Welcome 2020’s Latest Wedding Trend: The Gap Wedding

Photo by Anne-Marie Bouchard

We’ve noticed a growing trend with our 2020 clients and we’re HERE FOR IT! Many clients are opting to split their celebration across two separate dates and we’re calling these make-shift celebrations Gap Weddings.

Gap Weddings are a growing trend due to the current limits on social gatherings. Most events cannot go ahead as planned because most couples had planned to celebrate their wedding with more than 5, 10, or 25 guests.

Enter the Gap Wedding. One wedding celebration split across two separate dates so that couples can have their cake and eat it too… just on two different days. So what does a Gap Wedding look like?

Wedding Date 1 The Official Ceremony Day: The first event will take place this year, often on the couple’s original wedding date. This is a Micro-Ceremony followed by a champagne toast or small dinner which adheres to gathering limits and all social distancing guidelines.

Wedding Date 2 The Big Bash: The second event is a big reception scheduled for a later date (when things get back to normal). On this second date couples will host a vow renewal, so that guests can be a part of the ceremony experience, followed by the big dinner and party they’d originally envisioned.

Photo by Branding by Emma

Why would you want to host a Gap Wedding?

Your original wedding date is important to you: Whether you chose the date for sentimental reasons or the date has just grown on you as you’ve gone through the planning process, it doesn’t matter, this date has some sentimental value for you and you’re not ready to let it go.

You don’t want to compete with the assured chaos of 2021 weddings: With so many 2020 clients moving their events to 2021 we’re seeing venues and vendors filling up their 2021 calendars in record speed. Some couples don’t want to deal with that sort of chaos so they’ll get married this year and then relax, choosing a celebration date later when things get back to normal.

You just want to be married: For many couples, being married is important to you over and above the details about when, where, and who can attend. You want to be able to call your partner your spouse, your husband, or your wife and have the documentation to prove it’s a done deal. If this describes you, you’re likely to take the plunge no matter what limitations are imposed. A Gap Wedding could be a great option for you.

Some things to consider if you opt to host a Gap Wedding:

Vendor availability: Confirm with your vendors that they’re available to help out for both dates if you’d like them at both.

Venue – Original space or Micro Location: Can you, or do you want to, host at your original venue or will you need a micro space for the event? This might be a smaller event space or a family member’s backyard. New venues are popping up all over the place to serve this purpose!

Plan to be flexible: Currently, in Ontario at least, limits on gatherings are still restricted to 5 people and those people have to adhere to all of the guidelines on social distancing. If your wedding day comes around and you were hoping to celebrate with 20 people you may have to be prepared to reduce your guest list. It may be prudent to have several guest lists ready: your 5-person guest list, 10-person guest list, 15-person guest list, and perhaps even a 20-person guest list. This way, you’ll be ready to go no matter what.

Virtual Guests: Many clients going the route of the Gap Wedding will want to offer a way for guests to join virtually either through Zoom or some other platform. Speak to your DJ, Photographer, or Videographer about which options they offer for this service.

People who WILL NOT want to host a Gap Wedding would include:

You really want everyone present for the official wedding day: If it’s far more important to you that everyone be in attendance than it is that your wedding happen this year than a Gap Wedding probably isn’t for you.

You’re not too picky about ‘When’: If you’re a couple who doesn’t have any particular sentimental attachment to your original wedding date or you don’t care to be married ASAP you will likely opt to postpone over hosting a Gap Wedding.

You’re a planner and can’t stand uncertainty: If you have a lower tolerance for uncertainty and you don’t want to wait to see how many guests you’ll be allowed to host when the big day rolls around you’re not likely to host a Gap Wedding.

Family outside of the country: Couples who have key family members traveling from outside the country will want to reschedule for a date when international travel resumes with some level of normalcy.

If you fall into this group your best bet is to postpone the big day altogether. Better to plan for a date when your wedding is more likely to happen than to worry and stress about the limitations that might impact your wedding this year.

So where do you fall into the mix? Would you consider hosting a Gap Wedding? Do you know someone who has or who will? We’d love to hear about it!

Chat soon!


  1. […] this point, we also coined the term “Gap Wedding” to describe something we saw happening quite frequently this year. A number of our clients opted […]

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