Should We Ask Our Guests to Get Tested for COVID?

Engaged couples globally are still dealing with the ramifications of the COVID-19 crisis. While I truly believe you can still have a safe wedding during COVID, I highly recommend making sure all your wedding guests are tested prior to your wedding day. 

Newlyweds New Orleans Church Ceremony


Wondering if you should test guests at or before your wedding? It is absolutely a good idea to ask that your guests test negative before coming to your event. My suggestion is that guests test 2 weeks prior to the wedding and again 72 hours prior to the wedding.

Why 2 weeks prior? This gives your guest time to get test results back as 5 day lab testing seems to be the most widely accepted as accurate right now.

Why 72 hours prior? This is one final chance for rapid testing to give results for any possible exposure since their last tests. Two negative tests are great and definitely a green light! Any guest that received a positive test (and their plus one) should stay home. 

Sweet Note From Flower Girls to Couple New Orleans Wedding


Personally I don’t suggest this as testing AT the wedding is too late!

What would happen if someone’s results came back positive?
How will you handle it?
How will it make that guest feel in the moment because they tested positive?
And, even worse, what if the positive test result is for a VIP family member? Are you okay telling your mom or dad they can’t attend your wedding?
Are you okay putting your other guests at risk knowing that a COVID positive person is attending the wedding?
What do you do with the people around that person that are presently exposed to them and their positive test result? Are they still allowed to attend or will you ask that they quarantine as well?
What happens if the person tested positive AND has to travel back home by plane? Can they/SHOULD THEY knowingly get on an airplane with a positive test result? Are they able to quarantine in place for 14 days away from their home?

Finally, are you okay having COVID testing take a seat at the reception? Because if you’re doing testing, the discussion will happen. And it shouldn’t. The focus should be on you and your partner on your wedding day. So, to summarize many questions, NO, do not test your guests at the wedding. Prepping in advance by testing before guests arrive will maximize your chances of keeping your wedding safe and celebrating with peace of mind. 

Bride in New Orleans Gets Ready for Wedding


If it is shortly after your event, you need to get to work immediately to let anyone and everyone know that they have been exposed to someone that tested positive for COVID.

You also need to let your vendor team know ASAP. Your planner can help you spread the word to the other vendors, especially the most at-risk vendors like makeup artists, hair stylists, photographers, and your catering and service staff. Honestly, this includes anyone with prolonged exposure to guests and people in general.

The bottom line is always a good idea to make sure your guests are negative so that everyone, including you and your family, can feel confident that they will be celebrating in a safe environment. It puts the focus on you and your partner coming together on your best day ever.

Let’s focus on the happy reasons we are getting together. WE NEED THIS as a community!