BECAUSE EXPERIENCE SHARING IS THE BEST KIND OF WORD VOMIT

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The Hotel Blocking Hustle!

ARTICLE BY COLLECTIVE MEMBER: LAUREN O’BRIEN OF LAUREN O AND CO.

What is Hotel Blocking?

Okay, let’s rewind, because I know we just jumped into things. What is hotel blocking? This is a common wedding practice where you reserve a length of rooms at one or two local hotels so guests will be within a certain proximity of one another and your wedding venue. This is important to do because family and friends are there to be together! They may get a little loud, they may want to say hi, exchange gifts, get dressed, and travel together. Giving everyone an option for pre-reserved rooms will also take pressure off them to individually find a place to stay.

A room block can also serve as your dedicated space. You’ll have a dedicated space for your hair and makeup artist and to house all of your stuff. It also becomes your sanctuary, your space to take it all in before it all begins.

Pro tip: make sure you can close your door and take that moment…in peace.

Hotel Blocking – Let’s Get To It

Let’s get blocking! The key point here is to make sure you do have a contract. Get something in writing that outlines exactly how many rooms you have and what clauses, prices, and fees go along with them. You’ll need to know what time guests can enter their rooms and what time they must be out by.

It’s crucial here to understand the time frame you have to get the rooms booked. And what penalty, if any, you will have to pay if there are unclaimed rooms. This could be a percentage or a clause that allows the hotel to attempt to book any extra rooms to avoid you having to pay. Make sure you call significantly ahead of time so the hotel can be flexible.

Pro tip: Ask your planner if this is a service they can add on, at cost. Many planners are skilled in handling room blocks or they work with travel agents to handle this for their clients.

Let The People Know Their Options

Inform your guests. (Ahem, duh!) If you have a wedding website, that is the easiest way to relay the message on the hotels you’ve blocked, how to reserve their room, how to arrange transportation, and any other details they may need. The hotels will let you know what guests need to ask for when calling, so make sure everyone is clued in and aware of deadlines.

Pro Tip: You may want to book two hotels at different price ranges and hotel brands. We all have that aunt who only stays at the Marriott and the other aunt who wouldn’t dare step foot in anything not named Hilton.

Photos courtesy of Robert Norman Photography (Instagram: @robertnormanphotography)

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