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Hotel deposit via Western Union?? Venice (Maureen B)

Hotel deposit via Western Union?? Venice (Maureen B)

Feb 21st, 2007, 01:55 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 163
Hotel deposit via Western Union?? Venice (Maureen B)

Looking to stay at Hotel Riva and sent a few emails back and forth and not totally understanding but I see we need to send a nights payment to reserve room. Never used with Western Union or Money Orders... what is easiest and how do I know this is getting to them? Anyone have experience with this in Venice?

baemel is offline  
Feb 21st, 2007, 03:07 PM
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It's the *favourite* way for fraudsters to steal money from you

alanRow is offline  
Feb 21st, 2007, 03:21 PM
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You can only really use Western Union to send money to someone you know personally.
CRAZY4TRAVEL is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2007, 09:13 AM
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Posts: 2,355
Oh please. Hotel Riva is a well-known business, they won't steal your money! They're quite probably just trying to get around paying the taxes, but this is the problem of Italy's financial administration, not of us travelers...
franco is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2007, 09:30 AM
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Saying not to use Western Union is to misdiagnose the problem spectacularly.

A fraudster can ask for payment through credit cards, bank transfers or cheques. We frequently use WU for business transactions: it's quicker than banks, sometimes no pricier and a lot less likely to get lost in big banks' systems.

Any transaction that requires cash upfront is a clear sign of - someone wanting cash upfront, and no more. Normal prudence is needed. But it's the counterparty you need to check, not the method of payment.

Incidentally, you CAN insist on having the counterparty's national ID (or in the UK, passport) number before transmission through WU. This may not guarantee honesty - but it's as reasonable a deterrent to someone running off with your cash as a bank account.
flanneruk is online now  
Feb 23rd, 2007, 09:37 AM
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 4,874
I'm glad folks have posted about Western Union and fraud. WU will ask you if you personally know the person to whom you are wiring money, and when you say no, you will have to call the anti-fraud department and they will scare you to death. I had to pay a deposit on a VRBO in Rome that way. The first time I chickened out after talking to the WU folks. I finally got brave (or dumb) enough to do it, and it turned out fine. There ARE legit folks who want money that way, but I agree that it is scary.
missypie is offline  
Feb 24th, 2007, 06:22 AM
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I don't understand. Seems to me that the easiest way to reserve is by credit card. Is this not possible or preferable?
Jed is offline  
Feb 26th, 2007, 12:36 PM
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no, they donot take credit cards unfortunately.
baemel is offline  
Feb 26th, 2007, 07:45 PM
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What does the hotel recommend? And what happens to the money if you need to cancel your reservation within the no-penalty period set forth in their cancellation policy? You do know what their cancellation policy is, don't you...

Frankly, I'd pick a hotel that made it easier for the guest to confirm a reservation.
Jean is online now  
Feb 26th, 2007, 09:20 PM
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Posts: 2,550
Besides have you checked WU fees? They cop about 10% don't they?
worldinabag is offline  
Feb 27th, 2007, 09:16 AM
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Yes, the WU fees are high. The rate on our flat was really great, so it wasn't TOO painful to pay the fees. I was a bit irritated that the VRBO in Rome didn't take a credit card, or at least PayPal. But I consoled myself by imagining that the owner was an old Italian man who wasn't comfortable with such things. Then when I got there, I found out that I had been dealing with the Italian manager and that the owner actually lived in New Orleans!
missypie is offline  
Feb 27th, 2007, 10:41 AM
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We reserved the Hotel Riva via e-mail directly with Daniela, back in April 2006. At that time, we were able to send a credit card number via e-mail, and they used it to guarantee the reservation. But when we checked out, I paid in full in cash.

Here's a quote from their e-mail to me:
"For the reservation we require the credit card number and expire date, but we kindly ask you to pay your bill in travelers checks or cash at your departure. Cancel policy: 4 days prior arrival; otherwise we charge the first night as penalty.

"You can always reserve by a deposit of the first night made by Western Union to the name of the owner Sandro Nart, by Federal Express... with Travelers Checks..."

They don't let you use a credit card anymore? In any event, it's a legitimate hotel, so I think you'd be ok in using another method to reserve.

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