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  • Lauralee Shapiro

Learn The Lingo – Part 2 of 3

Every profession has their own terms and the meetings & events industry is no exception.  This blog is the first in a series that will help decipher some of the terms and phrases used by hoteliers and meeting planners.

  1. VAT – Value Added Tax. This is a foreign tax.

  2. GST – Goods and Services Tax.  This tax can be found in Canada.

  3. BAR – Best Available Rate – Many hotels will state in the group contract that after the cut off date, they will sell rooms to your group at the best available rate.

  4. IPO – Individual Pays Own – This term is used to describe an attendee who is paying for their own guest room charges.

  5. Overset – The banquet department will prepare a percentage (usually 5%) over and above the guarantee for a meal function.

  6. Room Drop – This is a charge that hotels use for when the bell staff makes a delivery to a guest room.  There are two types of room drops – under the door or in the room.  A departure notice for example can be slid under the door but a gift or amenity needs to be placed in the room.

  7. Corkage – Sometimes, a group will request to bring in their own food or beverage.  This represents a loss of revenue for the hotel and is usually not allowed.  You can however negotiate what is called a corkage fee that will allow you do this.  One way that they calculate the fee is taking the profit they would have made on the food and beverage plus the service charge for the banquet servers, based on the full banquet menu pricing.

  8. Dead Head – This term usually applies to transportation companies.  When a vehicle is billed with an hourly rate, the time it takes for the vehicle to travel empty to the pick up location and return without passengers at the end of the service is referred to as dead head.  A company may bill for example a 49 seat bus for four hours plus one hour dead head.

  9. Load-In – if you have a trade show or large production to set up, the hotel may charge a fee for the time you need the meeting space to move the booths or equipment in and set it up.  These same charges may be applied for tear down too if it has the meeting space unavailable to be sold to another group.