Post # 1
This Is basically a rant. But I blocked out 25 rooms for my wedding so guests can stay there and not have to pay the extremely inflated price that hotels often raise because of the season. If I didn’t get them canceled by last week I would have to pay 30% of the leftover rooms. Well that went by and I didn’t get a reminder or a follow up call with rooms booked so far and now I might be out of a lot of money because I don’t think people are using my website which has all the info there, or they are just booking at other hotels for other reasons.. I only have 8 rooms booked so far and i’m really stressing!
my recommendation…. Room blocks are a waste of money!
Post # 2
I would never block rooms if I had to pay the remainder! That is such a rip off! Sorry you have to do that. Most hotels around here will do that only if you want the rooms reserved right up close to the date (maybe a week before), otherwise they release them a month or so ahead of time for no charge.
Maybe you can encourage people who havent booked yet to use the room block?
Post # 3
Not all hotels charge, I only blocked at hotels that didn’t require any payment for unbooked rooms.
For your guest, it is possible that the hotel you chose is still out of their price range. Many guest are willing to drive a little further to save $$ per night on a hotel. Guest are not required to used the hotel at which you blocked at.
Maybe send out an email or start passing the word around. “Hey everyone, the hotel only has 17 rooms left on the block. Please book soon to save money. Thank you.”
You have to also realize, many guest know that a hotel usually comps the room for the Bride and Groom if the block is filled… most guest do not want to shell out big bucks just so the bride and grooms gets a free stay. 😉
Good Luck bee.
Post # 4
Sorry that happened. You should have only done a courtesy room block. The hotel gives you a rate, but you are not responsible for any rooms not booked.
Look over any other contracts you have where there are dates to be met and put them in your caledar on your phone. Unfortunately for you, it is not the vendors’ responsibility to send you reminders.
Post # 5
Yea, I agree with the PP — there are plenty of hotel chains that do not require you to pay for unbooked rooms. So no, room blocks are not a waste — they save the guests money and help ensure them room availability!
Is there a reason you had to go with the hotel you chose? My room block is with a Marriott brand hotel, and they are holding the rooms open until May 19 (one month before the wedding) with no cost or penalty to me if they don’t all get booked. I have also reminded my guests a few times on our (closed group) wedding Facebook page that they must book by that date to get the group discount.
Post # 6
That really sucks, bee 🙁 We didn’t do a room block at our hotel for precisely this reason. We considered it briefly and asked about it, but we decided not to when they said we would be on the hook for any hotel rooms not booked. No way! I’m so glad we didn’t because we are getting married in a large and spread out city with tons of hotel options and people have friends and family they’re staying with as well. Even my FI’s immediate family is opting to rent a house instead and my family already lives in the city. It just made no sense. And it’s a lot of money to be on the hook for.
I think the only situation in which a room block (where you’d be on the hook for rooms not booked) MIGHT be worth it is if a couple is getting married in a rural area where there are only 1 or 2 viable hotel options.
Post # 7
Yikes. None of our room blocks charged for the unreserved rooms- just released them if they weren’t booked (if they charged a %.. I wouldn’t have done one)
Post # 8
We blocked hotel rooms but they gave a coutesy warning when they were about due and we were not charged for rooms not booked. It was great for our guests because a repulican debated was scheduled at that hotel the day after the wedding so prices jumped significantly. The room block was useful.
Sorry you had a different experience. For future vendors go back over your contracts so you don’t ind more suprises
Post # 9
Yikes! So sorry. I didn’t even know that hotels charged for unfulfilled rooms in the block.
Post # 10
So sorry. I ran into this problem a lot. Look out for an attrition clause in any contract- this is where is states you will have to pay for unused rooms. See if they will work with you Bee. If not ask if they will release the rooms and not charge you, leaving your guests on their own to book to avoid what they want you to pay.
ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS ASK ABOUT ATTRITION.
Post # 11
I’m not sure how this changes regionally, but we live in Southern California and got married in Southern California and yes, we had to block rooms (for a March wedding – which is off season) so that the prices didn’t tripple in the last 30 days before the wedding. We did this about 9 months in advance, which is tough because you don’t know your final guest count 9 months in advance.
Also – not every hotel offered room blocks, but the ones that did ALL of them required that we put down a CC. We had to fill 85% of the rooms we reserved, because if we filled less than 85% we were reponsible for the empty rooms. (example, if we reserved 20 rooms, and 17 of the 20 were booked by guests, we were ok. but if 16 of the 20 were booked, we had to pay for the remaining 4 empty rooms).
Yes, this is sort of BS, becuause those “empty” rooms can be used by other hotel guests not linked to my wedding. But they run a business, not a charity, and they will charge you wherever they can.
In Southern California there was no other option. We aimed low, so we booked 20 rooms at the fancy hotel, and 20 rooms at the more affordable hotel. We filled up all of the rooms at both hotlels! But guests waited until the last two weeks of the room block that the rooms were available (which was 6 weeks before the wedding) to book – so I was stressed that I would be on the hook for ALL of those emplty rooms. To be fair, both hotels were generous with guests who wanted to book late, and one of them let us exceed our 20 room limit. But still, the stress of other people’s travel plans was more than I could handle.
I found the room blcoks to be one of the most frustrating parts of the planning process. I definately felt at the whim of the hotels. I hated it.
Post # 12
Sorry it’s a hard lesson to learn. I would only do a courtesy block where I wasn’t financially responsible for the rooms. Maybe there will be stragglers who can claim some of those remaining rooms. I suppose you could also post something on a a travel website or something saying that you have rooms blocked that others could take.
Post # 13
It sucks that you probably will have to pay, but it really was on you to check before the deadline. It’s not like they didn’t tell you about it at the start.
Post # 14
Man, that sucks. Sorry that happened. 🙁
I tried to do the room block thing, but the hotel wanted me to guarantee 10 rooms. I told them that’s difficult for me to guarantee since I didn’t even send out invitations yet. After some mild “well you should do that first…” and me going “well I didn’t”, we agreed that they will give my guests a discounted price, but no rooms will be reserved. It’s first come first serve.
The venue is surrounded by at least four hotels. If guests can’t book ANY hotel rooms by the wedding date, then they either didn’t try hard enough or really left it to the last minute. All I know is I have MY hotel room so I’m set. 😀
Post # 15
Yeah, same thing was going to happen to me, and I considered it for about 10 minutes. Then one of our friends who just got married told me that his room block (sans attrition) didn’t get used till about a week before the wedding, with the exception of two or three couples (we were one of them!). So we told them no, and they said they’d give us a discount but not hold the rooms.