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terrihugg

Early RSVP and deposits

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So our Wedding date isn't until October 15th 2013, we have a large family.  My wedding party has 12 people and that doesnt include parents and aunts/uncles.  I figure we can easily fill up 30 rooms.  So I requested a block of 30 rooms.  My TA (friend of the family) said that shouldn't be an issue but my TA is getting a lot of pressure from the Travel Operator.  The Travel Operator wants us to reserve all 30 rooms with deposit in a week.  Below is a time table of whats been happening.  Is this normal?

 

  • Friday Sept. 21st: TA and us chose which Travel Operator to move forward with based on perks and group rate.
  • Monday Sept. 24th:  The TA sends me the rough draft of the wedding flyer that will go out with the STDs.  She said she is go over the contract from the Travel Operator and appealing a few lines.
  • Tuesday Sept 25th: I pick up the flyers.
  • Wednesday Sept 26th: Mail out first batch of STD with flyers.
  • Friday Sept 28th:  Send out 2nd batch of STDs.
  • Monday Oct 1st:  TA calls me telling me that the Travel Operator wants 10 rooms booked with Deposit ($100/room) by Friday October 5th.  Stress!  I tell here it shouldn't be an issue because I have a large wedding party.
  • Wednesday October 3rd:  TA calls me saying that the Travel Operator is demanding all 30 rooms with deposit by Friday October 5th.  She said she is appealing it.  I also send out last batch of STDs.
  • Friday October 5th:  She said we got 11rooms booked and not to worry about the 30 rooms.  She's hoping that they'll see we are acquiring rooms at a steady rate and they'll neglect to mention the "30 rooms in a week" thing.  I told her that in the meantime, I've told non-wedding party guests to book by October 31st because I thought that was acceptable.  She thinks that's fine.  She said typically resorts do not start hounding you for room reservation until a few months before the wedding.  We're over a year away, so she doesn't understand the Travel Operator at all.  Also, we still have not signed any contract.

 

What do you all think?  My mom doesn't like that there is no official signed contract in use at the moment.  There is also no reference in the current draft saying how long the "Group rate" applies or how soon we have to book all 30 rooms. I don't want to place blame on the TA, she is a friend of the family and I really think she is trying her best. It just sucks that we already mailed out the flyers and have people booking when there is no signed contract.

 

It just all seems so sketchy but maybe this is normal?

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Hi there!

So your whole dilemma honestly has me sitting here with my mouth to the floor! So, you have no contract, which means either of you can turn around and change any detail at any moment without any confirmation? I have never ever heard of a TA, or the resort, pressuring anyone to book so very far in advance- this is absurd! If there is no contract I would look into getting a new TA, perhaps with some help from your WC. This sounds very fishy, this is one year away, final room balances & payments should only be due no more than 3-4 months away from your wedding. It's good to be early, but asking your guests to know what their plans, finances, and responsibilities are a year in advance is unheard of. If there is no contract, I'm sure you can get out of it and find a non-pushy travel operator/agent.

 

So simply put- NO, this is definitely not normal!! Especially that they are making "demands" within days of sending out your STD's. Just absurd, this makes me very angry to see you are clearly being taken advantage of. Please look into your options, and if there's no contract I would contact the highest person responsible for these people who are making these demands & ask for a change or your money back & run to the hills! If I were you, I would seriously get out of that agreement right away, none of it sounds right!!!!  It seems very shady, and with no contract they can up & close in a blink of an eye and you'll never have proof they took you for a run around- I'm sorry, I don't mean to be so negative, but I've heard of many scams & people losing so much money this way- so you have to be very careful, cover your every step! No contract, no deal, and you have the right to get a refund and take off!

 

 

Originally Posted by KMidura View Post

So our Wedding date isn't until October 15th 2013, we have a large family.  My wedding party has 12 people and that doesnt include parents and aunts/uncles.  I figure we can easily fill up 30 rooms.  So I requested a block of 30 rooms.  My TA (friend of the family) said that shouldn't be an issue but my TA is getting a lot of pressure from the Travel Operator.  The Travel Operator wants us to reserve all 30 rooms with deposit in a week.  Below is a time table of whats been happening.  Is this normal?

