Being engaged and unemployed was probably the last thing you would have expected. After engagement season ended and Cloud 9 subsided, you set your date and started your wedding planning journey.

You did all the necessary research to find your ideal venue and vendors and may have even booked them. COVID-19 hit and the worst you figure was moving your wedding date back a few months.

As you were home practicing physical distancing, an email from work pops up telling you that you’ve been let go. LET GO? In the midst of a pandemic? While I’m planning my wedding?

Things just got real and you may be wondering how you can be engaged and unemployed and plan a wedding.

The first thing that I will tell you is to breathe.


What Should I do about my wedding if I’m Engaged and Unemployed?

Begin Job Hunting

Your first concern is to make sure that you can take care of your most pressing priorities. Food, rent/mortgage, family, etc. Just about everyone has been left to the virtual world. Can your skills be offered online? Could you create an online course and sell membership? Or are you able to do something totally different like be a call center rep just to bring in money?

You know what’s best for your situation, but the goal is to remedy it now. Tap into your network and see who has job openings right now. The expenses of a wedding should always be secondary. This is of course if losing your job isn’t a big deal financially to you.

Review All Wedding Contracts

It’s key that you look over each wedding contract to see how you can cut costs. It would be a smart idea for you to also review your wedding plan and consider reducing guest count if that will help you save money.

If you have already signed your contracts your ability to negotiate is significantly reduced. However, I recommend creating a plan to renegotiate any and all contracts based on your needs. If the venue or vendor is open to changing your contract, ask to settle for the minimum amount at this point.


Inform Your Vendors and Venue

No one expected this to happen just like you didn’t expect to be engaged and unemployed during this time. Be open and honest with everyone. Unless you tell them what’s going on, they will believe this is business as usual.

If you have not signed a contract, this will be to your advantage. You will want to book your wedding far in advance. Many vendors are also out of work at the moment and are more open to negotiating with new clients. If they can book you now, that gives them reassurance for their future.

  • Ask the venue for the food and beverage minimum before signing
  • See if you can pay vendors via Zelle, check, or any option that removes fees
  • Ask that all contracts have the minimum with an option to upgrade if you decide to

Revisit Your Wedding Plan

Your wedding plan and budget should outline everything that you desire for your wedding. This should split things into wants verses needs. Both lists should be reviewed and adjusted based on the new direction you have.

This will be hard because many couples do want things that represent them. However, keep in mind that you are currently engaged and unemployed. Or perhaps you have moved from two incomes to one.

  • Downsize all of your big elements.
  • Consider having a wedding for close friends and family
  • Eliminate over indulges like gold leaf foil on your wedding cake and favors
  • Anything that can be removed that will not compromise your original plan, should

I recommend substituting things that you need, but can be done for less. Things like invitations are not a necessity when we have free wedding websites like Zola available. You can create your own website and still take RSVPs from the platform. You only need to use Paper Post or another mass email site to send the electronic invite to guests.


Adjust Your Wedding Registry

My team and I love a good wedding registry. However, for times like this, you need cash. Consider changing your registry from gifts and experiences to ask for cash. This helps you pay for your wedding and gives you cash before your date arrives.

Your guests will not judge you for asking for cash over gifts. If someone really wants to give you a gift, let them.

Do not Plan Based on Future Money

I have seen far too many couples plan their wedding based on money they think they will get in the future. It has resulted in heart break. You can only plan your wedding based on the money you have in hand today. Just like you did not plan on COVID-19 shifting your wedding, you cannot control the future.

Sure things may improve. You may get your job back. If those things happen, and we hope they do, then adjust back to your original plan. No one will be upset I promise.

Engaged and Unemployed Conclusion

When revising your wedding plan with your fiancé, if you cannot answer why you need it, you don’t need it. Keep an open mind as you are planning based on now. Because you have more time on your hands, do not spend it all on wedding planning. Refrain from deviating from your new plan as well. Lastly, getting marriage counseling during this time will be essential.

If you need more help or would like to get a copy of our wedding plan, contact us here.