Hotels.com literally put my life in danger with a fraudulent booking

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Feb 23, 2018
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#21
Giving a card to the hotel is giving them permission to charge it for any damages or additional charges. Telling them they can't charge it because you don't have sufficient credit to cover the charge means you are not meeting the basic requirement of why the card was needed.

You can book a room with a valid credit card and then pay cash at check out, but at the time you check in the card must have enough credit available to cover the cost of the room.
 
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Apr 10, 2017
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#22
Hello, is this hotels.com?

Has anyone read any of my responses? Just curious...

To the comment from my mom about only having $70 on me I never said that was all I had I said that was what the hotel room would have cost the first one. So who said I went out with only $70 on me and telling me it was Reckless? What was Reckless was actually taking that cab an hour and a half away not getting enough sleep, and then trying to do three and a half hours I'm driving the next day, expensive, and being tired in the morning for not getting enough sleep or find an affordable Hotel, which hotels.com has never let me down finding one no matter the time no matter the day that suits my needs whether cash credit card.

I am curious. Does this mean Hotels.com has booked rooms for you in the past with only cash as payment and no credit card whatsoever?
 
Mar 17, 2015
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#23
No, this is not hotels.com. This is a forum where advocates try to help people solve problems. There should be a link at the top of the page where you can find hotels.com contact information.

I have read through your rambling post, more than once and all your replies. I am sorry I have a different opinion of the situation than you do.

We are all volunteers on this forum so we cannot make hotels.com do anything. You have already received $125, what more do you want from hotels.com?

I understand that you are upset that the customer service rep at hotels.com told you that a hotel would accept cash. This was most likely true, the hotel would accept cash as a payment. What was not explained to you was that the hotel also wants to have a working credit card as a guarantee. If the credit card is maxed out, then for the hotel's purpose, there are insufficient funds as there is not enough credit left on the card to cover incidentals/damages. The hotel policy is not hotels.com fault.

Hotels.com did not help you when the customer service agent sent you to 2 different hotels that would not accept cash as payment without a credit card guarantee. I am not sure I agree with you that hotels.com are experts in anything. Hotels.com is simply a consolidator of hotel rooms that provide them at supposedly reduced rates. They are not a brick and mortar travel agent, I am guessing most if not all of the customer service agents have never had any travel agent experience. The customer service reps are probably paid minimum wage and given basic training on how to search for hotels in a given location. They are by no means experts at knowing each and every hotel policy.

I still think the reps at hotels.com did not understand what you were asking for, or misunderstood the actual hotel's policy. Again, the hotels would accept cash as payment, but you have to be able to have a hold amount on a credit card, a guarantee. No one is saying you tried to pay for the hotel room with a credit card with insufficient funds, what we are all saying is that hotels generally require you to put a credit card on the hotel room to charge for incidentals and damages, which would require that there would be some credit available on the card, which you have repeatedly said you did not have.

Even when checking into a prepaid room, the hotel asks for a credit card, the hotel then runs the credit card to make sure there is something on it, $100 let's say. And that is on a prepaid reservation. I would guess if I did not have a credit card with any funds available, the hotel may still let me stay because the room was prepaid, but it may require a manager override or an experienced employee to allow it to happen, as it would go against hotel policy.

At the end of the day, you traveled away from home, and it seems earned some business from it. You did not properly plan for the trip and did not have sufficient funds/ resources available to you at the time of travel.
 
Jun 11, 2018
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#24
I have responded to every rebuttal you all have given me and I appreciate the input and I have and I've explain each one of them. But I don't believe anyone has gone back and read them. I don't know where got the idea I tried to charge a room on an empty credit card or maxed out credit card. Someone else. I'm running around with only $70 in my pocket. Someone else wonders why I'm trying to make my business profitable and then after networking choose to go to hotel and rest rather than make a four and a half hour round-trip that evening and the next morning. And why did I not book this earlier? Because I didn't have the appointments for the next morning until I left the event I was trying to put the evening and morning together in the most efficient and economical way. Hotels.com had always proven to be the solution. As I said their prices where affordable and they had always gone out of their way to make sure my bookings went exactly as planned.
let's put this as simple as we can....

