Hampton discriminated

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Feb 4, 2018
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#1
Stayed at the Hampton in Fernandina Beach, Fla with a reservation that required 3 days stay with payment immediately charged to cc when reservation was made. The cancellation policy was 24 days prior to the auto concours event on Amelia Island. Weather circumstances impacted the event duration. We were leaving 1 day early as was another guest, who was in front of me at the sign in desk. She asked for and was assured of a refund of the 1 day stay via a check being sent directly to her. Upon our request for the same consideration...we were denied. Understood the conditions when we made the reservation, however actually being a witness to a waiver of the terms for another guest and being denied the same is discrimination...at least in my book. Given that the room rate was event adjusted ($376.00) would have liked to received the same consideration.

Contact with Hilton Guest Services was less than successful; they offered a voucher for stay at any Hampton within a year, which given our not frequent travel would be unused. Any and all help would be appreciated.
 
Jan 6, 2015
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#2
For clarification:
  • How did you book your stay (i.e., the Hotel, via a Travel Agent, or using Expedia, Priceline, etc.)?
  • What reason did the hotel give for denying your request?
  • Did you call or email Hilton for resolution?
The answers will provide helpful insight ...
 
Feb 4, 2018
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The reservation was made directly with the Hampton Inn; being a special event reservation it had to be made directly with the facility.

The only reason given for denying the request is that the cancellation period was well past (24 days prior to the event0. It also seemed to be relevant that because the other guest was flying and might be impacted by the storm whereas we were driving and might not be, the waiver was offered to her and a check to be sent whereas we were denied. Raised the feeling of being discriminated against .... no response.

Did contact Hilton Guest Assistance regarding the situation and their resolution was to issue a voucher for a 1 night stay at any Hampton. We have not responded to that offer. Be mindful that they were offering a "regular rate" voucher totally disregarding that for this event the Hampton had quite a higher room rate in effect. Have checked the current Hilton contacts and as of probably the last 10 mins. emailed the current VP of Customer Service.
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
13,380
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New York
www.promalvacations.com
#5
The reservation was made directly with the Hampton Inn; being a special event reservation it had to be made directly with the facility.

The only reason given for denying the request is that the cancellation period was well past (24 days prior to the event0. It also seemed to be relevant that because the other guest was flying and might be impacted by the storm whereas we were driving and might not be, the waiver was offered to her and a check to be sent whereas we were denied. Raised the feeling of being discriminated against .... no response.

Did contact Hilton Guest Assistance regarding the situation and their resolution was to issue a voucher for a 1 night stay at any Hampton. We have not responded to that offer. Be mindful that they were offering a "regular rate" voucher totally disregarding that for this event the Hampton had quite a higher room rate in effect. Have checked the current Hilton contacts and as of probably the last 10 mins. emailed the current VP of Customer Service.
How do you know that other people booked the same nonrefundable rate you did? Maybe they paid more and had a refundable rate. But you contracted for 3 nights and wanted to change your contract.

Nonrefundable means just that. And you were asking for early check out so it had nothing to do with the 24 days before. The hotel can’t resell you room because you want the leave early due to bad weather. Hotels would go bankrupt if they had to refund people that left early because weather was bad.
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#7
Does the OP know that the rate was exactly the same for the other traveler and that the person arrived the same day as the OP --- and how can there be a claim of discrimination -- maybe the other traveler paid more for the room. At this point there is no reason to accuse the hotel of discrimination. Doing that will not help.
 
Jan 6, 2015
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#8
I thought the revealing statement made here by @autocrazy was:

"the other guest was flying and might be impacted by the storm whereas we were driving and might not be"
It is against that backdrop that the result could be unfair, I think. Neil's point about the room rate (non-refundable vs. refundable) is a good one and may be accurate, but if the reason for the early departure for both was, in fact, an approaching storm (hurricane?), then I think it's reasonable for @autocrazy to be considered for a refund. And he/she has already been offered a voucher for another stay which, to me, says that Hilton understands his/her reason for checking out early.
 
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Neil Maley

Moderator
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Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
13,380
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www.promalvacations.com
#9
I thought the revealing statement made here by @autocrazy was:

It is against that backdrop that the result could be unfair, I think. Neil's point about the room rate (non-refundable vs. refundable) is a good one and may be accurate, but if the reason for the early departure for both was, in fact, an approaching storm (hurricane?), then I think it's reasonable for @autocrazy to be considered for a refund. And he/she has already been offered a voucher for another stay which, to me, says that Hilton understands his/her reason for checking out early.
If that is the reason- then I agree with you. We need our letter writer to come back and explain how they knew that this was the reasoning.

Autocrazy, have you written to all the contacts we show on our list?
 
