Hotel Reservation Policies

Read carefully below for cancellation penalty deadlines, hotel payment policies, reservation agreements, and wait list information.

JW Marriott - Photo by Aaron Rogosin



SXSW EDU Housing & Travel provides services for all hotel accommodations of official SXSW EDU attendees including conference Registrants, Exhibitors, Sponsors, Press, Speakers, Presenters, and groups. SXSW EDU Housing & Travel does not charge a booking fee, but penalties can be incurred. See details below.

Reservations should be made online through the SXSW Cart once registration is completed, or through your EDU Social account. Please email if you have questions.

SXSW EDU Hotel Reservations can be changed and canceled until 28 days before your arrival date without penalty.

  • If booking a room within 28 days of arrival, any reduction in number of nights or cancellation will result in a penalty of $50.
  • Other changes such as adding nights to your stay (if nights are available), changing room types (if available), adding or editing an additional guest, changing the payment details, or adding notes/requests for the hotel will NOT incur any penalty. Your changes are welcome. We want to provide the hotels with accurate details for your visit.



All hotel costs are charged by the hotel and not collected by SXSW EDU Housing & Travel.

Hotel Cancellation Penalties

We know plans change, so SXSW EDU Housing & Travel has negotiated flexible cancellation policies with our hotels. You’ll find that hotels booked outside of SXSW Housing often require a full pre-payment and include strict cancellation restrictions.

All hotels charge a one night deposit in February, and have a cancellation policy between 72 hours to 14 days prior to your scheduled arrival date. Each hotel’s specific deposit and cancellation policies can be found on our SXSW EDU Hotel Availability page, or in the “Reservation Agreement” section of your confirmation email after booking.

Early Departure

After check-in, any early departures will incur an Early Departure Fee. Review your confirmation email for your hotel’s specific fees and policies.

If a late change cannot be avoided, making that change before check-in will save you the hotel’s Early Departure Fee and cost only $50.

Rates & Tax

SXSW EDU Conference rates are only available to confirmed SXSW EDU attendees who book through SXSW EDU Housing & Travel. Room rates are USD per night and may increase based on additional guests in the room. Rates do not include the 17% occupancy tax.

Many hotels also add a “State Cost – Recovery Fee” of less than 1% of the total bill. This is an optional fee that some businesses in Texas can charge to offset their franchise taxes but this is not a local tax.



Credit Card Guarantee

A valid credit card is required to secure and confirm your reservation but is not charged at the time of booking. Hotels will charge an advance deposit to the credit card on file when they receive our reservations in the month leading up to SXSW EDU. If you need to update the credit card number on file you must provide the new card information to SXSW EDU no later than Friday, February 9. After February 9, we cannot guarantee that the deposit will be charged to the updated card.

If a card is no longer valid and the hotel is unable to charge your deposit, they may cancel your reservation. It is your responsibility to maintain a valid credit card number on your reservation from booking to arrival.


Guests are required to present a physical credit card at check-in for payment of room, tax and incidental charges. It is your responsibility to know your method of payment upon check-in.

If you will be traveling without the credit card to be charged or the credit card is not in your own name (e.g. a company card that does not belong to the employee). You must supply a credit card pre-authorization form directly with the hotel before arrival. Hotels will not accept these forms until they have provided your confirmation number in late February/early March.

Credit Card Pre-Authorization

Once you receive a reservation confirmation number from the hotel you can submit your credit card details directly to the hotel in late February or early March. The hotel must have your confirmation number in order to be able to process your Credit Card Authorization. Credit Card Authorization forms and instructions can be found here in mid-February 2025.

If you don’t intend to travel with the credit card you plan to use to pay for the reservation, you must submit a Credit Card Authorization form to the hotel before you arrive to charge your reservation, tax, or incidentals to a card that isn’t in your name (e.g. a company card that does not belong to the employee).


Credit card pre-authorization is the best method to pay for your stay without a physical credit card. If you need to pay for your room & tax in advance you can do so when the hotel charges a deposit. Please note that the hotel will still require a card to guarantee incidentals at check-in.

If you still have questions, please contact for further instruction.


Most hotels charge a deposit to the card on file when they receive the SXSW EDU reservations from us in late February or early March. This information is outlined in the ‘Reservation Agreement’ section of your reservation confirmation email.

