Hotel changed our rate. Any options?

Jul 27th, 2005, 07:35 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 576
Hotel changed our rate. Any options?

My husband and I had booked the Taj Coral Reef in the Maldives for a trip over the holidays, but they have just informed us that they charged us the wrong rate for that time of year. The "correct" rate is double! If this were a US hotel chain the hotel would probably just have to eat the difference for their mistake, but we're not sure if anything can be done since the chain and hotel are in other countries. We also booked through the hotel directly, so we don't have an agent in our corner. Should we just cancel the reservation and stay at another hotel or should we (or our credit card company) fight for the rate we booked?
MerryTravel is offline  
Jul 27th, 2005, 12:01 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 325
I'm not clear on whether the hotel has charged your credit card with anything yet or if it is just to guarantee your reservation. If something has been charged, then I would see if the credit card company can handle it. If you only gave them your card number to guarantee the reservation, do you have a confirmation in writing of the rate they agreed to? If you do, then I would say to tell them if they don't honor the rate then you will have to cancel. You might want to check other rates first before you do that though.
Richard1148 is offline  
Jul 30th, 2005, 08:44 PM
  #3  
 
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Posts: 1,753
I would fight. The Taj Group of hotels is a very professional, highly rated group. If necessary go to their website and write to someone at their corporate office rather than the hotel (who will try to browbeat you rather than get hauled over the coals).
hobbes is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2005, 12:11 AM
  #4  
 
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Posts: 7,689
I also suggest you try to fight this. The Maldives have consumer protection laws too. (You could also make the argument that the trip was ďpurchasedĒ in the US as you made the booking from the US and via a US credit card, so the laws of your State and/or federal laws should apply, but that is another tack.) If you have an e-mail or fax from them stating that you have a confirmed reservation at a confirmed price, then they should honor it. Definitely get your credit card company to help, especially if the hotel has already taken a deposit and if the deposit is non-refundable (sounds like it isnít from your message.)

I would write to the General Manager of the hotel, copying (i) the director of reservations at the hotel (ii) the CEO of Taj and (iii) the Minister of Tourism for the Maldives (see below for that info). I would send the letters by fax and also by air mail. I would explain the error and see what they can do. Perhaps you can come to some sort of compromise on the price if they wonít agree to honor the original price.

Of course if they agree to honor the original price, you take a risk that you will end up with the smallest, oldest room in the hotel located right over the kitchen, so you have to weigh up the risks.

Dr. Mustafa Lutfi
Minister of Tourism
Republic of the Maldives
1st Fl, Ghazee Bld.
Ameer Ahmed Magu
Malé 20-05,
Republic of Maldives

Tel: +960 323224,
Fax: +960 322512
e-mail: [email protected]
website: http://www.maldivestourism.gov.mv/index.asp

Mr. Raymond Bickson
Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer
Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces
Oxford House
15/17 N.F. Road
Apollo Bunder
Mumbai 400 001
India
Tel: (91-22) 5665 1000
Fax: (91-22) 2284 6680 / 83
Cicerone is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2005, 05:15 AM
  #5  
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Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 576
Thanks for the help everyone. Special thanks to Cicerone for the contact info! I'll update this post when we have a solution.
MerryTravel is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2005, 08:37 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 7,689
A few more thoughts occurred to me after I looked at the website for the hotel. If they wonít agree to give you a room at the original price, (or if you donít want to risk getting the oldest/smallest room) you might agree to pay the new price but ask for the following:

An upgrade to a lagoon villa
The agreed rate should include all applicable taxes and service charges
They should provide free boat transfers to and from Male airport

Boat transfers could easily be US$100 per person round trip and taxes and service charges will add about another 15% to your bill, so if you can get those two items included and the upgrade that would help, IMO.

You might ask for one or more of the following as well:

Free meals and/or free drinks
Scuba lessons if you donít dive
Free full day boat trip with dives or scuba
Sea plane excursion (this would be my pick!!)
Cicerone is offline  
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