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Thread summary:

Travel: lodging, hotel, bookings, reservations, inn, motel.

Old 06-06-2007, 04:39 PM
Location: Looking over your shoulder
30,862 posts, read 28,692,240 times
Reputation: 83096


If you made hotel/motel reservations and booked months in advance are you protected and guaranteed your reservation? NO is the answer! My wife and I (traveling with a senior) had made reservations months in advance of our trip to Santa Fe N.M. Our booking of the unit was special because of our travel needs with our senior citizen. We had paid via credit card and received a faxed confirmation with a confirmation number for our dates of lodging. Everything seemed fine, and we were sure that we had our rooms.

The Nightmare story started when we arrived early at the Inn (it’s well known in Santa Fe) to check into our rooms after a long and lengthy drive only to find that our rooms had been given to another party. We talked with the desk clerk and received only a “so sorry” excuse. Nothing could be done to resolve the problem! The manager would not come to the front desk to discuss the issue and thus we could not get anywhere with the desk clerk in an effort to correct the problem.

Booked early, confirmed reservations, checked on booking before starting the drive for the trip, arrived early to insure we have our room and could rest, only to find that there are no rules, laws or any help provided to travelers when things like this happen.

We had been traveling to Santa Fe for many years in the fall and had problems before with lodging – even though we had reservations. Thus this was one of our last trips and we wanted to use caution when reserving a room/s for our trip. I believe there had been three other times when lodging had been screwed up in Santa Fe and thus I’ve not returned. We now stay outside the city and avoid the problems there.

I also have to point out that the problem I’m speaking of here with the Inn also had trouble with no less then 5 other groups of travelers who we stumbled upon yet in another hotel in downtown Santa Fe. All 5 groups had the same situation of losing their reservations at this Inn. I don’t want to mention the name of the Inn – however when staying in Santa Fe N.M I would never stay at a Fort ? ? in the downtown area of the city.
Bottom line of this story
,,,, you don’t have the room you booked unless you have the key! Book early, confirm booking before leaving town, arrive early, and never forget to have a faxed or email copy of the confirmation on the lodging. All of this helps but the only thing you really want is the room key.~~~

Have you had a Nightmare to share?
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Old 06-06-2007, 06:26 PM
Location: Journey's End
10,189 posts, read 25,242,107 times
Reputation: 3870
Well, that is not a good story. I have been alternately making bookings ahead or waiting until I arrive in a town and look at hotels/inns/motels. Neither is the perfect solution. I think it is not just making a reservation, but the entire service industry that is lacking a full proof system.

Sorry to hear you had this problem; glad you find an alternative!
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Old 06-06-2007, 08:34 PM
Location: City of the damned, Wash
428 posts, read 2,288,953 times
Reputation: 255
I just booked something online yesterday. Now where did I leave that scrap of paper with the conf code?
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Old 06-06-2007, 09:50 PM
Location: Looking over your shoulder
30,862 posts, read 28,692,240 times
Reputation: 83096
One would think that at state levels of governments or the tourist industry would want travels and visitors coming to their state to have some protection with lodging. At least there should be some protection when the traveler has prepaid with credit card and confirmed booking that he has the room. It’s paid for with prepaid credit cards. However the only difference between two people wanting the same room is the one who has the key to it. I checked with New Mexico laws to see if there is protection for the traveler and couldn’t find much when it came to lodging. I don’t know if any state has any laws to protect them.
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Old 06-07-2007, 09:09 AM
Location: Journey's End
10,189 posts, read 25,242,107 times
Reputation: 3870
AksarbeN--that could be the name of a short story, "the only difference...who has the key."

NM, where I lived for more than one year is not big on rules and regulations--kind of as you go, but the Governor's office is very responsive. If this issue is still a lingering and discomforting issue, I seriously suggest you call his office and not one of the regulatory agencies. You'll get bounced around, but you may get some sense of justice. JMO, and good luck!
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Old 06-07-2007, 01:25 PM
Location: on an island
13,386 posts, read 41,514,892 times
Reputation: 13277
What a bummer!
In all our travels, including Santa Fe, we've never had this happen, but I always sort of feel it hanging over our heads. We are sort of like OTR in that we alternate between solid (hopefully!) reservations and winging it.
I bet a letter to Ombudsman in Conde Nast Traveler might get you some satisfaction, AksarbeN. I can't believe the manager would not come out to talk to you! That alone would make my blood boil. Someone messed up big-time.
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Old 06-07-2007, 09:06 PM
Location: Looking over your shoulder
30,862 posts, read 28,692,240 times
Reputation: 83096
I appreciate your thoughts however I’ve moved on and got over being upset with the manger/owner of the Inn in Santa Fe. I did at the time of the problem checked with the local chamber of commerce and the N.M. state online. I couldn’t find any laws protecting the guests only the owner at a lodging.

In all the years of traveling I have only had problems in Santa Fe three different times with the prepaid pre-booked lodging, and in Tucson one trip, and Denver on another. Most hotels will attempt to compensate you for troubles that come about and for that it usually helps out. The best part of the problem was that I “did not” become “out of control” at the front desk, speaking softly but firmly that this problem was unacceptable and I felt that the manager was needed. If I remember right my wife say him sneak into the office nearby and not come out. I’ve learned that if you are pleasant and logical others will talk to you and deal with the problem, and if you become enraged, loud and disorderly they tent to blow you off as a nut.

All this being said, I realized that most travels don’t give it a second thought about their pre-planed trips and reservations. And I felt it necessary to inform others about what they needed to check on.

Always make reservations with credit cards and get a confirmation number for the dates. A credit card is more helpful because if there is a dispute over lodging you can have help from the credit card company with the NOT paying for services NOT received. A debit card is NOT a good card for this use because the money comes directly from your personal account and the bank will not assist in any dispute with the other party. Always remember to call before leaving on the trip to see if they had any change in the pre-paid reservations. You never know when there could have been a problem out of their control and the rooms are not available any longer due to physical troubles. Always get to the hotel early and get the key. That’s the only trick and true confirmation of you having the room.
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