New IHG Best Rate Guarentee Issue (11/2017)

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Mar 27, 2017
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#1
Hey guys,
Got a new issue here with the IHG BRG, and I really could use your help.

Short version
Make a reservation on Sunday for the Presidential Suite at the Crowne Plaza Jerusalem.
Cost is $1715 before taxes etc.
Match to competing website which has lower based rate, and lower total cost.
Terms are same for both reservations (e.g. both have same cancellation policy, etc)
(screenshots were taken and sent in with the claim)

Get an email back within the hour of filing my claim:

Thank you for contacting our office regarding our Best Price Guarantee in reference to rates at the Crowne Plaza Jerusalem. We appreciate the opportunity to assist you with this matter.

We would like to inform you that we are currently researching the room accommodation you have found on *******. Once we have checked the lower rate and room accommodation you have found on the third party website; and verified that all the Terms and Conditions have been met, you will receive an immediate update from our office.

If you have questions or need assistance, please feel free to contact us.


Sincerely,

****
Best Price Guarantee Helpdesk
IHG
I found this odd, as I have never gotten such an email. Usually the email tells me why I dont qualify, etc.
I don't hear anything the rest of Sunday. Silence again on Monday and Tuesday. So today (Wednesday) I send out an email asking if there is any status update on my claim. And this is the response I get:

Thank you for contacting our office regarding the Best Price Guarantee; we appreciate the opportunity to assist you with this.

As checked, your reservation under confirmation no. **** has already been cancelled with cancellation number ****. Please be reminded that in order to qualify for the Guarantee, guests must have an active reservation with a confirmation number that we are able to locate in our database.

Please note that this list in not exhaustive and to view the complete Terms and Conditions of the program, you may visit www.ihg.com/bestprice and click on the corresponding link found on the website.

If you need further assistance, please feel free to contact us.


Best Regards,

***
Best Price Guarantee Helpdesk
IHG
That's a problem. I never canceled my reservation (Why would I prior to hearing back about the free night??), not only that, but I never even got a notification about my reservation getting canceled!

Can one of the amazing advocates here assist me with this? Something sounds quite fishy that my reservation goes missing (after they acknowledge getting the BRG claim) and that is the reason why it can't be honored.
I almost wonder if they canceled it, just so that it wouldn't have to be honored (just venting here, i wouldn't say that to them)

Anyways, is someone willing to assist me here?

 
Feb 9, 2016
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#2
did you reply to them via email or phone and ask when the reservation was cancelled and who cancelled it, citing that you never called to cancel?

stop wondering and start asking

on the flip side, did you book on the lower rate?
 
Mar 27, 2017
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#3
I did not book the lower rate, I'd rather it be Free!
I did email them stating that I neither canceled, nor received any notification of my reservation getting canceled.
This is their reply:

Thank you for your prompt response.

We will contact the hotel directly to confirm what happened to your reservation. Once we received any update, you will receive an email from our office.

We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience. If you need further assistance, please feel free to contact us.

 
Feb 9, 2016
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#4
ah, got it. so if you can find a lower rate your stay is free?

can you log on to your rewards account and check he status of the reservation you made?
 
Mar 27, 2017
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#5
Sadly I did not log into my account when I made the reservation.
But when I click on "Modify Reservation" on my confirmation email it opens a page which says:
Your reservation number **** has been cancelled.
Your cancellation number is ****. Please write down the number or print this page for your record.
 
Jul 27, 2016
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#7
If there hadn't been a lower rate on the other site, would you have booked the room and stayed anyway? In other words, are you trying to game the BRG program to get a free night in the Presidential Suite?
 

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
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#8
If you would make a list of the facts in chronological order, without cutting and pasting emails back and forth, perhaps we can help you. I have lots of experience with IHG; I've been platinum with them for years. I find it difficult to suss out the issues without a clear, concise narrative of what happened.
 
Jan 11, 2017
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#9
Have you ever paid more than let say $300 for a night in any hotel?
I think you bluffed, they called your bluff.
Not logging in made this reservation immediately very suspicious.
They have the right to refuse the brg if they suspect the misuse of it.
 
