H is for Hotel Rooms!
Many Brides have questions when it comes to guest accommodations. It can be difficult to know what options there are and what’s best for your crew. Before you do a deep dive into the two types of room blocks, consider how many of your guests will require accommodations, who will want a hotel room, and who might prefer an Airbnb. That will be helpful as you start making decisions.
The two types of hotel blocks are Courtesy blocks and blocks with Attrition rates. We’ll start with Courtesy blocks, which are offered by almost every hotel out there. Hotels determine room rates based on demand that weekend. (So for those in Nashville, they’ll be looking to see if the Titans or Vandy have home games the weekend of your fall wedding.) What’s great about Courtesy blocks is that you lock in the rate they offer you with a contract and don’t have to make any sort of deposit. These are completely free of charge for the Happy Couple, unless of course you reserve a room for yourself. About 30 or 45 days prior to the wedding, the rooms will release back to the public, though. So it’s important to ask what the deadline is, and communicate that to guests. After that date, the group rate will no longer be an option.
If you get an Attrition block, it’s set up similarly, but you’re on the hook for the final balance if you don’t book a certain percent of the rooms in the block. So you’ll secure a lower rate just like with Courtesy blocks, but most hotels require 80% of the rooms be paid for. Meaning if you reserve 10 rooms but your guests only reserve 6 of them, you’ll need to pay for the remaining 2 rooms to get to 80%, regardless of whether you use them. The upside is that you don’t have a deadline. Guests could book their room 48 hours ahead of time and still get the group rate.
With either option, most hotels offer 10 rooms to start. Check back with your hotel periodically to ensure you don’t run out of rooms in the block. Any additional rooms needed, regardless of type of block, is based on availability.
Last thing - when comparing hotels, don’t just look at the nightly rate. Consider amenities as well!