Choice Rewards dificulties

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Jun 2, 2018
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#1
I am a Choice Rewards Gold member since 2006.

I possess a Choice Privileges VISA card, which I use throughout the year and we stay at Choice properties at least twice a year.

Most recently, their website and customer care have become intolerable.

First, I tried to book a room in mid-town Manhattan and the site response was “Sold Out” for every location. I later figured out that this was due to my trying to reserve more than 30 days in advance. Fair enough, but why couldn’t the website say that? I had to call customer service and, by the way, they did not know!! Not bad, less than one hour wasted.

One week later, I tried again and was able to book a room for one night with points: SUCCESS!!

Here is where the trouble starts!! I would like to stay TWO night: one on points and one on the “Points plus cash” option that the web site shows as available. ( Want to keep my points for future use and I'm happy to use points and a reduced rate to stay 2 nights.) Unfortunatly, this cannot be accomplished in a single transaction (that I can see), so I need to book one night on points, then seperatly book the second "Points plus Cash" night.

Attempt #1:

After logging in, finding my desired property, entering my information, I tried to book the room and get the error message:

Points Plus Cash Error
Please verify your credit card information and try again or call 1-800-4CHOICE for further assistance.

OK, so after 3 attempts including using a different card, I call. Customer service has NO IDEA what I am talking about!! After about a half hour, I am transferred to a different department that needs all the information AGAIN. I am told that “Points plus Cash” can only be done on the website and there is a problem with the website so, if I give them my number, they will call me “in 20 minutes to a half hour”. Needless to say, I never got a call.

Attempt #2:

Next day I try again with the similar results!! This time, customer service gives me a different number to call and I am assured they will be able to help me. Another call… repeat information…. Again I am eventually told that “they are having problems with the web site, try again in the morning!!

It is now three days later and I have still not been able to book my second night.

I estimate I have wasted about four hours total, TRYING TO SPEND MONEY TO PAY FOR A ROOM!!!

I understand that internet issues happen, but why can’t customer service let me know up front and why can’t a work around be found if issues will persist for four days!!!

Customer service will be happy to book a room on points or at the full nightly rate, but they can not help me with “Points plus Cash” even though the error message instructs me to call.

I don’t understand why you even have a customer loyalty plan with options that are not really available.

In addition, due to these unsuccessful attempts, both cards I attempted to use during various attempts, have been flagged for fraud!!

I am deeply saddened by this situation, since we have been enjoying Choice services for many years.
 
Jun 2, 2018
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#3
Have you used our Company Contacts and sent this to Choice?

http://www.elliott.org/company-contacts/choice-hotels-international/

Please read the instructions on our Company Contact main page and follow the directions to write and escalate if necessary.

Sadly, I guess I made a rookie mistake and I just blanketed every contact with my email. I understand now that I should have worked my way up the list.

Sort of seems everyone should know how bad their system is, since I am trying to pay (admittedly discounted, with points) for a room.

Shouldn't they want to take my money?!?!??
 

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
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#4
Websites are not infallible ...they can be compromised for days. Nobody ever tells CS much. Can you book the second night on points right now to be sure you have it ... then try next week to book the points/cash room and cancel the points only res? In my eyes, points/cash is about the best thing to ever happen to loyalty programs (I just discovered that you can buy Delta seats with your SkyMiles combined with DL;s American Express), so I hope you can make this work. Read the cancellation policies very carefully before you book.
 
Jun 2, 2018
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#5
Websites are not infallible ...they can be compromised for days. Nobody ever tells CS much. Can you book the second night on points right now to be sure you have it ... then try next week to book the points/cash room and cancel the points only res? In my eyes, points/cash is about the best thing to ever happen to loyalty programs (I just discovered that you can buy Delta seats with your SkyMiles combined with DL;s American Express), so I hope you can make this work. Read the cancellation policies very carefully before you book.
Thanks for your comment, but NO that is not right. Your response seems to be "It's screwed up, get over it."

The answer should be this needs to be fixed!! It is not right for Choice Privileges to make an offer they are not prepared to fulfill.
 
Jun 2, 2018
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#6
BTW, this is like Lucy holding the ball for Charlie Brown: the offer keeps appearing, but they pull it back at the last minute Over and over again :-(

(I just tried again, same result.)
 
Jun 2, 2018
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#7
UPDATE: I did make the reservation using additional points. I no longer have enough points for my return trip in the Fall.
 
Jun 2, 2018
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#9
Paul, do what my post 2 advises. You need to let the Executives know your opinion. There really isn’t much more we can advise you to do because we can’t change their system- they have to do it and they have to hear it from their customers.
Understood and done. I'll let you know if I get a reply.