There is so much misinformation out there regarding wedding room blocks and a bit of that pertains to how many hotels someone needs for a wedding. Despite what you may have been told, in most cases, you need one hotel block and in the case of a city wedding, you may need two hotels, but we’d still recommend you keep the hotels close to one another.
We may be the only ones who ever say this to you but it’s only because we’ve worked in hotels and book thousands of weddings each year – we know exactly how this works and no one needs four or five hotels- ever. Even if you’re wedding planner tells you it’s okay, they’re saying that because they think it’ll make you happy but it’s a disservice. Even if you’re having a 3,000-person wedding- one hotel! (Trust us, we’ve booked that kind of wedding many times).
When wedding planning there are a lot of choices to make and sometimes too many options makes it hard to narrow things down but, in the case of the hotels, less is more and here’s why:
When you book a room block many of the concession’s hotels provide are based on “pick-up” or how many rooms get booked into the block. The concessions are all the freebies such as a suite upgrade, rewards points, upgrade for parents, breakfast vouchers, etc. What a hotel will offer varies but it will be in your room block contract, so you’ll know exactly what you’re getting. However, if you offer your guests too many options, you’re hurting your chances of getting the freebies (by a lot!).
Your wedding room block gets listed on your invitations and save-the-dates and if you’re printing them this means limited space. You physically can’t fit more than 1 or 2 hotels on those hotel block cards. And if you’re going electronic with a wedding website, you may think more options is better but it’s confusing as a guest. It’s why we love a good pre-fixe menu; limited choices are simply easier.
From a guest perspective seeing that limited choice menu says “Hey, we put thought into this, we got you the best deal, and this is where we think you’ll be most comfortable.” Of course, guests may have their preferences on where to stay driven by loyalty points with a hotel chain or travel plans but the kudos goes to you, because you still made it as easy as you possibly could.
- Shuttle service.
In the case you’re shuttling guests to the venue or your hotel is providing free shuttle as a concession, you will want one pick-up point. It’s so much easier to coordinate pick-up times if you have one location to work with.
When coordinating a hotel block for a wedding that’s providing transportation, we wouldn’t recommend two hotels unless the couple wanted to be separate from their guests along with their bridal party and will be coordinating transportation separately.
- Welcome bags.
If you plan on providing welcome bags to your guests or at least the weekend itinerary, you definitely want one hotel. You’re going to be stressed the week of the wedding tying up all those loose ends and the last thing you’ll want to add to that list is coordinating hotel drops offs with a bunch of hotels. One hotel, one contact, one drop-off point… ahhhh…. we’re feeling Zen just thinking about how much easier that is (and if that felt all too real, it’s because – yes – this tip comes from personal experience).
Whether you’re hosting an after-party or not, chances are you’ll have a few guests that are turnt and want to continue the party back at the hotel. Weddings are often a reunion for friends and families that don’t see each other often and no one wants the night to end. Keep everyone in one spot and make those memories you’ll share for decades.
- Post-wedding brunch.
Not every wedding hosts a brunch or rehearsal dinner, but we get a lot of questions about brunch so we’re going to add this in. When you are hosting any supplemental wedding event, especially a brunch, the key is to make it easy. After staying up way past your bedtime and having one-too-many slices of cake, brunch the next morning should be something we could stumble into half asleep in our avocado PJ’s.
Again, it’s about location, location, location. The easiest option in terms of location is to keep the event in the hotel or if there’s a restaurant across the street, but something that is walkable, so guests don’t have to worry about check out times, transportation, etc.
- Rooming Lists.
This is hotel lingo, but the rooming list is a list that details which of your guests have booked rooms in the hotel block. This is how you keep track of your guests, let the hotel know who VIP’s are for upgrades, coordinate welcome bag drop-offs, etc. As with the bags, this is a time when again, you don’t want to spread yourself thin coordinating with a ton of hotels. One hotel, one contact, ease of coordination.
We’re sensing a pattern here…….
There’s more to consider that didn’t quite make the list but when it comes down to it, our goal is to make is as easy as possible. Naturally when working with our service we handle all of the above, negotiate concessions, brunch details, remind you to follow-up, help you book your suite, etc. But for those tackling the beast alone, these tips apply to every wedding room block.
Not sure if you need a hotel block?
Check out our blog post: Do I need a wedding room block?
Stressed out from reading this, but need a wedding room block?
Click here– we’ll take care of the rest.