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New Jersey

hotel block- pay for unused rooms?

Hi everyone!We are trying to book a hotel room block for our wedding.  The hotel we really want to use will only let you block a set of 25 rooms without being charged.  So, if I want to block 50 rooms and only 30 end up being booked, then I'll be responsible for paying for the 20 unused rooms.  Is this typical hotel practice?  I have no idea how many rooms to block now, especially since I don't know how many people are coming to the wedding yet!We are inviting around 300 people.  How many hotel rooms would you block (about 70% will be from out of town)?

Re: hotel block- pay for unused rooms?

  • mbcdefgmbcdefg member
    10000 Comments 5 Love Its Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011
    Can't you just block 25 for now, and then ask them to add on more as they're needed?
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  • edited December 2011
    Agree with MB and what hotel is this?  Usually you do not have to pay for unused rooms and can block in sets of 10.
  • edited December 2011
    The hotel gives first preference to people having events at the hotel.  So if the hotel is hosting a wedding that evening, they get first dibs on the hotel rooms that aren't blocked.
  • edited December 2011
    Yes, that sounds about right... at least for me anyway.  They allowed me to hold 25 rooms aside, but if those rooms booked up and there is additional availability, they would add rooms to the block at any time for us.  I would up the room block to at least 30 if you know definitely they would be used. 
  • edited December 2011
    Most hotels usually hold the block until a month before and then release the rooms that have not been booked therefore allowing the rooms to be used.  I personally would not use that hotel just for that fact.  That could be a really large bill. What area are you looking in?  Maybe someone can suggest a different hotel.
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  • Danes983Danes983 member
    1000 Comments Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011
    Typical hotels do practice this way. So dont think they are scamming  you.  Here is how to get around that.  Most hotels will allow you to add more rooms as they are booked so you can always have 25 to be used (does this make sense?)  So block 25. Have  your immed family, bridesmaids and groomsmen who are staying call and make a reservation.  Then, call and ask for more rooms.  Next when you send out your STD's see if you can put it on there and say space is limited call asap. OR something like that. So then they can call and book too.  Check back once a week to make sure you still have rooms in the kitty.  Typically about 3 weeks after any unused rooms get put back to hotel inventory.
  • edited December 2011
    That sounds pretty normal to me. I don't know if our hotel does the same thing because we didn't need to block that many rooms but I could see where they are coming from. I would block the 25 and then once those book up ask the hotel to add more rooms to the block. Another option would be to set up blocks at 2 hotels. That way you give your guests a choice and if the rooms don't book up like you expected you're not stuck paying for the unused rooms.
  • edited December 2011
    Great!  Thanks everyone for your suggestions.  I'd prefer for people to stay at the hotel (Pearl River Hilton) because we are having the brunch there on Sun.  I'll book the 25 for now and will add on more rooms or add a second hotel.Thanks!
  • acablitasacablitas member
    500 Comments
    edited December 2011
    Agreed with what pp said.  I only blocked 10 rooms b/c I'm pretty sure that most out of towners are staying with family.  But we don't get charged for any rooms that aren't booked.  What hotel are you using?
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