Cancellation Guidelines Update

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Old Nov 10, 14, 6:30 am
  #1  
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Cancellation Guidelines Update

Hi all,

I wanted to share a quick update with you. We are updating our reservation cancellation guidelines to a minimum of 11:59 p.m. local hotel time the day prior to arrival, and you will be required to provide a credit card at the time of booking.

These changes will go into effect on January 1, 2015. As always, cancellation policies may still vary depending on the rate or dates of your reservation, and some hotels have more restrictive policies in place, so please refer to your individual confirmations to verify their policy.

We’re making this change so that we can provide you with a more consistent booking process and make more rooms available for when you need last minute travel accommodations.

If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out within this thread or through PM and I will do my best to share updates with you all.

Thanks!
Erin
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Old Nov 10, 14, 6:41 am
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Thanks for the heads up.

That's an unfortunate decision, though, since in the event of potential misconnects and other airline-related problems, it was nice to be able to do a backup reservation at a hotel that had a 6pm same-day cancellation.

I hope management might consider an exception for Diamond folks, anyway.
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Old Nov 10, 14, 7:00 am
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This is certainly helpful for me. I'm fed up with not being able to book a hotel room (whatever the chain) because some people book a room on a contingency basis and then simply cancel on the day after I have already had to make alternative plans. It is galling to learn fro the hotel later that they were not full.
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Old Nov 10, 14, 7:02 am
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I guess it it's past the 11:59PM, day before cancellation, no need to call and cancel if I am going to be charged for it anyway. The hotel can just keep the reservation until check out the next morning. A win-win for Hilton as still get the money for the room, and not have to clean it or provide services/meals that night.

Meanwhile, a traveler who just got their plans cancelled, can't stay there, because there are no rooms available. Not that Hilton will care, as see above......
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Old Nov 10, 14, 8:01 am
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This is not good news. I agree with the flexibility of being able to cancel day of in case of things going wrong with airlines, etc.

I will often choose a hotel with a 4 pm or 6 pm cancellation policy over those with an earlier cancellation deadline.
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Old Nov 10, 14, 8:29 am
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Erin, thank you for the advance notice.

There are winners and losers here. I can understand Truffles' sentiment; this is a good deal for him/her. I find myself on the other side of the fence.

It's not always possible to get out of Juneau, esp. in the wintertime. I'm sure we are not the only town like this. Though it's better than it used to be thanks to upgraded airport and approach navaids and on-board avionics, we still experience many overflights and cancellations. And then there's mechanicals.....

With this new policy, we are essentially being penalized for conditions that are not within our control.
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Old Nov 10, 14, 8:49 am
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Since me and my girlfriend mostly fly on a standby basis, I will no longer consider Hilton on the first night of my intended arrival. Both me and my girlfriend are former Diamonds, now Gold, so I will inform her (she loves Hilton) also. It's too bad, as Hilton is our preferred chain.
I have found lately that www.booking.com generally has the most lenient cancellaton policies.
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Old Nov 10, 14, 8:50 am
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Originally Posted by dave1013 View Post

With this new policy, we are essentially being penalized for conditions that are not within our control.
This.

While I understand why this policy is being changed, not all of us are trying to game the system. The 6pm cancellation policy has helped me on more occasions than I would like given flight cancellations - situations outside of my control.

I also thank you for the heads up, but count me as one who will be looking elsewhere.
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Old Nov 10, 14, 8:52 am
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Blindly following Marriott. Nice. Just ensures Hyatt will get even more of my business.

Originally Posted by Truffles View Post
This is certainly helpful for me. I'm fed up with not being able to book a hotel room (whatever the chain) because some people book a room on a contingency basis and then simply cancel on the day after I have already had to make alternative plans.
Hotels already account for cancels by overbooking (just like airlines). You will not see any difference in availability due to this change.

Last edited by Kacee; Nov 10, 14 at 9:25 am
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Old Nov 10, 14, 8:55 am
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Hi Erin,

I trust that existing reservations for 2015 that currently indicate 6:00pm local day cancellation will not be affected?
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Old Nov 10, 14, 9:08 am
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Originally Posted by fozziedoggie View Post
Hi Erin,

I trust that existing reservations for 2015 that currently indicate 6:00pm local day cancellation will not be affected?
Hi there,

Your reservations will be subject to the cancellation policy in place at time of booking!

Cheers,
Erin
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Old Nov 10, 14, 9:26 am
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Maybe I've just been lucky, but I've never had a hotel actually make me pay when I've had to cancel after the deadline because my flight was cancelled. I just call the hotel directly and explain what happened. They've always let me cancel or reschedule.
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Old Nov 10, 14, 9:36 am
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Originally Posted by HHonorsRepresentative View Post

We are updating our reservation cancellation guidelines to a minimum of 11:59 p.m. local hotel time the day prior to arrival, and you will be required to provide a credit card at the time of booking.

As always, cancellation policies may still vary depending on the rate or dates of your reservation, and some hotels have more restrictive policies in place, so please refer to your individual confirmations to verify their policy.
Nice effort at spin, but fail. It's not traveler-friendly in that:

- it's more restrictive than what I see at many properties & rate codes now

- it's not going to be applied consistently as properties can use something yet even more restrictive

Cancellation deadlines do matter. I have found Hilton properties very reasonable when stay plans get upended due to flight problems. If that generosity goes away by corporate edict, too, my stay count will drop precipitously.

Last edited by 3Cforme; Nov 10, 14 at 3:33 pm
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Old Nov 10, 14, 11:14 am
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Originally Posted by HHonorsRepresentative View Post
We’re making this change so that we can provide you with a more consistent booking process and make more rooms available for when you need last minute travel accommodations.
It would be more credible to say you're making this change to improve revenue capture, especially from arriving travelers with unforeseen travel difficulties who will now forfeit funds. This change is 90% to the property's advantage, isn't it?

Originally Posted by dave1013 View Post
With this new policy, we are essentially being penalized for conditions that are not within our control.
Originally Posted by 3Cforme View Post
Nice effort at spin, but fail. It's not traveler-friendly... I have found Hilton properties very reasonable when stay plans get upended due to flight problems. If that generosity goes away by corporate edict, too, my stay count will drop precipitously.
Agreed. I hope Hilton asks itself what aspects of the Hilton experience separate it from Priceline. If I can't cancel a $250 room early on check-in day because my flying plans blew up, why not book a room of similar quality via Priceline at $100? I'm risking much less money.

As for the "nice effort at spin" point... most of us are by now weathered observers of loyalty programs and travel/hospitality provider policies gutted, diluted, 86'd, etc. with bland (if borderline fraudulent) assurances that these "enhancements" are "to better serve our customers." Today's news is perilously close to that sort of doublespeak. As a number of HHonors members have said, good initial intentions aside, a rep who traffics in see-through spin is going to create net negative energy here.
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Old Nov 10, 14, 11:18 am
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I may be missing something here, and I am far from being an apologist for Hilton, but I can fully understand their stance on no longer allowing same-day cancellations if the practice of booking a room just in case there are flight or other travel problems is as widespread as it seems from the above comments. While they can overbook, just like airlines, if there is inclement weather they would end up not only having to accommodate more bookings than there are rooms, but they also have no rooms for all the other travellers affected by the weather.

On the other hand, this practice, for al I know, may only affect airport properties, so perhaps there is room for Hilton to finesse the requirement by limiting it to certain hotels only.
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