Hotel contracts for wedding room blocks typically have many clauses that may be foreign to the casual observer. Contract language, industry terminology and a general lack of knowledge all play an equal part in confusing and frustrating the reader of these contracts.
In this article, we hope to give you a better understanding of what makes up a contract.
Most hotel contracts have four parts:
- Basic Information
- Room Block And Rate Information
- Reservation Details
- Payment Terms
Let’s start by talking about the basic information.
The room block contract should have the following:
- Basic Contract Terms And Conditions (For more advice on contract terms, read this)
- Date of contract
- Complete legal names of the hotel and your wedding party
- Dates of the room block
Room Block and Rate Information
- A list of what room types are blocked.
- Number of rooms blocked for each room type.
- Overnight room rate for each room type.
- Any additional person charges, service charges, taxes should also be mentioned here.
- If you have negotiated any complimentary rooms (Good for you!), then this should be mentioned as well. The format should should be clear and should state that if an X amount of rooms are reserved, then you will receive a complimentary suite or room.
- Any additional details that you have negotiated like complimentary shuttle service for your wedding guests should be outlined here, including shuttle times, availability and restrictions.
Reservations Details and Payment terms
- Contract should state the method of reservation (i.e. Is it going to be a rooming list provided by the wedding party or are people going to be making their reservations individually)
- Details of how guests can make reservations by phone or internet. If the reservations are made by phone, then there should be details on what the wedding guests need to ask for when they call (e.g. I am calling to make a reservation under the Smith room block). If reservations can be made online, then is there a “code” that needs to be entered.
- Check-in/Check out time (Just so you know, this is negotiable as well. You just have to ask.)
- Cut-Off date
- Individual room reservation cancellation details (Typically 24 hours)
- Attrition clauses
- Details on how much time you have to cancel the entire room block before your actual wedding (Typically 4 weeks)
- There should be a force majeure clause that terminates your contract in the case of an emergency that you do not have any control over.
What should you do next?
Read our article “Are you confused by the legal mumbo jumbo in your hotel contract?“