Wedding planning often involves booking a hotel block for your out-of-town guests and wedding party, but what will that look like in a post-pandemic era?
Fortunately hotels have been moving to incorporate contactless technologies for years, such as keyless entry and minimizing crowding at the front desk or eliminating it altogether as Hyatt’s Andaz brand did with their 2007 launch.
Today guest safety and cleanliness isn’t only a way to get good TripAdvisor reviews, but hotels are actively working to reassure their customers that it’s their top priority and they’ve put in additional measures. Marriott has announced its use of electrostatic sprayers to clean guest room and public areas. Meanwhile, Hilton has announced its partnership with Lysol and the American Hotel & Lodging Association for their guidelines. Every major hotel group, including the Four Seasons, Loews, Omni Hotels & Resorts, Wyndham, etc. have implemented rigorous policies amid Covid-19 concerns and are rapidly implementing disinfecting stations, while exploring options such as dedicated floors for higher risk guests.
How does this information affect your wedding planning?
We know that Covid-19 has not ruined the desire for couples to want to be married. Over the past few months we’ve seen ‘80’s rom-com levels of romance flooding our feeds and with hundreds of couples reaching out to us every week so we know wedding planning has not been cancelled.
Here’s what we recommend:
- Book a Room Block. Because most room blocks do not require a financial obligation, as soon as you have your venue and date, book your room block. Should another pandemic occur it’s okay because you’re not held financially liable.The challenge for most couples is going to be that many hotels furloughed their sales staff so when you reach out to them via the usual channels of booking a room block, you’re likely to receive an out-of-office. However, if you’re working with Kleinfeld Hotel Blocks, you won’t have to worry about that because of their extensive hotel database that’s linked with the hotel’s internal systems as well as their global sales support, all of which is only accessible to industry professionals.
- Build a Wedding Website. Nearly 80% of couples create a wedding website, but in a post-pandemic world, a wedding website is a great opportunity to share more information than simply what’s on your invite. Since a lot of people will have similar questions, it’s a good place to load an FAQ page with updated hotel health guidelines that way guests know what to expect. It may seem like something out of a sci-fi movie seeing housekeeping staff with electrostatic sprayers or UV light devices, but if guests know it’s coming, it won’t be a surprise.
- Don’t Put It Off. If you know you’re getting married within the year or there’s a wedding date you’ve had your eye on, it may feel uncertain to plan during a pandemic but if you know what you want, plan as usual. There are ways to incorporate social distancing into your plans if that makes you feel comfortable by considering venues with indoor/outdoor space or rearranging seating. For example, typically a 72” round table can accommodate 10-12 guests, but you can seat 4 people at that table instead, so it’s not crowded.
- Consider Wedding Insurance.This recommendation is on a case-by-case basis since it’s unlikely to cover cancellations or postponements due to Covid-19, but the pandemic has taught us that events can be cancelled for reasons we would’ve never considered so as a precaution, we recommend getting some estimates and getting coverage for your event.
- Talk to Your Vendors.The lesson of 2020 has been that we are not always in control and sometimes wedding cancellations or postponements happen without our input. We recommend having these discussions with your vendors in advance and see if you can negotiate a worst-case-scenario cancellation policy as part of the contract.
Ready to book your wedding room block?
The hotels may not officially be open, but
we can get in touch with them.