PANAMA CITY BEACH Fla. (WMBB) — The wedding industry is a multi-billion-dollar industry that’s taken a major hit amid the pandemic.
For a lot of brides, their wedding day isn’t a last-minute event.
Jennifer Beach, with Panama City Beach weddings, said that her company usually books weddings a year in advance. This year, she said things are a bit different.
“We are doing a lot of last-minute weddings,” Beach said. “This has created a new wave of clients that we wouldn’t have normally had.”
Beach said that the new wave is mostly from out of town couples.
“A lot of the people who are booking for June, July, and August had large weddings planned in their hometowns,” Beach said. “Because of the lack of their ability to gather in a group of 200, like they might have planned to do, now they are opting for a smaller more intimate wedding.”
Beach said that some of them are looking for a package deal where they can combine a vacation and a wedding into one.
“Also traveling to Panama City Beach and trying to combine a vacation with it,” Beach said, “They can still get married and move on with their plans.”
One of Beach’s brides is Kristen Childre from Rome, Georgia who is getting married on Monday. Childre said that when her initial plans to fly to Jamaica had to be canceled, she was forced to look for other options.
“My son is graduating and we’d already planned this trip to come to Panama City,” Childre said. “We just decided that we already had this trip planned and why not see what we can do while we are there.”
Childre said she is grateful for Beach’s services because all she has to do is show up.
Panama City Beach Weddings is an all in one package. They provide everything from decorations to the officiant, to the photographer.
Beach said that their company usually does upwards of 25 weddings in May and April alone, but not this year.
“This year in April and May, it will be about five weddings,” Beach said.
Childre said she is still very excited about her wedding day, and that she thinks it might have all turned out for the best.
“We were going to Jamaica, I’ve never been,” Childre said. “We were going to be over the water for the ceremony, but this is just as good because we don’t have to think about it. All we have to do is show up.”
Beach said that her company is doing everything they can to accommodate couples while still abiding by CDC guidelines of suggested group sizes.