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Retroactive fees and forced non-refundable change

Retroactive fees and forced non-refundable change

 
Old May 24, 17, 5:59 pm
  #1  
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Retroactive fees and forced non-refundable change

Have a reservation in Las Vegas, for a major January convention, made months ago... no fees and fully-refundable with 2 days notice.

Marriott sends me an email (today) stating that they will automatically charge my CC for the entire cost of the stay, unless I cancel by tomorrow. They call it a 100% non-refundable deposit. Once they make this charge, my reservation will become non-refundable and non-changeable.

They also added a daily "Destination Amenity Fee" that was not part of my original reservation.

Anyone else have this happen?

Changing the terms like this seems very wrong. Where does this rate of the crappy to illegal behavior scale?

-Sx
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Old May 24, 17, 6:58 pm
  #2  
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Do you have an email confirmation that showed your original details? Fight it w/ that. Get on the horn immediately (given the charge or cancel tomorrow).

I'm assuming you're referring to CES, which gets 175,000 attendees. You might have made a ressie before all the T&Cs kicked in for CES, but that's not your problem. However, it explains why they're enforcing subsequent ressie T&Cs.

I'm assuming, since there's now a 'destination amenity fee' that you're at the Renaissance near the South Hall. It just instituted one. The other Marriott brands (including the LAS Marriott) around the LVCC haven't done so).

If you don't have a printout/email confirmation, get on the phone asap w/ Marriott cust service & have them pull up your original ressie to show the date it was made & then point out you shouldn't get charged for the entire cost etc.

Fight back hard on this one.

Cheers.
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Old May 24, 17, 7:25 pm
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I've read of hotels that have sent out letters like this to all guests during times when special events policies are in place without realizing that some guests booked before the policies were instituted. Clearly, that should never happen. But, humans sometimes make mistakes.

Call the hotel during normal business hours and talk to someone in the on-site Reservations office. This may be a simple clerical error.

If it is not an error, then you should certainly fight it.
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Old May 25, 17, 1:52 am
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Originally Posted by ScatterX View Post
Where does this rate of the crappy to illegal behavior scale?
Assuming it's not a simple mistake, then crappy and unethical, not illegal. There is a higher bar before not fulfilling a legal contract becomes a crime.
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Old May 25, 17, 5:17 am
  #5  
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Yes I'e seen a few threads like this over the years, customer books well ahead of time, special event gets announced later and hotel moves everyone over to new cancellation rules. When the hotel is pressured it will back down as you have a contract. Call the hotel to discuss today. No joy, then call Marriott immediately. Ensure you have the email to hand and don't lose it!
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Old May 25, 17, 6:32 am
  #6  
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Originally Posted by JackE View Post
Assuming it's not a simple mistake, then crappy and unethical, not illegal. There is a higher bar before not fulfilling a legal contract becomes a crime.
This.

Things like this seem to happen around major events. Properties open inventory before putting booking conditions in place and then go back and threaten to cancel if those conditions are not met. Or, worse yet, they have sold rooms at standard rates and then set the prices for the event and go back and threaten to cancel if the customer does not accept the new higher rate.

Start by finding your confirmation with the fully refundable terms and then call. Before going off the deep end, make certain that this is not an error. It may be. Or it may be that the property is simply testing to see if people comply. Most will. But, if you complain, the property will relent.

Remember, you hold zero cards here. It is CES and the property can resell that room for more (without even knowing your rate). So, push hard sure. Fight, not.
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Old May 27, 17, 8:58 am
  #7  
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This is a continuing issue and will always be. To add insult to injury, I find many chains will use a rate code to point to the details of your reservation and those details can change or be reused over the course of time. Therefore, it is very important to keep any email confirmations or print them out at the time of booking. DO NOT depend upon their online system to keep the same data from one day to the next.

I can see some less reputable businesses using this technique for a bait-and-switch operation claiming you agreed to the rate when booking.
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Old May 27, 17, 9:33 am
  #8  
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Originally Posted by JackE View Post
Assuming it's not a simple mistake, then crappy and unethical, not illegal. There is a higher bar before not fulfilling a legal contract becomes a crime.
It would be fraud, pure and simple.

Originally Posted by Often1 View Post
Remember, you hold zero cards here.
Wrong. Trump hasn't shut down the Bureau of Consumer Protection yet (though he's trying hard). And the credit card company would be on your side for the non-disclosed fees.
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Old May 27, 17, 6:59 pm
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This happened to me a few years ago CY near Metlife Stadium. The Ravens had won the SB. I reserved a nice rate in the unlikely event of a repeat. Late Spring, hotel emails that the rate was being converted to "paid in full, non refundable" if I didnt cancel by a certain date.

I called property to confirm this. Then I called MR-they called the property and assured them they could not alter original terms of reservation. They were noting the conversation and would not tolerate any issues. I canceled in the fall after the Ravens failed me-no trouble at all.
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Old May 27, 17, 7:35 pm
  #10  
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Originally Posted by mahasamatman View Post
It would be fraud, pure and simple.


Wrong. Trump hasn't shut down the Bureau of Consumer Protection yet (though he's trying hard). And the credit card company would be on your side for the non-disclosed fees.
I suspect you mean the CFPB. It has no authority over hotels. Period. As noted above, this is seedy, but it is not illegal and it is not fraud.

Contrary to your assertion, so long as the property gives the OP the opportunity to cancel without penalty, the issuer won't side with the property in a dispute.

There are dozens of similar threads on FT. If OP had not started his own and had read the others, he would see that they generally end badly for the consumer.
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