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Everything You Need to Know About Live Streaming Your Wedding

Live streaming your wedding has become increasingly popular, especially during these COVID times. Whether you're planning an intimate celebration or have loved ones living abroad, live streaming allows you to ensure that nobody misses out...

Live streaming your wedding has become increasingly popular, especially during these COVID times. Whether you're planning an intimate celebration or have loved ones living abroad, live streaming allows you to ensure that nobody misses out on your special day, even during a global pandemic.

What Does It Mean To Live Stream Your Wedding?

In simple terms, live streaming is the real-time filming and broadcasting of a video via the internet. By live streaming your wedding, your loved ones can become virtual wedding guests and watch your special day from the comfort of their own homes using their digital devices. While most couples choose to live stream their wedding ceremony, you can also stream other elements of your day, such as speeches or the first dance. You can even live stream other wedding-related events like your engagement party or bridal shower.

everything-you-need-to-know-about-live-streaming-your-wedding Photo via Simply Lace Photography

Why Do Couples Live Stream Their Wedding?

There are several reasons why couples choose to live stream their wedding, especially during the current pandemic. Here are a few common scenarios:

  • Hosting a minimony or elopement: If you're planning an intimate wedding but still want to involve a wider group of friends and family, live streaming allows you to do just that.
  • Loved ones unable to attend: Whether due to travel restrictions or personal safety precautions, some family members may not be able to attend your wedding in person. Live streaming ensures that they can still be part of your special day by watching it remotely.
  • Guest list downsizing: If you've had to reduce your guest list due to COVID-19 restrictions, live streaming provides a thoughtful way to include those who can no longer attend physically.
  • Capturing memories: Live streaming allows you and your guests to replay and relive your wedding time and time again. It's a great alternative if you're unable to hire a videographer due to budget constraints.

everything-you-need-to-know-about-live-streaming-your-wedding Photo via CYork Photography

How To Live Stream Your Wedding

Now, let's discuss the logistics of live streaming your wedding in 2021. Here are the four steps you'll need to follow:

1. Consider your live streaming equipment

Contrary to popular belief, live streaming doesn't require sophisticated equipment. You'll need a smartphone with good video recording quality, a tripod or smartphone mount for stability, and a strong internet connection. If you're having an outdoor wedding, an external microphone can help overcome background noises.

2. Choose your live streaming platform

Several video streaming platforms are available for hosting and broadcasting your live stream. Options include Zoom, Facebook Live, Vimeo, Google Hangouts, Instagram Live, and YouTube Live. Consider factors like guest numbers, time limits, and guest accessibility when selecting the platform that suits your needs.

3. Delegate the job

Designate a trusted friend or family member to set up and manage your live stream on the day. Practice running a test stream beforehand to ensure everything runs smoothly. Your wedding planner or venue coordinator may also offer assistance in setting up the live stream if needed.

4. Give your guests access

Invite your guests to the live stream by providing them with access details. Create a central hub on your wedding website where guests can find all the necessary information. Include the start and end times of the stream, instructions for accessing it, and any potential interactive features. This ensures that your guests can fully participate and enjoy the experience.

everything-you-need-to-know-about-live-streaming-your-wedding Photo via Abbi Cooley Photography

Live Streaming Invitation Wording

When inviting guests to attend your wedding virtually, the wording is crucial. Here are some examples of invitation wording for different scenarios:

If you've decided to elope or host a minimony

"We're going virtual! You're invited to Steph and Sam's virtual wedding. Saturday, October 5th at 3.30pm (AEST). For live stream and RSVP details, please head to (insert wedding website link)."

If you've downsized your wedding

"Hi (Name), Due to circumstances out of our control, we've had to make some difficult decisions for our upcoming wedding. To abide by our venue's restrictions and ensure everyone's safety, we will be limiting our guest list to immediate family only. Please accept our sincerest apologies for having to cancel your invitation. We will be live streaming our ceremony and would love for you to join us virtually on the day instead. Find all the details on our wedding website here: (insert wedding website link). We appreciate your understanding and look forward to celebrating with you in person soon. Love, (Name and Name)"

If loved ones are unable to attend

"We completely understand that some of you may be unable to attend in person due to the current pandemic. We have decided to live stream our ceremony so that all of our loved ones can be involved in our special day. Find more details via our wedding website here: (insert wedding website link)."

everything-you-need-to-know-about-live-streaming-your-wedding Photo via Tanner Burge Photo

Wedding Live Streaming Etiquette

To ensure a smooth live stream experience, follow these etiquette tips:

  • Discuss live streaming plans with your venue in advance to confirm practicalities and any policies related to recording.
  • Carefully position the camera to provide an uninterrupted view for virtual guests, ensuring it doesn't obstruct others' view.
  • Protect privacy by using a password to secure your live stream and wedding website.
  • Consider your start time and open the stream early to allow virtual guests to join before the ceremony begins.
  • Find ways to involve your virtual guests and make them feel special, such as sending a bottle of champagne or including shout-outs from the celebrant.

everything-you-need-to-know-about-live-streaming-your-wedding Photo via Asha Bailey

Nailing Your Live Stream

Successful live streaming allows you to include all your loved ones in this milestone event. Keep these tips in mind for a stress-free virtual wedding that your guests will appreciate, even if they can't be there in person. If you're planning a wedding during the pandemic, check out our guide on the 5 RSVP questions to ask your guests during COVID-19.