Interviews with New England Wedding Vendors: Cars and Travel
This blog post contains an interview in my mini-series focusing on the effects of the COVID-19 on the wedding industry. Specifically in New England. I’ve interviewed two travel vendors, as travel is one of the main categories to be profoundly impacted by the pandemic. Quarantine = absolutely no travel! Let’s see what Steven Schorr at Drive Maine Classic Car Rentals as well as Elizabeth Haggett at Looking Glass Travel, have to say.
A little about each interviewee’s field…
Elizabeth is a Travel Specialist with Looking Glass Travel. She provides complimentary and personal travel planning for parties of all sizes. Her niche is cruises and Disney destinations. Also, she specializes in the personalization and relationship that she builds with clients to provide exceptional customer service for a lifetime of travel.
Steven works with Drive Maine Classic Car Rentals, servicing the Mid Coast Region. DMCCR is a Veteran-owned business that supplies vintage British automobiles, as well as self-drive rentals. Perfect for special occasions such as weddings, proms, and photoshoots.
Now onto the interview…
How has the pandemic affected your business? What is one positive element about it?
Steven: Covid-19 has caused cancellations of our summer wedding bookings. Our fall weddings are still on the books. In terms of the positive, Covid-19 has allowed us to focus on the areas which we were in need of improving. We are now building a new facility, [and] we have also been able to narrow our scope to photoshoots, and chauffeured service. We are [also] going to be creating a landscaped garden area for photoshoots and small wedding ceremonies in which we can incorporate our vehicles. My wife is a notary and offers her services to marry couples and will assist in the writing of vows, and the flow of the ceremony.
Elizabeth: The pandemic has truly, literally put the travel industry to a halt. Without the opening of popular vacation hot spots, honeymoon favorites, family amusement parks, sunny beach destinations as well as available airfare, there is not only no place to go but no way to get there. The great unexpected but well received opportunity during this time has to be given time to brush up on training, expand social media presence, reach out to past clients to entice new adventures, schedule my own personal adventures which lead to business promotions and practice patience.
How do you think the wedding industry will be impacted as a whole as a result of the pandemic?
Steven: I believe, at least temporarily, that weddings will be smaller and more intimate affairs. Fewer guests, smaller wedding parties, and perhaps smaller venues will start to become popular. I believe couples will be looking to save their money in terms of the services they seek. [I believe] it will be harder for the [vendor] newcomers of those services to get established as the longer running businesses will have a heavy portfolio that can showcase their work.
Elizabeth: When things calm down I expect they will amp immediately up and am hopeful as such. The rescheduling of weddings due to restrictions and closure of wedding venues will increase demand for all businesses associated with large events such as weddings, including travel.
What regulations do you think should be put into place?
Elizabeth: I am cautious to speculate what travel regulations should be put forth. I think it is best to caution travelers that the virus still exists but they ultimately decide how they wish to spend their money and time.
Steven: I feel that if someone has a compromised immune system the individual should take every precaution such as masks, hand washing, and social distancing practices. Providing sanitation stations and disposable masks when entering/exiting a venue makes for an option for guests.
Thanks to Steven and Elizabeth for giving their thoughtful answers, and to you, for reading. The next interview will be up shortly. We will further discover how wedding vendors and their businesses are being impacted by the pandemic.
We’re all in this together!
TRAVEL SOCIAL MEDIAS
Elizabeth Haggett at Looking Glass Travel
Steven Schorr at Drive Maine Classic Car Rentals