- For destination weddings, or if you have guests coming from out of town, reserve group blocks at a hotel nearby, and make sure to ask for a discounted wedding rate, which is routine.
- Tell your guests to look online for lower hotel rates as well, if a hotel has a lot of vacant rooms (typical during off-season), they may be offering discounts via web reservations.
- Reserve blocks at more than one hotel in town, to accommodate different price ranges, from budget to luxury, and families with children, etc. This will also allow you to keep the old folks and youngins away from the up-till-dawn crowd, by simply sending out different hotel details with your invites.
- Steer clear of reserving blocks at hotels with "attrition policies," which may charge you for rooms that are not booked.
- Under no circumstances should you feel obligated to pay for your guests' accommodations.
- Reserve your rooms as soon as possible, as soon as your location and date have been decided. Especially during "wedding season" in popular locales, hotels book up quickly; you wouldn't want your guests to bail simply because there were no hotels to stay in.
- If the hotel(s) is far from the reception, and guests will be drinking, rent a shuttle to get your guests home safely when the night is over.
- Make out-of-town guests feel at home by putting a welcome basket full of goodies in each hotel room. Check with the hotel to see what toiletries (toothpaste, lotion, etc.) they may not provide, so your guests will have everything they need during their stay.
- If any of your guests are less than cordial with each other, suggest separate hotels for each party to make sure things go smoothly.
- Got kids? Hire a professional sitter to hang at the hotel, in case any of the kids lose interest in the reception and need to leave. That way, their parents can enjoy the party.
- Book one room in the hotel to be the after-party venue. That way guests can come and go as they please, without getting in the car.
- When reserving your hotel, especially in a small town, ask how often they've hosted wedding parties, and make sure they're equipped and staffed for a heavy load.
- Having a wedding overseas? Make sure your hotel is furnished with safes for valuables like passports, etc.
- Don't get reeled in by wedding packages. You may be able to get a better deal with your hotel than they normally offer, depending on your needs, the time frame, etc. Make sure you read the fine print.
- Test out the directions to your hotel before you print them (and include a map); the smallest mistake can cause your whole wedding party to arrive late.
- Check out the rooms if you're suggesting rooms at a hotel you've never used before — even budget hotels should be clean and offer the basics.
- Book a room in a different hotel than the one your guests will stay in on your wedding night; you'll want your privacy!
- Don't freak out too much about the hotel details, your guests will ultimately take care of themselves!
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