Mar 27, 2017
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#10
If you would make a list of the facts in chronological order, without cutting and pasting emails back and forth, perhaps we can help you. I have lots of experience with IHG; I've been platinum with them for years. I find it difficult to suss out the issues without a clear, concise narrative of what happened.
Facts:
Sunday - Make reservation for Presidential Suite @ Crowne Plaze Jerusalem (9:15am EST)
Immediately Send in my BRG request
Sunday - Receive email from IHG (not a standard email, this was sent by one of their employees. Email says they will be checking the 3rd party site, to see if the rate is lower, if the terms and conditions match, etc. I am given a reference number. Email says IHG will be getting back to me. (1:17pm EST)
Monday - Silence
Tuesday - Silence
Wednesday - I email them asking about the status of my claim (10:16am EST)
Wednesday - IHG responds that they can't honor the BRG since the reservation was cancelled (1:34pm EST)
I immediately post here, and I also email them, asking why the resevation was canceled, as I did not authorize it, nor was I informed prior that my reservation was canceled. (1:55pm EST)
Wednesday - IHG emails me saying that they will contact the hotel directly about my reservation, and that they are sorry for any inconvenience. (2:20pm EST)
 
Mar 27, 2017
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#11
If you would make a list of the facts in chronological order, without cutting and pasting emails back and forth, perhaps we can help you. I have lots of experience with IHG; I've been platinum with them for years. I find it difficult to suss out the issues without a clear, concise narrative of what happened.
I realize that I didn't post useful info like the reference number, reservation number etc, I'd prefer not posting those things publicly, is that ok?
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#12
If the reservation was not made with the normal account log in is there a possibility that it was canceled as a potential fraudulent charge by credit card?

Is it your normal travel pattern to book a hotel room that costs over $1700 for one night?

What does it mean that the room was booked and then immediately a request was sent in to get it free. Was there any intention of actually booking and paying? This almost sounds like it was done in bad faith.
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#14
But could the hotel have tried to run an authorization to check the validity of the card? I do not know the protocol with $1,700 per night rooms
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
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#15
Sometimes with those rates is that when you actually go to book them the may not really be available. Why didn't or don't you just book it on the site you saw?

I have to agree with my colleague that perhaps they thought this was a bad faith booking- if you knew the other price why didn't you just book it through the other site?
 
Mar 27, 2017
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#16
1. I can no longer find that rate at the 3rd party site
2. I have every right to utilize the BRG promotion that IHG is offering. They make specific rules to ensure that the program isn't being abused. Trying to get an expensive room to qualify for the BRG is not considered an abuse, per their T&C
 
Apr 3, 2016
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#17
If there hadn't been a lower rate on the other site, would you have booked the room and stayed anyway? In other words, are you trying to game the BRG program to get a free night in the Presidential Suite?
From the looks of the posts, you seem to be just trying to get a free night in a luxury hotel. While this may technically be allowed by the best price policy, it might not be appreciated by IHG. The intent of the program is to give people who are intending to pay for the hotel the best price, not to have people stay for free.

I get the feeling that you would not have paid for the hotel at the third party site price.
If IHG offered you the room today at the lower price (or even 10% off the lower price), would you pay it and go? If you would not, I would not count on the reservation being uncancelled if you never really intended to pay for the room from the very beginning.
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#18
Is there a chance that the 3rd party site really did not have the room available at that price -- as Neil suggested -- as no immediate confirmation? I have seen that complaint with some 3rd party OTAs with airline tickets. People book online for a flight and get a call later saying the price is higher.
 
Likes: Neil Maley
Sep 19, 2015
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#19
I am not sure there is much that can be done. We have no way of knowing if the 3rd party rate was truly an available rate.


This reservation likely has the appearance to the hotel of being made in bad faith-- did not sign in to reserve, a rate that cannot be found again, and an outrageously expensive room booked for one night and the immediate attempt to get it for free.
 
Likes: Neil Maley
Sep 19, 2015
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#20
How many times have you tried to get the first night free through the guarantee with IHG?

The terms are pretty specific such as hotel available with immediate confirmation, etc and there is not enough information to actually know what happened. They also do not accept screenshots as evidence.

As the intended stay is only a few days away I suspect no resolution will come before then. If you really want the presidential suite for Sunday then it may be a good idea to book it now and be prepared to pay the $1700 plus taxes for the night.
 
Likes: Neil Maley