When you think about one of the most emotional and memorable days of your life - where you and your soulmate will exchange wedding rings and vows - the word 'technology' might not spring to mind.
But technology has become such a ubiquitous part of our daily lives, it's only natural that more couples are exploring ways to use it to enhance their wedding day.
From high-tech photography to robotic bartenders, there are so many clever, subtle (or not so subtle) ways to use technology to enhance your wedding day. To get you inspired, we asked six technology professionals to share their best tips for getting the most out of tech at your wedding.
Beam your wedding with livestreaming
Image Credit: Mike Staff Productions
"Social distancing, travel restrictions and meeting the recommended safety requirements have forced many couples to drastically change their wedding plans by reducing the number of friends and family they can invite," says the team at Mike Staff Productions, a Michigan-based wedding production company that provides professional DJ, photography & videography services.
Many have opted to switch their large wedding for a micro-wedding, an elopement, or even a virtual wedding. One thing is for sure - not all your family and friends will be able to join you on the day, so livestreaming your nuptials is a fantastic way to have them join you from around the country, and the world!
Just because your wedding is livestreamed it doesn't mean your guests have to struggle with poor sound and a grainy picture. "Our wedding videography team uses advanced video and live streaming equipment to broadcast weddings for all of your loved ones to see from the comfort of their own home. They can still see you walking down the aisle, hear you reciting your vows and watch you officially become married," says Mike Staff Productions.
When choosing to livestream your wedding, Mike Staff Productions recommends preparing your virtual wedding guests so they know what to expect.
"We offer a custom webpage for your wedding. This acts as the 'home base' for your wedding live stream. Prior to your wedding day, you'll need to share the link with your friends and family. Couples usually choose to include it on their invitation, wedding website, change the date cards, or even their social media profiles. We recommend sharing your livestream link early so your guests can easily find your livestream on your wedding day with no difficulties."
Robotic bartenders are a thing - seriously
Image Credit: Somabar
The idea of a robotic bartender might sound pretty wild, but hear us out. Imagine being able to create, mix and serve custom cocktails - made with precision accuracy - at the touch of a button.
The team at Somabar, the award-winning automated bartender, explains how this type of technology can bring something special to your big day.
"Perhaps there is a rum you both discovered while vacationing in the islands, or a ferocious tequila shared one particularly crazy night. Somabar can craft your cocktail service using the liquors and ingredients that you love and cherish," they explain.
Have some fun and give the cocktails names that your guests will love. "Name the bride's favourite drink 'Vanessa's Nightly Cosmo', and for the Groom, 'James' Secret Negroni'. Don't forget to honour the best man by naming the Tequila Sour 'Chris' Lost Weekend'. Now that's a conversation starter!"
In the current climate, another benefit of using an automated bartender instead of a team of waitstaff, is the huge reduction in the potential to spread germs. "Not only does Somabar dramatically reduce the number of 'touches' during drink preparation from dozens to just a few, but it also significantly limits the zone of movement of the drink preparer."
Embrace the power of digital invitations
Image Credit: Greetings Island
From wedding invitations to save the dates or change the dates, there's plenty of information to communicate to your guests. In the past, couples felt compelled to spend a small fortune on high-quality paper invitations. Thankfully, these days there are many more budget-friendly and environmentally-friendly options.
"Now that we live in such a digitized world, it's becoming the norm to send out wedding invitations through email," says the team from Greetings Island, who offer a wide variety of digital invitations and cards for all occasions. "This allows couples to avoid expensive invitation materials while also being green."
Technology can also save you time and effort when it comes to managing your replies. "This comes in handy most of all when juggling so many potential guests. Due to the wonders of technology, the act of RSVPing, for instance, only takes a few easy clicks of the mouse."
An e-invitation can look as stunning as a physical one, but first, you should decide how personal you want to make it, says Greetings Island. "For instance, some e-invitations allow you to include one or more pictures. In that case, be sure to have your pictures ready. It also helps to have a list of everyone's emails, preferably right next to their name on the roster. That way, you can easily send the invitations to everyone on your list."
Tech to take the stress out of wedding planning
Image Credit: Allseated
Planning a wedding can be an exciting and stressful time for couples. "The organisation, attention to detail, and ability to work with multiple vendors throughout the planning process can be an overwhelming task," says the team at Allseated, an innovative planning platform for event professionals.
The team at Easy Weddings, Australia's number one wedding planning website and app, agrees: "There are very few couples who've planned their own wedding before and know exactly who to hire, where to host their wedding, and how to budget for the occasion," they say.
Thankfully, technology is making the wedding planning process a lot easier. This is especially important during this time when many couples are planning their wedding remotely and need to ensure the event meets all the required safety protocols, including numbers of guests, social distancing, and safe food service.
A major source of stress when planning a wedding in modern times is information overload, but the right tools can help you manage this, says Easy Weddings. "Our app allows you to keep your wedding checklist, budget calculator, and wedding inspiration, all in one place. You can also track the venues and suppliers that appeal to you most."
Being able to see and plan the physical elements of your wedding day virtually before the event can be a huge advantage during these challenging times. Tools like Allseated, which is used by wedding planners, can flag up any potential issues before your big day.
"Using event technology where you are able to take a virtual walkthrough of the event space and wedding layout, allows you to really see what your wedding seating and floorplan will look like, while allowing you to make changes with just a click of a button. In today's world, being able to tour spaces without the need for onsite appointments is critical," they say.
Take your wedding gift registry online
Image Credit: Wijdan Mq
The days setting up a gift registry at a physical store or leaving guests to decide what items you want or need are over. Now it is super simple to set up an online gift registry where your guests can choose from items you will genuinely use and appreciate.
"Making wedding gifts waste-free, stress-free and hands-free, is what we are all about," says the team at Wedding Wishlist, who offer an online registry service. "We help couples to receive the items that would be useful for them. And, for guests, it takes away the hassle of shopping and the guess-work."
Far from being limited to homewares or traditional wedding gifts, couples can choose things as diverse as funds for a honeymoon, experiences, charity donations, and gift cards.
Use online tools like gift registries to make your wedding a more budget-friendly and planet-friendly affair. "In the current times, the positive change in millennial couples' mindset and need of sustainable and zero-waste weddings has led them to leverage technology to ensure a smart and non-wasteful wedding," says Wedding Wishlist.
Have fun with photography
Your wedding is a milestone event in your life and one you will look back on for years to come. There's nothing more enjoyable than dusting off the wedding album for a look back at your special day. While traditional wedding photography and videography are still mainstays, technology means you can create all sorts of new, fun memories.
Many wedding videographers are now using drones to capture wedding scenes from above. For outdoor weddings, this really gives a sense of the beauty of the place. This is ideal for couples who have chosen a location that has special meaning for them.
Some couples have had fun attaching GoPros to everything from a willing wedding guest to dogs, capturing some hilarious scenes of the wedding from a different perspective.
Loved by some and loathed by others, selfie sticks can also be a really fun addition to a wedding. Place one on each table and encourage your guests to take some spontaneous snaps of themselves on their phones and share them on social media using your wedding hashtag.
You will love looking through these the day after the wedding and have a good laugh at some of the antics people got up to!
However you plan to celebrate your love, we hope we've inspired you to embrace technology as part of your wedding day. We think anything that can bring you and your loved ones closer during these challenging times is a good thing!