Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
shurbgatza

2011 Prices

Recommended Posts

Yeah I don't think a group rate is the way to go either. I think I'm going to give our guests the option to book on their own or through our TA. Prob just put her info on the invite for them. I want to do whatever is easier for them. Also since the rates are going to be dropping(fingers crossed) I'm going to let them make their reservations whenever as long as we have a final number 2-3 months before our date. I think as long as the guests know when and where they can start saving, looking for deals, and be prepared. It's still pretty early!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi guys

 

My TA has found us great rates for our May 2011 wedding trip with an Early Booking Bonus... however she has told me that the tour company will only hold the quote for 30 days... therefore in order for our guests to get this rate they need to put down a $150 deposit by June 30th. She said that if prices drop, we can adjust the rate once

 

Has anyone else been required to put down deposits to hold the quote?? I feel like I need to frantically send out STD's to inform my guests! Also... what about guests who still dont know for sure if they will be able to come? I feel like they are being forced to make a huge decision very rushed!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pineapplebride,

We faced the same dilemma a couple of weeks ago. We decided to put down deposits for 10 people (the minimum needed to obtain a group rate) which totalled $2000. With the number of people we are inviting (130-140), I figure at least 10 will want to book as part of the group. We are send STD cards with the TA's contact info and encouraging people to book ASAP. As people book, the $200/person deposit will be transferred back to us. Some people end up asking people to book individually as well because of all of the restrictions that go along with it. Good luck in your decision!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Originally Posted by pineapplebride View Post
Hi guys

My TA has found us great rates for our May 2011 wedding trip with an Early Booking Bonus... however she has told me that the tour company will only hold the quote for 30 days... therefore in order for our guests to get this rate they need to put down a $150 deposit by June 30th. She said that if prices drop, we can adjust the rate once

Has anyone else been required to put down deposits to hold the quote?? I feel like I need to frantically send out STD's to inform my guests! Also... what about guests who still dont know for sure if they will be able to come? I feel like they are being forced to make a huge decision very rushed!

Yes, that is how it works with the group rates. You need to put a min deposit down. But usually if you put a min of 10 or so deposits, they will hold an additional number of rooms or at the very least offer to give you the same price for subsequent bookings based on availability only.

When I got quotes in May, I was hesitate to book but I think now what we will do is put down the first $2000-3000 deposit. How many people do you think will come, at least? For me it's approx 20-30. I know at least half of the deposit I can fund immediately from the parents and I'm sure we can get at least 5 more people...when I think about it like that, I'm not so worried. The parents won't need to see a STD before they're willing to book. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for your responses! I am going to see my TA today and have her clarify for me! I didn't realize that you only need 10 people to hold the rate, but that totally makes sense because we need 10 people to get the group rate!

I think I will do the same thing and pay 10 deposits as well.... we are expecting 20-30 people to come, so I def won't be out any money if I do that!!

 

Thanks for your help blondy and bikegirl!!

 

 

One more question... what tour groups are you all using? I've received quotes from transat, sunquest and signature/sunwing. I really don't know what company would be best as I have never traveled with any of them.... I typically am not an all-inclusive type traveler. Do you think it is safe just to go with the best quote?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I went through the same thing. We didn't put a deposit down for anyone because I didn't want to risk it. I made my own invites so I had everything ready and once I got pricing, FI spent a couple of days making them and sent them in the mail. Our guests received the invites with all the info and still had 3 weeks to decided if they wanted to put a deposit down. We weren't expecting a lot of people, but the last day to put the deposit down is actually today and so far 40 have booked! We have quite a few people that are going to hold off and book later this year. The people that wait just might not be able to get the group rate later on, but when it's closer to the date they might also be able to get a last minute deal.

 

I don't think you really have to worry about which tour operator to use, they're all pretty much the same. I'm going with Sunwing/Signature but have also travelled with Signature and Transat. They all provide pretty much the same services, might just have a few different perks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi, TA Wendy here. It seems like with just about every bride I work with we begin by having the Groups vs Individual Bookings discussion. So here is what I normally tell clients and I hope it is helpful!

This is my "in a nutshell" version of group vs individual booking procedures.

With blocking group space, you must have a minimum of 10 rooms. Typically this is the best way to guarantee that you will get the most from the resort in terms of upgrades, complimentary events or free nights. Some definitely offer more than others in terms of incentives. It is all laid out in a contract that the hotel proposes, and the tour operator, myself and you all sign. The perks and freebies are all spelled out for you. A deposit of at least $100 per room is due within about 1 week of getting the contract set up. Usually this would be coming out of your pocket, since it is not likely that the guests would be booking or putting up money this early. Then as time goes on, if your guests want to add additional rooms, or arrive early, or stay late, or fewer nights than you have booked requests can be adjusted within the block. Some brides choose to block roughly 3 or 4 room nights around the wedding date for their group block. You always know you have the rooms, and the price will not go up, but if rates go down, the hotel and tour operator will usually accommodate a price drop and make an adjustment.

Group rates are not always lower than what you can find shopping as an individual, but most times they are.

Final payment for groups is due about 60 days prior to departure, and once all payment is in the rooms can be nonrefundable if the hotel chooses. Travel insurance is highly recommended.

Alternately, you can have your guests all call one central agent, and as for me, I keep track of everyone, booking them the lowest available pricing as they come, (price matching and such if necessary), and you as the wedding couple have no financial responsibility for any of the guests bookings. I still will gather up all the bookings and I write to the hotel manager just before your arrival asking for any possible amenities they can offer the group and especially for you yourself, but this is not guaranteed to get you an upgrade or free party or anything...

Also, the hotel COULD possibly sell out, and then late birds could find that they are out of luck with no rooms left.

Either way, unless the entire wedding group is coming from the same city, and traveling both directions together with no changes or deviations, it does not make sense to try to block airline space as a group. It is best to have each of the guests book air individually either through me as part of the package, or just on their own, letting me know their flight schedules so that I can provide airport transfers to and from the hotel.

So I hope that explanation helps a bit! I work with both types of wedding groups, and find that both ways of booking have their bonuses and drawbacks, we just have to find what will work best for each bridal couple and go from there!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Transat/Nolitiours is having a special deal -- you can hold 30 seats for up to 90 days by paying only 2 deposits (the bride & groom). I'd get your TA to ask about this if you plan to book with this tour operator!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not sure if this is possible for anyone but what we did was just tell all of our closest friend and family that we knew for sure would be going that we were getting close to booking and to be prepared for putting down their deposit pretty much at a moment's notice. So what actually ended up happening was we got a quote that was valid for like a month. However, there was a promo going on that if you booked within the week, you'd get 10% off. So we told everyone the prices and said that if they were committed to coming and were ok with that price, to give us their credit card info and we'd secure their spot.

 

So now, we have 34 people already booked and the invites haven't even gone out yet. I'm kinda holding off on sending them because honestly I didn't expect that many people to book in the first place and now the gazebo is going to be full already.... who woulda thought too many people could be a burden?!!

 

Anyway, this probably doesn't apply to everyone but just letting everyone know our experience. For those that haven't booked, well to be honest, it doesn't matter to me so much if they do come or not. It's more of a "it'd be nice but I don't expect you to."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×