magazine | Weddings | Tips + Advice

12 Tips to Book Hotel Room Blocks for Birthday Parties

It's your birthday and you'll travel if you want to. Let this be your mantra when planning your next b-day bash – don't worry about tightening up your invite list because this year, the more, the merrier and everyone can come. How? Gone are the days of blowing out your candles and wishing your entire group can be there to see it happen thanks to this guide to booking hotel room blocks for your birthday extravaganza. From group rate basics to negotiating like a pro, use this guide for your next destination birthday party (yes, that's a thing) so you can have your cake and eat it too.

Get ready to sit back, relax and let COCO (more on her later) do all the work for you. If you don’t need to read any further, just click here to enter your info and we will take it entirely off of your hands so your start to another year around the sun goes off without a hitch. 
Photo: Mason Rose
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Go Ahead, Invite Everyone (Seriously)

Good news, traveling with your entire friend group easily means you're already looking to book 9 or more rooms! Most hotels require a 9 room minimum for group hotel reservations but some special hotels only require 5 rooms or more. 

Inquire about room blocks now  →
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Book More, Save More

As mentioned, a hotel room block is typically a reservation of 9+ hotel rooms. The perk of booking rooms in these large blocks is that they will save you and your birthday besties both time and money. How much will you save? When booking blocks of ten or more rooms at a time, you may be able to save 15%-40% because of the group rate deals offered by hotels. Buying in bulk typically means savings, savings, savings! Start Your Hotel Search Now  →
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Beginning the Booking Journey

Feeling overwhelmed at the thought of having to call a dozen hotels around the globe to try and negotiate room block deals for your group? Have no fear, the ultimate group hotel reservation shortcut is here. Submit a request through COCO (a super fun group bidding platform). Simply enter your dream budget, location and the number of rooms needed. Next, the hotels in the area will be notified and then will start bidding on your request. Finally, you will simply sit back, select your favorite hotels from the bunch and voilà, you are done. How easy is that?
Photo: Jona Grey
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Patiently Awaiting Your Bids (It'll Be Worth the Wait)

So you filled out the room block form, set your dream budget and pressed 'enter,' now what? The hotels will begin bidding for your birthday business! It may take a few days, but each hotel in the area that is able to match your budget/room request will reach out to you individually with a bid containing rates, dates and rules. After you recieve your online bids, you have a few options: 1. Decline (so sad). 2. Counter with another bid (and hone your bargaining skills while you're at it). 3. Lock it in! You love this bid and you're ready to commit. Finalize it and get your b-day fam pumped. Start Your Inquiry Now  →
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Timing is Everything

The rule of thumb for reserving room blocks is typically 3-8 months ahead of your travel dates. If you are just starting to plan your event, you can search for venues on The Venue Report to message them about their event spaces. Once you find your venue you can book your room blocks here too, of course! Who doesn't love a good one stop shop? Inquire about room blocks here →
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Finally, Oversharing is Appropriate

The more, the merrier in this case. This is YOUR birthday, make it count! COCO is designed to handle customized requests so you can get tailored bids back (isn't that exciting?). Simply put, the more information the hotels have from you, the more they can do for you.
Photo: Max Rand
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Only Hearing Crickets From the Hotels?

Before you change your mantra to, "It's my party and I'll cry if I want to," listen up. Reasons you may not have heard back from any hotels with a bid include: 1. You didn't meet the minimum night stay (2 night minimums are very common); 2. The hotels in the area may be completely booked; 3. You set your budget way too low. Inside tip: The further out you book, the less likely it is you'll run into these problems. Inquire about room blocks here →
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Reservation Confirmation: When is it Signed, Sealed and Delivered?

Once you and the hotel both come to an agreement on the group room rate for your birthday bash, the final contract is sent straight to your inbox! The very last step is to simply follow the link in your e-mail to make sure you secure your negotiated group room rate on COCO. Refresh your inbox and you're done (insert praise hands here). 
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Did Someone Say VIP...

Yes! The Venue Report has a special bond with hotel partners meaning your bid could include special perks and upgrades for your whole group. Talk about icing on the cake. Get room blocks for your birthday here

Editing a Reservation: Yes, You Can!

Simply email the awesome COCO planner who has been assisting you and they will happily help you with your reservation changes. You may also contact the hotel directly and speak with the manager whom has been helping your group through the planning process.
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Warning: Your Negotiated Room Rate Can Expire

If you waited past a bid's expiration date to reserve your room but want to move forward with it, fear not. You can always re-open the bid and start the negotiations again. The original negotiated room rate and room details are not guaranteed past the expiration date, but there is always the chance that the hotel will happily assist you. Pro Tip: Always be sure to accept a bid within the stated time frame! 
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Check Those Check-In Times

Last but certainly not least, make sure you take into account the check-in time of the hotels you choose so it doesn’t conflict with the starting time of your birthday celebrations. After all, there's nothing worse than you and your friends coming off of a long flight and having to get ready in the lobby bathroom or Uber. Pro Tip: Ask the hotels if they would allow earlier check-in for a certain amount of rooms – there's strength in numbers! Start Your Room Block Inquiry Now  →

Still need to find a venue for your birthday? Start Your Birthday Party Venue Search Now  →

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