This time I would like to share my latest professional experience which is obviously related to the remote world but focused on relationships… I strongly encourage you to broaden your horizons not only in terms of remote work but also remote weddings… Yes, to my absolute excitement I had the amazing pleasure to participate in such a remarkable and touching online event last month where I acted as a remote translator. Although it was part of my work, I must say that even I shed a tear when Lukasz and Sophia tied the knot having over 80 people from all around the world celebrating live… and in front of their laptops! So, let me fill you into the background of the whole story…
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced all of us to #stayhome which made it practically impossible to spend time with family and friends during such an important event as a wedding. Now, if only there was something that could be done...
And here's where Zoom weddings kick in! This new invention came around as soon as people understood that the ongoing pandemic, among other things, may easily ruin their dashing wedding plans. Those proactive souls came to the companies like Wedfuly with hope and grim determination to have "at least something" - and they quickly realised that what they were getting wasn't necessarily worse than the traditional weddings they have planned.
The basic principles are quite simple - you set up your camera or multiple cameras, make sure that the area onscreen is nicely prepared and decorated and then just send the invitations to your wedding guests, who are at the same time waiting at their homes in some fancy clothes and with glasses of wine in their hands. And from here, it all goes the way you have planned it - you may invite your significant other to the first dance and then have your wedding guests sing to the tune, you can talk, laugh and still retain the feeling of sharing this wonderful moment with your closest family and friends - and enjoy some of the benefits that only remote weddings can give you.
First, costs - while organising a virtual wedding, you don't have to care about many expenses usually associated with that kind of ceremony. No hotel rooms for wedding guests, no problems with renting a big place for all of the family and friends to sit around, dance and chat. No need to worry about catering and music, no need to trouble yourself with a parking space for all the guests, etc. - long story short, the newlywed couple may finally just enjoy their special moments without having to worry about organising the entire thing! More than that, due to the lower cost of the entire ceremony, they may be able to invite many more people than they have previously expected! But a virtual wedding has some nice perks not only for the main stars of the show, but also for the guests! They don't have to worry about traveling, finding a place to stay or any other preparations - all they have to do is click on the invitation link and there we go!
There are dozens of platforms that allow you to communicate through the Internet and the only question is - which one is best for a particularly unusual event such as a virtual wedding? It all depends on what you require - Zoom is quite well-known and this familiarity, combined with a lack of limit of active guests and a premium version, allowing us to stream without any time limitations (the free version only allows us a 40-minute call) makes it a very popular tool for virtual weddings. It also has many functions that, while not necessary for such an event to take place, will definitely prove more than useful. The ability to share a device audio will allow the chosen DJ to entertain your guests, while the breakout rooms may let them gather in smaller groups and talk without the noise of hundred voices shouting their congratulations to the newlywed couple. Please take into account the fact that Zoom meetings are a relatively easy tool to use and here’s why they are so popular. But when choosing the platform, you should always ask yourself - what do you require for your special day? Which of the many applications on the market is best suited for your needs? You should consider the number of guests being invited and how are you going to manage them - it all depends on you and your needs.
When it comes to the hardware, you should take care about proper quality of the camera. After all, that is what all your friends and family will see throughout the ceremony - you don't want their memories of that special day to be blurry due to poor camera quality, do you? You should also ensure that your Internet connection is sufficiently strong - it is crucial, because sudden losses of connection may prove to be fatal to the entire atmosphere. But of course, as with the traditional weddings, remember one thing - accidents happen, and you shouldn't worry too much about them - focus on having fun on that special day!
Of course, it doesn't mean you should completely forget about technical preparations. But this is where companies like Wedfuly come in - apart from organising every detail of the wedding, they also offer technical support during the event. Not only will they teach all you need to know to use the platform, but they may also take care of technical details like inviting, letting in, muting, unmuting and controlling the ceremony while you just enjoy the event.
The future of virtual weddings
If anyone threw that kind of idea six months ago, most of the people would gaze with confusion. But the COVID-19 pandemic has changed our lives in many ways, and the way we used to marry is no exception. Wedfuly has around 80 weddings organised per month, and all the signs on heaven and earth suggest that those numbers won't be falling anytime soon.
Of course, since fully virtual weddings have become quite a thing, one had to ask a crucial question - is it even legal? And fortunately, yes, yes, it is: in April it became legally possible to get married online in the state of New York. Similar laws have been passed in California and Colorado, and other states are sure to follow. It is a logical move in the times of globalisation, uncertainty as well as pandemic, when people want to go on with their lives despite all the difficulties.
Surely this state of affairs will not last forever. Sooner or later the pandemic will end, and life will return to normal once again. But that doesn't mean that we need to forget all the new ideas and inventions that appeared during this difficult period - and one of the notions that may very well stay with us are virtual weddings. While being undeniably cheaper and easier to organise, they may become a part of our lives along the traditional, grand ceremonies our parents and grandparents had. It is also quite likely that the next trend will be a mixture of both – a traditional, smaller wedding and an online stream of the ceremony, which will allow the newlywed couple to invite more people without having to worry about costs.
After all, less money spent on the wedding means more funds for the honeymoon - and let’s hope that at least that part won't have to be virtual!