How to Plan a Virtual Wedding
In the new age of social distancing, many familiar ways of life are no longer available to us. Weddings, like many large-scale gatherings which involve predominantly face-to-face interactions have been significantly impacted. However, with a new Bill passed on May 5, couples are now allowed to tie the knot legally online!
Almost immediately, we see couples embracing this new virtual trend – from saying their “I dos” in front of a castle to holding their e-wedding in Animal Crossing.
Seems like a good solution to your wedding woes? Well, if you are keen to have your wedding solemnization online too, but don’t know where to start, continue reading for a simple step by step guide.
Virtual Wedding Planning: A Step By Step Guide
1) Check the Legalities
2) Choose a Platform
3) Tech Set-up – Cameras, laptops etc
4) Coordinate with Vendors
5) Inform your Guests
6) Test Run
Check the Legalities
Let’s start with the most important part. Make sure to start by filing your Notice of Marriage on either the Registry of Marriages (ROM) or the Registry of Muslim Marriages (ROMM) website. There you will be able to select your options for virtual processes and receive confirmation of dates for the next steps of verifying your documents and statutory declarations process.
After these steps, you will receive a copy of the unsigned certificate of marriage, a solemnization video link and an appointed date for your virtual solemnization.
Choose a Platform
After more than 2 months at home, all of you must be experts with online video conference software by now. So, pick and choose one that works best for you. Check the time & meeting attendees limits to make sure you it fits your needs. Some popular options include:
· Zoom (paid subscriptions recommended for longer time for the ceremony and larger number of attendees)
· Google Meet (free for individuals)
· Facebook Messenger Rooms (free, no time limit, up to 50 pax no account needed – useful for elderly who might not know how to navigate all the apps)
Bonus: One key benefit of doing this online, is that you can easily record the whole ceremony, the reactions of your friends and families with a simple click of a button!
Tech Set Up
Make sure your tech is up to scratch for videoing, recording, and running the whole operations on the big day.
Must haves: A recording device (camera, phone or webcam?), a tripod to mount the device for steady viewing, a laptop to set up the video conferencing for all your attendees and maybe also a speaker for streaming background music. If you want to see everyone clearly, connect your laptop to your TV monitor so you can see more of everybody.
Make sure you check if everything is working well. Test all your devices individually, and together, so you can make sure the quality of the video and connections will be good on the day itself.
Coordinate with Vendors
While simple and intimate, a virtual wedding doesn’t mean you need to forgo everything that you would have done under normal circumstances – after all, it is a once in a lifetime experience.
From photography (yes this is still possible), décor, food and more, many wedding vendors have come up with creative solutions to continue providing their services for couples wedding in these unique times. Simply, check in with them and ask if they provide these services 😊
Photography – You don’t have to limit your memories to just screen recordings and screenshots. Reach out to your photographers and ask if they are offering photo and video editing services for virtual weddings – just see this example here.
Décor – Have a theme! Get everyone to dress up and have some fun. Have fun decorating your home in preparation of the wedding solemnization. DIY or get a professional to help you out! Even if wedding stylists can’t come to your home, they can help pick and choose the décor and ship it to you. Again, simply check in with your vendors if they provide this service.
Food – Get a wedding cake! Celebrate the occasion with a feast! At least that is what we would do. Order something to spoil yourself! Or as a gesture to spread the joy, send some goodies over to your guests as well! Even if they are not there in person, everyone can celebrate with the common language of food. :D
Inform Your Guests
It can be as intimate or large scale as you want it to be – some software can accommodate up to 100 attendees. You can have even more attending if you use multiple accounts and devices. At the end of the day, it is up to you.
Remember to send the meeting link on top of the date and time of the virtual wedding! And maybe also remember to include instructions on how they should turn on their videos and remain muted during the ceremony. Oh! And of course, let them know if they should be dressing up for any special theme! Something to look forward to!
Need an e-card template? Check out our complimentary service that we are providing with 2 simple e-card templates.
Like any other wedding, a rehearsal before the actual day will definitely help make sure everything runs smoothly on the day of. Especially now with so much tech involved, make sure that every device is troubleshooted and runs well.
Some important things to take note of:
· Positions (to make sure you will not be off-screen)
· Who will manage the video conferencing software? (Have someone in-charge so you don’t have to fuss about it)
· Sound – the microphones in working order?
· Batteries – make sure everything is well-charged before the big day
On the big day, just let loose and celebrate. Even though your loved ones may not be physically present with you, this virtual wedding will get them as close as they can possibly be – while still responsibly social distancing.
Looking back, you will have lots of precious memories of this fun & unique wedding day! Bonus: You can start celebrating a life together with your significant other – that is what really counts.
We hope this simple guide has been helpful to any brides or grooms interested in planning a virtual wedding during these times. Do feel free to share with your friends/family should you know of anyone who might need this guide during these times.