Having virtual guests at your wedding isn’t ideal. Of course you want them there in person! But in some cases, a person who is special to you won’t be able to make it. Maybe it’s a grandparent with fragile health, who can’t leave the hospital bed. Maybe it’s a friend who is out of the country for work, and can’t afford to fly home for the weekend. Whatever the case, having their virtual presence is better than nothing, right? Here are four ways that you can include your loved ones virtually on your special day.
To include absent guests through Skype, you will need to ask someone who will be sitting in the front row to hold a laptop, iPad, or other device that has Skype on it. Make sure the ceremony location has wifi, and that you know the password. Test out the connection before hand. Then, stream the ceremony live so that those connected through Skype can watch in real time.
2. Google Hangouts
Google Hangouts is another option for live-streaming your ceremony to those who can not be physically present. As an alternative to streaming the ceremony, you could also set up a Google Hangout during the reception, so that the call can be a two-way conversation. Instead of having absent guests silently watching, as though they’re seeing a live video, they can actually talk and connect with other wedding guests, as well as the bride and groom.
3. Facebook Live
If you’re on Facebook, you could set up a group for your wedding. Invite your guests that can not be present to join the group. Then, delegate the task of live-streaming the ceremony again to one of the guests in the front row. This would work well if you have a large number of guests who won’t be able to make it. Perhaps most of your family lives halfway around the globe, and you know they can’t afford the travel expenses. With a Facebook Live, they will feel connected and included, even though they are far away.
If the location of your ceremony doesn’t have wifi and won’t support a hot spot, you could also ask a guest or a professional to film the ceremony, and upload it to Youtube shortly after, once wifi is available! This is a last resort option, because you want your guests to enjoy themselves, not be worrying about uploading videos!
If you know of a friend or family member who can’t make it to your wedding, think about ways to use technology to include them. Arrange a Skype callwith your grandmother who just had surgery and can’t fly, or set up a Facebook group for all of your aunts, uncles, and cousins who live in the Ukraine. Think outside the box, and plan ahead! Make sure you test the system before the big day.
Are you planning to include a guest virtually on your wedding day? What’s the situation? Let us know in the comments, below!