Hotels.com have vendors that fit every situation. I have paid cash for a security deposit I have had Resort fees, and security deposit waved at the request of them to the hotel. I have been comped a night Within 30 minutes of having a hotel restaurant overcharge my credit card to make up for the inconvenience Everything all of you have said that cannot happen has and continually happened for the past 5 years I had no reason to doubt it could happen again on this occasion.
Hotels.com truly was the obvious choice as a Hotel expert!
Previously one of you stated that I wanted hotels.com to make the hotel go against their own policy and they would not do that. Then someone else just said hotels.com went against their own policy to try to help me. Neither of those comments make sense. I asked hotels.com to provide me with a booking that I have had many times before. This was not unusual despite what you think. Why can none of you see that a simple "we do not have that available"

And if there policy agreed with your opinions they could have added " all of our hotels require a credit card for check in as the only acceptable form of currency."
That is a straightforward honest and only answer I should have gotten.

I'm sorry but if they are a professional business giving me false hope as to where I can stay, knowing I would not be able to ( what was this, a fingers-crossed situation ??) Spending how much time on the phone arguing with me and listen to me cry, wasting numerous employees time, and then eventually giving away $125.
I'm not a business major but I don't see the profit in that any of that. They have a script and know what to say to every situation so who lost the page that says we can't do that?
 
Jun 11, 2018
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#25
I am going to thank you all kindly for your responses and then I'm going to leave this for forum because no one has Reg my replies or cares to find out if they are right or not. No credit card held this booking as a payment, hotels.com knew that and took my credit card payment to Simply hold the reservation. I was not trying to rent it or fool anyone I was up front that it was empty at the moment which was why I was calling in in the first place, again missed the point. The hotel would not take cash at all not a penny, credit card only not just to hold the room not as a security deposit no cash accepted no silver crosses the palm of the desk clerk at all ever. If it were simply a matter of a credit card as a security deposit I could have handled that in another manner. Most of you may have major credit cards and savings accounts and lines of credits, there is still a large majority of this country that work strictly on cash and only what we can afford at the time and within our means. And does that mean we're cutting it close to the penny? you better believe it does sometimes! that's why hotels.com service is so important to the individual consumer like me and many others. they always knew where I could save that last penny, they always new my limitations and goals and did everything they could to meet those and they did!

If I love you all right, then please explain to me how I managed to book upwards of 60 + hotel rooms every year for three to four years, without ever having a major credit card , using only prepaid debit and cash, and a good majority of those times giving my ATM debit card number to Simply hold the reservation until check in without it ever being charged?

And I'm not even saying anything bad about them! I'm praising them for the service they give me over the years it's been amazing! Which is where my faith in them came from on that evening, and why it is hurtful but they couldn't just give me a simple no is in fact what I requested was unattainable.

all I ever requested from them was a simple no or yes and I cannot find a hotel that takes cash, and after calling a few that say on the credit cards there are none that will accept only cash I'm sorry we can't help I didn't want this voucher I didn't ask for it, I didn't want a free night my budget was agreeable to the cost of a night. I'm just going to write it off as hotels.com had a lot of fun at my expense, and everyone else can open their eyes now and stop squinting to look down their nose at the lower- middle class manual laborers who live day-to-day and paycheck to paycheck, coupons to roll of pennies. But we get it done one way or another. thank you for your opinions and judgements
 
Oct 13, 2015
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#26
You absolutely have the right to ask hotels.com to train their personnel to turn away requests like yours from now on. The voucher was their way of saying sorry.

When you strip out the emotion and panic from your situation, what you had was a problem with no solution. Any hotel will put some kind of hold for incidentals.

Since you're a businesswoman, let's look at this from the hotel's perspective. According to a very cursory search, they run about 5% profit margin, meaning if the room cost $100, they make $5. If they accept you as a guest, they do so knowing that if you trash the room, break the mirror, or even just smoke in it and spill coffee on the mattress, they're looking at a huge loss. So the best case scenario for them is $5 profit. The worst case scenario could be a loss in the hundreds or thousands of dollars depending on damage. I know which one I'd choose. Even if you'd been able to use your voucher you would have run into the same problem.

I don't know if you have the kind of business where you travel a lot but renting cars without a credit card is even harder. They're handing you the keys to their $20,000 asset.

