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Strict Cancellation/room Attrition Fees?


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#1 ssimonvii

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    Posted 29 July 2014 - 05:16 PM

    Hey Everyone,

    First off, thanks so much for all the great information on this site..it has been extremely helpful!! 

     

    I am currently in the middle of the contract phase with an all-inclusive resort in Puerto Vallarta the weekend of May 8th 2015.   Most of the contract looks good (room rates, etc.), but my family and I are pretty concerned about the cancellation and room attrition penalties.   After reading the contract, it looks like there are some clauses that penalize you if users don't book the rooms on the block.  While I understand that this is a common practice, the time-frames they are giving us seem way out of line (especially for only booking 40 rooms out of 250+ at the resort).

     

    Specifically:

    24paus8.png

     

     

    They aren't really giving me any time to get an idea of how many guests we will have for the block.  Yes, I've put together an estimate, but as soon as we sign the contract, we have less than 2 weeks to even have the option to adjust the block by 10%.  I feel as if this is making me pick the number of guests with a 5% margin of error :-). 

     

    In regards to the cancellation policy, it makes me completely liable for the wedding AND the room fees if the event were to be cancelled.  While I'm not concerned about this, you never know what may happen in regards to external factors (e.g. people worry about traveling to mexico due to drug cartel violence, USA issues a warning, etc).  Again, the minute I sign the contract, I am responsible for the wedding, and 40 rooms for two nights if something goes wrong. 

     

    I would really appreciate it if anyone has any feedback regarding whether these are normal practices.  Don't most hotels give you the option to change the number of rooms in your block up to a few months in advance?  Is 5% extremely strict (I've read that 80% is the norm).  Is this something that you think the hotel would be willing to negotiate with me on? 

     

    Very sorry for the lengthy thread.  Thanks so much in advance!!!

     

    -Steve



    #2 AllieH

    AllieH
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    Posted 29 July 2014 - 05:37 PM

    Maybe one of our TAs will chime in. Based on my own experience, those are stiff penalties with a very long lead time, and very little wiggle room. That said - not uncommon for doing a true room block that you really need to have a good idea of how many rooms you'll have very quickly as you sign the contract and be on the hook for them. 

     

    We too ran into this, and we refused to be on the hook for rooms that our guests may or may not commit to. We gave guests 2 weeks to put down their deposits so we'd know how many rooms we'd need. The deposits were refundable up to a certain date (maybe 90 days out..?), but once final payment was made, no refunds (unless they had purchased travel insurance separately). 

     

    Anyone who missed that booking window wasn't guaranteed the price we negotiated, or the same room category that was available. Luckily our TA was able to squeeze in some late bookers, but overall it worked out for us. 

     

    Do you have a good TA who can help you through this? They are by far the best partner to have when planning a destination wedding. 


     

    Official El Dorado Royale/El Dorado Casitas Royale Thread <---check here for all info about EDR/EDCR

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    #3 TammyWright

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    Posted 29 July 2014 - 06:05 PM

    Every resort sets different penalties and deadlines and some are much more flexible than others.  It is one of the things we explain to our clients when they are narrowing down their choices.

     

    Can you tell us what resort you are working with and we might be able to tell you if they are standard restrictions or not.


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    #4 ssimonvii

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      Posted 29 July 2014 - 06:56 PM

      Hey everyone,
      Thanks so much for the quick replies! Yes, I just reached out to a travel agent today and we were waiting to see how they modified the agreement. They switched the attrition percentages to 20% to 15% to 10% and no changes within 30 days.

      The hotel is the grand velas nayarit.

      Is there anything else I can suggest to negotiate with them? Like can I do a 20 room block and then do a 20 room courtesy block? Can I choose to not block any rooms and havey guests book ASAP (there is currenty no cancellation fee before 30 days). Or even push back the timing even more (e.g I can reduce the block without penalty until November). Thanks again guys! My parents are hesitent to have the wedding here now so hopefully things work out. Have a great night.

      Steve

      #5 TammyWright

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      Posted 29 July 2014 - 07:13 PM

      You have many choices.  You DO NOT have to do a group block but if you do not, you will not get any amenities that are negotiated into the group contract AND you are not holding rooms for your guests or securing the rate.

       

      If you guests are willing to book now, and the resort is not offering many group amenities, it may be worth it to consider booking individually but you will need to weight the pros and cons of a group vs. booking individually.


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      #6 malyna

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      Posted 30 July 2014 - 02:03 AM

      I can cancel rooms in my room block without without penalty up to three months before the wedding

      #7 LauraM

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      Posted 01 August 2014 - 11:37 AM

      woah that's strict... my resort gives me way more time. That may be a deal breaker...






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