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Hotel booking's and their confirmation policies!

ireland
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47 posts
32 reviews
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Hotel booking's and their confirmation policies!

Hi all,

Can anybody advise me about having to fax back every hotel each time a booking is made with a signed confirmation allowing them to take up to 80% of the total amount payable for the entire stay, should I cancel within 14 days of arrival or 100% of booking should I not show up, even though my credit card details complete with security code was given to the hotel/guest house/lodge etc at the time of reservation.

I just don't understand it.

If you delay in sending back the signed confirmation, most will call or email you to remind you.

It's clearly very important to them.

I feel that I'm pretty well travelled, but I've never experienced this reservation policy anywhere!

We're flying tomorrow and it's left a sour taste in my mouth wondering why they are so anxious to get your money.

I've booked hotels in madrid, new york, vegas etc by providing credit card details at the time of booking. No signed fax authorisations there!

Is it just me or does anybody else feel this seemingly standard practice is very wrong?

Awaiting comments.

Edinburgh, United...
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1. Re: Hotel booking's and their confirmation policies!

Hi

we visited SA last year and stayed in mainly small Guest house / lodges. A number did wnat us to do this - in addition to the provision of CC details - some were willing though to secure with a CC and thne offered a discount if we paid in cash when there.

Some places dont' take CC's. In all what I would say is that althought there was a little bit of extra hassle EVERY single place we stayed was fantastic - my advice is you take a wee bit more trouble at this end and are rewarded with an amazing holiday and destination. Suggest you try Auberge du Cap in Camps Bay, Woodall Country House, Addo, Akademie St GH, Franschoek; all HIGHLY recomended.

Tempe, Arizona
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for South Africa, Sabi Sand Game Reserve
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2. Re: Hotel booking's and their confirmation policies!

It's common in the US for hotels to ask for a fax that includes both sides of the credit card. Is this what you had to send?

ireland
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47 posts
32 reviews
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3. Re: Hotel booking's and their confirmation policies!

Thanks for the replies,

We've booked four different accomodations in total.

A good hotel in the V&A. That, we booked online direct with hotel and they took complete payment for both rooms for the entire stay at the time of booking.

A highly rated hotel in Franschoek. They insisted on the signed fax being returned to them with (i believe) an outragous cacellation policy!

A top rated hotel in plettenberg who wouldn't guarantee the booking with just the c/c details (complete with security code). No,no, they wanted signed fax also. Again allowing them to take full payment for entire stay for both rooms should we cancel, say, six days ahead!

And lastly, one of this sites top rated Cape town lodges/hotels, again, holding my booking till they too recieved the signed fax, even though, they also had total c/c details.

I think if I'm being completly honest, it's the cancellation policies on these fax confirmations that really wind me up!

Do these establishments really think that somebody from half way round the world, calls them up, books a few nights accomodation with them, provides them with loads of personal details including payment guarantee, and they still want more!

I just find the whole thing a little odd!

Tempe, Arizona
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for South Africa, Sabi Sand Game Reserve
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4. Re: Hotel booking's and their confirmation policies!

Just one more question.. your note mentions 'signed fax'. But I am wondering if they also wanted your credit card front and back on the fax?

Port Elizabeth
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for South Africa
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5. Re: Hotel booking's and their confirmation policies!

In the last 3 or 4 years, South African banks (because of government legislation) have tightened up their policies enormously. It used to be incredibly easy to get a bank account. Now you have to be or one. The legislation is to prevent fraud, money laundering, tax-dodging etc. etc.

The hotels in South Africa are probably just trying to cover their butts with the banks.

ireland
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47 posts
32 reviews
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6. Re: Hotel booking's and their confirmation policies!

Thanks bewanadave

Yes, they do want all the details from the front and back of the credit card. Not a photocopy of it.

Edmonton, Canada
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250 posts
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7. Re: Hotel booking's and their confirmation policies!

Hi Carrickaman,

I am from Canada and will be travelling to S.A. later this year. Along with you, I have found the reservation process odd. Personally I prefer to book everything myself also and after many e-mails back and forth and finally the decision is made and I fax my own letter with credit card details, address, etc., to book and secure the reservation, without fail the establishment sends me back yet their own form to fill out and sign as if my letter of intent is not enough. My husband's opinion is that the South African's and Namibian's are very formal in the reservation process. However I'm with you, I still find it odd.

We have been asked a couple of times to send a photocopy of our passport and front and back of our credit card. I just simply will not do it. I am not sending a copy of my passport or credit card by fax to anyone. They have all my credit card details already in their form, . and in my mind that is enough! So far no one has objected and my reservation is secure.

The pre-paying in advance is also a bit of a surprise. We have calculated that before we walk out the door we will have pre-paid 70% of the trip. In fact this has me looking at trip cancellation insurance at this very moment.

However this is what travelling is all about, differences. If this is the way S.A and Namibia choose to reserve accommodations there's not much anyone can do about it. At the end of your trip when it's all said and done and you've had a fantastic time, possibly a trip of a lifetime, it just won't matter! Have a great trip Carricakaman.

Tempe, Arizona
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for South Africa, Sabi Sand Game Reserve
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8. Re: Hotel booking's and their confirmation policies!

The US travel agency where I have been connected for almost 20 years is a consolidator - most of its activity is selling airfares. And many buyers don't live in the area but find the agency on the internet. It is standard practice, then, to require the out of town buyer to fax the front and back of the credit card. It is one step that protects the agency from selling to someone who has, shall we say, "found" the credit card information and wants to use it to purchase the ticket. But, since we are discussing hotel rooms, it does seem less important for a hotel to require this level of security, since the guest will ultimately be IN the hotel, not flying off on a plane. I am guessing they are protecting themselves against people who reserve, find a better deal somewhere else or maybe not travel at all.. leaving the hotel with booked rooms that are not used.

MERSEYSIDE
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10 posts
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9. Re: Hotel booking's and their confirmation policies!

i'm getting a migraine !!! Cannot believe the hassle. Never had this experience before.......losing the will to live but hope the trip compensates...........

Has anybody ever stayed in Benevento Apartments in Camps Bay?

MERSEYSIDE
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10 posts
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10. Re: Hotel booking's and their confirmation policies!

i'm getting a migraine !!! Cannot believe the hassle. Never had this experience before.......losing the will to live but hope the trip compensates...........

Has anybody ever stayed in Benevento Apartments in Camps Bay?

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