Right now, just being on a guest list for a wedding can be hard. We get it! Knowing if you should attend, what relationship dynamics are involved, and how to communicate is just not something you’ll find in an etiquette book. Because of that, we felt like we could give you some tips to help navigate these murky waters.
1. Know that the couple is struggling too.
They know they have to balance the safety of everyone attending, with their family's wants and desires, as well as the financial impact of their decisions. If you want to be someone they are happy to chat with right now, try listening more than giving an opinion. Trust me, they are getting opinions from EVERYWHERE. They will value you so much for simply just being there, not asking sensitive or shaming questions, and let them vent a little if they want to.
2. Be flexible!
The couple may need to postpone or cancel the event until further notice. They aren’t doing it to upset you, they simply are making the best plans they can, for health and financial reasons. Should the event be cancelled or rescheduled, make sure to change your travel plans quickly as you don't want to forget to cancel or change reservations!
3. Make the decision to attend based on good information, not how someone will perceive you.
It’s a personal choice to go to an event during a pandemic. Hopefully, the couple has communicated with you as to what safeguards will be in place to help this be a safe as well as a joyous occasion. If they haven’t, you can absolutely ask them what safeguards they and their wedding vendors are putting into place. Again, try not to judge here, but you definitely want to be well informed as to what to expect should you attend.
4. Should you decide to attend, do not add guests to the rsvp.
Because of restrictions, whether local or federal, guest counts are probably restricted at the event. If someone’s name is not on the invitation, they are not invited and there is probably not room for “extras”. Also, please do not ask the couple if it’s okay to bring an extra. This just adds more pressure to them and they feel awkward saying no. They definitely put thought into their guest list, so please know they intended to leave someone off if they are not listed.
5. If you decide not to attend, the couple will more than likely understand.
They get that this is hard too. Please send in your rsvp promptly (however they’ve requested it) so they know to not include you in the festivities. If you want to attend the ceremony only, note that on the rsvp so they know to leave you out of the caterer’s count. (This is okay too!)
6. When you attend the event, follow directions.
If a mask is required, please bring one and wear it correctly. If asked to submit to temperature checks, use hand sanitizer, or put your mask back on, please be gracious. No one wants to be the bad guy and they are all doing their best to ensure your safety. They still want you to have a great time, so giving a little grace to the situation allows everyone to do that.
7. If you contract Covid-19 after an event, notify the couple.
This allows them to notify any others that you might have come in contact with, as well as notify their venue and vendors so they can have staff tested and take extra cleaning measures so it doesn’t spread further.