How to politely cancel your wedding guests due to COVID-19



COVID-19 has impacted all of our lives in the most profound ways. Future brides around the world are grappling with changes and even cancellations. Of course, one of the biggest changes is towards smaller, more intimate events, in order to meet the latest restrictions. If your wedding is approaching and you have decided to move forward, choosing which guests can still attend is a colossal decision. However, doing it and letting people know it doesn’t have to be stressful. Here’s our expert-backed guide to doing it smoothly and in style.

Reduce the size of your guest list

First, get to know the current marriage limits imposed by your state. When you have a definitive number, you can start looking at your old guest list and making cuts. “It’s never easy, but divide it into categories: family and friends who absolutely need to be there and family and friends who would. like be there, ”advises event planner Terrica Skaggs. “Those whose attendance is not necessarily mandatory can attend virtually or be invited to a birthday celebration later.”

If you’re having trouble deciding who to invite to your intimate relationship, consider getting back to basics. Start with the people who matter most and take things from there. “I would recommend limiting it to parents, siblings, close aunts, uncles, cousins ​​and best friends. It can be difficult, but you want to surround yourself with those who make you laugh and who you literally can’t imagine not being there for the wedding, ”says planner Feyisola Ogunfemi.

Meet the expert

  • Terrica Skaggs is the Chief Event Planner and Designer at Cocktails and Details®. Award-winning wedding planner, Skaggs has over 14 years of experience in the wedding industry.
  • Engineer turned wedding planner, Feyisola Ogunfemi is the owner of Statuesque Events, a full-service Washington DC-based wedding planning company specializing in multicultural and luxury events.

In an ideal scenario, you and your partner would agree on every decision. But life is not perfect. Chances are, you will feel differently from some customers. Make sure you take other people’s feelings into account during this conversation. Speak openly and listen to yourself. “Be kind and show yourself grace about Why they feel like someone’s presence is important, ”Skaggs says. “While you may feel differently, your partner’s reasoning might be rooted in longing and emotion.”

Notice to guests

Once you’ve made the last call, it’s time to let people know. Fortunately, there are several ways to let people know about the news. Make sure you take a personal approach, rather than sending mass messages to the group. “While your guests certainly understand in this current climate, do your best to alert them in a personal and intentional way,” says Skaggs. “Phone your loved ones to update them. Get cards designed by your stationery with a message of regret that you must cancel. Sign it with a small note.

If you decide to send each former guest a note about the change of plans, it is essential that you write the wording well. Of course, you must make it clear that these circumstances are beyond your control while letting the recipient know that they are important to you.

Example 1: Keep it simple.

Dear [Names],

Due to the current climate and for the safety of all, we have a change of plans for our marriage. We will limit our guest list to an intimate number. Please accept our apologies for not having you with us on the big (little!) Day. We look forward to celebrating with you in style at a later date.



Example 2: Explain that it is only the family.

Dear [Names],

In light of the current circumstances and for the safety of all, we have a change of plan for our marriage. We will limit our guest list to family members only. Please accept our apologies for not having you personally with us on this occasion. We look forward to celebrating with you in style at a later date.



Example 3: Offer an alternative.

Dear [Names],

Due to circumstances beyond our control, we have a change of plans for our marriage. For everyone’s personal safety, we will limit our guest list to an intimate number. Please accept our apologies for not inviting you in the flesh. However, we would like you to attend it virtually and have more details about it on our wedding website. Looking forward to celebrating with you!



You can set up a Zoom video for them to watch the special occasion. “You can also close with a link to view it virtually or anticipate an invitation to a future celebration,” Skaggs explains. “Make sure you play the way you always want them to be included and involved. This should allay any hard feelings. “

Want to know more about the new arrangement? The note you send should be concise. However, you can also add a longer explanation on your wedding website. “Adding an explanation to your wedding website is a great option, but shouldn’t replace sending out an official announcement,” Ogunfemi says. “Your guests probably don’t visit your website every day or every week. So it’s ideal to send a notification to make sure everyone is in the know.”

Worried about what people are going to say when you tell them? Avoid overcomplicating things when engaging in social policy. “Those who really love you won’t make an already stressful time even more stressful by focusing on themselves,” Ogunfemi says. “It’s best to respond respectfully and let them know that if you could you would include them, but don’t internalize the stress either, as an explosion shows that this guest was probably thinking more of themselves than you. . ”


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