Published: Thursday, Oct. 14th, 2021
Industry experts predict a record-high 2.5 million weddings to take place in 2022, nearly a million more ceremonies than we’ve seen this year, and double the number recorded in 2020 -- when the industry was hit with a record low of 1.27 million weddings.
That’s good news for wedding officiants, many of whom have been working through unpredictable ups and downs in demand since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.
And it’s good news for couples, especially those who have rescheduled events multiple times to accommodate changing public health and travel guidelines, family needs, and tighter budgets.
According to The Wedding Report, about 20% of 2021 weddings have been rescheduled for 2022. That’s a substantial number, on top of the 2.1 million couples (on average) who marry each year. But ‘more ceremonies’ doesn’t always translate to more money for wedding professionals: The Wedding Report also notes that 15% of couples say they’re cutting their budgets by up to 28%.
A nationwide survey of 1,722 wedding officiants and 300 pre-wedding couples, conducted by American Marriage Ministries earlier this year, revealed a steady rise in smaller, more-affordable ceremonies; less concern over choosing a specific venue or location; and growing excitement to stop waiting and just get married already.
Some AMM ministers are highlighting their signing-only services. Signing-only ceremonies are lightning-fast elopements: A wedding officiant meets up with a couple and their witnesses, asks them if they’re willing to marry (the declaration of intent is still important during signings), and then signs their license. Easy-peasy, a five-minute marriage ceremony!
Elopements aren’t what they used to be! Couples arrive at a venue dressed in their wedding finery, marriage license in hand, and say their vows in a beautifully decorated space -- without the planning and price-tag of a full wedding.
Officiants can team up with venues and other vendors to make these elopements happen, or set up their own private Vegas-style micro chapels to create the perfect atmosphere.
AMM Ministers are getting more requests for short ceremonies, and they’re adding a few short non religious wedding ceremony scripts to their offerings to meet demand.
Ceremonies are usually between 10 and 15 minutes long (we call this the ceremony sweet-spot), but some couples are requesting ceremonies that last 10 minutes or less. Shorter ceremonies make sense in terms of COVID safety, and they take less in-person planning or rehearsal.
More than ever, couples are waiting until the last minute to contact a wedding officiant. Call it whirlwind romance, call it COVID fatigue, call it a dash to wed before the approaching tax season… This last-minute wedding trend shows no sign of stopping.
To make the most of it, familiarize yourself with a few popular wedding scripts now, so that you can deliver them comfortably on short notice. And keep a few weekdays and evenings free to accommodate these last-minute lovebirds!
Couples are flocking to places like Florida and Las Vegas to get married -- areas where they can gather and celebrate with fewer COVID restrictions. Recent reports suggest that some wedding professionals are following them -- at least for now.
Luckily, AMM’s online ordination is recognized in every state (Virginia is a little challenging right now). If you’re interested in officiating weddings in other states during the coming months, head here to learn more.
One of the best ways to book up fast is to show prospective couples that you’re trustworthy. Ask the couples you marry to leave you a detailed review online, on sites like WeddingWire, Google Reviews, or on your personal website. If they’re willing to give you a couple photos from their ceremony to use on your social media, or as part of an online portfolio, all the better!
If you’ve only performed a few ceremonies so far, detailed reviews will help you develop a reputation as a kickass officiant and can lead to more requests.
Become a Wedding Officiant with Our Free Online Ordination!