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Hotel transferred booking to anotherhotel. Is this normal?

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Caloundra, Australia
Level Contributor
276 posts
14 reviews
Hotel transferred booking to anotherhotel. Is this normal?

We made our Patong hotel booking for 5 nights (free cancellation ) in February 2013 through a reputable on lline booking site in August 2012. Our Visa Gard was charged AU$521.05 via Visa Card and we received our booking confirmation then. When we arrived at the hotel we were told that there had bee an error in their booking system, this was as they sat us down, copied our passports, passed over an undated letter addressed to us and offered an apology. The lass said they had upgraded us into another hotel up the road which offered breakfast. That alternative hotel was okay but would not be our choice given the location further away from the beach.. No Email or text to advise, so we didn't have the option to book in elsewhere. We had to contact 3 tour operators to arrange pick ups elsewhere. Never before have we experienced this sort of treatment. Has this happened to you?

Poulton Le Fylde...
Destination Expert
for Khao Lak, Khao Sok National Park
Level Contributor
29,917 posts
85 reviews
1. Re: Hotel transferred booking to anotherhotel. Is this normal?

Undoubtedly you should have been given advance notification of the unavailability of your chosen and paid for accommodation unless changing due to certain circumstances was provided for in the T&Cs of the agency you booked through. What have they said about It?

Bangkok
Destination Expert
for Thailand
Level Contributor
17,600 posts
3 reviews
2. Re: Hotel transferred booking to anotherhotel. Is this normal?

Should certainly not have happened, which hotel was it, where did they move you to, who was booking agent ? ( if you care to advise ) because there was something similar a week or so again howrver they were told in advance.

Gold Coast
Level Contributor
4,656 posts
34 reviews
3. Re: Hotel transferred booking to anotherhotel. Is this normal?

I am glad that I book through good travel agents in Australia and know that this will never happen.

Caloundra, Australia
Level Contributor
276 posts
14 reviews
4. Re: Hotel transferred booking to anotherhotel. Is this normal?

Thanks for your input. I did contact the Booking people after our return to Australia and put my case forward., given the limited space available. As soon as I was able I did check out both hotels and room availabity/rates. . As I have a response I will let you know the outcome.

Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
3,621 posts
40 reviews
5. Re: Hotel transferred booking to anotherhotel. Is this normal?

Most online hotel booking sites provide you with a local contact number for use only on check-in, in the event there is a problem. Have a look at your voucher.

Also, I would suggest an email or phone call to the hotel about a week prior to your departure to ensure they are actually expecting you. Especially considering you appeared to have booked some 6-7 months ago.

Cheers

Edited: 7:17 am, March 12, 2013
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
185 posts
27 reviews
6. Re: Hotel transferred booking to anotherhotel. Is this normal?

This is appalling and if you don't get a satisfactory resolution from the booking company, name and shame the hotel and booking company so it doesn't continue with offering one thing and delivering another to unsuspecting customers.

Italy
Destination Expert
for Livigno, Lombardy
Level Contributor
39,428 posts
161 reviews
7. Re: Hotel transferred booking to anotherhotel. Is this normal?

You should have contacted the booking site that you booked through, it would have been up to then to sort it out, it looks to me as if the hotel forgot to take the availability off the website and went into overbooking, you shouldn't have accepted the other hotel if you didn't like it.

8. Re: Hotel transferred booking to anotherhotel. Is this normal?

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Bangkok
Destination Expert
for Bangkok, Air Travel, Thailand
Level Contributor
14,331 posts
74 reviews
9. Re: Hotel transferred booking to anotherhotel. Is this normal?

Hi,

Sounds like the OP got "walked"...

I agree with the others in that if it was a known event due to known circumstances, then an advance email would have been the right thing to do.. However, if the reason wasn't known in advance or was fundamentally uncontrollable (like damage to the room, or the like) then I can understand the no-notice issue.

However, regardless of the timing of the event(s) that lead to the walk, I would at minimum expect that the room I did get would be *at minimum* be equal to, if not better than what I had booked, and that any added costs I incurred to get there (if the new hotel isn't walking distance)

On this front, it sounds like they got an overall "better" room by way of the breakfast included (which I am assuming was not the case at the old hotel), but the location wasn't as ideal as the original location.

Only based on what the OP writes, It sounds like it was an issue that was known in advance, therefore really should have been handled better by the booking agent and/or the property themselves- starting with an email to the OP given them at minimum a "heads up" as to the matter, and if required by contract or regulation, outlining what is/was the OP's rights to a refund or the like-- whatever is applicable.

Travel Safe,

Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
3,621 posts
40 reviews
10. Re: Hotel transferred booking to anotherhotel. Is this normal?

Hi,

What GOPBI says is correct and would ideally be the way issues like the OP's might be handled in other parts of the world. Not necessarily in Thailand however :)

The way I see it is this. OP arrived at hotel, hotel advises that they are overbooked but have organised another (possibly better) alternative that won't cost the OP an additional cent. The OP agrees. Problem solved.

The online hotel booking site that the OP booked though would be none the wiser as to the hotels inability to accommodate the OP's booking. Therefore, I don't think the booking site/agent can be blamed. The hotel itself is in control of their occupancy.

If this had happened to me and If I wasn't happy with the hotel 'switcheroo', I would have politely declined the offer until I had spoken with the booking agent to alert them to the situation and had them organise an alternative of my choosing.

I very recently made a booking through hoteltravel.com and the booking voucher clearly provided a local contact phone number to call in the event that the guest experiences any problems upon on check-in. That would apply to situations like the OP's.

Live and learn.

Cheers