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-   -   Hotel Riva in Venice Wants a Signed Travelers Check as a Deposit (https://www.fodors.com/community/europe/hotel-riva-in-venice-wants-a-signed-travelers-check-as-a-deposit-25902/)

Paula May 17th, 1998 03:47 PM

Hotel Riva in Venice Wants a Signed Travelers Check as a Deposit
 
We called this hotel and made a reservation for July. I was asked to send a signed travelers check for 100 USD to confirm. This doesn't seem like good practice so we contacted American Express. They confirmed that this is not a good idea as it invalidates the agreement with AE by sending a travelers check by mail. Has anyone else heard of this practice? We are not sending a travelers check, but need an alternative. Any ideas?

Michele May 17th, 1998 06:48 PM

I don't like the sound of that either. We have booked at the Albergo Paganelli for several days in late June. I called and made the reservations directly. I was asked to fax my credit card and its exp.date, and agreed as long as they faxed back a confirmation (which they did). Other places in Italy followed the same protocol. I plan to take these faxes with me just in case there is any question. If you are comfortable, ask Hotel Riva to do the same.

Dayle May 17th, 1998 07:26 PM

We stayed at the Albergo Paganelli 2 years ago and used the credit card deposit for 3 rooms. We had no problems and the hotel was charming. Great location! I had called and faxed several Venice hotels before finding a vacancy even in March, but no one requested at signed traveler's check. That does sound out of line. Have a great time!

Chau Mar 27th, 1999 09:30 AM

Dear Paula, <BR>Interested in what you did? I have just called Hotel Riva and was told the same thing. I'm not crazy about this idea either, plus they told me to call them back a few days before we arrive to confirm our reservation. This means I won't know for sure I have a room until I was laready out of the country, plus they already have my check. What did you do? Did you stay at Hotel Riva or somewhere else? They told me they don't take credit cards.

Richard Mar 27th, 1999 09:57 AM

Paula, I think I would find a different hotel. Standard practice is a credit card #, exp. date, etc. Michele has it right, this can all be done by fax, the faxed confirmation being very important. <BR>Sounds like someone at Hotel Riva has invented yet another scam.

Carole Mar 27th, 1999 10:33 AM

We stayed at the Hotel Riva last summer for two nights and again had the problem with the deposit. They wanted us to send a eurocheque - which we did - but they were not able to cash it as we hadn't written our number on the back. However, they did honour our reservation. We also had to ring beforehand to confirm our reservation. We then had some problems on checking out as they did not want to accept the eurocheque. All in all I was not too impressed with the Hotel anyway. It was VERY hot as there is no a/c and we were there in August during a heatwave. I had booked two rooms early in the year and had specifically asked for a room overlooking the canale. Unfortunately when we got there the only way that we could even see the canale was by hanging right out of the window and even then we only caught a glimpse! I am sure that there are better hotels in Venice - although it was reasonably priced I suppose. Next time I would definately pay more for air conditioning. Because Venice is made up of lots of narrow alleyways and canals it holds the heat. Also the hotels are very high and heat rises. This means that you need somewhere with a/c to get out of the heat. We ended up by keep diving into Macdonalds! Not exactly the way we had planned to spend our stay but it did help us to cool off.

Janet Mar 27th, 1999 11:39 PM

My husband and I stayed for a week at Hotel Riva this past May and had a great time. When we called then from the US they did say to send a cashier's check by express mail even though our stay was a month away. And they told us to call to be sure the check arrived (which we did). They had told my husband on the phone they did not have any canal view rooms at all that week available. My husband is fluent in Italian so I asked him to enclose a note with the check letting them know it was our anniversay and telling them that I would really love to have a canal room at least part of our stay. When we got there we found we had the room with the best canal view (all 3 canal right outside our two huge windows) that they had and for it for the full week. My husband had many interesting talks with the two owners and their small staff while there and they asked us several times to please come back next time we were in Venice (which we will probably do someday). I would definately recommend the Hotel Riva to anyone. There is no scam going on here...it's just a very Mom and Pop type small hotel. <BR>

