Wedding Recap and Withdrawal

Hotel Block Question

Based on the number of OOT households you had, what's a good percentage to plan for regarding a hotel block?

Also, did you go scope out the hotel before you contacted anyone?  Or were they cold calls when blocking rooms?

White Knot

Re: Hotel Block Question

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    I work at a hotel. We usually will offer a specail rate, but not block off rooms. This way they are first come, first served and we don't miss out on selling them when people bail. Some hotels will block off rooms, but have a date about a month prior to your event that they will cancel any unclaimed rooms. Just call around and find the awesome deals! :)
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    We are having almost everyone staying at hotels, since its a semi-destination wedding (though in the US, just not where anyone lives). Our hotel (a Marriot) gave us a special deal on the room rate, and opens up a block of 10 rooms at a time. When 8 are booked, they open up another 10 for us. They keep doing that until 1 month before the wedding. However, it all depends on the hotel chain. I think they also gave us a discount on the Suite for the Wedding Night, which is pretty awesome. 
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    Most of my family are out of town.  My first stop by priceline so that I knew what price range to start looking.

    I am so glad I started there because the "discount" they tried to give me was more than priceline.  In the end I argued my way to a better rate for my guests than priceline.
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    I looked up reviews for the closest hotel to where we are getting married. Then I called the hotel and asked them what their policy was and how they block the rooms. We needed a total of 45 rooms, they allowed us to block 35 total so I contacted the next closest, nicest hotel and did an additional block. Frist come first serve, and the un-rented rooms when back to the hotel a month and a half before the wedding. And I was under no obligation to pay for the un-rented ones. Be careful, and ensure you ask about that policy. 2 of the 5 hotels I called stated that if a percentage of the rooms that were blocked out were not used I would be responsible for the cost.... Had no idea about that! Thank goodness that I found that out prior to blocking the rooms!
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    I would definitely check online first to find out how much you can get the room for there. I could get rooms online for $80 on the hotel's website for booking more than 7 days in advance, and that was just on one room. When I went to book a block they told me they'd give me 10% off for booking 20 rooms and that it would be $80 with the 10% off. When I told them I could get it for that on my own online, they agreed to give me 10% off the online price. I've worked at hotels before, and they can always give you a lower rate. So just do your homework to find the lowest rate, even looking at comparable hotels and keep in mind that you are giving them alot of business without them having to do anything. So make them give you a good discount! :)

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    We have been having a total mess of a time - we blocked rooms at the Renaissance Seattle Hotel, part of the Marriott brand. We were offered an initial 10 rooms at a certain rate and were told that more rooms could be blocked as those 10 filled up. We have filled about 2/3 of the "room-nights" and inquired about extending the block. We are still about 12 weeks away from the wedding date - haven't even sent out invitations yet. The hotel is being AWFUL about extending the block and told us that they can add more rooms but that the new rooms will be an additional $20 per night from what they originally quoted. We feel very stuck! Any good ideas on how to talk these people into being more reasonable? They were incredibly nice before we booked and assured us that extending the block would be no problem, but the exact terms were not clearly spelled out in the contract. 
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