Understanding Hotel Room Blocks For My Indian Wedding

Hotel room blocks for Indian weddings are pretty important, as they’re such large events with guests traveling from across the globe to be there on your special day. When I work with couples to help them find their wedding venue, naturally talk about hotel room rates and discounted rates comes up. This guide walks you through everything you need to know to setup a hotel room block for your wedding.

There are two ways to setup a room block at a hotel: Courtesy Room Block (CRB) or a Contract.

{About Courtesy Room Blocks (CRB)}

  • the hotel gives you a special rate and a booking code which you print in your wedding invitation as well as post on your wedding website. It’s also good practice to send the info via emil.
  • guests use the booking code to make make their reservations, themselves.
  • CRB’s have a limited number of rooms – most hotels release 10 rooms at a time. They’re booked on a first-come first-serve basis.  When the 10 rooms are full, you can request 10 more rooms. But more rooms are given based on availability and note that the rates may change. Hotel room rates are like flights – they fluctuate minute-by-minute.
  • rooms in a CRB must be booked at least 30 days prior to the event. (important since sometimes we’re sort of a last minute culture). If there are unbooked rooms in your room block, 30 days prior to your event, those rooms will go back into the hotel’s inventory.
  • a variety of rooms can be offered in a CRB – standard, suites etc.  – but again, subject they’re subject to availability.

Take Aways:

  • Setting up a courtesy room block is very common
  • Encourage guests to book early (at least 30 days before your event; I know that can be challenging).
  • Particularly useful for the couple’s friends and rooms that you’re not going to host (pay for).

Contracts  

  • Rates are locked in, meaning they’ll give you a room rate and that rate won’t change
  • Rooms are reserved for you – so you don’t have to worry about the hotel selling out
  • There is a financial obligation (see more info below)
  • Sometimes the room rate is lower lower the rate in a CRB

{Hotel Room Block Attrition Rate}

At most hotels, anything over 10 rooms automatically requires that you go into a contract. That means you’re guaranteeing to pay for a certain number of rooms. How many? Usually 80% of the contracted rooms. This is called an attrition rate.

Example 1: Assume, you contracted 100 rooms for your wedding and the attrition rate is 80%. That means as long as 80 rooms are occupied, there’s no additional fees. In this example, as long as 80 or more rooms were filled then you’re good.

Example 2: Instead, assume only 70 rooms were occupied. You’d have to cover the difference – paying for those 10 rooms that didn’t get occupied. In this example, any number of rooms, below 80 would incur a penalty.

Take Aways:

  • We recommend contracts when you’re hosting rooms (you’re paying for them; which is common for family/relatives).
  • When you know you’re going to have a lot of people staying at the hotel there’s little risk of not meeting the attrition rate
  • Encourage guests to book using your booking code. Read our guide about this and ways to tactfully encourage guests to book with your room rate instead of heading Trivago, Kayak etc.
  • Contracts are recommended when you don’t want to run the risk that rooms might not be available.
  • A variety of rooms are available but make sure to specify to the hotel what types of rooms you want to include in the contract and communicate that to guests as well.

We can give you more details about room blocks when we help you with your venue. Visit ShaadiShop’s main website to discover venues you’re interested in or contact me and I’d be happy to help!

{Room Block Options}

Sometimes, especially weddings taking place at high end resorts where the room rates are pretty high, couples will set up room blocks at a couple of different hotels close to the wedding venue where the room rates are lower. This is a courtesy so that your guests have some options. Of course your guests could figure out nearby accommodations on their own too, but it’s a nice gesture when you’ve taken care of that for them.

{Not Getting Married at a Hotel? No Worries!}

You don’t have to be getting married at a hotel to set up a room block there. Many non-hotel venues have relationships with the nearby hotels and can make recommendations, contact me, or you can call nearby hotels yourself and set it up.

{Take Aways}

Booking room blocks for Indian weddings is very common and the hotels are happy to work with you. Courtesy room block and contracts are available and they each have their merits as detailed above. Because most Indian weddings are so large and you’ll need a lot of rooms most people get a contract.

I encourage you to read our guide about what to do when guests go online and book instead of booking through your room block. That can be a real problem if too many do that because you have a contract with a minimum number of rooms you have to fill. And we provide some actionable ideas and ways for you to work through this. I worked on a wedding earlier this year where 3rd party booking was becoming a big problem for the couple because they weren’t going to meet their minimum, and would have to pay the attrition rate, so that hotel allowed the rooms that were booked via third party websites to count towards their contract. That was really nice and accommodating of them!

Was this guide helpful? Let me know in the comments. And follow ShaadiShop on Facebook, Pinterest, or Instagram so you can see our latest guides and tips.

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding! 🙂

Samta Varia, Founder & CEO ShaadiShop: Indian Wedding Venues

 


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ShaadiShop is a free service to help couples, planning an Indian or any South Asian wedding, find their wedding venue. We walk you through the whole process from discovery to booking. And, venues extend better pricing and amenities to our clients. Visit our main website or contact me to start your venue search today!

 

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