Coronavirus forcing couples to rethink weddings: ‘I really wanted them here’

Giancarlo Silvestri is ready to marry his fiancée in Toronto this month. 

But the couple’s late March wedding will be missing a few crucial guests Silvestri’s best friends from northern Italy, who are now part of the 16 million people under mandatory quarantine and cannot leave the country. 

“I didn’t expect a lot to come just because of the costs, but a few of them were like, ‘For sure, I wouldn’t miss it for the world,’” said Silvestri, 37. “Up until like two days ago, they were coming … but now, they’re not allowed to move.”

After spending part of his childhood and his late 20s in Italy, it’s upsetting that his closest friend, in particular, won’t be able to attend an important moment in his life, he said.

“I really wanted them there just because we went through a lot together,” he said. “I really wanted him there to celebrate my wedding with me.”

The wedding industry is facing disruptions amid the new coronavirus pandemic, as it’s impacting destination and cruise ship weddings, dress and decoration deliveries, and guests are having to cancel last minute.

Wedding insurance that some couples opt for to protect their event might not cover coronavirus-related scenarios — especially if guests are simply unwilling to travel rather than being forced to stay home. 

Currently, the Canadian government has travel advisories out for seven regions around the world, including Italy and China. They’ve also advised against any cruise ship travel due to the possibility of being infected in a small space after Canadians have fallen ill on ships.

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