HOTELS.COM

Hotels.com left me in Paris sans hotel

Iohan/Shutterstock
Iohan/Shutterstock
When Judi McManigal arrives at her hotel in Paris, she discovers she doesn’t have a reservation. Her online travel agency won’t help her. Is she stuck with the bill?

Question: We made a reservation recently on Hotels.com for a hotel in Paris. When we arrived, the hotel informed us that they had canceled the reservation due to an issue with the credit card transaction. Apparently, not all U.S. credit cards are accepted in Europe, which we also learned when we tried to buy train tickets from a machine with the same credit card.

Our hotel told us that they had notified Hotels.com of the credit card issue and cancellation before our arrival. They even showed me a printout of the email. However, Hotels.com never notified us of the credit card problem, nor the cancellation. The hotel had only one night available, so we had to find another hotel at the last minute for the three remaining nights.

We called the Hotels.com number in France, and the agent stated that they had the cancellation in their system. But after speaking with several representatives, Hotels.com refused to put us in another hotel at the same rate.
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Can I get a refund for my stay at the No-Tell Motel?

Wave Media/Shutterstock
Wave Media/Shutterstock

Gladys Martin’s hotel room is uninhabitable, but the property wants to charge her for it, anyway. Is there any way to undo this mistake?

Question: While traveling through Pennsylvania on a college tour with our daughter, my husband and I made a reservation for two nights at a Super 8 through Hotels.com. When we arrived at the hotel late in the evening, we were dismayed to find a hotel with questionable clientele (there was a couple behind us looking for a couple of hours’ stay at the hotel) and a hotel attendant behind a double-panel glass window.

I asked to see the room before signing any paperwork and the attendant declined. He simply gave me a form to fill out with my name and address. Due to the late hour and not having any other viable option for a night’s stay, we agreed to spend the night at the hotel but to check out the following morning as soon as possible.

Although the room had been recently renovated, the carpet was filthy. Our shoes stuck to the carpet. The air conditioner was set at 45 degrees, and it took more than three hours for the room to heat up to 74 degrees. The walls were thin enough that we could hear every move of our neighbor upstairs and of our neighbors around us.
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An extra $55 for taxes on my pre-paid car rental? Seriously?

Photopixel/Shutterstock
Photopixel/Shutterstock
Question: We booked a ten-day vacation package in Cancun, Mexico through Hotels.com that included air, hotel and a rental car. Taxes were included in the price of the rental car.

When we arrived at the Hertz rental counter, we were told there was an additional tax of about $55. I paid the additional tax at checkout, expecting to be reimbursed from Hotels.com.

I’ve written two emails to Hotels.com, but both have gone unanswered. When I called the company, a representative told me the $55 charge was a “deposit” that would be returned to me. But a call to Hertz confirmed it was a tax and no refund was due.
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But no one told me the pool was closed!

Question: I thought I would try to see if you could resolve a problem we had with Hotels.com. My husband searched for hotels in the Wisconsin Dells with indoor water parks. My son, who is in college, was bringing home his other ROTC cadets to see Chicago and go to the Dells during their spring break.
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Hang on — are you sure your hotel’s closed for the season?

Question: I booked a stay in Ocean City, Md., through Hotels.com. When I arrived to check in, I found it was closed for the season. All numbers I was able to find for the hotel — front desk, reservations, housekeeping, and administrative offices — either rang forever or had a voice mail saying that the hotel was closed.
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Can this trip be saved? Charged $281 for three nights I never used

When Carol Pulido tried to check in to the Puerto De Luna Hotel in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, a few months ago, she got some bad news.

The suite she’d reserved and paid for through Hotels.com wasn’t available.

“They said they were overbooked and no longer had any suites, but they could give us two rooms,” she says. “I wasn’t very happy with the arrangement because we wanted to keep our party together. But we went along with it.”
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“We have been ripped off”

Kate Silver didn’t stay at the Hotel Arlecchino in Venice earlier this year, even though she had a confirmation from her online travel agency. Instead, she and her husband, Howard, were “walked” to the Hotel Continental when the Arlecchino was oversold.

Here’s the Arlecchino’s site and here’s the Continental’s site. And I’ll save you the trouble of checking TripAdvisor: 89 percent like Arlecchino; 73 percent recommend the Continental.

So although they aren’t quite the same, they seem to be close enough.

But Silver isn’t happy with her agency, Hotels.com, because for her, the trip was an unqualified disaster.

Question is, how does an online travel agency address a problem like this after the guest has stayed in a hotel?
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Two rooms with one bed — and no refund

Question: I have recently had a problem with Hotels.com, and I hope you can help me. I called them to reserve one room at a Holiday Inn in San Francisco. This was to be a gift for my two granddaughters.

I was sent two email confirmations, which I assumed were duplicates since they both were for one room for two nights. My granddaughters were given two keys when they arrived. They showed the desk clerk the confirmation, but were told the reservation was for two rooms and that they were prepaid.

It turned out that each room had only one bed, so the girls did use both rooms. I received my Visa bill the next day and saw that I was billed for two rooms — two different charges for $302 each.

I called the Holiday Inn and was told that it was Hotels.com’s problem. The reservation that was made was for two rooms, and they had nothing to do with the billing. Hotels.com denies that they made an error, and that because the girls used both rooms, they would not refund the money.

I feel they made the mistake in reserving two rooms, and I should not be made to pay for the extra room, even though it was used. Is this the way they make money? — Nula Fales, Elk Grove, Calif.

Answer: Certainly not. If you only ordered one room, then Hotels.com should have only given you one. Any business that tries to sell you more than you wanted, wouldn’t last very long online, or anywhere.
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Hilarious exchange with Hotels.com makes you wonder: Is anyone reading your complaints?

Reading comprehension is one of the foundations of primary education. (I ought to know. My eight-year-old struggles with his reading assignments from time to time.) But you’d expect a full-grown employee to actually take the time to read and understand something like a complaint email, right?

So would Ned Uyeno, who recently tried to cancel his Hotels.com room in Japan. When the site refunded only one of his rooms, it set off a chain of events that Uyeno is having a hard time comprehending.

Me too.

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