The Covid-19 pandemic has impacted various business industries and the events market is similarly not spared.
Datuk Sivakumar Kuppusamy, president of the Malaysian Indian Event Association (MIAE), stated that event venue operators, bridal services and other related services were severely hit by constraints placed to prevent the spread of Covid-19 under the Movement Control Order (MCO) and the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO).
He said the good news was on the recent lifting of the interstate travel ban and hoped that as per the issue announced earlier by the National Security Council (MKN) in August, protocol for social events, including weddings, may be resumed.
Sivakumar stated that;
We are prepared to comply with the standard operating procedures (SOPs), even if it means operating at half capacity, to help cover rental, utility bills and staff salaries, as much as we are concerned about the rising number of Covid-19 cases, we need to give attention to our livelihood that is badly affected as well.
There are more than 500 companies and 20,000 workers in this sector and they need help.
Big events such as wedding receptions, dinners and prayer meetings are not allowed under the CMCO. Lee Hui Chin, Vice-President of the Association of Professional Wedding Planners, said couples must consider what they want, considering the current situation.
They have to definitely consider their best decision as to when they would want their wedding to take place based on their personal choices now or after the pandemic.
She noted that some might feel that it was a waste to tie the knot now or even have wedding photo shoots or videos taken.
Some couples may not want to carry on as the photos and videos cost a lot and will show them masked, with expressions hidden. They also may not want to take the risk for fear of Covid-19 infections and will postpone plans to a safer date, ” said Lee.
Many couples whom follow the older traditions of the family would want elderly couples to be present to bless them for the wedding.
Bridal make-up artist Aishu Ash Krishnan, a leading makeup artists in the industry have expressed concerns stating they prioritise the cleanliness and well being of their clients by sanitising and washing each of their make up brushes after its used and try to avoid any crowd when dressing up the brides.
Only the bride and I are in the room, unlike before where relatives and friends crowd in. This is to curb infections, adding that make-up artists must protect themselves by donning face shields, masks and gloves.
The authorities have also further extended their concerns that photographers should strictly avoid taking pictures by using the phones of the attendees at the wedding due to the possibility of spreading Covid-19 even through the usage of mobile phones.
Highlighting further, the food catered at the wedding are mostly pre packed or served in a self-service way.
Events hall operator, Rajan Raman said upon pertaining to the new norm, tables were placed two metres apart and chairs spaced out.
In conjunction with the current increase of wedding events all around us, let’s allow the planners, caterers and make up artists to perform their job well while adhering to the SOPs ruled out by the government to combat the pandemic effectively.