A written contract enables the parties to verify all the details of the relationship to avoid uncertainty and unfriendliness later. Be sure the contract covers the basics as well as specifics.

The Basics

  • Identification of group and facility
  • Clear definition of terms and obligations
  • Billing procedures
  • Breach of contract, termination, and cancellation issues
  • Protection clauses

 The Specifics

  • Room rental rates and dates
  • Reservation details
  • Meeting room names
  • Identify all functions, e.g. banquets, receptions, exhibits, etc
  • Important dates and penalties
  • Exact attrition dollar amount
  • Precise cancellation amounts and due dates
  • Definition of “revenue” in all cases
  • All changes should be “mutually agreed upon”

Negotiation is about creating something mutually beneficial to each party. Here are some Do’s and Don’ts to keep in mind.


  • Establish clear objectives before you begin negotiations.
  • Determine what hotel considerations are best for the group.
  • Make all agreements part of the written contract.
  • Communicate with clarity.
  • Ask questions.
  • Listen.
  • Be ethical.



  • Sacrifice quality for cost.
  • Make unreasonable demands.
  • Insist on being the final authority.
  • Be inconsiderate of a supplier’s profit margin and business needs.
  • Escalate and over estimate needs.
  • Be apprehensive about negotiating for everything required.
  • Promise what cannot be delivered.

Throughout the negotiation process, be fair, flexible, and willing to compromise. Both parties should be happy with the contract.