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"Advanced purchase" hotel rooms... a good idea?

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I'm looking for hotel rooms in Berlin this summer, and am finding that many hotels offer a reduced rate for "advanced purchase." Typically, next to the price it says something like "full credit card purchase required; no cancellations accepted."

Has anyone ever done an advanced purchase like this? If so, is it true that you make the full payment now with no possibility of getting that money back if you cancel? I don't anticipate cancelling, but it also seems pretty risky to pay everything now with no possible recourse.

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