London Hotel 2009. Should I prepay?

Old Oct 11th, 2008, 05:16 PM
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London Hotel 2009. Should I prepay?

I'm looking at booking a room for 5-night in September 2009 at the Claverly Hotel in London.

They have quoted me two options:

1. Prepayment. 141 GBP/night Full payment in advance/no refunds: full payment is required for this reservation at the time of booking; your credit card will be charged immediately in Great Britain Pounds (GBP) for the total amount quoted for the entire stay as reserved and no refunds or credits will be issued. Charges cannot be applied to other stays. No prices or hotel availability are guaranteed until full payment is received.


Price does not include: any applicable service charges or charges for optional incidentals (including but not limited to gratuities, beverage, and other optional incidentals). The price you selected includes room rate, full breakfast and applicable taxes only.

Other restrictions: If you fail to arrive at the hotel on the scheduled arrival date, your reservation will be cancelled and you will not receive any refund or credit or . . . . .

2. I can book the normal way with 48 hour cancellation notice, but at the higher rate of 159 GBP and chance that the exchange rate will remain low.


Sorry for the long message. Would I be foolish to stick my neck out this early or would I be a fool not to.

eurogals is offline  
Old Oct 11th, 2008, 05:24 PM
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Wow--that is a dilemma. I don't have a crystal ball either. I think I would risk things at this point though. The exchange rate could continue to equalize....not to mention that if the economy tanks any further internationally, the rate could also be more favorable if you wait....or not. I know that if the exchange rate continues to improve and/or it looks like rate could improve over time, I would be kicking myself for locking in that non-refundable prepayment.
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Old Oct 11th, 2008, 05:34 PM
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I say go ahead and do it but not so much because of the exchange rates. Rather, to get it at the lower price. For all my holidays, I tend to book way way in advance and I find that it has given me substantial savings which I could use to spend on other items during my travel.
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Old Oct 11th, 2008, 06:32 PM
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<i>I'm looking at booking a room for 5-night in September 2009 at the Claverly Hotel in London.</i>

This is almost ONE YEAR from now. So many things can happen between now and then. NO WAY I'll pre-pay for a hotel room so far away from now.

The only reason I can think of I'll pre-pay is:
1) Losing 141x5 pounds is a drop in the bucket for you.
2) The hotel room normally costs 3 or 4 times as much if it's not a pre-paid rate.
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Old Oct 11th, 2008, 07:12 PM
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Hello eurogals, personally I would never ever pay for something a year in advance where I would be out the entire amount if for some reason I could not keep the reservation. A one night fee yes, but not the cost of all five nights.
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Old Oct 11th, 2008, 10:28 PM
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IMO - that is a crazy idea. You are 11 months out. ANYTHING could happen between now and then.

Tourism could tank so much that hotels will be lowering their rates - not raising them.

Or the &pound; can fall farther - or go back up. It has fallen 31 in the last couple of months. If you had taken this deal back in August you would have lost about $200.

So I'd wait several months and then decide if you wanted to pre-pay . . . . . .
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Old Oct 11th, 2008, 11:46 PM
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Never pay today what you can pay tomorrow. I almost never pre-pay until maybe 2 to 3 weeks out.
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Old Oct 12th, 2008, 01:05 AM
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Is this the Claverley Hotel? Have you looked at the reviews? They're pretty good, but not fabulous.

I have seen great prepaid deals disappear, so if this were a terrific opportunity I might be tempted to prepay 11 months in advance. (But I also have annual travel insurance that would cover many instances of possible losses.) But I don't see this as being a superlative hotel, nor do I think 18 pounds per night is much of a savings for the level of risk you are undertaking.
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Old Oct 12th, 2008, 02:59 AM
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I wouldn't do it. The only time I did prepay in full almost a year ahead I arrived to find no space &amp; had the devil of a time getting my money back.

That said, I stayed right by it year before last &amp; the location is terrific. Why not wait until closer to the date &amp; see if they're still offering the prepaid rate?
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Old Oct 12th, 2008, 04:19 AM
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Really can't understand why you are even LOOKING for somewhere so far in advance. Anything could happen - exchange rates - your situation.

If they were asking for one night in advance, well if it's the only place in the whole of London you feel you can stay at, then maybe. But 5 nights in advance. NO WAY.
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Old Oct 12th, 2008, 02:49 PM
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Hi eu,

&gt;...Price does not include: any applicable service charges...&lt;

Have you asked what the additional service charge will be?

Is bkfst included at the prepay price? At the regular price?

You might not be saving 18E/night.

If 141 GBP is the full price with all of the benefits of the 159 GBP price, I would be tempted to take it now, with the GBP at $1.7.

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Old Oct 12th, 2008, 04:23 PM
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There shouldn't be any service charge per se unless you order something when you are there. That's what those charges mean, they can't predict what a customer will order when they are in the hotel (like room service, minibar, etc.).
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Old Oct 12th, 2008, 04:32 PM
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What is the chance you think you'll have to cancel? That is what I'd base my decision on.
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Old Oct 12th, 2008, 11:30 PM
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I would also consider that &pound;141 may be as much as US$150 more than what you would pay for a 4-star hotel on Priceline.

To my mind, the Claverly does not look that much better than even the worst 4-star you would get on Priceline (probably the Copthorne in Kensington). I would pocket the extra $500 - $750 and go with Priceline.
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Old Oct 13th, 2008, 08:03 AM
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I agree about Priceline - but I wouldn't bid PL this far out either . . . . .
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Old Oct 13th, 2008, 08:16 AM
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hi, eurogals,

look at it this way:

for a trip in Sept '09, you won't have actually to pay until October '09, if you pay on c/card.
so you've got a year to invest your &pound;141 x 5 [= &pound;705]. at 5% that's &pound;35. you can offset that against the extra &pound;18 x 5 = &pound;90 that payment in Oct '09 will cost you. so your saving is only &pound;55.

against that, you're contemplating spending &pound;705 NOW on a trip that you may want to cancel/change.

that is, to coin a phrase, a no-brainer.

if you are really worried about xchange rates, why not buy &pound;1000 in GBP now to hedge your bets. the worst thing that can happen is that the &pound; will gain in value, in which case you'll win!

all right, it'll cost you in commission, but that's much cheaper than potentially throwing away &pound;700.

regards, ann
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Old Oct 13th, 2008, 10:08 AM
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Annhig:

Don't take this the wrong way.

But has it occurred to you that you're responsible for all those millions charities and local authorities have lost?

When you went home from Iceland, 100% of the country's financial acumen was on that Ryanair plane.

How can you live with the thought?
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Old Oct 13th, 2008, 10:24 AM
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Have you looked at Londontown.com? You can get relly good rates there and the booking is much simpler. It's far enough in the future that you have time, IMO, to look around if you haven't done so.
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Old Oct 14th, 2008, 02:27 AM
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LOL Flanneruk, I'm not that bright, unfortunately.

but the phrase KISS does spring to mind.

Also, that there's no such thing as a free lunch. if a thing looks too good to be true, it probably is.

I'm rather sorry we're not in iceland now - the exchange rate must be great!

regards, ann

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