairs
Throughout lockdown, Guides for Brides held a weekly Wedding Fair Live on Facebook with thousands of couples joining every week to watch the virtual venue tours and hear from different suppliers. The videos are still available on our Facebook page for anyone wanting to check out a particular business.
Wedding Open Days
Not quite the same choice of suppliers you’d see at a wedding fair, but a wedding open day is an opportunity for couples to see around a venue and find out more about the venue’s recommended suppliers.
The venue is set up as it would be for a wedding and you’ll book in for a particular time slot to arrive and be taken for a tour of the venue, incorporating an opportunity to see the work of suppliers such as a florist’s table displays, a wedding cake or photographer's albums. You’ll be accompanied by the wedding coordinator who’ll answer any questions; the suppliers wouldn’t usually be there.
You may have to pre-register or book tickets for some Wedding Fairs, so don't assume you can just turn up on the day. Some Wedding Fairs are now appointment only, so you'll need to contact the venue and book your time slot.
For those who like to meet their suppliers before booking, (and let's face it, that is a really important part of choosing who you involve on your wedding day), these events are going to be really helpful.
7 Ways to Prepare for a Wedding Fair During COVID interruptions
1. Arrive on time
If you have been allocated a time it should mean that you won't need to queue. It is important you stick to your time slot or be prepared to wait.
2. Prepare for all weather
If you do need to queue, make sure to bring a coat or umbrella in case you're queueing outside and the heavens open.
3. Prepare some questions
You may only have limited time with each supplier. The organisers should be able to give you a list of the suppliers who will be at the fair. Research them online in advance.
4. Be prepared to have a Covid Test or prove your Covid Status
Many events will likely require you to prove your covid status. This may involve taking a lateral flow test before the event, having your temperature checked on arrival or showing that you've had your covid vaccinations. This process and the measures needed will likely be down to the discretion of the venue or event organiser, but will ensure everyone can feel relaxed at the event and enjoy meeting all the suppliers present.
5. Food and drink
You may find that food and drink will be available to sample from suppliers either at the event or be individually wrapped for you to take home to try later. Remember to sanitise hands first!
6. Remember the essentials
You'll need to have a face-covering with you and wear it at all times. Remember to bring hand sanitiser with you and gloves if you would like to. A notebook may also be handy in case suppliers aren’t allowed to give leaflets or business cards.
What to do if you have concerns or questions
If you’re worried about the safety of a wedding fair that you’re attending, you can check the government guidance. It is down to everyone to work together responsibly to allow as many fairs as possible to go ahead, within the rules, so that we can demonstrate they can be safe and viable.
You can also ask the venue questions if you’re worried about any measures they’ve put in place. Organisers are working hard to make sure that their events are as safe as possible so will want to hear of any concerns.
For further information on getting the most from the opportunity to see the wedding fair venue too, check out our guide to viewing wedding venues during COVID.