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Earning Perks for Your Destination Wedding

If you're planning a destination wedding, announce it to the world — you'll likely receive some surprising benefits. Destination-wedding perks can include VIP treatment at hotels, especially when you can reserve a block of rooms for your guests. In fact, hotels offer perks and upgrades for one smart reason: to build customer loyalty. They want you to come back again for your anniversary, with your kids, and on your next vacation.

Perks start becoming valuable when the length of your stay or the size of your guest list grows. If you can gather ten people or more to take the same flight together, most airlines extend a discounted rate to all. In some cases, they upgrade you from coach to business or first class. Each airline has its own rules. Although you may be able to find the benefits listed on an airline's Web site, you normally have to phone a representative to activate the offer.

Hotels operate in much the same way as airlines when it comes to discounts. If your guests can occupy a minimum of ten rooms, inform the property. Ask for a volume discount so that guests in each room pay less than if they would have booked individually. This price difference could be the deciding factor between a trip that's affordable for a guest and one that isn't.

In addition to a hotel offering a group discount, the management may also be willing to upgrade your quarters to larger ones, throw in a complimentary hospitality suite, or waive the fee for your ceremony space — even if the two of you are traveling alone. In all instances, asking nicely for the added value never hurts.

To receive special treatment, ask about romance packages when you book your room. A hotel that's really on the ball delivers a fruit basket, perhaps sparkling wine or cider, or even strawberries dipped in chocolate to rooms of wedding and honeymoon couples without asking them in advance or charging extra. Some hotels may even surprise you with rose petals on your bed when you return from dinner. To ensure you receive such amenities, you may have to request them in advance and pay an additional fee, though.

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