Guidelines for a wedding this year

Planning a wedding can be one of the most stressful things you may do in your life, throw in a global pandemic, constantly changing advice and shifting dates and you are all entitled to be a bit stressed.

However relax, take a breath and sit down.  Now more than ever is the time to have a clear head and clear plan.

If you are still planning for your wedding to take place this year, there are a few guidelines to be aware of.

Read the latest Updates for Monday 29th June 2020.

Article by Tara Fay, one of the leading Wedding planners in Ireland.

Guidelines for a wedding this year
Article updated on the 29th June 2020
The Irish government have published new guidelines for weddings in light of the Covid-19 crisis

From Monday, June 29th a group of 50 people can gather indoors and 200 people outside. From the 20th July groups of 100 may gather indoors and 500 people outdoors.

So what does that mean for your wedding?

I have listed some of the most frequently asked questions I have received in relation to the new guidelines. 

So on the 20th of July I can have 100 guests for my wedding?

The guidelines state you can have up to 100 people indoors.  So this number must include your venue staff as well.  So example if your venue needs to provide 10 staff members to serve food and drinks, then your guest numbers reduce to 90 people.

But my photographer and musicians are not in these 100 people then?

Any other wedding suppliers you would like in the room at any time must be included within this number.  So if your musicians need to set up in the room after the meal, then either guests or staff would have to leave to ensure you don’t go above 100 people in the space.

What about my table plan?

Social distancing must be maintained at a table.  So if for example, you have invited a couple or a family they can sit together.  If you have 4 friends for example who don’t live in the same house, they must be seated according to the current guidelines, which is 2m.

I am having a marquee wedding though so I don’t need to follow guidelines

A marquee is still listed as a wedding venue, so you still need to treat it as such.  Therefore you must maintain social distancing within the marquee and the max capacity is 100 people total.

But a marquee is outdoors surely 

Unless your marquee has no side and only partial roof, which is not really practical it’s still seen as a venue and still subject to the same guidelines

 My wedding is in November and I am still going to invite 150 people

Currently, the max number is 100 people inside a room.  If the numbers increase or the social distancing possibly changes, you may be able to have more people based on the size of the room.  However, for the moment the max amount allowed will be 100 people from 20th July.

 I had moved my wedding to May 2021, is social distancing still going to apply then?

Whilst there is no vaccine available, it would be assumed that there will still be social distancing and strict guidelines for weddings.  On a positive note, Ireland is one of the very few countries in the world where guidelines have been issued for weddings.  

 I have already invited 200 people for my wedding when I sent save the dates, do I have to disinvite them

That’s a tricky one, you have a few options:  One possibility is to have two wedding days, so, for example, have one set of guests on one day and the others on a second day.  However if the guidelines remain the same for the foreseeable future, 200 people will not be possible even over two days.  You still need to allow for venue service staff and also your wedding vendors, like your photographer, musicians etc.  You should also remember that you will always get some drop off on numbers.  You can always write a note to your guests and explain the situation to them, it’s not like it’s your choice.

Will guests want to even come to my wedding 

You need to trust in your venue that they have followed all protocols, then its up to each guest to decide if they want to attend.  At the end of the day, your guests do need to take responsibility for themselves.  

What about dancing

The guidelines state that social distancing has to be maintained on a dancefloor also.  What not be a bit creative here and encourage people to dance with their table.  You could have dance offs between different parts of the room.  Socially distant of course.

I thought I could have more people in a church

If you are having a religious style wedding ceremony, you are still required to follow the guidelines for maximum numbers for a wedding under the current guidelines.

Trust me I do know this is a lot to take in.  It is for me as well and I have been doing nothing else but working on and looking at these guidelines for weeks now.  Your wedding will still be beautiful and special and you will get to enjoy it.

Don’t forget that.


This article is written by Tara Fay

Recognized as an industry leader in Ireland, Tara has spent the past five years assisting the national tourism board develop Ireland as an international wedding destination. She pioneered and co-produced the global wedding summit, the Engage!18 Conference, bringing in industry leaders from dozens of countries to celebrate all that Ireland has to offer. Tara is known as the “Wedding Planner’s Wedding Planner,” and is a sought after industry speaker internationally.