Your good friend recently got engaged and always dreamed of a wedding on the beach. Well, she booked a wedding in the Caribbean and you just received the Save the Date and the wedding is at an all inclusive resort.
What should you do next?
Find out if your friend has taken out a block of rooms that the hotel. What does this mean exactly? Well, if your friend is working with a travel agent that specializes in Destination Weddings, the travel agent would have done 1 of 2 things for her.
- The travel agent would have taken out a group block for your friends wedding, which is open to the guests to book into. The rates are set and as long as the room type is still available when you book, you should be able to book a room through the couple’s travel agent.
- The travel agent has a “group code” set up which will enable all guests to book into a “flexible group”. This means, you can book any room at the hotel for any amount of days but the price can fluctuate. There may be additional discounts that come with the group code so check with the travel agent handling the destination wedding.
Should you book online yourself?
You can but we don’t suggest it.
- We have heard of cases where the guests booked the wrong hotel. (There may be multiple Dreams Resorts or Riu Resorts or Iberostar Resorts in the Riviera Maya or Punta Cana). This almost happened with a mother of one of our brides. She thought she found better rates online. The rates were lower but it was a different hotel.
- If you book outside of the group, you may not be entitled to join in on some of the wedding activities. Some resorts will only allow for those guests that booked within the group to join in on a rehearsal dinner or cocktail party that has been set up with the resort.
Should I book at a different hotel that is cheaper?
NO, this is something that we absolutely do not recommend. If your friend’s wedding is at an all inclusive resort, you will not be allowed to come onto the resort grounds if you are not a guest OR if you did not purchase a day pass. Day passes can run from $50-100+ per person and you may need to purchase a daytime day pass + a night time pass if the wedding is later in the day and you want to stay for the dinner/reception.
Also, day passes are not automatic. Hotels that are booked up can limit the # of day passes they sell or can not sell any at all. You just flew down to the destination of your friend’s wedding but won’t be able to see her get married if you can’t get into the resort.
The romance specialists at My Vacation Lady have experience helping our clients plan their destination weddings and are able to help the wedding guests attend the wedding. Don’t do it alone. Call a specialist.