CoolRide Blog

Minding Hotel Rules When Planning Corporate Travel and Events

Posted by Steve Johnston on Wed, Mar 20, 2013

Know the Policies When Making Travel and Event Plans 

rulesPlanning for any kind of event is difficult, whether you’re traveling for business or putting together a big corporate party. For either scenario, you’ll likely work with a hotel for the use of a room or event space. We’re going to take a look at both instances to help you understand why hotel policy compliance is so important for your company.

Executive Travel

In many cases, a travel manager decides which hotels to book for corporate travel. The popular method is to join several rewards programs and use only those hotels when a trip is needed. This allows employees to rack up travel points to use on their personal time. In order to keep using these hotels for your business travel, compliance is important. With a solid relationship between your company and the hotel chain, discounts and bigger perks can be awarded.

Most of the important policies are posted everywhere. No smoking. Don’t run by the pool. Breakfast ends at 10 a.m. These are easy enough to see and even easier to follow. The policies travelers are likely to break are the ones they don’t know about.

They may not realize there are certain rules about noise levels, Internet use, and even food delivery. Awareness of these policies can help to smooth the way.

A noise ordinance is usually common sense, but sometimes people get carried away without realizing it. This can certainly happen if traveling executives meet for a meal and some drinks and time gets away from them. When returning to the hotel, those happy and amused travelers could certainly disturb sleeping guests.

Internet use is another perk of hotels that could be abused without travelers even knowing it. First of all, you’re responsible for any business you conduct on the hotel’s Internet connection. If you’re not sure if your connection is secure, it’s in your best interest not to use it. You’re also responsible for the sites you view when you use a hotel’s wireless services. If these sites don’t comply with hotel policy or even state laws, you could find yourself in a world of trouble. Always check Internet use policies before connecting.

If your hotel offers room service, having food delivered from an outside restaurant could be frowned upon. Always be sure to check the rules before you place your order. The last thing you want to do is anger your favorite hotel chain with a pizza delivery.

Corporate Event Planning

Where you can really run into policy issues with hotels is during corporate event planning. In many cases, a hotel offers largest meeting space available, and the rooms are often more affordable than other options. With excellent planning, you can void major policy pitfalls, including room capacities, outside catering issues, and even alcohol consumption.

Great event planners always know the questions to ask a hotel when scheduling an event. Start with the number of people you’ll invite so you don’t choose a space that is too small. Your chosen hotel cannot allow more people than the posted limit because powers higher than hotel managers make those decisions. Your hotel will have to deal with legal issues, and those just might be passed along to you.

If you’re planning an event in a city where alcohol is prohibited, you cannot opt for an open bar or even a liquor-by-the-drink dinner. Understanding the hotel’s alcohol policy is exceptionally important, because that policy is usually in place because of city or state laws. Breaking that rule could put your company and the hotel in very hot water.

Finally, you need to pay close attention to the catering policies. Many hotels prefer to use their own in-house catering services, so if you book a private firm to bring your food, you could really step on some toes. If you’re determined to provide your own food for any reason—such as themed dinners or special tasting events—always be sure to clear the catering service in advance. You may find you have to pay more to bring in outside food, so be prepared for any possibility.

As long as you’re aware of all policies and make a point of following them, you can build great relationships with hotels. These ties will only strengthen over time, and you could get greater benefits over time from your partnership.

Photo Credit: artur84/

10 critical techniques expert travel managers master ebook

Tags: Ground Transportation, Executive Travel, Corporate Travel, Professional Development