Wedding celebrations have always been big, thick and more or less recessive in India. The unorganized Indian marriage industry employs a large number of people and is estimated to be in the billions.
The Covid-19 epidemic has severely disrupted this segment and radically changed the way weddings are planned and celebrated in Indian metropolitan cities and small towns. Covid restrictions imposed by government authorities have forced people to have limited and short weddings, with thinner guest lists and more intimate celebrations. Undoubtedly, the epidemic has forced people to reduce their wedding budgets. Before the epidemic, people spent a lot of money and hired many service providers for the perfect big, fat wedding. However, now most people prefer to avoid spending on unnecessary wedding services like wedding planning.
Wedding celebrations and the art of the wedding have thus witnessed a paradigm shift, as never before. Large fat celebrations are excluded for intimate and small celebrations despite the ban. Overall people are choosing a short guest list, even when the restrictions are relaxed.
Moreover, most weddings are now planned on shorter notice than in the pre-coupid period, with more emphasis on personalization of decorations, gifts and menus. While some people have decided to postpone the wedding during lockdown and covid-waves, others have proceeded with small intimate celebrations in compliance with prescribed government rules.
The epidemic has affected marriage supply chains differently in metro cities, tier-II and tier-3 cities. In the big cities, most people prefer to get married in the open, while in the small towns, hotels and banquets make for less good business. Wedding vendors like makeup artists and photographers have recovered good business, while other vendors in the industry such as decorators and venues have suffered significant losses in business and revenue.
(Author Divyata Shergill, co-founder of Shadius)
(Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author. They do not reflect the views of India TV)