If you’re like most couples, you spent more than a year and $20,000 planning your wedding. And you spent a lot of energy coordinating all the details perfectly for your special day. But no matter how much time or money you spent, postponing your wedding is a difficult and emotional decision to make—even if it’s for a good reason.
As you consider postponing your wedding, you may feel sad, frustrated, or even angry. All of that is expected! You are allowed to grieve for the planned wedding that you’ll never have. (At least not on that specific date!) Once you’ve made the decision—and before you start re-scheduling—take a day or two to process. Talk to a friend, sleep on it, and journal. It will help clear your head for the long road ahead, because postponing your wedding is a lot of work, too.
Because there are so many vendors and little details involved in your special day, checking on each one takes time. Before you tackle the postponement to-do list below, we recommend that you create a wedding task force of your fiance and a few friends. They will be your support system during the coming weeks.
Keep the Same Vendors
Rescheduling with the same wedding vendors will save you time and money. (Which will, in turn, will save you from extra stress!) If you’ve already put down deposits, you may be able to apply those deposits to a future date, instead of losing the money by booking a new vendor. Or you may be able to use a portion of your deposit towards a future date.
Bonus Tip: Be flexible with your new date if you want to secure your current venue. Weekdays might even be a cheaper option!
On top of saving money, rescheduling (instead of cancelling) saves you the hassle of looking for another venue or vendor—again. You’ve already done the research, already visited the venue, and you already know they’re a good match. Of course, if you were unhappy with a vendor choice, this may be an opportunity to find a better match. But keep in mind the reason why you’re postponing your wedding—it might not be worth the extra hassle.
Update Your Wedding Website
As soon as you’ve made the decision to postpone your wedding, update your wedding website. You don’t have to post the new date if you don’t have one, but guests should know as soon as possible, so they can cancel hotels and travel plans. If you’ve been sharing the website on social media, consider sharing the update in the same manner.
And you should absolutely call or text friends and family members who are in your wedding. Again, you don’t need to give them a new date right away. But they are very involved in your big day, and you shouldn’t wait to notify them. You may even ask them for help re-scheduling certain things, or contacting family members.
Considering Emailing (Instead of Calling)
If your wedding is less than four months away, you should notify all your guests within a few days of making your decision. For weddings more than four months away, you can wait a week or two if you’ll have a solid date by then. Then you can skip to the next item on this list!
But for weddings that are fast approaching, guests need the time to cancel or postpone their travel plans. Calling each guest is sometimes considered the polite method, because talking to someone directly is more personal than an email or mailed invitation. However, mailing or emailing a postponement announcement is quicker—and less taxing.
If your postponing your wedding for personal, private reasons, you might not want to call all 200 of your guests. It could be hard for you to talk about the postponement, or the reason why. And even if most guests respect your request to not talk about the reasoning, someone will inevitably ask you. For these reasons, emailing may be a better option. Of course, if you really want to call everyone, ask a few family members to help, to keep the invasive questioning to a minimum.
Mail New Invites ASAP
As soon as you have the new date secured, mail out new wedding invitations. If your new date is more than four months away, you can choose to mail a save the date, with an official invitation to follow. However, it’s more cost effective to just mail a formal invitation once you have the new date, and skip the save the date. That saves on printing and mailing costs, and clearly communicates the change of plans to your guests.
Don’t Forget Special Orders
Once you’ve contacted all your vendors and mailed your updated invitations, think about your centerpieces and favors. Did any of them have your wedding date, year, or location? And if so, have any of those details changed? If your new date is far out, you may be able to adjust your order for a fee. Otherwise, you’ll have to place a new order, or skip the item altogether.
If you find yourself stuck with an order of inaccurate wedding favors, consider mailing them to your guests with the new invitations as a thank you for their patience. Don’t forget to keep a few for yourself, as a token of all the hard work you put into both of your weddings!
Postponing your wedding is a difficult decision. And, unfortunately, sometimes it’s the right decision to make. Once you’ve spent a few days processing your disappointment, it’s time to start re-planning! Remember to ask friends and family for support, keep the same vendors, and communicate quickly with your guests.
Are you postponing your wedding? What has been the biggest challenge for you so far?