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Hotels going cashless (i.e., refusing cash payment) & implications of refusing cash

Hotels going cashless (i.e., refusing cash payment) & implications of refusing cash

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Old Mar 2, 18, 6:24 am
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Hotels going cashless (i.e., refusing cash payment) & implications of refusing cash

Some airlines that charge for food and drink on-board have migrated to ONLY accept cashless payment systems (i.e. cards). And some hotels are going the same way and refusing anything but cashless payments, sometimes claiming the move is a safety issue even as itís really about reducing cash management costs for the hotel/business.

For some who liked to get rid of foreign cash by using residual cash toward settling the final hotel charges (in part (or even full) using cash when departing country, the hotels going cashless may be an inconvenience.

If your bank cards get stolen or blocked or otherwise rejected for a purchase, having emergency cash for purchases has been useful; but having emergency cash is less useful for travelers when hotels/businesses are trying to migrate away from cash handling and even wanting to reject cash payments.
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Old Mar 2, 18, 10:43 am
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Name one or more hotels where this is verifiably happening.
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Old Mar 2, 18, 11:00 am
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For paying for the room, I have no problem with this.

But I like to pay cash in the gift shop and the restaurant sometimes. Especially when in a foreign country, as I find my cards, even if I told the bank, work only intermittently or the debit system is different.
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Old Mar 2, 18, 11:44 am
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Some hotels now want a credit card or debit card rather than a cash security deposit (in case there's damage to the room, etc.) even if they will accept cash to settle the bill. I guess it gives them some recourse if the damages are much more extensive than what was imagined and it avoids having to send an employee to quickly check the room at check out.
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Old Mar 2, 18, 3:54 pm
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A downside of this may be that hotel restaurants/bars could refuse to let guests charge their hotel restaurant/bar bills to the room and thereby more easily earn hotel points from hotel restaurant/bar charges. I have already seen this hit at some hotels in Europe when they went cashless.
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Old Mar 2, 18, 4:02 pm
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Originally Posted by dulciusexasperis View Post
Name one or more hotels where this is verifiably happening.


Iíll give you two from this week: a Clarion 20 minutes by train from Stockholm-Arlanda airport; a Best Western 13 minutes by train from Copenhagen airport.

The Clarion Sign no longer allows hotel restaurant charges to the room since the hotel went cashless on March 1, 2018 .

The Best Western indicated above has been cashless for at least a year or two.
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Old Mar 2, 18, 5:57 pm
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Well I usually pay my hotel bill with a credit card and always have any other charges added to that bill including meals. So that means yet another criteria to check on before using a hotel. Probably something that only talking to a real live person at the hotel will find out for you. Yet another reason to not use third parasite booking companies.

Thanks for the heads up.

I wonder just how they intend to do business with people who only use cash? My Brother for example will not use credit cards for anything. i even think he is a dinosaur but that doesn't change the facts. He pays everything by cash or by cheque (bills). Hmmm, will the hotel take a cheque.
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Old Mar 2, 18, 6:05 pm
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Originally Posted by dulciusexasperis View Post
Well I usually pay my hotel bill with a credit card and always have any other charges added to that bill including meals. So that means yet another criteria to check on before using a hotel. Probably something that only talking to a real live person at the hotel will find out for you. Yet another reason to not use third parasite booking companies.

Thanks for the heads up.

I wonder just how they intend to do business with people who only use cash? My Brother for example will not use credit cards for anything. i even think he is a dinosaur but that doesn't change the facts. He pays everything by cash or by cheque (bills). Hmmm, will the hotel take a cheque.
Most Scandinavian hotel front desk staff have probably never signed or endorsed a paper check; maybe many don’t even know what a current account demand draft/check/cheque is.

The Park Inn in Uppsala and the RadissonBlu in Malmo are also cash free, both as of this year IIRC. The Avalon hotel in Gothenburg went cash free in 2016. I wouldn’t be surprised if dozens or more hotels in just Sweden went or go cash-free this year.

What will traveling people who have their bank cards stolen or blocked (and perhaps their smartphones’ pay features unavailable/compromised) do to stay while waiting for (non-cash) replacement payment methods to be available and activated?

