Hotel stays can often involve some careful monitoring of online accounts for expenses. That is because you could have challenges getting your bill if there are any issues. The best thing to do is take proactive steps to avoid problems before they happen. In the unfortunate event that something goes wrong, how do you deal with a negative situation?
Hotel stays are not always perfect, and the last thing anyone wants during their travels is an awkward accounting problem.
Just imagine this, you go to a hotel and select your package of choice, be it bed and breakfast, half board, or even full board, for a couple of several days. You enjoy your stay and it is the checking out day, you have packed your clothes and cleared your room, even given out details of your credit card that will be charged.
You check out and go back home. A few weeks later, you notice that the hotel did not actually charge your credit card, and they have not even sent you a follow-up email or any message. What will you do?
We know that most people would be happy to stay in a hotel and not be charged for the stay, regardless of the duration of the stay, but will you be humane enough to raise the issue with the staff at the hotel, or you will run as fast as you can to avoid being charged? What are your options? What would you do in such a scenario?
Hotels are businesses, so their goal is to make money and not lose it. That is why they almost never offer free stays. However, if you get an amazing deal from a hotel, like an unadvertised promotion for the second night free, you should take it, right?
Well… maybe not. Some hotels have been known to forget to charge guests who take advantage of such promotions or let us call them errors.
Probable reasons why you were not charged
If you did not get charged by a hotel, there may be a variety of reasons why:
- They overlooked it or made an honest mistake.
- They might have thought that you paid cash or had already paid your bill in another way.
- The hotel forgot to charge your credit card
All this does not necessarily mean that the hotel is being dishonest with you; after all, hotels are businesses with bills to pay and expenses to manage, not charities looking for ways to help out their guests for free.
Aside from worrying about whether or not these things will happen again, what can you do if your stay at a hotel went unpaid? Read on for some tips on what to do when the hotel never charged you for your stay…
What to do if a hotel never charged you for your Stay
1) Confirm if it is an error
First and foremost, make sure that you did not make a mistake when checking out. It is common for guests to lose track of what they have been charged for, especially when they are trying to pay for multiple people.
Even if you are positive you never got charged for your stay, it is worth talking to the hotel about it. Some hotels may have made an honest mistake and forgotten to charge you. If you have already checked out, let the hotel know that you did not get charged.
Depending on the nature of the promotion, the hotel may be able to retroactively apply for the promotion. They may also be able to give you a discount on your stay without applying for the promotion retroactively.
2) Ask to be charged for your stay
If you are positive that you did not get charged for your stay, you can ask to be charged for it. You can ask the person checking you out if you can be charged for your stay or ask to speak to a manager. If you speak to a manager, make sure to tell them that you want to be charged for the full amount. You do not want them to apply any kind of retroactive promotion or discount.
Human is to err and they probably forgot to charge you for the stay during check out or if you notice it when you are at home already, you can call the hotel up and ask them to charge you. It will be a kind act from you, and I am sure they will appreciate you for that.
3) Get a Receipt and Contact the Hotel Again
If you are not quite sure that the hotel did not charge you, get a receipt for your stay and contact the hotel again. Let them know that you did not get charged for your stay and that you would like to get it corrected. Most hotels have a policy for this situation.
Depending on the hotel’s policy, you may be able to get a discount, a credit, or even a gift card. If you can, get a receipt or gift card that is dated the same day that you stayed at the hotel. This will help you prove that you stayed there and that you were never charged.
This will also help them realize where the mistake came from, and correct it on their end, to avoid similar cases and losses of cash because it is a very expensive mistake.
4) Request a Credit on Your Credit Card
If you never got charged for your stay, request a credit on your credit card. Depending on the hotel’s policy for uncharged guests, you may be able to get the full amount credited to your credit card.
If the hotel offers a gift card for uncharged stays, you can request a gift card for the amount that you should have been charged on your credit card. When you request a credit on your credit card, make sure that you have a record of your request. You may need it in case if the hotel disputes your request.
5) Ask to Pay Now and Get a Receipt
If you want to stay at the hotel, but want to make sure that they charge you correctly, ask to pay for the amount that you were supposed to be charged and get a receipt. That way, you can prove that the hotel charged you correctly and that you also paid the full amount. If the hotel offers a gift card or discount for uncharged stays, you can ask if they can apply that to your stay now.
6) Ask for a Recorded Conversation
If you are really concerned about the hotel’s possible negligence, ask to speak to a manager and ask if they can record the conversation. If the manager agrees, you have proof that the hotel was negligent about charging you.
This will be of help if they decline to charge you and you have even raised the issue with the hotel. Make sure you also record your conversation with the hotel, so that in the event they decide to sue you, you will have the evidence of the recorded conversation.
7) Escalate to a Manager or the Hotel’s HR Department
If you have already tried to resolve the issue with the manager, you can escalate it to their HR department. This department is in charge of investigating guest complaints and resolving issues. You can also escalate the issue to a corporate manager. If you have the name of the hotel’s parent company, you can find their corporate website and reach out to the CEO or management team.
It is not a case of wanting to magnify an issue, but this will be of importance to the hotel senior management to know how and where this loophole is emanating from. It could be that the hotel’s booking and payment have a bug somewhere that is causing the error. You will be able to save the company a great deal of loss.
Hotels are businesses, and they are in it to make money. They do not want to lose money, so most hotels will make sure to charge guests who were supposed to pay for their stay. That does not mean that some hotels do not make honest mistakes.
If you think that the hotel did not charge you and that you were supposed to be charged, reach out to the hotel and let them know that you were not charged. If the hotel is not willing to correct the situation, you can escalate it to the hotel’s HR department or contact their corporate management. By doing so, you will have done a noble thing to yourself and to the hotel.
Hotel stays can often involve some careful monitoring of online accounts for expenses. That is because you could have challenges getting your bill if there are any issues. The best thing to do is take proactive steps to avoid problems before they happen.
The fact that you are reading this article to know what to do if you have not been charged by a hotel shows that you are an ethical human being and congratulations on that!
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