You mention a few times "doing the right thing". I'm in healthcare and you can easily argue that I should provide free care for those who need it. I get it and I'd love to be able to help everyone who can't afford care but the reality is that I have bills to pay as well. Businesses often can't do favors for everyone who asks but it's not because they don't want to. And when you run into this situation yourself, don't beat yourself up for saying no because you can't afford to say yes all the time.

You sound young (but I could be wrong) and I hope you take this as a learning experience and best of luck with your business.
 
Jul 27, 2016
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#27
Most of you may have major credit cards and savings accounts and lines of credits, there is still a large majority of this country that work strictly on cash
Actually, over 3/4 of American adults have a (non-prepaid) credit card. The unbanked are a sizable portion of the population, but they're not even close to "a large majority."
 

Neil Maley

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#28
Credit cards with credit on them are necessary if you travel. Take this as a learning experience- you cannot rent a hotel room without enough credit in your card to cover damages that might occur even if you are paying cash.

There is really nothing else we can say here.
 
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Jun 30, 2017
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#29
Hello, is this hotels.com?

Has anyone read any of my responses? Just curious...

To the comment from my mom about only having $70 on me I never said that was all I had I said that was what the hotel room would have cost the first one. So who said I went out with only $70 on me and telling me it was Reckless? What was Reckless was actually taking that cab an hour and a half away not getting enough sleep, and then trying to do three and a half hours I'm driving the next day, expensive, and being tired in the morning for not getting enough sleep or find an affordable Hotel, which hotels.com has never let me down finding one no matter the time no matter the day that suits my needs whether cash credit card. I'm a single mother trying to run a business and I'm always trying to save as much as I can. And I made three new clients that evening and had appointments to sit down with them the next morning. My reasoning using hotels.com at that time we're solid, safe and frugal, pardon me. I do what I have to do and I expect the people around me who take on certain roles to do what they have to do. Hotels.com has always been the hotel expert and they put me everywhere I requested before. Why can't anyone answer my simple question? How did it help me for the representative send me to a hotel knowing full well there policy was not in my best interest? I do not want her to change their policy or fight it I did not ask that. If there was no such thing wouldn't the expert have told me she's unable to complete my booking as no such Hotel exist, instead of all of you?

and I did not try to pay for the room with a credit card with insufficient funds. I told the representative there were no funds on it but if they had to have a number then I would give her my card but it could not be charged for anything not by her or by the hotel! I made that very clear! Hence the note on the booking that I would be paying in cash and arriving soon! As soon as I got there hotels.com called and told them I would be paying cash and the hotel said no she won't hotels.com said we want her to and she needs to and they said too bad I did not ask for any of that. That was not my choice I had no say in the matter I wanted a hotel that took cash the end! Why couldn't anyone just say they couldn't find one instead of run me around when they already knew I was in a tight situation!
Your posts are not able to be read or understood. Are you using your phone with voice recognition? I cannot comprehend what happened to you, why it happened and what resolution you wish. You appear to have traveled without the resources to do so. Hotels.com can't fix that problem.
 

jsn55

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Dec 26, 2014
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#30
Your posts are not able to be read or understood. Are you using your phone with voice recognition? I cannot comprehend what happened to you, why it happened and what resolution you wish. You appear to have traveled without the resources to do so. Hotels.com can't fix that problem.
My thanks to my colleagues for dissecting this issue so we could understand what happened. The issue here, I think, is that hotels.com is an online booking service. Their call center people are (hopefully) qualified to take your order and give it to a hotel. They're not qualified to do much more. Understanding the type of entity you're dealing with might make your situation a little less murky. You had expectations of one thing, but they are unable to deliver it. I'm glad you got the voucher as a good will gesture.
 

Neil Maley

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#31
Sadly, Lori Ann said she’s not coming back -


“I am going to thank you all kindly for your responses and then I'm going to leave this for forum because no one has Reg my replies or cares to find out if they are right or not”.

We all read her replies and advised her she is not right but she doesn’t want to accept what we are telling her.

This would actually make a good blog story about trying to book a hotel without a valid credit card - you can’t.
 
Jul 27, 2016
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#32
This would actually make a good blog story about trying to book a hotel without a valid credit card - you can’t.
Well, you can, it's just a lot harder, and almost impossible to do online. I have seen signs at checkin occasionally (usually during conventions), where the hotel notifies people that, even for prepaid rooms, they'll either need to provide a valid credit card on checkin or a cash deposit of $X. If you're booking enough in advance, you could contact the hotel, mail them a money order to pay for the room, and then pay a cash deposit on arrival.
 
