|When The Storm Clouds Threatens|
Last updated on 2009-10-15 , 10:18 PM
Nothing brings home the problems of having an outdoor destination wedding than when bad weather brings all the best laid wedding plans to a crashing halt. We are not talking of light showers or mild gusts of wind that can be solved by the anticipated erection of a tent, but the kind of downpour and gale force winds that only a typhoon signal can guarantee.
Forget bringing eggs to Santa Clara. Those poor nuns must already have cholesterol problems at the rate so many people are setting eggs on their doorsteps. Besides, it doesn’t work. Nothing does. When Mother Nature is mad, she shows it in the most destructive way.
Force majeure is its more stylish name but bad weather by any other name is an event planner’s major nightmare. It not only can undo all plans but it will reduce the most optimistic bride and groom to tears. What took one year to plan will be cancelled in a matter of minutes. Not to mention what it will do to the wedding budget.
As helpless as it sounds, here are some pointers which may help not only couples planning a destination wedding but also those who will have it in their area.
1. Choose you wedding date wisely.
Don’t go sentimental on your wedding date choice if it means risking bad weather. There are specific months in all countries when weather changes and patterns are a surety. He may have proposed in July or it’s your anniversary in August but you don’t need a weather bureau to tell you that it’s the start of typhoon season during these months. Summer is not only for sand, sea and surf but it can also mean a bad heat wave.
2. Never, never, never go for an outdoor wedding if your venue cannot guarantee a back-up indoor area.
Don’t play tag on your wedding day by not having a secondary venue, just in case your outdoor venue gets rained out. Even if it means an additional cost to your budget just consider it as an insurance policy and a guarantee to your peace of mind.
3. Check your suppliers’ contracts for any mention of AOG (Acts of God), Force Majeure, etc.
Can and will your wedding supplier refund, transfer or honor any cancellation due to bad weather? Do they have any policy that deals with such eventualities? It would be good practice to have something in writing so that both parties have a game plan on hand rather than having to negotiate something at the last minute.
Food will spoil, flowers wither and venues have other bookings, so early on, inquire about “just in case” situations.
4. Monitor the weather at least 5 days before the wedding date.
Check the weather stations and get a 5-day weather update from the Internet and prepare for the worst even if no storm clouds are on the horizon. Remember that climate change has made weather patterns more unpredictable.
5. If you have to cancel, CANCEL!
Just like removing bandage from a wound, if you have to cancel, do it fast to make it painless. Make your decision definite so that everyone is clear on what has to be done now. If the time for “ifs” and “buts” is over, then get everyone moving on how to make this negative situation into a positive one. Start assigning roles – a family member to inform the guests, another to check on the suppliers, someone to talk to the venue, etc.
Last but not the least, there should be no arguments, no finger pointing, especially between the bride and the groom. Never forget the crucial fact that the situation was not of your making much less something desired. Move on, move up and start anew. Remember for better or for worse... it’s just unfortunate that the worse came first.