There are certain elements that are simply out of control when planning a wedding. Maybe there was a recent death in your family, or perhaps the venue was damaged from bad weather. Regardless, unforeseen circumstances such as this may force couples to push their wedding back to a later date. So, what’s the right way to officially postpone your wedding?

Send Notices to Guests

Once you and your fiance have decided to postpone the wedding, you should immediately notify guests. Rather than relaying the message through social media or word of mouth, however, it’s recommended that you send formal cancellation notices in the mail. You can do this by creating custom-printed stationary cards, saying something like “Mr. and Mrs. John Smith announce that the marriage of their daughter Donna Smith to Terry Stewart has been postponed until June 11, 2016.You may also include the reason for postponing your wedding, although this is completely optional and not required.

Notify the Venue

Your next move should be notifying the venue. Pick up the phone and call the venue to let them know of your decision to postpone the wedding. Depending on how far in advance you notify them — and their policy regarding cancellations — you may or may not be entitled to a refund. Cancellation policies vary between the different wedding venues, so refer to your contract for more information. Generally speaking, though, the sooner you cancel, the greater your chance of recouping some, if not all, of your payment.

Notify Vendors

Now it’s time to notify all of the vendors with whom you’ve made arrangements to provide services at your wedding. This includes the catering company, photographer and/or videographer, DJ, and florist. Go through your list of vendors, explaining that you’d like to cancel their services.

Cancel the Honeymoon

The final step in postponing a wedding is to cancel the honeymoon — and again, the sooner you do it, the better. If you booked your honeymoon through a travel agent, contact them ASAP to see if you are entitled to a refund.

What About Wedding Insurance?

The good news is that wedding insurance may reimburse you for any expenses associated with your cancellations. Generally speaking, though, policies typically only cover cancellations that occur from illness, natural disaster, or other unforeseen circumstances, and not cold feet. Contact your insurance broker for more information about your policy and whether or not your situation is covered.

Hopefully, this will give you a better idea of how to postpone your wedding.