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How Did You Coordinate Your Travel to the Iberostar?


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#1 triumphbliss

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    Posted 03 July 2012 - 07:23 AM

    Hi Ladies!

     

    I’ve been browsing the forums and getting some wonderful information from everyone. My notebook is full of wonderful ideas and pointers from everyone – so thank you for that!

     

    My Fiance and I have (finally) decided that we will be doing a destination wedding and we are aiming on the Iberostar Rose Hall Beach in 2013. (Just waiting on confirmation of our date we requested!) It took us some debating back and forth on this decision, but we realized in the end its what we wanted and so we are moving forward with it! (yay!)

     

    I’m planning on working with the WC directly at the hotel as I don’t feel I need a ‘middle man’ to do that work, and being the perfectionist I am I need to be in control of that (haha). I was hoping to get some input from you all as to how you coordinated your travel arrangements to the hotel. Did you use a travel agent? Did you use a wedding planner? Did you do it yourself? Did you coordinate with the hotel directly? Did you just tell people where the wedding was and have them book on their own?

     

    I’ve also heard that there are discounts based on the # you have that books at the hotel.. is this something that the hotel does automatically? Or do you have to be booking through a travel agent to negotiate this?

     

    If anyone has some insight or even a travel agent they’d recommend that they have worked with or are currently working with that would be greatly appreciated. I’m based in Toronto so it would be helpful if they were in the area, but I am open to anyone with great recommendations on a reputable person to work with. Just want to ensure our party is able to be taken care of properly.

     

    Thank you all in advance for your help!



    #2 TammyWright

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    Posted 03 July 2012 - 08:03 AM

    You might want to try one of the BDW Travel Agents.  We Specialize in Destination weddings.  You can contact us HERE!

     

    If you do not know what TA you want to work with, just fill out the form Contact a Destination Wedding Specialist HERE and I will direct you to the best agent that fits your needs.

     

    You can contact us:  Contact a Destination Wedding Specialist HERE and I will direct you to the best agent that fits your needs.


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    #3 triumphbliss

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      Posted 03 July 2012 - 09:21 AM

      Thanks Tammy! I appreciate your insight :) I will work on getting the forms filled out to begin
       



      #4 Kassi22

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        Posted 03 July 2012 - 11:49 AM

        I'm based out of Toronto to :)

         

        I can tell you my experience. I wanted to do everything I could myself to save money, and I to.. are a bit of a control freak.

         

        Though, you almost do need a travel agency to book your packages (from Canada its seems easier/cheaper this way IMO.. and I travel.. alot).

         

        I went online and just went with iTravel2000.. and I would NEVER recommend them. They have been terrible from start to finish. I guess I could have pulled out, but I already had quotes and the ball rolling. I just feel I have to be on top of them for everything. I will be filing a complaint with them once this is all said and done.

         

        I booked my package with Transat Holidays. They had the best pricing but I could not book directly with them as you have to use a travel agent to get group rates that I wanted... otherwise I would have.

         

        So, for the package deal, we got a rate good for so many people and after a certain number we get free travelers. I believe this is linked with the courier (ie, Transat in this case) and the hotel. People that want to book now, and fly through Toronto will book via my travel agent. Other then that, everyone else (the other half of people coming are coming from all over the place) are on there own. I gave them the details and then they can get there on packages from where they are located. It was way to hard to get deals out of every province so we choose Toronto as the main hub (most flights to Jamaica fly through Toronto first anyways).

         

        For everything else, I will work directly with the Hotel/Coordinators. I have already made contact with them and will work everything out with them once it gets closer to the wedding. I have booked my own make-up and hair artist, photographer, and working with a florist. It is really straight forward and I didn't feel the need to pay the money to have a wedding coordinator do this for me.

         

        So unfortunately I can't recommend a travel agency, but I can suggest against one :) ahahah.

         

        Hope this helps!



        #5 SunwingWeddings

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          Posted 05 July 2012 - 06:21 AM

          Hi Ladies,

           

          I thought I would let you know about Sunwing Weddings!

           

          For the hands-on Canadian brides, Sunwing Weddings allows you to go directly through the tour operator for group rates! You are the team leader for your group, so perfect for the bride that wants to be on top of her wedding group from start to finish. All you have to do is request a quote at http://www.sunwing.c...ons.asp?Lang=en and you should recieve it within 48 hours.

           

          If you are looking for the service from a travel agent, there are some great ones on this website!

           

          Happy planning,

          Sunwing Weddings



          #6 triumphbliss

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            Posted 05 July 2012 - 06:21 AM

            Kasi22 - thank you so much for your insight. (and also who not to use for this!)

