You finally arrive – exhausted, hungry, and feeling a little dusty – only to be told that your reservation is not to be found. Before you go postal on the desk manager, take a deep breath. Sometimes the problem is simple; the desk manager could be tired too and may have miss-typed your name.
In the moment
Have your travel companion call the site you used to book the hotel, so they can help you get re-accommodated. If the original hotel doesn’t have availability, ask if there is a sister property where you can be rebooked at no extra charge. You should also ask for transportation (or a voucher) to get you there.
If the hotel where you are rebooked is not of the same standard, ask what they will be refunding you. Don’t be afraid to ask for restaurant credit too.
Next time, Be prepared
- Carry the phone numbers with you. The number of the hotel, the number of the service or travel agent through which you booked the room, etc.
- If you are arriving late, contact the hotel and let them know, so they don’t release your room to the tired traveler standing in front of them at the same desk.
- A printed confirmation, or one you can show the manager on your mobile, can go a long way toward making your case.
For peace of mind, the best strategy is to call the hotel a few days before your arrival to verify the reservation. Even if you booked the room through a third party, call the hotel directly. This is especially true if you made special requests, such as adjoining rooms, to keep an eye on the kids, for example. Special requests don’t always get through the online booking sites to the hotel itself. Verify those requests in advance and you’ll feel a lot better about having a room when you arrive.