Weddings have been stopped as part of the Government’s restrictions, set to last until mid-April at least. And weddings booked for later this year could also be affected if the coronavirus outbreak continues or the ban on public gatherings is extended.
John Lewis has now confirmed that its wedding insurance customers will be covered for cancellation if their wedding venue can’t hold the wedding due to Government restrictions. So there should be cover for weddings scheduled at least until mid-April (subject to the policyholder minimising their costs, for example checking if any elements of the wedding are refundable) – and possibly further ahead if the restrictions are extended.
Debenhams and Wedding Plan Insurance say that weddings scheduled for before 30 June 2020 will be covered for cancellation if the wedding or reception venue is closed by the council due to Government restrictions.
For weddings further ahead, whether you’d be covered would depend on the circumstances (assuming the blanket wedding ban was lifted but coronavirus continued to cause some disruption). Check with your insurer directly, but as a general rule you’re likely to be covered if the venue cancels due to coronavirus, or if a member of the wedding party or close relative falls ill with coronavirus – but not if they’re simply self-isolating, or if guests can’t attend due to travel restrictions.
In all cases, you should contact your insurer before making any decisions or cancellations – and stay in touch with any wedding suppliers to see what they can offer you.
It’s also worth noting that several leading providers, including the three above, have already stopped selling wedding insurance due to coronavirus. So unfortunately if you’ve not yet bought cover for your wedding you’re unlikely to be able to now.
If you find your wedding insurance doesn’t cover you – or you haven’t yet bought wedding insurance and are now unable to – the first thing to do is to check whether any of the elements of the wedding are refundable.
Sadly, if you’re not covered by insurance and you won’t get a refund if you cancel, you may have to make some tough decisions – depending on how far ahead your wedding is and how much money you’ve already paid towards it.