Do Hotels Take Cash? And Why You May Need That?

This question may seem really strange – do hotels take cash? Yes and no, and the answer will not be that short. Now, why would you ask that question? Sometimes it just means that you want to get around some rules of the hotel or maybe you don’t have a credit card? And again, what country are you in? Because it differs from one country to another.

In this article, we are going to talk about the hotels that take and don’t take cash. We’ll also speak about different cases when you can pay cash at the reception or for your reservation. And you’ll be surprised that this question is strictly regulated in some chains and in some countries. Paying cash is now old-fashioned but many people try to still use cash only.

Here’s what we’ll be talking about:

  1. Do hotels take cash for reservations?
  2. How can you book a room if you don’t have a credit card?
  3. Can you pay cash at the hotel’s desk when you are checking out?
  4. Why don’t hotels want your cash?

Let’s get started!

Booking a hotel room for cash – possible?

The vast majority of modern hotels will want a credit card payment or at least a credit card deposit when you book a room. At least, when we are talking about the US and the European Union countries. A lot of hotels in these countries use systems like the Booking website to allow their clients to book rooms. In most cases, this happens through a credit card.

Why? Because it’s safe for a hotel. For example, if you decide to leave the hotel without paying, the hotel accountant will simply charge you because they have your credit card details and a certain deposit that they can take from you. Also, by knowing your credit card details, they can find you and sue you if you have damaged some hotel equipment, for example.

Cashless hotel payments are popular for other reasons, too:

  • it’s easier for hotels to keep books and pay taxes if they have all their payments without cash;
  • it’s safer for all parties to pay with credit cards because cash is always risky – it can be queer money, someone may try to steal cash, etc.;
  • it’s less likely that one of the hotel staff will make a mistake because the reservation and payment system works almost automatically;
  • hotels know more about their clients and they don’t even need to see IDs or any other documents – a credit card is enough;
  • when hotels hold deposits on their clients’ credit cards, they are sure that the person has money to pay for the room and for other services.

For a person, it doesn’t change basically anything. But for a hotel credit card payments bring many advantages. That’s why all the sphere of hotels turns to credit card payments. Actually, these payments are safe, quick, and guaranteed for hotels.

But do still some hotels take cash? Nearly all hotels will take cash at their receptions, but not for booking. You will have to book a hotel with a credit card (most likely) and then you can pay in cash when you are checking out. The deposit on your credit card will not be taken, it will be unblocked immediately or during 1 day after you pay at the reception. Let’s dig into some details?

Which hotels can still take cash?

As you understand, there can be some exceptions. So, some hotels will always be glad to take cash or any other type of payment for their services. We know for sure that in most Asian countries but in Japan and Singapore, you can book a hotel paying cash and then pay cash when you check out. So, it also depends on the country.

In most East European countries, you will also be able to pay cash. When we are talking about credit card payments, we mean Western Europe, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and some developed Asian countries. In these places, the hotel systems are very much alike and they will take credit card reservations only.

But there are still some exceptions:

  1. These hotels are usually controlled by a family or a small group of friends, or even by one person. They will be glad to take any kind of money you offer, so paying cash here will not be a problem.
  2. Small hotels. These hotels struggle to compete with big chains that have a lot of ads and are always on the top of search results in Booking. Small hotels will be glad to get payments from you in any form.
  3. Usually, apartment owners also take credit card payments through some special websites, but sometimes you can contact the owner directly and arrange cash payment.
  4. Hotels in developing countries. Usually, these countries don’t have any united system of hotels control, so the hotels there can take payments in any form they like.
  5. Some chains of hotels. Taking cash or not taking cash can sometimes be just the policy of a certain hotel chain. And some chains will take cash at the reception while some others will not.

So, you have to consult with a hotel receptionist before you make any decision about whether you can or cannot pay cash in this hotel. But even hotels that take cash in America and Europe will still allow reservations with credit cards only. This is the safety and security of these hotels.

What should you do if you don’t have a credit card? You can still book a hotel in any place in the world, but you will have to know some tricks.

How can you book a room in a hotel without a credit card?

We know some options to pay in cash even in the US and Europe. You can do it easily and legally without staying in some very shabby private hotels that are possibly half-legal or illegal at all. And these options may be very helpful for you when you are traveling or when you just don’t want to use your credit card for booking.

Here are these methods:

  1. Find hotels that take cash. There are many of them in any country, and you can actually find good ones. Then call the hotel reception, ask how you can transfer money to them to make a deposit. When you check out, don’t forget to get your deposit back.
  2. Go to a travel agent. This is a very useful trick. You can book nearly any hotel in the world by going to a travel agency. They will offer you higher prices in most cases, but you will be able to pay in cash and just go to a hotel with a travel voucher.
  3. Find hotels that take online payments. For example, in many hotels in the US, you can pay by PayPal. Some hotels even take cryptocurrencies and other electronic payments. Credit cards are no longer the only way to pay for a hotel room.

These are the three methods that will allow you to pay cash in a lot of hotels all over the world. They are legal and absolutely safe for you. But you will need to call the hotel before you make any payments. It’s much better if you speak to a receptionist before making any reservations, payments, and other things.

Be careful – some prepaid hotels in many countries appear to be fake hotels that just take your money and disappear. Better find the hotels in big online hotel catalogs.

Can you pay cash when you check out?

We don’t know about any special laws or requirements that don’t allow you to pay in cash when you are checking out the hotel. The credit card deposit is necessary for a hotel to just understand that you are not going to leave without paying. After you check out, the hotel may take cash or a credit card payment from you. And then the deposit will be unblocked.

So, yes, you can actually pay cash in almost every hotel we know about. And your deposit on the credit card will not be used at all. Bear in mind that some hotels are prepaid. It means that you will pay for your reservation with a credit card before you actually arrive. In this case, you will pay cash before checking out only if you have used some additional services like a minibar or something.

Final words

If you are going to stay in a hotel and you want to pay exclusively cash, you should bear in mind that it’s not possible in some cases. You can pay cash when you are checking out, but to book a hotel in many countries you will only need a credit card. We have offered you some ways you can use for paying in cash. But actually, we recommend using the simple and comfortable way to book hotel rooms with your credit card. It’s safe, easy, and quick.