I’m curious about people’s experience if you did require vaccination to attend your wedding (how you conveyed this, attendance rates, any extreme reactions….etc). I’m still deciding if I want to require COVID vaccination, aside from those medically exempt, for my wedding. I definitely want to in an ideal world, but logistically and socially it seems somewhat difficult.
My wedding is 10 months away and we know 95% of our guests are vaccinated, so hopefully it won't be necessary for mine. However I just went to a wedding in the spring where they required it, basically telling their potential guests that if they didn't have one, they weren't invited. They ended up with 30 guests. I have another coming up where they're making people send a picture of their vaccination card when they RSVP, or if not, proof of a negative test right beforehand. You have a few options you can go with here but it all boils down to what you would do with guests who refuse to get their shots or refuse to tell you their status. Will you uninvite them? Give them a livestream link so they can watch virtually? Let them come but require masks, or seat them in a separate section? It's up to you.
I think it's overstepping to require a COVID vaccine for admittance to a wedding. If you require the vaccine, then you'll also have to ask guests to provide proof of the vaccine, which I also think is overstepping boundaries. I can understand requesting a negative COVID test, but not a vaccination and I think you'll have more luck with attendance if you just require a negative COVID test and provide hand sanitizer and masks.
If you go ahead with this, I'd just be prepared to have a lot of guests not attend.
In the end, it's really up to you. It's great that you're thinking of your overall guests' experience, but you also have to ask yourself what's more important for your big day — whether you want to have as many people attend as possible and have a big wedding with everyone no matter what or you want everyone to feel safe and make sure you aren't blamed for anyone catching anything.
That said, asking people for vaccination cards or otherwise having them tell you why they cannot get a vaccine (disclosing medical info/health reasons) is a bit of an intrusion on their privacy. Definitely provide hand sanitizer stations and be very transparent about what people can do to feel comfortable regardless of their vaccination status (e.g., outdoor areas, provide sanitizer, have masks ready, opt for plated dinners instead of buffet or family style, etc.)
We are going to a wedding in 2 weeks; for this couple they just stated on their website that they require all guests to be vaccinated (honor system). The ceremony is outdoors which is nice, but my fiance and I are still going to bring masks (we bought some lace ones to go with our formal outfits).
Our wedding is in November (rescheduled from November 2020) and we will be requiring that our guests are fully vaccinated against Covid. We haven't decided yet if we're going to go with the honor system or enforce it. If anyone doesn't like it, then they don't have to come! And we're totally ok with that. We'd much rather have a smaller wedding with exclusively vaccinated guests than risk our event becoming a super spreader.
We are absolutely requiring that people are vaccinated. It's not really an issue because we only know two people who aren't vaccinated - my brother and his wife, who already would not have been able to attend since she'll be 8 months pregnant and would have to travel.
People seem to think a negative COVID test prior to the event means you don't have COVID at the time of the event, but it absolutely does not mean that unless you're rapid testing directly outside the venue (and even then those are not particularly reliable).
It truly does not matter if people are fully vaccinated, they can still get the virus and spread it…it’s happening all over (Texas Congress on the plane is a perfect example). The covid vaccine is not a vaccine since you can still get the virus, just like the flu shot- it can lessen the symptoms. Does not make people invincible. Would you also require guest to show proof of a flu shot? measles, mumps and rubella records too? People are able to make their own choices and can wear a mask or not attend.
Requiring it, while tempting, seems like a bit much. We made it very clear that we were recommending that everyone be vaccinated and requested that anyone who isn't (and anyone who wants to) wear a mask whenever they're around people and/or indoors. We also put links on our website to make it really easy for anyone who needed one to find a vaccine appointment near them.
As a person who is medically exempt (anaphylactic reaction to vaccines in general, as well as to certain components present in the current vaccines,) I can tell you I would not attend any wedding that "required" a vaccine, even though I have a perfectly legitimate medical exemption.
How are you planning to verify someone who claims a medical exemption? You want a doctor's note? You want proof of exemption?
Personally, I would never provide any "friend" proof of my allergy. It isn't their business. That is my private medical information. I also would reevaluate any "friendship" with someone who would have the audacity to ask me for my private medical information for the "honor" of attending their wedding. They would get a swift decline, no gift, and would promptly be put at an arm's length.
ETA: I am very much pro-vax, and as soon as a COVID vaccine with different inactive components emerges, I will be getting it. I simply think this is way overstepping. You aren't entitled to your guests' medical status.
I support you in this and will be doing the same for my wedding. The way I see it is you can respect friends' and family's decision to not vaccinate themselves, but they should equally respect your decisions around your desires for your event. If they are against getting vaccinated (or showing a negative test in the case of medical condition), then no problem they don't need to come! You also don't need to know what medical condition people have (per some comments above) - so they can remain private in that detail, just show a negative test. I am still thinking through the honor system versus showing proof. I know some have had people sign something (though I don't know the exact language that was used). Logistically this is a hassle to manage, but having postponed twice in the past, I think its worth the peace of mind knowing you're being as safe as possible for the guests who are taking necessary precautions to protect themselves from Covid. I see it as my responsibility to make it as safe as possible if people are going out of their way to celebrate our marriage.
We will definitely be requiring our guests to be vaccinated or have a negative test that's not older than 24 hours, but it certainly makes it easier that this is mandatory for parties and weddings where we live - we can just fend off any extreme reactions by pointing to the official guidelines. I actually hope that the guidelines will not change until February, because having all guests vaccinated or tested on same day makes me sleep easier. My mom's family are anti-vaxers (is that even how you spell it?) and may refuse for weird reasons to attend if testing is required, but while it would hurt to not have them there, I could not forgive myself if my grandma or FHs grandpa caught Covid at our wedding. As for wording, try this article from offbeat bride: https://offbeatbride.com/requiring-wedding-guests-covid-vaccines/