Stay and Play
The USQ Stay and Play policy applies to all regional championships and US Quidditch Cup. The policy requires that in order to participate in a particular event, teams are required to book hotel rooms in one of several tournament-approved hotels through our travel planner. The only exception to this rule is for teams whose official mailing address is within 100 miles driving distance of the tournament site address, using the shortest driving distance as reported by Google Maps. The goal of the exemption is to accommodate those teams who could safely drive home and spend the night at their place of residence before, during, and/or after a regional or national championship. It is aimed at local teams, and having the exemption be based on driving distance reaches that goal more effectively.
WHY IS USQ USING A STAY AND PLAY POLICY?
A Stay and Play policy is among the most effective tools we have to ensure overall event quality. In addition to lowering rates for teams on hotel packages, this policy increases our negotiating power with future host cities by allowing our travel planner to commit to a fixed number of room blocks for teams at hotels. This number translates to a greater economic benefit to host cities, and will encourage greater city support of our events in terms both of amenities and financial contribution. This commitment of room blocks also increases the number of potential hosts that are likely to submit bids.
For the continuation of our regional championship and US Quidditch Cup programs, it is crucial that we institute a Stay and Play policy to continue to receive quality bids for these events.
HOW DOES STAY AND PLAY HELP MY TEAM?
Benefits for teams from implementing Stay and Play include:
LOW GROUP ROOM RATES
Stay and Play leverage allows our travel planner to negotiate collectively lower room rates for our blocks. Without Stay and Play, a considerable number of hotels in the best locations would be available only at higher rates. With a fixed commitment to purchasing room blocks, our travel planner will be able to offer rooms for lower rates than if we had to reserve rooms based on anticipated occupancy, as we have done in the past.
MORE ROOMS CLOSER TO THE TOURNAMENT LOCATION
Hotels that are familiar with the Stay and Play policy know that their block will fill up and are willing to work with our planner to allocate rooms. This, in turn, produces more rooms closer to the tournament location and more rooms at a wider variety of hotels and price points.
Our travel planner will have staff available on-site throughout check-in, and will be available via phone for the entire duration of the event. The presence of a travel specialist means that teams will have a point of contact who can assist in resolving issues that may arise regarding transportation, check-in, or hotel service.
STAY AND PLAY FAQ
Who determines the rules for Stay and Play?
USQ determines the guidelines and procedures for the Stay and Play policy. The travel planner then implements the policy.
What other organizations use Stay and Play?
The concept of the Stay and Play policy is utilized by leagues across the athletic landscape, including USA Volleyball, USA Lacrosse, USA Field Hockey, and many high school sports programs.
What hotels will be available via Stay and Play?
USQ and the travel planner will consider all hotels willing to offer a contract for rooms at a set price. The travel planner evaluates multiple hotels near a tournament site and evaluates factors including cost, location, and amenities when determining which hotels they will contract with for a particular event.
How many rooms does my team have to book?
Your team must book enough rooms to accommodate every player on your tournament roster. Also, your team must book enough rooms to abide the hotel's occupancy policies. This means a maximum of two people per bed per room (some packages may also include sleeper sofas or cots and will include an extra two people per room). Teams must also stay for a minimum of two nights for Regional Championships and US Quidditch Cup. Exceptions to the two night minimum will be considered on a case-by-case basis, and requests for an exception can be made via email to email@example.com.
What happens if my team doesn't want to stay in a tournament-approved hotel?
If your team has not booked approved hotel accommodations (and your team does not have an official mailing address within 100 miles of the tournament location), USQ will contact your captain to discuss the situation. If your team has not booked approved hotel accommodations before the event date, your spot at the tournament will be forfeited.
Is my team allowed to stay at the house of a family or friend that is near the tournament site?
In order to be effective in securing better bids for our events, we require that all teams that are based outside the 100-mile radius stay at approved hotels, not at houses of families or friends or rented locations. USQ and their travel planner will be ensuring that the number of rooms each team books is consistent with the number of players on that team’s tournament roster.
What are the rules governing my team's selection of a mailing address?
Teams should not select a mailing address that is not reflective of their true location in order to seek an exemption from the Stay & Play policy. Each team should ensure that their mailing address is in reasonable proximity to the team's geographic origin and practice area. In cases where a team's mailing address is significantly distant from its practice area (e.g. if a university team chooses to use a player's home address as a mailing address), USQ reserves the right to designate an address adjacent to the team's practice area as the team's address for the purposes of adjudicating exemption from the Stay & Play policy. Exemptions to the Stay & Play policy are determined based on the team's mailing address at the beginning of the season.
Why isn't the hotel I want on the list of options?
We consider proposals from any hotel that wants to host teams, and actively solicit hotels to negotiate rates. However, a hotel cannot be forced to offer a room block for an event; it is a business decision by the hotel. Sometimes hotels have other business booked on the tournament dates, so they do not have rooms available to provide a block. Also, some hotels offer rooms at rates that are too high.