Likes: VoR61
Dec 7, 2017
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#10
discrimination based on what? status? type of room purchased? use of a third party booking agent?

discrimination is based on law, not being angry you didn't get a refund.
If you bought a non-refundable rate then its non-refundable. You don't have any dates in your post - so we have no idea when it was -

i will point out that the 2017 Concours on Amelia Island was in March 2017 - there were no hurricanes in March 2017 impacting florida. . .
 
Likes: jsmithw
Jan 6, 2015
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#11
According to Sports Car Digest:
  • The Amelia Island Concours 2017 was held March 9-11
  • With a near-certain forecast for rain on the Concours’ traditional Sunday date, Bill Warner and his team made the unprecedented decision to move the event up a day to Saturday.
So it seems that those who booked a stay in anticipation of the Sunday event were thwarted by the weather. In view of that event change, I think a refund for Sunday is not an unreasonable request, though it would certainly be considered "an exception" ...
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
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Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
13,380
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www.promalvacations.com
#12
Hmm- this is an odd situation. So the other party who received a refund - that had nothing to do with them flying or not. So if an exception was made for one, it should have been made for both IF the booking circumstances were exactly the same.

On the other hand - the hotel is the one left holding the bag by losing revenue for people checking out early so I understand them standing behind saying no refunds. But unless we can verify that the other people booked the exact same rate for the exact same says - how can we say yes there should be a refund or no there shouldn't. Maybe the other couple never received a check.
 
Likes: VoR61
Jan 6, 2015
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#13
I agree Neil - too many unknowns. When the event was moved up, did the other guest change her flight and that became the mitigating reason for the refund? If so, that would still have been a goodwill gesture. And was the other guest an "honors" member or maybe, as you opined, booked a refundable stay?

But in the end, @autocrazy can only appeal and see what more Hilton/Hampton will do ...
 
Likes: Neil Maley
Sep 19, 2015
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#14
I am confused about somethings. Did the OP know the traveler who checked out early and was "assured a refund of the one day stay"... or did the OP just overhear the conversation? Is it not a little odd that a check would be sent as a refund instead of refund to a credit card? What does the OP know about this traveler and circumstances? What if they were event sponsors with different categories of stay?

If I overhear that a passenger is able to get a refund for canceling their flight does that mean I should demand a full refund when I know my ticket was non refundable?

There is just too much unknown.
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
13,380
13,047
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#15
I am confused about somethings. Did the OP know the traveler who checked out early and was "assured a refund of the one day stay"... or did the OP just overhear the conversation? Is it not a little odd that a check would be sent as a refund instead of refund to a credit card? What does the OP know about this traveler and circumstances? What if they were event sponsors with different categories of stay?

If I overhear that a passenger is able to get a refund for canceling their flight does that mean I should demand a full refund when I know my ticket was non refundable?

There is just too much unknown.
I agree. I am quite confused by the whole story.
 
Jan 6, 2015
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#16
One response by @autocrazy speaks to the confusion, not only by us but by him/her:

"Raised the feeling of being discriminated against .... no response"​

This would have been the opportunity for the desk clerk to offer an explanation (i.e., elite-level member exempted from the policy, booked a refundable rate, one of the event sponsors, etc.). But ... "no response". Nothing to explain why the difference except for the "24 day cancellation policy" which seems to apply to everyone and would have no bearing on an early checkout.

Perhaps the clerk was prohibited from sharing such information, but I can see where the silence could be confusing to anyone and may create a sense of discrimination.

Certainly there are many unanswered questions here, but placing myself in this guest's position I would wonder also ...
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#17
The hotel staff answered the question as to why the OP did not qualify for a refund. Hotel staff should not give out information on another party's reservation or finances to an unrelated party that overheard a conversation. As someone who self insures a lot of trips (i.e. pays for flexible fares and rates) I would not be happy with any information being given out on my business transactions to an unrelated third party.

Discretion does not automatically equal discrimination.

A check being mailed already hints at a different reservation as the OP was charged on their card, and refunds are usually given in the form of payment made.
 
Jan 6, 2015
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#18
I have since found two pieces of information that I thought would be helpful for this and other cases. The first is about past weather conditions, for which I landed here:


Entering the dates for this event, the site shows 0.00 inches of precipitation. This site also allows you to easily look forward or back one day at a time.

The second is related to Hilton's early check-out policy. After failed attempts to find any specifics online, I called their reservations line and was informed that the policy is set by each hotel, without any guarantee of a refund. I posed examples like Hilton Honors, fully refundable, non-refundable, and advanced non-refundable and the answer came back the same: it's up to each hotel - they can choose any (lawful) criteria they wish to refund or refuse to refund any portion of the stay. Nothing is "automatic" for early departure refunds.
 
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Likes: jsn55

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
13,380
13,047
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#19
I posted the information about early checkout above as well- if you check out early- prices can change.

It’s odd that the event holders went so far as to actually change the date to a day earlier and there was no rain. There has really be more to this story than we are seeing and unless autocrazy comes back to update us, we are “spinning our wheels”. The only advice we can offer is to use our contacts to write.