Learn the Etiquette of Virtual Weddings


If you’re attending a wedding in person, you may be asked to quarantine and to take a coronavirus test. Greg Moss, 36, and Danielle Black, 36, who married on the Brooklyn Grange rooftop farm on Sept. 26, asked their 20 guests to self-isolate for two weeks before the wedding and submit proof of a negative coronavirus test by email.

“We understand this is a lot to ask,” the couple wrote on their wedding website, which also included a list of rapid testing sites. “We’re relying on you, our most special people, to honor us and each other with your honesty and strict caution.”

A couple of guests did not attend because they could not comply — “with good reason,” Mr. Moss said in an interview, “but everyone understood where we were coming from.”

One thing guests — both in person and virtual — can expect is shorter receptions. (Ceremonies often seem to be similar length as in the Before Times, with the main difference being that more couples are writing their own vows, according to several wedding planners interviewed.)

Leah Weinberg, a wedding planner who founded Color Pop Events in Queens, said a “normal” wedding would be about six hours from guest arrival to the end of the night. Currently, the events are about three hours, she said, because in-person parties of 20 or 30 people don’t need an hour for cocktails, and there isn’t usually much dancing.

Virtual guests don’t necessarily want to watch the in-person ones eat dinner, so some receptions with a large virtual guest list may go directly from the couple being pronounced married to the first dance, any family dances (such as father daughter), toasts and cake-cutting. Then the virtual guests log off, and dinner is served (yes, after the cake), Ms. Creidenberg said.

Another feature of some virtual weddings: Breakout rooms, which the couple organizes, à la tables at a wedding. “Keep your breakout rooms to the first page of gallery view of Zoom,” Ms. Creidenberg said — in other words, to fewer than 25 people per room. If you’d prefer not to chat with your “table,” you can always turn off your camera and mute yourself until the couple arrives, said Brittany Ward, lead planner at Modern Rebel, a wedding planning company based in Brooklyn.



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