Jasmine.A Photography. Sheraton Imperial Kuala Lumpur. www.theweddingnotebook.com

We all know that weddings will not be the same again, at least in the near future. Your celebration will look and feel different with all the new restrictions but look at the bright side – you’ll get that small, meaningful and intimate wedding and reception that so many couples wish they could have had! Here are 10 ways your wedding will look different from now on. Don’t forget to read the Wedding SOP by MKN (Malaysia National Security Council), the English translation is here for your reference.

#01 Guestlist
One of the things many bridal couples dislike about their wedding is their parents’ long guestlists. Now that you cannot have more than 250 people, or fewer depending on the size of your venue, it is the perfect excuse to keep your numbers low. Consult your venue vendor for requirements and remember that Patients Under Investigation (PUI) and Persons Under Surveillance (PUS) are not allowed to attend. Individuals with chronic illnesses, children and toddlers are also advised not to attend. A shorter guestlist will make it easier for you to manage your guests and give you more options in terms of venue.

#02 Venue
Now that your guestlist has been trimmed down, it’s time to reconsider your choice of venue. Find one that easily fits double the number of your guests so that you can comfortably adhere to social distancing requirements. Another option is to split your celebration – one for family and another for friends. This way you will also minimise contact between different groups of guests.

#03 Invitations
In addition to wedding invitations, a wedding website might be a good idea to keep guests posted on the requirements and new developments. Include an online RSVP form and don’t forget to collect all your guests’ details for contact tracing purposes. This includes your parents’ relatives and friends! Instead of the traditional angpow, consider allowing e-angpows or having gifts delivered directly to your home. Give your guests clear instructions, including asking them to download the MySejahtera app.

#04 Vendors
All vendors must go through health screening processes prior to your wedding. It’s a good idea to stagger setup times so that your event space will not be overcrowded, and this will also minimise contact between vendors.

#05 Table arrangements
All tables must be set 2 metres apart with 1 metre in between each seat. This means a round table with a diameter of 9-feet will seat approximately 4 people, while a Viking table with a length of 6-feet will seat about 2-4 people. Guests are not allowed to roam the venue to minimise contact, neither are they allowed to change tables.

#06 Arrival of guests
All vendors and guests should avoid attending if they have any symptoms and should be honest about their travel history or if they have had close contact with a Covid-19 case. Pre-event cocktails are no longer allowed, and guests will need to be seated immediately upon arrival. Guests should wear masks until seated, and their temperatures should be taken. Helpers and organisers should have masks on at all times as they will be interacting with more guests. In addition to e-angpows, consider bringing your guestbook online too. Generate QR codes for important links to make it easier for your guests, and if you are able to send your guests their table numbers in advance, you could even avoid having a registration table altogether. Just keep a help desk available for those who get lost or confused. Don’t forget to confirm all your guests’ contact details prior to the event to minimise the amount of work on the actual day. Encourage your guests to use the MySejahtera application or other appropriate applications.

#07 Food
Food is best served individually plated or pre-packed bento box style. If you are having a buffet, the food must be served by waiters only. Consider having more than one buffet counter to speed up the process and make crowd-flow smoother.

#08 Toasting
For those who find the traditional wedding toast cheesy, this is your excuse to do away with it. Instead, the bridal couple could incorporate a meaningful toast to their parents, friends and guests as part of their speech.

#09 Photography
Photography should be done in an orderly manner. Guests should not ask the photographer to take photos on their individual mobile phones, and should remain seated during the entire ceremony. In short, wait for the official photos from the photographer from now on.

(Edited: Group photography still pending clarification from MKN)

#10 End of wedding reception
With hugging and handshakes no longer allowed, the end of your celebration should be short and sweet. There will likely be no after party so save that for your anniversary. For now, the newlyweds will probably get to rest earlier, which isn’t a bad idea after a long day of festivities!

Photos by Jasmine. A Photography