 

  • Friday Sept. 21st: TA and us chose which Travel Operator to move forward with based on perks and group rate.
  • Monday Sept. 24th:  The TA sends me the rough draft of the wedding flyer that will go out with the STDs.  She said she is go over the contract from the Travel Operator and appealing a few lines.
  • Tuesday Sept 25th: I pick up the flyers.
  • Wednesday Sept 26th: Mail out first batch of STD with flyers.
  • Friday Sept 28th:  Send out 2nd batch of STDs.
  • Monday Oct 1st:  TA calls me telling me that the Travel Operator wants 10 rooms booked with Deposit ($100/room) by Friday October 5th.  Stress!  I tell here it shouldn't be an issue because I have a large wedding party.
  • Wednesday October 3rd:  TA calls me saying that the Travel Operator is demanding all 30 rooms with deposit by Friday October 5th.  She said she is appealing it.  I also send out last batch of STDs.
  • Friday October 5th:  She said we got 11rooms booked and not to worry about the 30 rooms.  She's hoping that they'll see we are acquiring rooms at a steady rate and they'll neglect to mention the "30 rooms in a week" thing.  I told her that in the meantime, I've told non-wedding party guests to book by October 31st because I thought that was acceptable.  She thinks that's fine.  She said typically resorts do not start hounding you for room reservation until a few months before the wedding.  We're over a year away, so she doesn't understand the Travel Operator at all.  Also, we still have not signed any contract.

 

What do you all think?  My mom doesn't like that there is no official signed contract in use at the moment.  There is also no reference in the current draft saying how long the "Group rate" applies or how soon we have to book all 30 rooms. I don't want to place blame on the TA, she is a friend of the family and I really think she is trying her best. It just sucks that we already mailed out the flyers and have people booking when there is no signed contract.

 

It just all seems so sketchy but maybe this is normal?

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Originally Posted by KMidura View Post

 

So our Wedding date isn't until October 15th 2013, we have a large family.  My wedding party has 12 people and that doesnt include parents and aunts/uncles.  I figure we can easily fill up 30 rooms.  So I requested a block of 30 rooms.  My TA (friend of the family) said that shouldn't be an issue but my TA is getting a lot of pressure from the Travel Operator.  The Travel Operator wants us to reserve all 30 rooms with deposit in a week.  Below is a time table of whats been happening.  Is this normal?

 

  • Friday Sept. 21st: TA and us chose which Travel Operator to move forward with based on perks and group rate.
  • Monday Sept. 24th:  The TA sends me the rough draft of the wedding flyer that will go out with the STDs.  She said she is go over the contract from the Travel Operator and appealing a few lines.
  • Tuesday Sept 25th: I pick up the flyers.
  • Wednesday Sept 26th: Mail out first batch of STD with flyers.
  • Friday Sept 28th:  Send out 2nd batch of STDs.
  • Monday Oct 1st:  TA calls me telling me that the Travel Operator wants 10 rooms booked with Deposit ($100/room) by Friday October 5th.  Stress!  I tell here it shouldn't be an issue because I have a large wedding party.
  • Wednesday October 3rd:  TA calls me saying that the Travel Operator is demanding all 30 rooms with deposit by Friday October 5th.  She said she is appealing it.  I also send out last batch of STDs.
  • Friday October 5th:  She said we got 11rooms booked and not to worry about the 30 rooms.  She's hoping that they'll see we are acquiring rooms at a steady rate and they'll neglect to mention the "30 rooms in a week" thing.  I told her that in the meantime, I've told non-wedding party guests to book by October 31st because I thought that was acceptable.  She thinks that's fine.  She said typically resorts do not start hounding you for room reservation until a few months before the wedding.  We're over a year away, so she doesn't understand the Travel Operator at all.  Also, we still have not signed any contract.

 

What do you all think?  My mom doesn't like that there is no official signed contract in use at the moment.  There is also no reference in the current draft saying how long the "Group rate" applies or how soon we have to book all 30 rooms. I don't want to place blame on the TA, she is a friend of the family and I really think she is trying her best. It just sucks that we already mailed out the flyers and have people booking when there is no signed contract.

 

It just all seems so sketchy but maybe this is normal?

