Many of our couples are new to the idea of a room block, why they should have one and how it all works. Here are some of the most common questions we hear to help you as you begin looking in to room blocks for your wedding or if you are on the fence about having one.
What is a room block? A room block is a collection of rooms that is reserved for your wedding guests. Many hotels will hold the rooms until approximately one month prior to your wedding day at a steady rate. Some hotels will give you a bonus if your group books a certain number of rooms (i.e. a shuttle for guests or a free or discounted room for yourself.)
Why should I book a room block? If your wedding is on a busy weekend you will want rooms available for your guests. It is also nice to have everyone in one place in case you want to hold additional functions (i.e. brunch.) If the hotel has a shuttle, you can assure your guests will return from your wedding safely.
Are room block rates discounted? Sometimes they will offer a discounted rate, but on a busier weekend it is often at a disadvantage to the hotel to create a room block for you (reserving 20 room with no guarantee of booking is risky.) Often, the benefit is not in the price per room. Your guests may say they found the room at a better price on a third party site or even on the hotel website, but it is important to weigh if them booking outside of your block will mean you don't have a enough rooms for a free shuttle. Often, if you explain this to your guests they are happy to pay the minimal difference and know they have a free ride.
What if most of my guests are in town? When you go to a wedding, even one 30 minutes from home, do you sometimes book a room just so you don't have to drive? I know I do! As long as the room block is a "courtesy" block, you are better off booking one, just in case!
What does "courtesy block" mean? A courtesy block is a room block where you as the "host" owe nothing up front. Typically wedding blocks are booked in this way.
Alternatively, if you need a large number of rooms booked and you know they will be filled you can set up a contract with the hotel where you guarantee a certain number of rooms will be filled. You are financially responsible for a block where you are guaranteeing a number of rooms will be filled.
How do Welcome Bags work for out of town guests? Many hotels will hand out welcome bags that you create for your guests. We have a blog post with fun ideas on creating these. This is a great way to show those who traveled a little extra love and appreciation. Ask hotels if they are able to distribute these when you are talking to them about the block. We have another great blog post with ideas on what to include.
Still have questions? Reach out to us! We would love to help you navigate your wedding planning.