Whether you’re a stag party, hen party, touring sports team, group of business people or, indeed, any group at all, you should check out what we can do for with your group bookings.
There are a few considerations to take into account before making your reservations, however. The size of your group is going to be very important when considering making a group booking.
Timing Is Everything
If you’ve got a large group of more than 10 people, the earlier you can make your accommodation arrangements, the better. It is going to be hard for standard hotels and BnBs to sleep numbers of this size, especially if they’re small and you’re booking at a busy time of year (i.e. Christmas, or the summer high-season).
Large groups need to be handled by our Group Bookings Team, who will contact a range of hotels on your behalf to negotiate prices and contracts. If you were to attempt to make several bookings on our website, there is the danger that you would not all be slept together. Moreover, the availability being displayed on the website is for a room at a time, so you might get half way through your multiple bookings to find that your hotel has, in fact, sold out.
This does have a positive effect though, as it means rates will often be cheaper (it’s the same as buying wholesale). The way in which payment is made will differ for large groups, too. If a hotel is booking out a large number of rooms, then they will require an earlier and larger deposit than on individual rooms. This is something that TravelStay.com will negotiate and inform you of in due course, but it is wise to make provisions for this.
Groups of 4 – 10
Groups of this size are not considered ‘large’ groups, and bookings can be made the conventional way.
If you’re in a group of 4, then we recommend searching by room type and selecting “Quad”. This will show you results for hotels that have rooms that can sleep 4 people. Be careful to select the right kind of bed arrangement though; some hotels may only have two double beds – and this might not be ideal for a stag do!
We recommend looking at accommodations such as Hammersmith Rooms. This budget accommodation has a wide range of rooms with a variety of set-ups and has the added bonus of offering a self-catered kitchen. If you are in a group and want to keep costs down, then cooking your own food together is a great way of doing so.
Alternatively, you could look at Borough Rooms in Elephant and Castle. This is a similar budget accommodation that offers a variety of quad rooms and dorms. The quad rooms in this accommodation tend to be small dormitories and therefore have bunk, rather than double, beds.
If you have a group of between 5 and 8, then you might want to consider booking dormitory rooms in hostels. In many cases, and if the hostel isn’t particularly busy, then spare beds will be left unfilled so that your group, essentially, has a private room.
Do consider, though, that if you are a group of 5 in a 6-bedded dormitory and there is another, solitary person in the dorm, that their wishes should be taken into account regarding staying up in the room.
We have a great many hostels in some fantastic locations all over London, so if you are a group of this size and wishing to book a dormitory for your stay, then search by location and select the number of guests you are. The search engine will give you the appropriate room type for your booking (and will also split you between two dormitories if the hostel has availability for that).
In central West London (which is a very popular area), you could try the Barkston Rooms in Earls Court, which have beds starting from as little as £12.00 per person. It’s a great location for events taking place at Kensington Olympia and has a buzzing social scene.
Or to be near the O2 Shepherds Bush (and the Westfield too, in case you wanted a shopping spree) you could try the Westfield Hostel. It’s a basic hostel but offers excellent value for money, and places you in the heart of Shepherds Bush. Beds start at £17.00 per person.
To be more centrally located in West London, check out the Notting Hill Hostel in Bayswater. This is one of our cheaper options, with beds starting at £10.99 per person, and locates you perfectly for a great night out in one of London’s trendiest areas.
For a cracking night out in Camden, try the Camden Inn Hostel, right in the heart of the action. With beds starting at £10.00 per night, this promises a fantastic night out or sightseeing trip for your group.
Groups of 10 – 20
Groups of this size are a little trickier to find dormitory accommodation for, however it can be done. The format doesn’t change too much between the group sizes, however in the instance that your group is this big, we strongly recommend getting in touch with our customer services team.
They will be able to contact any hostels you might be interested in to discuss your situation with them directly, and this stands you a better chance of finding the best accommodation for your group at the best price.
If you have a group of 5+ and want to stay in hotels rather than hostels, this negotiation should be undertaken by TravelStay for you.
This is to do with the hotels’ availabilities, and some hotels do not offer group bookings due to their size. Some hotels, however, are very amenable to large groups and will go out of their way to sleep your group in the best way possible.
If you have a group of (e.g.) 10 and you can see online that a hotel is offering two quad rooms and a twin room, and that arrangement works for you and your group, that’ great. We do advise that you call us to double check that arrangement, however booking instances like that are fine.
There can be problems when you need a specific number of a specific type of room. Let’s imagine that you are planning a trip with one family of 4, a couple, a brother and a sister, and one family of 3. You would, ideally, need a hotel that offered a quad room, a double room, a twin room and a triple room.
This is where it starts to become complicated, and the temptation is to make them all as separate bookings. As we mentioned earlier, this can backfire. However if you enter only the total number of guests into the search options, it’s very unlikely that the rooms offered will give you exactly what you’re looking for in terms of room type.
This is why we suggest calling our customer service team, who are available 24 hours a day. It is likely that, if you find a hotel from your search that is showing availability but not the exact availability that you want, we will be able to arrange it with the hotel.
If you don’t have a phone handy, you can always email our customer service team with your request. If you do this, please be as specific as possible about your requirements. We know that this isn’t always possible, but if you do know the hotel you want, the room types, the number of people and any other information that is pertinent (for instance a rough budget), it’s best to include it so that we can move your request along as rapidly as possible.
Groups of 20+
Very large groups must be done through TravelStay’s dedicated Group Bookings Team, as many hotels (particularly smaller ones) very often will not be able to accommodate groups this size without making certain that everything is in place. For example, they will have to take large numbers of rooms from their online availability, and it is better for everyone if they don’t do this before they are certain that they are delisting the appropriate rooms for you.
It is also for this reason that the mode of paying a deposit will change slightly. You will usually be asked for two up-front payments (a deposit and the remainder) prior to the stay in order to mitigate for large cancellations.
With respect to group bookings, nearly every accommodation is different and have their own policies which TravelStay.com are aware of. TravelStay.com are therefore in a unique position to be able to arrange these bookings, payments and discounts for you.
Our Group Bookings Team are available to help 9-6 Monday-Friday and will work hard to get the very best deal they can for your group. Often, groups will require certain additional supplements (such as meals or packed lunches) which TravelStay.com can arrange with the accommodation in question.
We recognise that any group outing is, by its very nature, going to be a special occasion, so please don’t hesitate to let us know of the nature of your trip in order that we can ensure we get the very best arrangement possible for your group.