After you secured your wedding date at the resort of your choice, the next thing you need to do is reserve your destination wedding room block. You want to make it easy for your guests by reserving enough rooms and locking in the low rates so you don’t have to worry about your guest price hunting to book a room. Send them to one place to book their room to make it easy on everyone.
It is necessary to understand the difference between a flex vs group contract is and what the benefits are before you sign on the dotted line. Any group traveling together for any type of occasion or event can qualify. The most common types of groups are destination weddings, bachelor/bachelorette parties, friend getaway, or multi-generational family trips. The number of guests and/or rooms you’re expecting will help determine which route to take.
Let’s break down both types in further detail:
A flexible group works well for wedding parties where the couple isn’t sure of the total amount of guests who will attend. This is a great alternative to a group contract if you a small group travel of at least 5 rooms. This is what you need to know about flexible groups:
- You cannot hold rooms, which means rooms cannot be guaranteed for all your guests.
- No deposit required, except the individual reservation itself.
- Must guarantee a minimum of at least 5 rooms.
- Rates can fluctuate since you’re not holding any space. This means, each guest could be paying different amounts.
- Can receive a discount per room reservation ranging from $50 – $225 depending on the total cost of the reservation (per individual reservation)
- No penalty’s other than having to guarantee 5 rooms. Only penalties on individual booking, not the group as a whole.
- Receive group benefits (as listed above), but must still meet the minimum room requirements. Most require 10 rooms or more to receive the group benefits.
With a flexible group a room rate is locked in and guaranteed once a deposit is submitted. It can create more stress on the group leaders / couple (if your group is slow to pay), as the hotels will eventually sell out and there is no extra space being held.
If you are having a larger group that requires 10 or more rooms, then I recommend going with a group contract. At the time of booking a deposit for rooms are required upfront and places a contractual liability on the couple. This can be a costly endeavor at the beginning. Ultimately, you will save money in the long run and receive more benefits with a contract versus a flexible group.
The penalties of a contracted group can be scary, but as your destination wedding travel specialist I monitor all the important dates and ensure my couples don’t run into any issues. I release rooms not booked prior to the penalty date as well as ensure all guest have all the information needed to a stress-free travel.
If you are ready to book your rooms and need guidance, look no further. I can help you with a room block (aka contract) for your destination wedding. Contact me here and we can get started!
- The rates are secure and cannot increase giving you and your guests time to book and pay on their trip. The travel dates are typically for a minimum of 3 nights.
- Guests place a minimum deposit to secure the room (typically around $100 – $250 per person/per room)
- Group leader / couple pays a small deposit to secure the rooms
- Comped rooms – each resort brand has their own set of rules, but for the most part you can receive every 6th, 11th, or 20th room free. Approximately 45 days prior to departure, you will know the amount of the comp. You can either apply it to your wedding/group or receive it back as a refund to your credit card.
- Receive group benefits at no additional cost. These are typically a private VIP check-in, free room upgrades, private dinner or other events. Each resort has their own group benefits.
- Every contract has attrition, meaning you must abide by the dates to release unused rooms by a specific date or you could be charged for them. As a destination wedding travel specialist, I make sure we release rooms for all my groups well ahead of this date to avoid this from happening.
- You can make modifications to a reservation (without air included) without a fee. For example, if a guest cannot attend a wedding and they found a replacement to go, then we can certainly make the name change. If you need to change dates, you can do that as well, as long as there is availability.
- If a room cancels, there could be a fee associated with that room cancellation.
We hope this clears up many of the misconceptions between flexible and contract group bookings. It’s important for us to offer both types of booking methods for our customers, as each group is different. At Travel with the Trio our first priority is helping a group or wedding couple find that perfect resort, and from there the direction a group should take becomes clear.
Are you considering a destination wedding or group vacation? Contact us today to learn more so we can get you to paradise quicker!