1/2 hotel deposit paid-cancelled my wedding PLEASE HELP

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babesie Posts: 10
I hope someone can help me...my parents have paid for 1/2 my wedding deposit and I have just cancelled the wedding due to relationship breakdown (hell on earth, physically, mentally and emotionally draining). In the contract the hotel stipulates they need x amount of time for a cancellation and to facilitate a deposit refund-I am 20 days over this time frame. I am sick to my stomach with nerves as the hotel are refusing point blank to give my parents back one cent. I have had no menu tastings, no guests have booked rooms and needed to cancel (hotel don't release the rooms until nearer the date). The hotel is a well known hotel, 5 star and the deposit paid is really sizeable, we had to pay a booking deposit and then 6mths in another, it wasn't long after the last deposit was paid that I cancelled. The hotel when we were initially booking and trying to barter on price were very much about 'this is part of the contact and is non negotiable etc' however I know of other couples who for a fact managed to get certain 'non negotiables' waivered so the contract seems to be flexible when it suits them. Has anyone any advice? Can any one out there help me? I understand that I have cancelled the wedding but am only 20 days outside of the cancellation period..please help me. The wedding planner is just not budging and mum said she might as well have been talking to a robot that there was no even meeting half way. Any help would be so gratefully received.
realta Posts: 820
I'm not sure if there's anything you can do to get your deposits back but I just wanted to say that i hope you are doing ok. It must be very upsetting and having to deal with this on top of the hurt after a relationship breakdown must be taking its toll. Have you asked them if they could give the deposit back if ur date is rebooked by someone else? Failing that could you try get someone else to take the date...even for a big birthday or wedding anniversary???? something??? just trying to come up with solutions for you
RainbowNinja Posts: 4437
could you advertise the hotel and date somewhere and see does anyone wish to get married that day there?? hope you're ok :thnk
luckyladee Posts: 2550
Oh chicken, I really feel for you. What a horrible experience to have to go through. Even without the inevitable guilt of your parents ending up out of pocket. This very thing happened to my cousin but with only 3 weeks to go until the wedding. They had no choice but to pay for 80% of the wedding (not just the hotel, the entire wedding). I know this isnt much by way of consolation - but sometimes knowing it could be worse can help when you really feel thats not possible. The most important thing at the moment is for you to take care of yourself. Hugs xxx
LittleLily Posts: 3682
[quote="realta":1qmsjgwi]Have you asked them if they could give the deposit back if ur date is rebooked by someone else?[/quote:1qmsjgwi] I think something like this is your only hope, otherwise the hotel would be well in their rights to keep the deposit. Hope it all works out for you and your parents and sorry to hear about your bad news. Best of luck to you in the future.
coco11 Posts: 309
Mi sisters was cancelled three days before and the hotel kept the whole lot, even for wine and bottled water that obviously was neven opened. She also lost out on her honeymoon and had paid over 50% to most of her suppliers. i think she was down about 25k by the time everthing was taken into account aswell as having to deal with the trauma of breaking up, telling guests coming from america and putting her house on the market. I can completely understand how stressful and heartbreaking it is for you but the only reason i'm writing this is thats its now a year gone and she has come out the other side a mich happier person and shes really getting on with her life!!!!!!! I know its difficult to loose money like this, particularly in these times but you really have to focus on making sure your alright and i'm sure this is your parents main concern also.
Schnicks Posts: 50
You should give your solicitor a call and see. THose 'non refundable' things, as far as I know are not totally legal. The hotel has not spent any of your money yet in preparation for your wedding. You think a 5 star hotel would be classy enough to at least discuss it. It certainly wouldn't hurt to call the solicitor and just ask... Best wishes to you chic, I hope you are ok. X
mrdvd Posts: 649
Contracts are there to protect the supplier and the bride. In this case, technically the hotel is completely in the right. If they do not sell the date, their attitude would not be that they lost half the deposit plus all the bar/hotel room income. That said, if they DO sell the date, then they won't have lost out. They still have no obligation to refund the deposit - however morally and ethically, there is no question that a refund could be considered. It's in a hotel's best interest to maintain good PR and foster good will. Having five stars over the door is not much good, if some of their main clients would rather chew razer blades than cross through the doors. As they have no legal obligation- there is little, I suspect that a solicitor can do (WOLs who are solicitors could correct me). Threatening the hotel and bombarding them with solicitors' letters is unlikely to have an effect. I would however consider a more public forum to air your grievances. I'd begin by writing to the hotel asking the hotel if they could refund the deposit should the date remain unsold. Keep a copy. Follow up with a phone call and keep a note of the conversation, who you spoke to and when. At all times, be civil. DO not say or do anything that they will use against you. I'd suggest that if (A) you get a positive reaction to the idea that a refund is possible if the date is sold- then you are half way there. You can consider going on the Joe Duffy show appealing for a couple to take your date. It would be a massive story and gain you enormous sympathy. Even if the hotel does not sell the date then they may still refund the deposit as a gesture. If (B) they say no to the refund. Then still approach the Joe Duffy Show as you want to try and appeal to them over the airways. The hotel would face a PR nightmare if they proved to be unmovable. On the other hand, a slick, genuine gesture would give them free nationwide publicity. The key here is to convince the hotel manager that you are very serious about publicising this- that you have nothing to lose. No duty manager wants this on their CV and will refer this right to the top if they are convinced if they will talk to Joe. RTE are very flexible and approachable, you can ring them after the show to speak to a researcher, you can e-mail the show. I am sorry but I can't give you the series producer's e-mail without asking her first. I would have little sympathy for you if you wanted a refund should you just change your mind about the hotel. In this case, there are mitigating factors and the hotel management may respond. Ultimately, while you are stressed, can you consider being able to take that call? No amount of money in the world is worth it, should you or your parents suffer illness due to the prospect of national publicity. Opinions Martin