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Demystifying Room Blocks: Do You Need One?

One question that often arises when planning a wedding is whether you need to arrange a room block for your guests. Room blocks can be a convenient option for ensuring that your guests have a place to stay during the wedding festivities, but they may not always be necessary.

It may not be the most exciting planning topic, but it's important to understand room blocks so you can weigh the benefits and considerations and help you determine whether a room block is right for your guests!

What is a Room Block?

- A room block is a group of hotel rooms reserved for wedding guests at a negotiated rate.

- Room blocks typically come with a set number of rooms held under the wedding party's name, which guests can book at the discounted rate for a specified period.

Benefits of Room Blocks

- Convenience: Room blocks offer convenience for guests by ensuring they have access to accommodations close to the wedding venue. It is also super convenient if you plan on having shuttles transport guests to and from the wedding. Door to door service, yes please!

- Cost Savings: Hotels typically offer discounted nightly rates for room blocks, helping your guests save on their lodging expenses.

- Group Coordination: Room blocks allow guests to stay together in the same hotel, facilitating coordination and camaraderie among attendees. Often times, the room blocks are clustered on the same floors, so guests can easily visit with one another.

Considerations When Deciding on a Room Block

- Guest Count: Consider the number of out-of-town guests attending your wedding and whether a significant portion of them will require accommodations.

- Venue Proximity: Assess the proximity of your wedding venue to hotels and lodging options to determine the need for a room block.

- Budget: Evaluate your budget and weigh the cost of arranging a room block against the potential benefits for your guests.

Courtesy vs. Guaranteed Room Blocks

 - Guaranteed Room Block: This room block is a block of discounted rooms that a couple contracts with a particular hotel. These rooms are guaranteed for your guests, meaning they are considered book and the couple is financially obligated to ensure that the rooms are booked (hotels typically allow 20% attrition). Guaranteed Room blocks typically have deeper discounts and can be booked until just days before the wedding. We recommend Guaranteed Room blocks for couples that are getting married in more remote areas that do not have multiple options for hotels and lodging, especially if it is a larger wedding (over 100 guests). Guaranteed Room blocks are great for weddings that have a lot of international guests or guests that are traveling from across the country. Because the nightly rates are typically more discounted, guests can book a few more nights and make more of a trip out of it!

 - Courtesy Room Block: This room block is a block of discounted rooms that a hotel offers to a couple with no financial obligation. Meaning, the couple is able to recommend a hotel with discounted nightly rates to their guests, without being on the hook for ensuring those rooms are booked. Courtesy Blocks typically don't have as deep of discounts as Guaranteed Blocks, but still offer a great savings to your guests as long as they book their room before the cutoff period (usually 60 days before the wedding). We recommend Courtesy Room Blocks for couples that are getting married in areas with a variety of lodging options that want to extend a discount to their guests. It allows the couple to plan events and shuttles and coordinate timelines with more ease. Multiple Courtesy Blocks are great if you have guests that would enjoy options at different price points!

Alternatives to Room Blocks

- Hotel Recommendations: For locations that have a lot of lodging options (like San Francisco!), guests may prefer to book accommodations independently based on their preferences and budget. I often recommend couples have a list of hotels/neighborhoods they recommend to their website so that guests can "choose their own adventure".

- Airbnb Rentals: Always a great option for groups of friends or family that want to spend a weekend together!

Tips for Arranging a Room Block

We work closely with our hotel partners to help research hotels, gather information, and negotiate terms on our couples' behalf. All you have to do is review the information and let us know the hotels you'd like to move forward with!

Ultimately, the goal is to ensure that your guests have a comfortable and enjoyable experience celebrating your special day, whether they choose to stay in a designated room block or opt for alternative lodging options.


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