Hotel cancels reservation the evening before arrival

A reader sent us his correspondence about a hotel reservation in the Hampton by Hilton Fort Lauderdale / Cypress Creek. He would arrive on September 19, 2017, but on September 18 he receives an email at 20:03 pm.

The message reads: “We see that you have a reservation with us arriving September the 19th. We are temporarily closed due to the hurricane Irma that arrived to Florida affected our operation.” Interestingly, Irma hit Florida’s West coast hardest, whereas the hotel is located at the East coast.

Because our reader has business meetings in the evening, he does not read the message until late that night. He is surprised for 2 reasons. First, the hotel cancels his reservation on the eve of his arrival, whereas he would need to cancel 2 days before arrival to avoid cancelation penalties.

Second, although the hotel apologizes for any inconvenience the closure may have caused, the hotel does not provide an alternative at a similar rate as in his reservation. He can call a 1-800 number if he would need assistance.

He is angry about the late message without an alternative and decides to go to sleep first as it is already late. The next morning he decides to make a reservation in another hotel, but from another hotel chain than Hilton.

After his return back home he sends an email to the Hilton expressing his disappointment that his reservation was canceled half a day prior to arrival and without offering an alternative hotel at a similar rate as his reservation. Hilton appears to restrict itself to forwarding his message to the hotel.

The Hampton Inn contacts our reader by email. Interestingly, it says that the hotel will be closed until January 1, 2018 and that they look forward to welcoming guests back to their property in January with a new and improved property appearance and decor.

This implies that the hotel did not close due to damages sustained to the hotel by Hurricane Irma. Rather, the hotel considers this a good opportunity to redecorate and perhaps renovate the property.

It seems better to communicate open and honest with customers rather than taking them for a ride.

Tags: Hilton, cancelation, hurricane

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