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Sammy Jan 22nd, 2002 11:48 PM

Hotel's Right of Substititution: "...Alternate Hotels in Rooms of Equal or Superior Quality..."
I got the receipt for my reservation at an Aston* (A 'Resort Quest' Company)<BR> property in Hawaii and much to my chagrin, noticed the following written on the back:<BR><BR>"SUBSTITIONS AND LIMITED LIABILITY: The Hotel reserves the right, without liability, to<BR>provide guests (for all or any of the terms of their reservations) with accomodations in<BR>alternate hotels in rooms of equal or superior quality to those reserved. Approval of name<BR>changes are at the discretion of the Hotel and may be subject to current availablity."<BR><BR>??!!!<BR><BR>First of all, it's nice of them to mention this on my _receipt_ _after_ I made the<BR>reservation. There is no mention at all of this policy in the brochure I had nor was I<BR>informed of it on when making the reservation on the telephone. To not disclose this<BR>policy to the customer in advance is downright deceptive.<BR><BR>Furthermore, this policy itself sounds outrageous to me. If one _reserves_ a room for<BR>specific dates, then how it could it not be available when one arrives? How is it<BR>acceptable for them to book one room for more than party?<BR><BR>As to , "equal or superior quality", that is highly subjective and even if the quality of<BR>the accomodation itself would be determined by objective standards, there remain individual subjective factors such as location,<BR>environment and ambiance of building (including noise level, floor level, etc., etc.).<BR><BR>Finally, I cannot make sense of the last sentence of the above quoted statement. <BR><BR>THanks for any (non-hostile or nasty) comments or explanations.<BR><BR>

Lori Jan 23rd, 2002 05:47 AM

Sammy, I'm thinking that the last bit refers to you perhaps selling your reservation to someone else instead of going yourselves. <BR><BR>I couldn't believe the terms I had to accept when looking into renting a condo for a week in Sanibel. Among other things, I was told that as individual units may be for sale it was ok that they show the property at any time. And that they could switch us to a different unit as it may have been sold since we reserved and the new owners may not want to rent the unit that particular week. At least we were given the fine print up front before we had to sign on the dotted line.

Dick Jan 23rd, 2002 07:23 AM

Aston has many, many properties.<BR><BR>It maeans that you can pick out your "ideal ocean front property" and they could switch you to another of their properties which could be almost anywhere. It sounds like a great way for Aston to fill some of their less desirable properties.<BR><BR>Are you getting a deep discount? It could mean that if higher paying guest come along,,they get your unit and you get bumped.<BR><BR>Although this may not happen, the hotel's terms means you would get no compensation ....if you get swithced to another hotel.<BR><BR>Personally, I wouldn't agree to their terms

Ash Jan 23rd, 2002 07:54 AM

This is not an unusual hotel/resort policy, folks. Sammy just happened to actually read his confirmation. Most of them have so much fine print that it's ridiculous.

John Jan 23rd, 2002 10:08 AM

I think this language may have something to do with the fact that the law in Hawaii does not allow hotels/resorts to remove guests from their rooms if they wish to extend their stay. Thus, if the hotel was full, and the guest who occcupies your room wishes to extend their stay, there's nothing the hotel could do.

Better Jan 23rd, 2002 10:24 AM

This is pretty boilerplate, actually. Don't get your speedos in a bunch. The reality is that things happen - like folks extending their stay beyond what they reserved - that reduce the projected room inventory. Most often it isn't a problem, but in peak seasons issues may arise. <BR>You are correct that quality is subjective. Best bet is, if you don't like what is offered, don't accept it. Make it clear to the desk clerk that you want to actually see the substitute property before accepting it. <BR>In the rare instance that you do get "walked" (industry term for sent to another hotel) most properties will pick up the tab for transfer to the new hotel, often will throw in dinner or someting as well.

Faina Jan 23rd, 2002 10:32 AM

Not sure about Hawaii, but hotels in California practice overbooking not to have rooms empty as there is always somebody who wouldn't show up. This information I got from my co-worker who was a hotel manager and had to walk clients to other hotels. I have no idea if this is legal, but it's common practice.

joan Jan 23rd, 2002 11:36 AM

This sort of thing just happened to our family group over Thanksgiving in Playa del Carmen (booked through Apple). All five rooms were switched to another resort (slightly nicer but further from the town - no walking distance for the teens). Everybody was really mad - this was for a whole week. The resort we left was booked solid (Reef Resort Playacar) and the new one (Resort Miraval) was half empty and busy adding a new wing on. We made the most of it though. The only compensation we received was two rental cars for one day each, which took four days of back-and-forth with the Mexican hotel manager to arrange. I'd never use Apple again - don't really know whether it was Apple's fault or the resort's fault, but the Apple rep was NEVER available.

tani Jan 23rd, 2002 04:18 PM

John is right...they can't force guests out of their rooms. When this happens, you get sent to another hotel, but usually they will upgrade your room or comp you some of the nights. My friend works at the Hilton HV and when he walks guests, it is often to the Halekulani, so no one ever complains!

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