Tony Levy and his family are big fans of Riu Hotels & Resorts, a Spanish chain of all-inclusive properties with locations in the Caribbean and Mexico.
Six months before getting married in her hometown of Santa Rosa, Calif., Pamela Baker-Miller made hotel arrangements for some of the guests visiting from out of town. She called Hilton Sonoma Wine Country and reserved a block of rooms — but not before getting assurances that she wouldn’t be on the hook for the accommodations.
Tami Alloway needs to cancel her hotel stay because of “extenuating” personal circumstances. Just one problem: the reservations are non-refundable.
Question: I recently reserved a hotel room at the Hawthorn Suites in Charleston, SC, through Priceline for a family trip with my mother. A few days later, my sister’s children were removed from their home and taken into state custody. I was awarded foster care for all three of them and they have been with me since then.
The older children, prior to removal, were homeschooled, so the dates of the trip were not an issue. With them being in my care, they are now in public schooling. The children range in age from 22 months through 9 years of age.
When we realized that the time frame would mean I would still have the children with me in March (and not during spring break, so they would miss a week of school), I called to cancel the reservation and was told there is no refund, even in extreme situations.
Some hotel amenities aren’t that important. Some are.
Having an accessible room, which is required under some state and federal laws, is a biggie. So when John and Carolyn Falabella asked me to look into their hotel’s failure to offer them the room they reserved, I knew it could be serious.
But a closer look at their case one shows just how frustrating it can be to fix a major problem like this, particularly with a chain hotel. I’m not sure if I can make this right, but read on and let me know if you think I should get involved in mediating this dispute.
Falabella had reservations at a Comfort Inn in Arlington, Va. He says he’d made a booking for an accessible room through Comfort Inn’s 800-number, and that he received a confirmation.
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.
Question: I have a concern that I tried addressing with a specific Days Inn and with Wyndham, which owns Days Inn, but have not received a response. I recently stayed at the Days Inn in Fernandina Beach, Fla. I made a reservation for a non-smoking room and was given a smoking room when I checked it.
I spoke with a manager, who told me he was sorry he couldn’t offer me a non-smoking room. The only rooms the hotel had left to sell were smoking rooms.
So, my question to Wyndham is: Is it their policy to accept a reservation for a non-smoking room when no such room exists? I wrote to Wyndham, but after several emails, it stopped answering.
Question: I recently booked a hotel room for a three-night stay at the DoubleTree Beach Resort by Hilton Hotel Tampa Bay – North Redington Beach through Expedia. I opted to pay the higher rate of $239 a night to guarantee a beachfront room. The lower rate of $199 was refundable but would not guarantee the oceanview room.
My husband and I decided it was worth the risk of losing our $800 so that we can have the oceanview. This was risky since we have four small children and anything could have happened to force us to cancel our reservation.
When we arrived at the hotel on Friday, March 2nd, they gave me a landview room and told me that Expedia booked me a landview room. I thought once I called Expedia, the issue would be resolved but after an hour on the phone with a supervisor who was extremely rude, I had no such luck.