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chevy14

Help! Is anyone else having this problem??

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Group rates are probably the thing that confuses brides the most and with good reason.

 

A couple of things that you need to know-

 

Each resort has completely different policies when it comes to destination wedding groups. Some will provide longer periods for deposits, some incredibly short terms-shortest I was offered was 5 business days!

 

Some require that you specify exactly how many rooms, the type of room and the exact travel dates that you are requesting for the group (this is fairly common)-others will let you add a few days on either end and others will have the contract extremely open ended (this is a bit more rare). Your TA has no control over what the policy will be- they can however try to negotiate a bit of wiggle room.

 

Some other factors are time of year- how long you anticipate that your guests will stay 3 nights/7 nights)- how many rooms you are holding ect

 

Add to that which supplier a TA uses, their relationship with the resort and the policies will vary.

 

Canadian & US suppliers tend to have different contracts with the resorts and airlines = more confusion as brides are comparing notes and may not realize that!

 

 

Keep in mind that not all resorts are like Palace resorts- they have a gazillion rooms at Moon place and so it is much easier fo rthem to have a very open ended contract! Smaller properties tend to have tighter policies in place as they have more to lose if a wedding cancels or the rooms do not get booked.

 

Also a TA has a alot more negotiating power if they book through a supplier than direct with the resort- the resort screws up with a supplier booking you bet they don't want to lose potentially thousands of bookings a year-they fix it much quicker and also with a better outcome! We also use our suppliers to be able to privode packages with transfers ( generally less expensive ) and have access to bulk or contracted airfare-generally less expensive for our clients.

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It was the same price and we all got a link from palace to book our rooms. The palace had a 45 day release with no deposit needed until then, the supplier was the one who had the really short waiting time. I understand it's different for every resort, that's why the OP should call the hotel directly and find out what their policy is. Either way, I think that they situation she's in is bad and she needs to find a new TA. If her TA didn't set up the "interim replacement" properly, she obviously doesn't care how her clients are treated, and I wouldn't want my wedding in those hands.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by honey740 View Post
Maureen, sorry you didn't like my view, but I want to situation to work for me not for the TA, it's business you know?
Yup- I do know, and I also know that you may have done your guests quite a disservice by insisting that your TA book direct. As I stated in my reasons above- we don't book direct for a myriad of reasons and amazingly they are all about the client.

Keep in mind that there is reason why resorts try to offer incentive pacakges that cut out the TA and middlemen- very little to no accountability. You are one group- unless you have over 100 rooms-considered very small and the liklihood of you or your guests coming back....extremely small-where is the incentive to keep you thrilled? Yup you can go online and gripe but another 50 posts and your gripe is gone...... It's not about commissions ect.-it's about how we can assure that you will get the best experience.

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It all sounds a bit strange. I know personally some of my guest still don't know if they are going to make it...i couldn't imagine asking them to confirm almost a year in advance!! The group rate discount shouldn't go away that quickly either but I guess different resorts means different rules. And why does it stop at 50 people, shouldn't you get more off the more people you get to go!?!

Seems like there are some red flags with your TA! Hope everything gets resolved, you still have a long way to go so I'm sure it'll come out great for you and your guests!

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sorry but being able to have the luxury to wait to make a decision (a 3K decision in this economyhuh.gif) as opposed to having my guest have to make a deposit 30 days after we booked was priceless. That was what the OP was posting about. Times are tough and that was the difference between 10 people coming and the 35 we ended up having because they had time to decide. I would not have done anything differently, so you can bash my decision all you want.

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Most of us found air on our own, bulk air wasn't any cheaper and we were all coming form different places. Alot of us travel all the time. My family all used frequent flier miles. I was simply telling the OP if something works for you but isn't convenient, push for what works for you. I understand you feel that not using a supplier is bad news, but please consider the type of situation we are in. 3 years ago, it wouldn't have been such a big deal. Now, a lot of people don't even have jobs let alone $ to take a $3k trip. It's a big decision and 20-30 days is not enough time, and if we need to eliminate suppliers to give us more time for the guests to feel comfortable we should have that option.

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I just want to reassure you Chevy14 that a TA can be your biggest asset!!!! You made a good decision. However, the TA leaving and not giving you proper customer service is bad business and leaves unnecessary stress on you... so I would call their manager too. (It helps me to make a bulleted list before I make unpleasant calls.)

Hang in there and keep us posted.

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Thanks everyone for your advice. I wouldn't dream of trying to organize all of this without a TA and, to be honest, when she was available she was great! I have tried to reach the manager at her agency and was told she is "on sabbatical". I asked who I could speak with instead and was referred to a customer service rep who I explained my concerns to yesterday. She is looking into it for me though she did say it "might take a while" to get some answers. I guess I just have to hope no one calls to book while she's figuring things out! I will let you know how it all turns out!

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We were given a 2 month window for the guests to put their deposits down. My TA is a close friend who does travel on the side (she's also coming with us), so all of our guests have her cell phone number and she answers even when she's away....I'm soooo lucky to have her handling everything! I hope you're able to get everything straightened out!

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Chevy, I organized my group booking through a TA in Vancouver for guests flying from all around Canada. We were given a group rate and had 2 weeks to place our deposits in order to secure that price. The final amounts were due 2 months before departure. We also booked our wedding 13months in advance. In Canada you'll basically have 2 options from your TA, book a package (ie. Sunquest, Signature) or book flight + hotel separately. If you book a package you do the deposit within a given time period to secure the group rate. If you book flight+hotel separately you have to pay up front. At least that was how it was in my experience.

 

Having a TA organize my travel arrangaments was really important to me. It helped to have someone who knew about the travel and even in terms of getting insurance for some of the elderly people that traveled. Furthermore, we had a ton of people with questions about legalities of travelling to mexico and restrictions etc.. It helped that they all had someone else to call other than me, because I would have lost my mind having to deal with that on top of all the other planning.

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