Hotels.com Complaint - Reservation and Cancellation Fees
OREGON -- I made reservations through Hotels.com for a room, several months in advance. I found that Hotels.com charged my credit card for the full amount the day I made the reservation. This is the email I sent to them, and their reply:
"Comments: I would like you to know that I am VERY displeased with a transaction I recently had with HOTELS.COM. I reserved a hotel for two nights in Bend, Oregon. The next day my credit card/debit card had been charged for the full amount of the reservation. I have never heard of this before, I do know that reserving a hotel through the hotel company does require a credit card to hold the reservation, which is fine. I have never been charged for the reservation for the full amount before I actually arrived. I emailed your company about this, and was given a reply of ..."Please be advised that when booking a reservation through hotels.com, you are charged on the date of booking. This is so that we may confirm and guarantee your reservation at the lowest discount rate available at that time. We apologize if you were not aware of this when you submitted your reservation request. Thank you for using our service."....Well, I checked with the hotel that you reserved with, and their regular rate IS THE RATE that you claim was a discount rate, so you weren't doing me any great favor to begin with. And so, I went to cancel the reservation on your website, and find I am being charged $25 just for canceling. --OK, this was probably somewhere in the fine print agreement, buried in the 5,000 word document you have to click on to continue with the reservation process. I guess what really makes me mad is the fact that you took $175 from me just for the reservation, which was for July (It is now just January). And then, you charged me $25 to cancel the reservation. I absolutely will not deal with you again, and will tell EVERYONE I know about your way of doing business. Believe me, they will not like the way you do business, either."
Their email reply to me was:
"Thank you for your email. Our records are indicating that this reservation was booked online. In doing so, you agreed to the terms and conditions posted on our website. We apologize for any inconvenience this caused you. Thank you for using our service."
OK--I found the 'Terms and Conditions' section posted on their website, only after having to dig into link upon link. I would think that this type of 'Terms and Conditions' should be shown somewhere a little more noticeable, like where you are actually GOING THROUGH THE PROCESS of making the online reservation.
And so, by Hotels.com taking $175.00 out of my checking account via my debit card (without knowing this for a few days), I had several checks bounce, which was expensive at $33 per NSF charge. And then, I lost another $25 to Hotels.com when I cancelled the reservation to get my money back.
I still have not been credited the $150 I have coming from them for the cancellation. In my opinion, these people, and their website, SUCK. As mentioned, I will tell everyone I know about my only experience with Hotels.com, and do my utmost to prevent it from happening to anyone else. I haven't had this type of trouble with any other travel/reservation website I have used, and will deal directly with the hotels I want to stay at from now on.