Would we be entitled to our deposit back?

We booked a venue end of 2017 for a wedding a year later.

It is 3 hours away from us at a hotel and so most family will be staying. We have no idea who will be as invites are not due to go out for a good few months yet.

I emailed the venue end of January to ask to reserve rooms for my parents and sister who has a baby and will need to be on site.

The response I received was that was fine but that no other family rooms are available now so no one else with children would be able to stay at the venue.

This panicked me as we have our own baby who will need to stay at the venue and my fiance's brother has a newborn too.

I emailed the venue to let them know that we would need a minimum of 2 other family rooms due to these baby's and I have just had the reponse that they are sorry but they can't accomodate them in this venue and we would have to put the families with babies up at a sister hotel.

Obviously this isnt suitable and I am now worrying about having to cancel and find an alternative venue.

Luckily we hadnt booked too many other elements to the day so the bulk of the deposit paid was to the venue £1000, and then another £100 to the dj and another £66 to the registrar.

Is there any chance we would be able to get these back? It totals 20% of our wedding venue/catering budget
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Replies

  • pigpenpigpen Forumite
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    Do you have any insurance? You should discuss it with them if so, they each offer different services and policy specifics.

    tbh.. I'd have the family room for myself and tell the extended family they can leave babies elsewhere or stay elsewhere.. or you can lose a whole heap of money and move elsewhere.. I think children should be welcome at weddings personally but you have to consider your finances and your baby first.

    It is a hard decision I am sure.
    LB moment 10/06 Debt Free date 6/6/14
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  • lika_86lika_86 Forumite
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    If rooms were going to be a real factor then you should have agreed to reserve some at the time of your booking. Where's the nearest hotel? Is it really too far for people to stay there?
  • p00hsticksp00hsticks Forumite
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    Luckily we hadnt booked too many other elements to the day so the bulk of the deposit paid was to the venue £1000, and then another £100 to the dj and another £66 to the registrar.

    Is there any chance we would be able to get these back? It totals 20% of our wedding venue/catering budget

    I don't think you'll get the registrar fees back (presumably this £66 charge is for giving notice ?). When we went to give notice at ours they stressed that you were not able to change the given location afterwards, and that you would have to go through the process again if you wanted a different location.
  • We definitley won!!!8217;t be able to get the registrar fee back.

    The hotel is saying the deposit is non refundable.

    But they haven!!!8217;t met the agreements that we made at our initial meeting.

    Unfortuanltey the wedding Insurance doesn!!!8217;t cover for this
  • Which states - !!!8216;a business is only entitled to keep a deposit sufficient to cover actual losses that directly result from a cancellation.!!!8217;

    I don!!!8217;t think £1000 is reasonable for them to keep in this instance despite it wing their issue that is causing the cancellation and would not have been our choice otherwise
  • After asking for our deposit back they have now turned around and said they will be able to accommodate us.

    This has made me quite angry as if it was that easy to sort us out in the first place why cause all the stress of telling us repeatedly that they can!!!8217;t do it?

    The way they are handling this has meant that we have been left with a bad feeling so soon after booking and no confidence that the venue will not mess up on something else down the line when it!!!8217;s too late to cancel.

    I think withholding £1000 is excessive on a £7k Wedding when they can resell the day and even if they kept an admin charge for their time it would be better.
    We are still out of pocket with other suppliers that had been booked that we won!!!8217;t be able to get back as it!!!8217;s not their fault, not to mention rebooking a whole new Wedding now
  • pigpenpigpen Forumite
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    They may have had cancellations from other guests or the first person made a mistake..

    .. but if they said they can now accomodate you why would any of your other suppliers be affected?.. I do not understand why you would now be out of pocket having things the way they were when you booked them.. unless in your anger you cancelled everything I guess ..

    If you have decided to go elsewhere are the same suppliers unlikely to do the new venue?.. it is not too difficult to just change the venue on their systems. If you are just changing venue out of bloody mindedness that is not the venues fault.. and the non-returnable part of the deposit will be in the contract you got when booking with them.

    And.. wedding insurance should cover most costs.

    good luck!
    LB moment 10/06 Debt Free date 6/6/14
    Hope to be debt free until the day I die
    Mortgage-free Wannabee (05/08/30)
    6/6/14 £72,454.65 (5.65% int.)
    01/01/2022 £41653.68 (2.41% int.)
  • Have spoken to the CAB who confirmed what I thought and that they can’t keep such a large deposit without returning part of it anyway as they can’t say they have lost out.

    I also don’t think many people would want to hold their own wedding with a company who makes admin mistakes this early on in planning. As I said, confidence in them has gone.
    I’d be very nervous about carrying on with them after how bad they have been at dealing with it.

    I’ve asked politely twice for them to return the deposit now and it’s being ignored.

    I’ve asked the manager to contact me twice to discuss and that request has been ignored.

    This has been going on since mid last week.
  • pigpenpigpen Forumite
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    what does the contract with the venue state in terms of deposit?
    LB moment 10/06 Debt Free date 6/6/14
    Hope to be debt free until the day I die
    Mortgage-free Wannabee (05/08/30)
    6/6/14 £72,454.65 (5.65% int.)
    01/01/2022 £41653.68 (2.41% int.)
  • edited 25 February 2018 at 3:51PM
    PrettyKittyKatPrettyKittyKat Forumite
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    edited 25 February 2018 at 3:51PM
    When we had our wedding it was very important that we had rooms for guests as all our families did not live local to the venue either.

    Therefore every venue we spoke to we queried what accommodation was available, the costs, could they be booked etc.

    The venue we chose had no on site accommodation so we found a local hotel. Again, we spoke to them and checked they could accommodate the numbers of rooms we needed (around 30). We then block booked what we could (10 at first, although the venue had around 60 rooms in total) and send fb msgs to people to let them know there was limited availability and suggested they reserved a room asap (they had time to cancel and didn't have to pay until the day if they didn't want to). We then provided transport from the hotel to the wedding and back on the wedding day. As this was really important for us, we made sure all these questions were asked and sorted before booking.

    You say the venue didn't fulfil their agreement when you booked, so did you enquire about rooms and confirm you required x family rooms reserving? If so, did they put this in writing? or did they say the rooms were exclusively for wedding guests only? Again, is this in writing, maybe in your T&Cs?

    If you have just booked a venue which has rooms available for anyone to book then you can not cancel you wedding on the basis that they have sold their rooms - this is what hotels do!

    There is no guarantee the hotel will be able to resell your date. They may have even already turned people away for your date. Therefore they can argue that the costs of meeting you, processing the booking, plus then having to re-advertise the date make up the £1,000 deposit. Presumably you have also signed a contract stating that you know that this is non refundable if you change your mind (which unless you have made an agreement as part of your wedding booking re: rooms is essentially what you have done)?

    To say yourself loosing money or being on bad terms straight away with your venue I would suggest that you make an appointment to go in and sit down with the wedding coordinator. Have a chat about how the day with go and make sure you have a list of anything and everything you think they should/will be doing and anything you need and make sure you are all on the same page from the start. This will hopefully make you feel more comfortable and happy with your plans. If you still are unhappy after this then you may just have to bite the bullet and loose the deposit.
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