Buying Wedding Insurance During the Pandemic
The coronavirus pandemic foiled many couple’s wedding plans this year, but at the same time, it has helped raised awareness of wedding insurance.
“When the pandemic first hit back in March, we were handling dozens of clients with cancellations, postponements, contract negotiations, relocations, and a flurry of questions from 2020 couples about how to move forward and handle their event in the safest and most reassuring way,” said Noelle Ahmad-Snedegar, who owns the Washington-based event-planning company Lily & Grayson Events .
“One question that we received many times,” she said, “and still continue to answer, is, ‘Do you think we should get wedding insurance?’”
Here is what you need to know about buying wedding insurance amid the pandemic. Fewer Providers Offer Cancellation Insurance
There are two types of wedding insurance policies: liability and cancellation (or postponement) insurance. Liability covers incidents that happen during a wedding, such as property damage to the event space and bodily injuries to attendees. Cancellation provides reimbursement for deposits made to vendors — the venue, caterer, band, photographer, or florist — if a couple is forced to cancel or postpone their wedding because of weather, unexpected illness to the bride, groom or an immediate family member, military deployment, or for other reasons beyond their control.
But many insurance providers stopped selling cancellation insurance when coronavirus cases in the United States spiked in March, said David Berke, the founder of Manhattan-based eWed Insurance , one of the few large insurance companies still offering cancellation insurance. “Insurance companies are taking huge losses from Covid cancellations,” said Mr. Berke of the couples who filed claims after they or a family member contracted Covid-19.
Namisha Balagopal, 27, and Suhaas Prasad, 33, who live in San Francisco, paid $874 for a cancellation insurance policy with $125,000 of coverage in early March. The couple, who planned to marry at the St. Regis Deer Valley resort in Park City, Utah, on Aug. 30, said they purchased the insurance after hearing about a wave of wedding cancellations in the news. “We didn’t expect the virus to go all the way through August, but we wanted to be very cautious in case we had to make changes,” said Mr. Prasad, the chief executive of AspireIQ, a marketing company in San Francisco. Unlock more free articles.
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The couple decided in May to postpone their wedding with around 300 guests. “About 75 percent of our guest list was flying in from India,” said Ms. Balagopal, a product manager at Twitch, a video livestreaming platform. “It didn’t feel safe to ask them to fly.”
The couple plan to file a claim with their insurance provider, WedSafe, for the $3,500 deposit made to the Zermatt Utah Resort & Spa in nearby Midway, Utah, where they were going to have a Sangeet, a festive Indian prewedding event.
Ms. Balagopal and Mr. Prasad had a small wedding ceremony on the beach in Muir Beach, Calif., with just 10 people on Aug. 15. They moved their wedding celebrations at the […]