Any couples out there have their venue asking them to sign a new contract inclusive of 2021 rates and terms? We postponed our wedding slated for 11/8/20 to next October and our venue states that all couples (including postponing COVID brides and grooms) must pay the 2021 rates regardless of the reason.
I understand the wedding/event industry is a mess right now but this definitely feels like it’s penalizing couples who want to ensure the safety of themselves and their guests. To me, I feel that new bookings for 2021 should pay the 2021 pricing. However, anyone who has had to postpone and has sign a contract for 2020 rates should at least be given some grievance and be allowed to pay what they were initially quoted. Thoughts? *note* our deposit is non refundable.
From what I’ve heard this is happening a lot and I totally understand your frustration! I know you feel like you’re being penalized by something you had absolutely no control over, to be fair it sucks all the way around. Venues have had to lay off and/or furlough employees trying to even stay in business. Covid is hurting everyone and charging the new rate for postponements is pretty standard even if it feels like they should make exceptions. There are some exceptional vendors that are making exceptions to their contracts, but they are talking a major hit by doing so and not all are able or willing to take that hit. Good luck!
I agree this is very typical. I understand it's hard to budget for additional costs with everything else you're dealing with, but food costs have gone up significantly (even regular restaurant menus have reduced offerings and/or increased prices/added surcharges) and your venue is likely also having to pay for additional cleaning supplies and additional staffing to make sure they meet all the requirements for social distancing their staff, etc. Not wedding related, but I've had a couple medical appointments lately and EVERY facility now has a person whose job it is to wait at the door and check temperatures of each person entering.... That didn't used to be a job, but now they have to pay someone to do it. I'd guess wedding venues are getting slammed with similar kinds of expenses. I am sorry for the toll it's taking on you and your wedding. Good luck!
My venue said they'd allow us to postpone to 2021 with no penalty, though because of limited availability in 2021 (both on our part and on the venue's part), we ended up postponing to 2022, and they said rates weren't guaranteed if we choose 2022. So, we sort of experienced this, but part of it was by choice.
It is frustrating, but hopefully the price difference between 2020 and 2021 is minimal for your venue. I do agree that being forced to postpone, it would be nice for the venue to stick to the rates agreed upon in the original contract, though I also understand that costs on the venue's end are likely increasing, and that it'd be tough for them to take the loss for all weddings that postponed. The positive side is that you did not lose your deposit! Sorry that COVID is causing this issue for you - 2020 is definitely a rough year!
That didn’t happen to us. But I was totally expecting it. We were simply able to move dates and amend the contract without any financial penalties and no change in our food and beverage minimum... I was SO surprised. In our case, it was our choice to postpone, so I would’ve completely understood if the venue charged us new 2021 rates. I realize that it’s still a business and typically rates increase every year, despite Covid.
Do you choose to postpone or did the venue stop holding events for the remainder of 2020?
All of our vendors agreed to honor our deposits and 2020 pricing for our rescheduled wedding celebration in 2021 (with the caveat of food pricing, which has been all over the place so our venue/caterer didn't want to guarantee availability or cost of food with such a fluctuating market). All of our deposits were non-refundable. I don't feel that vendors are at all obligated to honor 2020 pricing, but think its an incredibly compassionate gesture when they do, particularly if rescheduling is a choice by the couple. If the venue is legally not able to host an event due to local, state, or federal regulations or the venue makes the choice to postpone, then I would have a higher expectation and hope the venue would apply the 2020 rates. However if the couple is deciding that postponing is in their best interests, its really up to the venue whether to charge the same rate as the original date or not. Many couples are vying for 2021 wedding dates right now, and venues are struggling. From a purely financial standpoint, it makes little sense for a venue to charge one couple less for a weekend when a "new" couple is willing to pay more for the same date. If a venue only has so many dates available, it makes the most sense for them to get the highest price they can for every open slot. It's simple supply in demand economics.
If you are dead set on not spending more, maybe you can be flexible about the timing of your wedding. Your venue may be more willing to honor your original price if you choose a lesser demand date and time, such as a Friday or Sunday instead of a Saturday, or a date slightly before or after peak season. It might not be exactly what you wanted, but the venue benefits by filling a date they may not otherwise have filled, and you benefit by paying a similar less expensive price. The venue is likely to be more flexible if there is a benefit for them as well.
Legally speaking you should go over your contract for any fine print regarding rescheduling, acts of god, hold harmless, etc. I think it depends on a lot of things. Smaller/independent vendors may not be able to afford to keep all their postponements at the 2020 pricing but some larger venues should be able to. My venue is at a golf club so they have other revenue beyond weddings and also included a hold harmless in their contract "if unable to perform for any reason out of their control any money down will be refunded" (this is standard and was agreed upon pre-covid). If I was cancelling I would not expect money back as I did not hold up my end of the contract, but if I was postponing due to the venue not being able to hold my wedding as contracted then I would expect the agreed upon contract pricing to still be in effect. Likely your contract included an estimated guest count and price per person agreement and if you postpone due to restrictions on that guest count then your venue is not in compliance with a legally binding contract. I think it is easy to say "it's a business and this should be expected" since we live in a capitalist society. But I don't believe their added costs should not fall on the consumer once a contract has been agreed upon by both parties. I would challenge any additional costs they try to charge and definitely try to at least negotiate.
My location didn't have me sign any agreement to agree with nxt yr agreements. I just signed for changes of the date they send me a copy of my last yr agreement & we talked about everything we agreed on in 2020 that will still happened in 2021 and what will be my nxt step nothing else wow sorry that happened to you...
My venue didn't have me sign a new contract- they specifically stated that all couples postponing due to COVID would not have to pay additional costs and they would honor the fees from the date of original contract signing.
My deposit was originally nonrefundable. But, after new guidelines were issued, I had a very candid chat with my venue about how dissatisfied I was and how I found it ridiculous that couples would be punished by not receiving their deposits back when there was a worldwide pandemic preventing them from having these celebrations.
Needless to say, I have it in writing that I can absolutely have my $2000 deposit refunded if COVID is still a thing by the time our postponed date rolls around!
Sorry that your going thru that I know my co worker has to pay a different fee now due to her wedding being moved to 2021 but my wedding venue updated my contract but left all 2020 agreement for 2021 wedding... I feel they should of left 2020 wedding the same its not our fault this happened.
My venue and all my vendors have been great and just rescheduled our contracts with the same pricing (our venue even honored June 2020 pricing in December when it's high season when things would typically be way more expensive). You just have to decide whether to pay the inflated rates or lose a deposit.
I had to postpone our until next with no penalty. I did sign a new contract for the new date and everything that was on our first contract was on the new one (no penalty). All of our vendors stayed the same with no increase in price. I understand your frustration and it hard to imagine to have to pay more to change your date for your wedding. With everything that is going, it has been hard everyone on both end. You may want to ask your venue again if they can honor the contract you already had without penalty. if they are not willing to honor it after talking to them again, maybe check to see how much more it is. You may have to decide if you want to keep the venue and pay the new cost or try to fine a new venue. Good Luck. I hope that everything works out for you.