What’s sort of weird is that some of these cash-free hotels may still be marketed as having on-site currency exchange services available.

Last edited by GUWonder; Mar 2, 18 at 6:35 pm
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Old Mar 2, 18, 7:39 pm
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My understanding of the situation in the UK, at least, is that whilst one can refuse a transaction for any reason (e.g. I wonít sell you a coffee for cash), if a debt has been incurred (e.g. during a hotel stay), and the debtor offers legal tender (cash), then they cannot be pursued for the debt if you refuse to accept it.
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Old Mar 2, 18, 9:31 pm
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I've always wondered about this. In the US - "This note is legal tender for all debts, public and private" - how can a business refuse to accept it?

EDIT - OK, I guess Googling it isn't that hard
Originally Posted by Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System
There is, however, no Federal statute mandating that a private business, a person, or an organization must accept currency or coins as payment for goods or services. Private businesses are free to develop their own policies on whether to accept cash unless there is a state law which says otherwise.
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Old Mar 2, 18, 10:06 pm
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I'm thinking that the hotels mentioned above are a function of Scandinavia in general not using cash all that often. Hotels in other locales may not be able to get away from cash so easily, at least for now.

As for airlines, going cashless is likely more for practical reasons; it's kinda difficult to restock cash registers while at 35,000 feet.
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Old Mar 3, 18, 12:05 am
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Originally Posted by dulciusexasperis View Post
I wonder just how they intend to do business with people who only use cash? My Brother for example will not use credit cards for anything. i even think he is a dinosaur but that doesn't change the facts. He pays everything by cash or by cheque (bills). Hmmm, will the hotel take a cheque.
I think it depends on the clientele of the particular hotel. Most poeple staying at a Hilton or Marriott probably have a credit/debit card. I imagine roadside motels and such get a lot of cash payments. There are middle class people who don't use cards, but they are probably too few to be worth the hotel's consideration. Perhaps they can be directed to get a money order from the closest CVS or 7-Eleven, or maybe the Flyertalker in line behind them would be happy to take the cash and use his/her credit card to pay the bill and earn some points

Originally Posted by Scots_Al View Post
My understanding of the situation in the UK, at least, is that whilst one can refuse a transaction for any reason (e.g. I won’t sell you a coffee for cash), if a debt has been incurred (e.g. during a hotel stay), and the debtor offers legal tender (cash), then they cannot be pursued for the debt if you refuse to accept it.
I assume these hotels will make you provide your card when you check in, not when you leave.

Originally Posted by tmiw View Post
As for airlines, going cashless is likely more for practical reasons; it's kinda difficult to restock cash registers while at 35,000 feet.
Many airlines do accept cash for onboard purchases. I don't see any practical reason they cannot. Maybe they occasionally cannot make the proper change, but that's usually easy to work around.
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Old Mar 3, 18, 9:38 am
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Originally Posted by dulciusexasperis View Post
Yet another reason to not use third parasite booking companies.
I thought you would have learned from your previous thread that these sites aren't necessarily bad. In a lot of cases they have clear advantages.
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Old Mar 3, 18, 9:45 am
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I would presume that a person who otherwise only deals in cash could purchase a prepaid card and use that? Never considered trying to pay at a hotel with one, but guess it could be done.
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Old Mar 3, 18, 10:09 am
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Yes
Originally Posted by xooz View Post
I would presume that a person who otherwise only deals in cash could purchase a prepaid card and use that? Never considered trying to pay at a hotel with one, but guess it could be done.
That can sometimes work, but sometimes it doesnít work.

I am just waiting to see what a place does when the final bill charges are such that the card used at check-in doesnít cover the final bill in full and yet the only remaining form of payment available to the person is cash. Will courts defend the hotel ban on cash, or will courts defend the right to use local cash to pay expenses incurred in local cash denominations?

In Germany, for example, nearly 80% of all purchase transactions were done using cash. In Sweden, however, donít be surprised if the majority of purchase transactions are settled without using cash.
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