Updated News | So when will my wedding be allowed?

The Coronavirus and governmental decisions thus far has impacted (and is still impacting) weddings in South Africa. This article looks to explore where weddings have existed on the lockdown scale so far. After President Cyril Ramaphosa’s most recent national address on 15 August 2020, let’s look at SO WHAT NOW for Weddings. We explicitly assess the updated regulations as we enter into lockdown level 2. Leading us to delineate JUST TELL ME! SO WHEN WILL MY WEDDING BE ALLOWED?

To get to: When will my wedding be allowed – let’s start here. Lockdown and weddings so far.

It’s been a gruelling five months during a hardcore lockdown in South Africa. South Africa has experienced once of the most hardcore lockdowns globally. During level 5 and level 4 of lockdown, weddings were not permitted and home affairs were not processing marriage certificates. During level 3 a wedding ceremony in the presence of the couple, plus a marriage officer and two witnesses was permitted. It was only during level 3 that home affairs begun processing marriage certificates.

It’s for sure been a topsy turfy and very emotional experience for many brides, grooms, friends and families.

During level 3 of lockdown, very few brides and grooms have chosen to have their weddings in a back garden with a marriage officer and two witnesses. Other couples have ignored lockdown regulations and gone ahead with their dream wedding, but intimately and secretly. Potentially a bit too risky for such a big day. However MOST couples have postponed their wedding and tried to accept the lockdown for what it is.

Almost a month ago we interviewed several wedding experts and wedding venues. They aimed to answer the burning question of: When will my wedding be allowed?  Here’s a few of their predictions from then:

Wedding Planner Kate said that many smaller weddings are postponed to the remainder of 2020, and larger weddings are postponed to 2021.

Founder of South Africa’s Largest Online Wedding Shop Tracey said: “We’re assuming that from level 2, smaller wedding gatherings will be permitted. Level 1 will likely permit wedding gatherings with much less restrictions, but with caution. It’s just a matter of time that our Government announces the date of level 2. Couples will never stop getting married.”  Shop Owner Tracey expected that from level 2, smaller wedding gatherings will be permitted.

In hindsight, we appreciate the precision of these statements aiming to answer the question of when will my wedding be allowed. Read more on that here

So what now?


The President’s most recent national address on 15 August 2020 stated that on midnight 17 August 2020, South Africa moves from level 3 lockdown, to level 2 lockdown. The President distinguished some factors, which can be applied to answer the burning question of:  When will my wedding be allowed.

1. All gatherings are limited to a maximum of 50 people

This gathering restriction of 50 people has been confirmed by both President Ramaphosa on 15 August 2020, as well as by NDZ’s on 17 August 2020.  The gazette is also updated as follows: “Weddings, subject to a limitation of 50 persons.”

So when will my wedding be allowed?

 2. A curfew remains in place from 10pm – 4am (except for essential workers)  

This factor will influence your wedding agenda.  Perhaps your wedding ceremony might have to start slightly earlier in the day, to accommodate a longer joy-filled wedding reception. Probably a light wedding venue close at 830pm will give the wedding venue the opportunity to clean up and close the venue before curfew at 10pm. Plus time for their employees to get home before curfew. Chat to your wedding venue to interpret their regulations initiated during level 2 lockdown. 

3. The sale of alcohol is permitted in restaurants and can be sold again

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Personalised Customised Wedding Groomsman Gift

4. Tobacco can be sold again  

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5. Face masks are mandatory in public gatherings and any time any person steps out of their home 

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6. All sanitising precautions must continue to be applied  

Hand sanitiser stations are the new wedding trend. They can be done up really cool with personalised sign boards, décor and flowers.   Design your unique and pretty awesome personalised signboard here .

Better yet are the hand sanitiser wedding guest gift favours which we found here and also another cheaper style here. Social distancing will still apply, therefore consider spacing your wedding guest tables further apart. Contemplate removing 2 or 3 seats from the normal 10 seater round wedding tables.

Personalised Wedding Gift Favour Hand Sanitiser

Personalised Wedding Gift Favour Hand Sanitisers here

7. Current restrictions on international travel remains in place  

International travel is not permitted during level 2. As a result, the weddings booked abroad will need to wait a little longer.  Unless of course couples choose to marry in some of the most beautiful local destinations within South Africa.

The restriction upon international travel will impact the attendance of wedding guests from abroad. International travel will likely open during early 2021.  The economy cannot be further impacted or furthermore sustain a severe hardcore lockdown. It is only a matter of time in which international travel restrictions will be eased.

8. However, travel between provinces in South Africa is permitted  

As a result, guests and the wedding team can travel nationally anywhere within South Africa. This is great news for local weddings and for South African people attending weddings.

Just tell me! So when will my wedding be allowed?


If your wedding has less than 50 people, then your wedding is permitted after midnight 17 August 2020.  Obviously fitting with the above-mentioned guidelines and regulations.


And what if my wedding is larger than 50 people?


If your wedding is larger than 50 people, it’s likely that your wedding will need to be postponed furthermore by a few more weeks.  We wait to hear the President’s next national address when we move to level 1 (given that the corona statistics are still on decline and the recovery rates sticks around the current 80% mark).
If your wedding is well into the 200-400+ in guest size, at this stage, postponing your wedding to early 2021 could be a realistic strategy.
It took the government five months (lockdown level 5, 4, 3, 2) to permit 50 people to a gathering.  Therefore it’s likely that much larger weddings will resume again early 2021.
Therefore the answer to your question: When will my wedding be allowed – is much applicable to the size of your wedding at this stage.

So when will my wedding be allowed?

In summary

The most recent Presidential address was more lenient than it has been in almost half a year. His mentioned variables can be applied to answer the burning question of:  When will my wedding be allowed.

We see gatherings up to 50 people, sale of alcohol and tobacco are permitted after midnight on 17 August 2020. However, larger size weddings will need to be postponed by a further few more weeks.  For wedding sizes into the hundreds, postponing your wedding to early 2021 is realistic.

Although we are happy that the lockdown is beginning to ease, the curfew existence still adversely impacts wedding agendas. A lot less than ideal, but at least beginning with the wedding vibes and celebrations, even though on a smaller scale to begin with.

Together with these eases in lockdown, it’s become mandatory to wear face masks in public, sanitise frequently and practice social distancing – these factors will be taken seriously and for sure implemented at weddings immediately.

It is a pity that international travel has not yet opened during level 2 lockdown, as this still impacts the wedding guest list. It is ideal to have our loved ones physically share our wedding day. But at least at this stage, we are moving positively forwards with an outline of when will my wedding be allowed.

It is only a matter of time before South Africa moves to level 1 lockdown, where we’re expecting that wedding gathering size and curfew restriction will ease furthermore.

Remember to read Wedding Tips on how weddings will change. And most importantly, check out some SA’s best online wedding shop HERE

This article will be updated in our blog as wedding information progress onwards. Watch this space! Most importantly, check into our  Blog Page for more insight into Hot Wedding Topics.

*Note from the Editor:  By no means is this article a comprehensively seamless analysis or by any means official information. However this article is merely intended to explore grounding information proposed to sober wedding indecision. This information is accurate to the date of publishing.  More information will unveil as the government releases further information.