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Neil Maley

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#33
Well, you can, it's just a lot harder, and almost impossible to do online. I have seen signs at checkin occasionally (usually during conventions), where the hotel notifies people that, even for prepaid rooms, they'll either need to provide a valid credit card on checkin or a cash deposit of $X. If you're booking enough in advance, you could contact the hotel, mail them a money order to pay for the room, and then pay a cash deposit on arrival.
That’s correct. It is very difficult to do period- not a last minute thing. Hotels.com had absolutely no responsibility to even attempt to help the writer - they tried and got bit for it.
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#34
Neil I do agree that this is an interesting topic, the issue of the necessity of a credit/debit card with an available balance when booking a hotel.

I am sorry if the OP thinks I was not paying attention or not sympathetic— that is not the case. There were times in my life when I was juggling bills. So there is an understanding of financial difficulties.

Several years ago I was traveling and my credit card was shut down because of fraud —( yes someone cloned the card when I was out of the country and went shopping so account was closed) many small hotels outside the US only take Visa and MasterCard. So I had to revert to paying cash at these places. It was an ordeal.

Explaining expectations vs reality does not mean that no one is sympathetic— or that one is a company apologist.
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#36
As the OP mentioned that people had not read the posts clearly I went back and made a search on hotel policies and cash payments

first of all a lack of a coherent narrative in what happened. Also avery similar complaint was put on another website last month complaining about hotels.com and it sounds like the OP, complete with

But there are inconsistencies—.in the original post here a credit card is mentioned as having no available funds

But on Thursday the post is

then please explain to me how I managed to book upwards of 60 + hotel rooms every year for three to four years, without ever having a major credit card , using only prepaid debit and cash, and a good majority of those times giving my ATM debit card number to Simply hold the reservation until check in without it ever being charged?

There is a difference between credit and prepaid debit card and debit card attached to a checking account and there may be even more different policies when it comes to prepaid debit cards with hotels and deposits. These cards may all look like credit cards but they are not the same.

So after rereading I have less of an idea as to what happen.

Also the post says this happened just before Mother’s Day and

I still shake when I think about that evening and my children spent Mother's Day in tears thinking that they might not have seen me again.

Yet the complaint on the other website was posted May 6, a full week before Mother’s Day .... and at that point the OP claimed to have already contacted a lawyer..

Also the other posting gives more detailed information on the attempts to get the night comped or paid for by hotels.com and having success with that in the past.

So In an attempt to see if I overlooked something I found out that I am more confused than ever.

But I do wonder if there is a difference in paying with credit, debit, or prepaid debit when it comes to a hotel.
 

Neil Maley

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#37
Most hotels now have signs at check in about the perils of using a debit card because they place a hold on the card at check in that might not drop before they put the actual charge through at check out.

However, the key is whether there is actual credit on any of those cards. You still need to have enough credit on them for the hold the hotel puts on the card at check in.
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#38
When my Visa was shut down for fraudulent purchases in the US while I was traveling in London I had to use a debit card, as AmEx was not accepted at the hotel. I now have another backup card. The deposit was minor — less than $75 as this was a small hotel — which is why no AmEx. I was so annoyed as I was on my way to the hotel from the airport and I got a fraud alert from the credit card company. It was an inconvenience to put it mildly but it was at the end of the trip so it could have been worse.
 
Dec 26, 2014
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#39
There are some good take aways from this saga which is a case study of being outside of the norm in making a hotel booking.
1. Be aware that you need a credit card with an available balance (something like $250.00 for one night stay)
2. Be aware that if you use a debit card the hold will be large (something like $250 for one night stay) and may take a while to be dropped for the actual charges
3. When making a hotel reservation that is outside of the norm, CALL the hotel before leaving to the hotel to verify any information a 3rd party provides
4. Use your smart phone to find local hotels and call them direct. (using a maps application, search for hotels, then call them to verify availability and acceptance of your needs that are outside of the norm)
 
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Neil Maley

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#40
“I am going to thank you all kindly for your responses and then I'm going to leave this for forum “

Since the writer says she is not coming back, I’m going to close this to further replies because there is nothing else posted that’s new.

Royaljewels if you do decide to come back and want to comment any further, just let us know and we can re-open it.
 
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