NEW YORK -- On March 3, 2009, I booked a hotel room reservation for the Queen Mary Hotel in Long Beach, California using BookInHotels because they had the cheapest rate. The reservation date was for March 21, 2009. My friend and I had an awful stay and when we checked out on March 22, 2009. We spoke with the Queen Mary's general manager. He apologized, and said he would refund the room rate. He informed us that because we booked the room through BookInHotels, that the hotel would reimburse the website that we booked the room through, and then the website would refund our money.
I called to speak with him on the following Monday, March 23, 2009 and his secretary and she let me know that she was aware of the refund and she would take care of it. I had sent an email to BookInHotels on March 23, 2009 to let them know of my complaint. (See attached e-mail.) BookInHotels responded to my email on March 24, 2009 and stated that that it could take up to 20 working days to resolve this matter.
On March 27, 2009, the hotel manager's secretary left me a voice mail to let me know that the funds had been returned to BookInHotels. I checked my account for a few days and did not see my funds so I called the bank to see if they could see any pending credits. They said they did not see anything. I called BookInHotels on April 1, 2009 to check on the status of my refund.
I was not able to reach them by phone because something was wrong with their phone system and you could not choose any options without it giving you the message that the system did not recognize your choice. (This happened several times.) On April 2, 2009, I received an email from BookInHotels stating that the refund had been made to my credit card and the funds would be back in my account in a maximum of 3 working days.
On April 8, 2009, the funds were not in my account, so I called BookInHotels and spoke with a gentleman by the name of ** (very, very rude). He stated that his accounting group was closed and he would not be able to assist me at this time. I asked to speak with a supervisor, and he transferred me to a gentleman by the name of **. ** promised that he would call the next morning because he was in New York (they are really in Turkey with a New York phone number) and their accounting office was in London and he would call me first thing in the morning.
When I did not get a call by 10:00 A.M. PST on April 9, 2009, I called back and spoke with **. He apologized and said that the funds transfer did not get done but he ensured me that it would not take any longer than another 2 to 3 business days. On April 13, 2009, the funds were still not in my account as promised. I once again called and spoke with ** and he stated that he did not remember our conversations (how convenient, as if he was toying with me) and that now it will take the “supplier” to credit my account.
When I asked him who the supplier was, he would not give me an answer. When I asked him how much longer it was going to take, I got the same answer, 2 to 3 business days. When I asked him to speak with the owner or for him to give me the name of the owner, he refused and he hung up on me. When I called back, I got their recording and when I tried to choose an option, the phone did the same thing and it would not let me get any further.
I called my bank to file a claim because I have tried on numerous occasions to resolve this with the merchant and I keep getting the run-around. I believe this company is not legitimate, and is withholding my funds for no reason.
I made one last attempt to call them today, April 21, 2009, and I was told the exact same thing, that I would get my refund in 2 to 3 days. I have now contacted the Better Business Bureau, my banking institution, and I filed a police report with my local police department. If you want to book a trip, please do not use this company.
I have just come back from a weekend in Brussels. I booked with BookInHotels over a month ago and received my confirmation, voucher, and my account was debited immediately. When I arrived to check in on Friday night, I was told that BookInHotels had sent a cancellation to the hotel and my booking was no longer valid. After many failed attempts at calling their customer service, I sent them an email and received an email a day later saying:
"We regret to inform you that due to the financial issues between our supplier and us we cannot honor your booking, therefore full refund is going to be made to your credit card provided. We sincerely apologize for the late notification. For any questions or concerns, you may contact our customer representatives via e mail or via our contact phones at any time. This is a very regrettable incident and we are very sorry indeed. Thank you for your kind understanding. Kind regards."
I then replied - asking when exactly and for more information and was given this response: " Please note that refunds will be made in the form of a credit to your card account. All credit card refunds will be processed in a timely manner. Typically, this process takes several weeks (business days) for the instruction to leave our company account. The refunds process depends on your billing cycle with the cooperated credit card company. Once the refunded amount leaves our company account, it may take up to two months time for the proceeds to appear back in your account. Customer Service, Bookinhotels.com"
Whenever I try to call their Customer Service, I get no response or an answering machine. I have yet to understand WHEN I will receive my money back or to speak to a responsible person in charge. I spoke with the hotel I had initially reserved my booking with and they were more than helpful, providing me with copies of all confirmation/ cancellation documents. As it currently stands, I am over 300€ out-of-pocket because I had to pay last minute rates for the hotel at my destination and also the amount initially charged. In my humble opinion - do not book with this company.