If you’d like to update the credit card number on file you must provide the new card information to SXSW EDU no later than Friday, February 9. After February 9, we cannot guarantee that the deposit will be charged to the updated card. If a card is no longer valid and the hotel is unable to charge your deposit, they may cancel your reservation.

You can update your credit card via the link to make changes in your reservation confirmation, your EDU Social Account, or the same Shopping Cart used to purchase your registration.

How to Change or Cancel Reservations & Waitlist Requests

Changes and cancellations must be made through SXSW EDU Housing & Travel (not the hotel). This can be done in one of 3 ways:

  1. To change or cancel use the ‘Request for Change’ link in your reservation confirmation email.
  2. Choose your reservation from the drop-down (only your reservation should be listed).
  3. Make the changes you need to the reservation or choose ‘Cancel.’
  4. Choose ‘submit’ at the bottom of the page.

Questions? Check out our FAQs.

Please review all change requests carefully before submitting. Canceled nights will likely not be reinstated.



Who Can Join the Waitlist

SXSW EDU registrants and confirmed official attendees may get on the waitlist for their entire stay or to add nights to an existing reservation if they can’t find the availability for the nights they need.

Waitlist Tips & Facts

  • Attendees are not able to hold a confirmed reservation and waitlist for the same dates at another hotel.
  • The waitlist has limited availability based on the number of attendees we have been able to accommodate in the past. Getting on our waitlist doesn’t guarantee a room, but we do have a high success rate of accommodating SXSW EDU attendees from our waitlist.
  • SXSW EDU Housing & Travel will work with you until your check-in date to help you find accommodations, even if it’s not your first choice. We won’t leave you without a room!
  • We see the most movement in our waitlist between mid January and late February.
  • If you’re flexible with your hotel needs or need something very specific (i.e. room type, location, price range), add that to the special request field once you’ve confirmed your hotel and room type. It will help us look for only what you need and also let us know if it’s ok to look for options outside your request.

We have a high success rate for our waitlist but we don’t see much movement in it until the month leading up to SXSW EDU. So if you’re uncomfortable waiting until the last minute to secure your accommodations for SXSW EDU, we recommend you book an option from one of our available properties.

Contact for questions about location, amenities, or for suggestions on what to book and our housing team of local Austin travel professionals can help guide you to the best available property and potential transportation options to fit your needs.

Waitlist to Extend Your Stay

If you’re flexible with your dates when booking, try a few sets of dates to see different availability. You can get on the waitlist to extend your stay if you’re able to book most of the nights you need.

How to get on the waitlist to extend your stay:

  1. Book the nights that are available from your SXSW Shopping Cart or EDU Social

  2. Note your desired check-in and/or out date(s) in the “special request field” when finalizing your reservation (Step 4).

  3. Our Housing & Travel team will then add you to the waitlist for the nights you need, or reach out with any questions or to communicate further about your options.

If you’ve already booked a reservation and you want to add additional dates to your reservation that are no longer available, email to join the waitlist for the dates you need.

Waitlist Fulfillment

SXSW EDU Housing & Travel will work until your check-in date to accommodate your waitlist request. Most requests are fulfilled in the month leading up to SXSW EDU as attendees face their cancellation deadlines. If you need to secure a reservation before February, the waitlist may not be the best option for you.

We strive to accommodate all waitlist requests until their arrival date. Should a room become available for you, SXSW EDU Housing & Travel immediately books your reservation and sends you a confirmation email.

Be sure to check that you’ve received your waitlist confirmation email and add to your contact list to be sure you receive your reservation confirmation if we accommodate your waitlist request.

Waitlist Fees & Penalties

If your waitlist request is accommodated within the hotel’s cancellation period (usually 7-14 days) you may be responsible for any hotel cancellation fees. It is very important to cancel or adjust your waitlist request if you no longer need it or it is no longer accurate

Check the reservation policy section of your waitlist request confirmation for your hotel’s cancellation policy.

How to Cancel Your Waitlist Request

There is never a fee to cancel your waitlist request. To cancel, use the “Request for Change” link located at the bottom of your waitlist confirmation email to make changes. Email with any questions.


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From booking your hotel to traveling to Austin, explore our list of frequently asked questions.

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