As the wedding industry is finally seeing some normalcy, more couples are resuming their wedding preparations. Soon-to-be brides are getting their wedding dresses ready and collaborating with wedding vendors.
Weddings in 2021 are moving ahead now that vaccines are available for distribution across the world. Despite the good news, newer COVID variants and breakthrough cases are causing worries to the general public. More than ever, couples and wedding vendors are facing stricter protocols, such as mask mandates, social distancing, and vaccine requirements.
In some states, local governments require people to bring proof of vaccination when visiting indoor gathering spaces, such as entertainment venues and restaurants.
Vaccination requirements are in place to give event participants peace of mind and ensure everyone has protection against COVID-19. Despite the good intentions behind the policy, many are still doubtful about getting their shots. This is where the problem comes in as couples are deciding whether they should limit their guests only to those who got vaccinated.
To address this, we’ll discuss vaccination etiquette at weddings and how to communicate vaccination requirements to your guests.
Vaccine etiquette at weddings
Vaccination requirements have created a new type of public etiquette called “vaccine etiquette.” This means dealing with non-vaccinated guests in the most appropriate and respectful way possible. In other words, you try to be mindful and considerate of your guests’ safety, health, and comfort, particularly older family members. Instead of expressing your disagreement with their belief, you should approach the dialogue with kindness and respect.
Since people have different opinions about vaccinations, many feel timid about asking this important question. But the idea of vaccine etiquette is to encourage people to have this conversation once the need arises.
Vaccine etiquette also acknowledges the fact that not all people share the same vaccine status, while some aren’t ready to return to pre-pandemic life. For this reason, couples should be mindful of these considerations and other variables that affect individual decisions and choices. Thus, planning ahead and staying flexible is essential to ensure your wedding day will be as meaningful and special as you’ve expected it to be.
What to ask wedding guests
The vaccination status of your guests will determine the level of safety requirements of your wedding. Guests can attend without masks provided if they are fully vaccinated. In this case, there’s no harm in inviting only the vaccinated guests.
For those who prefer a mask-less wedding, couples should be comfortable asking non-vaccinated guests to undergo a diagnostic test at least two days before the wedding. Remind them to bring the test result to the venue so the point-person can check it. While this may seem offensive to others, asking people for a COVID test is critical, especially if other guests have fragile health conditions. If you choose this option, make sure to state it in the invitation.
Temperature test is also a must in public venues. This is already a commonplace protocol in several establishments every time someone walks in. Thus, couples should be comfortable taking the temperature of their guests, whether they’re vaccinated or not.
What not to ask wedding guests
If you are to have a conversation about vaccines with your wedding guests, make sure to be wary and sensitive enough about your questions or statements related to their health and vaccine status.
The first rule is to never ask a guest why they aren’t getting vaccinated yet. Doing so is like going against the vaccine etiquette by making people explain or defend their personal decision. As mentioned earlier, people have different reasons to refuse vaccines, including health conditions, allergies, and religious beliefs. Prying into their personal belief and choices is a sign of poor etiquette.
Another question to avoid is to ask about their pre-existing health condition. Not all guests are comfortable sharing their health history, but if they’re willing, make sure they’re comfortable to discuss this with you. Also, assure them that you will keep the information private.
Asking guests about their political stand about vaccines is another rule to not break in vaccine etiquette. It’s worth noting that your guests have conflicting opinions on masks, vaccinations, and other safety measures. But you should be diligent by not appearing as if you’re calling them off for their opinions.
As things slowly return to normal across the U.S, getting vaccinated has never been more critical. Never compromise your decision just to accommodate someone who refuses to get their vaccines before your wedding. Remember, your wedding should be a special time between you and your loved ones, and keeping them safe while sharing your precious moment together should be your priority.