The money you save is not worth the time trying to get a hold of these folks if something needs to change. You have to pay for the whole hotel stay at once, which was fine when there appeared to be a $60 savings than the rest of reservation services provided. However being in America, trying to book a hotel in America seems to be a problem.
Their offices are apparently located in London and you can only reach a customer service representative during London hours, no 800 number to use, a long-distance American number. So basically you have to call between 2 AM and 12 noon, eastern time if you want to reach an actual person. Then we got hit with a foreign exchange fee, because apparently their bank is in Istanbul, Turkey. Nothing, and I mean nothing, I read all the fine print and obscure pages on their website, mentioned that fee.
Now I made reservations for my boss to travel to New York from Tuesday through Friday in August. You have until one week before the reservation to make any changes. And the changes can only be done via fax or email. I did both and on the date that they said I could make changes. The changes have not been made, I've called twice and are told they have not heard from the hotel. I call the hotel and at least my boss is registered, but the hotel cannot make any changes. I still have not heard from anyone about the changes, but they definitely have all the money for the stay!
Needless to say, we will NEVER use BookInHotels.com ever again. It is just not worth the "savings" if there is any reason to contact the company. Please heed my warning, use one of the regular services like Expedia, Travelocity or contact the hotel directly. Do not use this fly-by-night reservation service. Learn from my mistake!
On January 22/09 I made 2 hotel bookings with this company for reservations at the Metcourt Laurel in Johannesburg on August 18/09 and Sept 14/09. My credit card was duly charged on Jan 22/09. Then on Aug 14/09 I was advised that my Aug 18 booking was cancelled due to some spurious problem with their supplier. I emailed a complaint and they assured me that my subsequent booking was OK. Sure enough, on Sept 12 I was advised that the 14th booking was also cancelled for the same reason. They apologized for the late notice in both cases but the hotel advised me they had cancelled 2 weeks prior to my arrival!
To-date I have had no refund. I have tried to contact their U.S. phone number but all you get is a recording in a language that I cannot even recognize, let alone understand! DO NOT USE BOOK IN HOTELS FOR ANY REASON.
These guys have great deals but if you have to make any changes, their customer service is HORRIBLE. I canceled my reservation before their deadline and I did receive confirmation from them. Everything seemed fine, but what you don't know at the time is that you have to wait 3 weeks minimum for your refund. It has been 4 MONTHS since our holiday and I still have NOT received my money back!
As another customer here (**) said, their office is in London, very difficult to reach and when you do they don't answer or when they do, you're dealing with someone with a very heavy Indian accent on a very poor quality connection, so you can imagine. You can reach them by email however, but all they keep telling me is that they can't help the delay due to the "banking system." That's BS, 4 months I've been waiting and still nothing. They are not worth the saving as I have now literally paid for 2 hotels on the same trip. Very disappointing.
Last July I booked 2 overnights on this website but unfortunately I was unable to travel on the dates booked. I cancelled the booking well in advance of the date I was due to travel and I am still waiting for my refund. I have emailed this website at least ten times but I was given every excuse under the sun and now they are not replying to my emails at all. DO NOT USE THIS WEBSITE TO BOOK ANYTHING - YOU WILL REGRET IT!!
I booked accommodation through BookInHotels 4 months ago and yesterday, the hotel's receptionist told me over the phone they had cancelled the booking! No reason given, money taken from the account (but of course), nobody to answer the phone and false email address. I'm furious, what a bunch of crooks! It's the 1st time I write a review but it's worth spreading the word. My advice: stay away from them!
The same experience as everybody....booked rooms in Berlin, paid upfront, got a mail cancelling the room with a commitment to refund the payment. Nothing is ever returned, despite several calls and mails. Almost 300 EUR down the drain...NEVER use this fraud company!!
I have had the same experience as others. We had confirmation and voucher - paid in full. When we arrived at the hotel they said BookInHotels had sent a cancellation and we had to pay a second time. We were told by the hotel that this has happened at least three times in the week prior to our arrival. We still have not received our refund and no other company takes this long to process a refund. The hotel did have rooms available so it was not an issue of supply of rooms.