Wedding celebrations have always been big, fat, and more or less recession-proof in India. The unorganized Indian wedding industry has employed many people and is estimated to be running into billions.
The Covid-19 pandemic has greatly disrupted this segment and has radically changed the way weddings are planned and celebrated in Indian metropolitan cities and small towns. Covid curbs put in place by the Government authorities have forced people to have restricted and smaller weddings, with slimmer guest lists and more intimate celebrations. Undoubtedly, the pandemic has forced people to reduce their wedding budgets. Before the pandemic people spent on various aspects and engaged many service providers to have the perfect big, fat wedding. However, now most people are preferring to skip spending on non-essential wedding services like wedding planning.
The wedding celebrations and the wedding industry have thus witnessed a paradigm shift, like never before. Big fat celebrations have been ditched in favor of intimate and smaller celebrations, notwithstanding the restrictions. Overall people are opting for a smaller guest list, even when the curbs are relaxed.
Furthermore, most weddings are now being planned on shorter notice in comparison to pre- Covid times, with greater emphasis on personalization of decor, gifts, and menus. While some people have chosen to postpone weddings during the lockdowns and Covid-waves, others went ahead with small intimate celebrations complying with the prescribed Government regulations.
In metro cities, tier -II and tier III cities, the wedding supply chain has been impacted differently due to the pandemic. While in big cities, most people preferred to hold weddings in open venues, hotels and banquets in smaller cities have more or less generated good business. Wedding vendors like makeup artists and photographers have recovered good business, whereas other vendors in the industry like decorators and venues have faced a significant loss of business and revenue.
(The author is Divyata Shergill, Co-Founder at ShaadiWish)
(Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author. They do not reflect the views of India TV)