That doesn't sound right.  I suggest you correspond and/or do a search for what other brides from your resort have done.  Either your TA isn't telling you something or there might be a mis-communication.  Either way, this is sketchy and you need to investigate on your own some more.

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 For Terrihug: My FI and I reserved 7 extra rooms for our family that just could not get themselves together in time:) We have an agreement with the TA that if the rooms were not reserved by a certain date (120 days before the wedding) that the rooms would be released (we would give up the reservation for those rooms) and the money we put down for the unused (and used) deposits would be credited toward our room--like a refund. It all depends on if your TA is willing to hold on to the rooms for you.

 

For the deposits, we did things a bit differently (advice for other brides). I actually collected the deposits from our close friends and family via PayPal and check. We then negotiated our group terms with the TA and then gave her deposits along with the guest database. 

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Oh it's always nice to see threads with brides to be that have the same worries as you. I have sent out my STDs exactly a year out from our wedding date next November 2013. The TA told me that the deadline for putting down the deposits with the hotel block of 30 rooms is Jan30th, but my family are not very willing to commit this early. THAT worried me a lot as I feel like they would lose out on a good deal, and I won't have the numbers to do the rest of my planning. 

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This is how I did it:

 

Picked our resort...shopped around for a TA, found one that got us a great deal ($1299 inclusive per person from toronto). She booked 30 SEATS with a $300.00 deposit from us... that $300.00 would go to our trip at the end.

 

As soon as I had a date for the wedding and the details ironed out with my TA I made boarding pass invitations with all the information for people to book. From the time we put down our orginal $300.00 deposit to when I sent out the invites, it was about a week.

 

I had one month for people to secure their spot. The payments work out as follows:

 

$150 Due by December 10, 2012

$150 Due by February 10, 2013

$999 due by September 10, 2013

 

I put all of this information on my invites. I did not ask for RSVP (I wasn't about to stress about people returning them). I sent out about 65 invitations. If I got 16 people to book, FI or I would get a free seat.

 

As of December 3 (first deposit not even due yet), I have about 38 people booked. I am completely happy with that. If I get 50 people, my TA travels with our group and organizes everything at the resort for us (this would be a bonus, but not necessary)

 

I have never met my TA, she was recommended by a friend.  I live in Sudbury, Ontario, she lives in Welland, Ontario, all of our correspondance has been by e-mail except for 2 phone calls so far.

 

 

Alright, I guess that's it!!

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Hi Loreal30,

That's awesome that you were able to lock in the Trip with the TA for $1299/person.  Now does that include airfare?... because I was told that the flight schedule does not come out until 330 days prior to departure therefore they cannot guarantee the prices.

 

So right now, we have a locked in rate for resort only, 1 week stay at $875/person.  The TA is bouncing the airfare rates between a few airlines before we lock in.  We have 50+ attending the wedding and therefore may need to divide our group between a few flights.

 

Airfare also looks to be higher this year because of the fee increases.  Right now we are around $550/person from Connecticut to Jamaica.  I'm hoping she can push them down to $400.

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We did it the same as a few brides here, I picked the resort and reserved a date, then i got with my TA and she got us pricing... then we went and paid a $300 deposit which gave us 30 seats for 90 days, I sent out our invites and basically told people they had until the end of January... we are at 29 and now my TA is saying that she will take deposits until they tell her no more! We dont know the exact price, but do have a gaurantee that with the deposit it wont be higher then the quote... and they will give us a one time price reduction! I couldn't imagine trying to get it all organzied in a week that is crazy!

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We also did it where we picked the resort, chose a TA and she looked into 4 different companies to see where we got the best price.  Transat Vacations gave us the best deal at $1032 pp and every 21st person was free.  We then put a $300 deposit which gave us 30 seats for 90 days.  I sent out the STD and we immediately booked those 30 seats so we requested an additional 30 seats and put another $300 down and only have 2 more remaining (so myself and my FI fly and stay for free and only pay for the taxes).  We still have 3 weeks before the deadline and about 25-30 more people who have RSVP that they were going but not yet put down their deposit.  I sent out our invites last week so I anticipate that the remaining people will put down their deposits soon.  I did send a note attached to the invites thanking the pepole who had already put their deposits and reminding everyone of the deadline.   We also get a one time price reduction. 

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