             

            I'm so sorry you have to go through such a horrible experience in getting your travel plans arranged :( Make sure to document all you can so when you write your complaint in the end you can back up everything and they can see how much you had to put up with!

             

            I think I've come to the same conclusion you did - I will need a travel agent to arrange the travel for the group and work out the group rates/discounts possible. It will be too hard to coordinate on my own and I've heard I wont be able to negotiate the same rates/discounts as an agent. I am going to work directly with the WC at the resort to sort out the details (so I can at least stay in control of that part!).

             

            Fortunately, I only have family from Toronto that will be flying out for our wedding so I dont have to worry about coordinating people around the globe.

             

            Now just to find a good travel agent that has experience in booking wedding parties at a resort!

             

            If anyone has recommendations, please share :)



            #7 justine416

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              Posted 25 August 2012 - 07:11 PM

              I thought I would put my two cents into this thread as I am using both itravel2000 and Sunwing. I found Sunwing fast and prompt with price quotes but went with itravel. I found my TA good ,responding quick and efficient but nowhere did anyone explain what a group booking entailed. Since mine is over Xmas break I wanted to offer the option for NYE but because I did not understand how the booking went I have screwed us out if 3 trips, a saving of $5000-$6000. I have found Sunwing very rigid with our booking. We have 15 booked Dec.30 and Jan.1 10 at iberostar suites and 14 staying at iberostar rose hall....you need 15 people to get the 16th free. My advice is make sure the TA and the tour operator both are easy to work with.

              #8 Ploman

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                Posted 26 August 2012 - 06:51 AM

                If Sunquest gives you a good quote I would highly recommend them! They have honoured our price even though we wanted to switch dates. And then they honoured our flight and trip even though they pulled their travel program from Edmonton to Jamaica (since WestJet was no longer offering direct flights). And then they negotiated with other tour companies to buy extra seats when we had over the 60 person allotment that they could offer. And they were able to hold the entire 60 people allotment from day 1, allowing us to drop completely without any payment penalty until they finalized the flight schedule.

                 

                 

                I could NOT EVER go with WestJet Vacations Groups. They have been terrible the entire time, and even when I complained they kept redirecting me to different departments, and then when I finally got to the right department they never got back to me. Clearly do not care about customer service. They also had the worst tour concessions (1 HOTEL ONLY free for ever 25 people). Sunquest is 1 entire trip free for every 16 people.

                 

                 

                I would definitely get a travel agent though, even when going through these companies. A travel agent got me better prices than they quoted directly, and has dealt with many of the guests questions that I didnt want to deal with (ie can i have a window seat, what'd the price if i want to leave from a different city, etc). And they are free! 


                Iberostar Rose Hall Beach, Montego Bay

                91 guests and counting....


                #9 justine416

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                  Posted 26 August 2012 - 07:15 AM

                  Originally Posted by jreist 

                  If Sunquest gives you a good quote I would highly recommend them! They have honoured our price even though we wanted to switch dates. And then they honoured our flight and trip even though they pulled their travel program from Edmonton to Jamaica (since WestJet was no longer offering direct flights). And then they negotiated with other tour companies to buy extra seats when we had over the 60 person allotment that they could offer. And they were able to hold the entire 60 people allotment from day 1, allowing us to drop completely without any payment penalty until they finalized the flight schedule.

                   

                   

                  I could NOT EVER go with WestJet Vacations Groups. They have been terrible the entire time, and even when I complained they kept redirecting me to different departments, and then when I finally got to the right department they never got back to me. Clearly do not care about customer service. They also had the worst tour concessions (1 HOTEL ONLY free for ever 25 people). Sunquest is 1 entire trip free for every 16 people.

                   

                   

                  I would definitely get a travel agent though, even when going through these companies. A travel agent got me better prices than they quoted directly, and has dealt with many of the guests questions that I didnt want to deal with (ie can i have a window seat, what'd the price if i want to leave from a different city, etc). And they are free! 

                  Jealous, Sunquest was so accomodating! Good info to know. Sunwing wouldn't even allow one couple our group rate to staty Dec.30th at the beach instead of the suites..which the suites has 15.



                  #10 CourtandMatt

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                    Posted 06 September 2012 - 05:16 PM

                     Our travel coordinator is Ellen Paderson at Smiles and Miles Travel, Inc.   She has been great and gave us a good rate.  See here:  http://walters-doolin.ourwedding.com/view/4896518494100463/8330464. 






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