Booking a hotel often requires a credit card to secure your reservation. If your hotel of choice has a policy that requires a credit card for a reservation, ask pertinent questions to learn how the hotel handles your credit card information.
Hotel Reservation Policies
Hotels have two types of reservations -- guaranteed and confirmed reservations. A guaranteed reservation requires that you give the hotel a credit card number to guarantee that you'll pay for at least one night of your stay. This form of reservation holds a room for you regardless of how late you check in. If you miss check-in completely, the hotel still charges your credit card for the room. With a confirmed reservation, you may or may not need to give a credit card number, and the hotel promises to hold a room for you until a specific time. If you don’t check in by the specified time, you aren’t required to pay for the room, but it may not be available for you, either. For a confirmed reservation, the hotel may request a credit card number to verify your ability to pay for the room, but you won't be charged for it without checking in.
When you make your reservation, ask about making a final payment with an alternative form of payment. You might wish to use a different credit card or pay with cash. Most hotels allow this adjustment.
- The Frequent Traveler's Guide; Alexander Anolik and John K. Hawks
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