Richard Mar 30th, 1999 11:09 AM

if you are uncomfortablewith the hotel riva's policies, try the hotel fontana. its a small family run hotel near st marks and they do take a credit card deposit. <BR> <BR>www.hotelfontana.it

Maurice Mar 31st, 1999 04:13 PM

I also called, was told to send a travellers cheque. <BR>I am going on the theory that it is at least more traceable than cash. I found hotel Riva mentioned in several guidebooks online (and here, now) so I guess they're legitimate. If the cheque is cashed by someone other than the intended recipient, is AE saying that there is no legal recourse? At very least, you can file a complaint with Italian police? (You can't get your money back, but then, you run a similar risk with so many transactions not on credit card.) <BR>I sent a Visa TC about 4 weeks ago. I will phone them shortly to see if it arrived. It looks like a nice location, I am hoping June 2nd is not TOO hot.

richard j. vicek Mar 31st, 1999 04:54 PM

Good evening, <BR>If you have a complaint with the Hotel <BR>Riva, the e-mail address for the Venice hotel assn. is [email protected]. <BR>I dropped them a line last Sunday and have not received a reply. <BR>Richard of Hickory Hills, Il....

Maurice Jun 18th, 1999 10:33 AM

We were told a month before we left that the travellers cheques we sent did not arrive. I send another set ($100US again) by FEDEX (Delivery guaranteed, $26US). The savings on one night's stay vs. most hotels would pay for that cost. When we arrived, they had received both sets and so 2 of our 3 nights were paid for. (I had forgotten to counter-sign one of the Travellers' Cheques - no problem.) I blame the problem on the potent combination of Canadian and Italian post offices. <BR> The Hotel Riva is fantasic! It is renovated inside (outside still looks 300 years old). The lobby and halls are marble tiled. The rooms were all new. You're 2 minutes walk from ST. Mark's, just around the bend at the end of the canal under the bridge of sighs. We got what must have been a triple as our double room, right over the canal where the gondolas go by (some with accordians and singing). We eventually went on our own Gondola ride, sharing with another couple at the Hotel. (Quoted rate - L150,000 for 4). The ride starts on the steps beside the hotel entrance. This ride went out to the Grand Canal for a bit, not under the Bridge of Sighs; still a fantastic ride. <BR>PS. Venice was hot; July 2-5th, it was humid and about 95. Unlike Paris, there are places that sell cold-cold-cold pop, even in 1.5 or 2 litre bottles.

David Jun 19th, 1999 07:57 AM

Just to reiterate all the positive messages; we stayed at the Riva earlier this month and thought it was FANTASTIC. Paid 170000 lira which was less than we paid for inferior places in Rome and Florence. Not only did it have all the Marble described above; it had beautiful wood accents making the interior common areas as nice as hotels costing much more. Further there were beautiful Murano glass fixtures and mirrors in the room. The owners and staff speak Italian and French and English. <BR>It's unfortunate that their policy requiring a traveller check as a deposit exists as it causes concerns. But there is no scam here as suggested in one of the posts. I think they ask for three days telephone confirmation just to make sure they arent going to have an empty room for the night (albeit already paid for) Again the perception is negative but there was no problem with us. <BR>We had a view of the three canals that go by; All we had to do to experience Venice was to pull up a chair to the window and look out! After having inferior rooms in Rome and Florence we were due! <BR>No air conditioning may be a problem in the summer. Consider travelling with a small ($5 size) fan that you can combine with using a wet wash cloth to keep you cool at night (personal evaporative cooler!) <BR>

Mary Ann Jun 19th, 1999 08:27 PM

It is not that uncommon for accomodations that do not accept credit cards to request travelers checks. Small pensions in Vienna may ( the banks charge large fees for personal checks) and some French bed and breaksfasts have requested them. Generally a fax or e-mail confirmation is sent upon receipt.


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