oops. our first embarassing double booking

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TheBeachHouse's picture
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I was so excited for another on line booking this morning!  Until we realized the room had already been booked via telephone.  And hubby forgot to block it off on the on line system.  ooops.  I know my husband well enough to know he will never make that mistake again.

But in the meatime, what would you tell the unfortunate person who is left without a room?  We're full.

(And to add to our embarassment, the person put a note on the booking saying he'd stayed in our town many times, but never at our inn and he was looking forward to seeing it.)

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TheBeachHouse's picture
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Resolution.

Gentleman received the email and booked the suggested room at the inn four doors down from us (and owned by a friend.) 

Hubby sent him a note saying we'd had a cancellation and that he could book with us.  Guest replied that he'd already booked elsewhere.  Hubby wrote back saying we knew he'd enjoy the other inn and that if he comes back to our town, we would like to offer a discount off his first night's stay to make up for the hassle.   He accepted.  We'll see if he stops by to say hellow this weekend.  

Joey Camb's picture
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told you, you would get a cancellation! typical!

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Late coming in to answer, sounds like you got it all sorted out.  GLAD he made a personal phone call to the canceled guest as well.  It is always better to speak with someone when an error has occurred and not hide behind email.   

And the only side note I would like to make regarding the advice to make the alternate reservation is to note, I would never provide a 3rd party with customer CC information to secure a reservation.  I am sure that is what the others meant as well but we have many reading these posts that are not taking part of our conversations.  If you are ever in this situation, tell the guest you will provide the other accommodation with their name and contact info, but for security of their CC, you will not share that info with anyone else. 

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copperhead wrote:

And the only side note I would like to make regarding the advice to make the alternate reservation is to note, I would never provide a 3rd party with customer CC information to secure a reservation.  I am sure that is what the others meant as well but we have many reading these posts that are not taking part of our conversations.  If you are ever in this situation, tell the guest you will provide the other accommodation with their name and contact info, but for security of their CC, you will not share that info with anyone else. 

Yes, absolutely! Never give the guest's cc info out.

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Arks's picture
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TheBeachHouse wrote:

..we realized the room had already been booked via telephone.  And hubby forgot to block it off on the on line system...

How did he know it was available to book via telephone unless he checked the online system first? Surely he's not trying to just keep it all in his head. You're already too busy to do that.

As others have mentioned, you have to check the online system while you're on the phone with them, and take it out of inventory right then so you get a confirmation number. Otherwise, Party B could book it while you're still on the phone with Party A. 

When someone phones to make their reservation the online system MUST be the place you go to check availability and make the reservation. Otherwise, this will happen again.

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Joey Camb's picture
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We had this once - I was in the shower, and had left my mum in charge while doing so with one family room left ie double bed and single bed - I get out the shower and there is an email on my phone saying 2 ladies are desperate for a twin for tonight please ring this number - I did booked them in, not knowing my mother was taking a walk in at the door at exactly the same time!

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I'm glad I'm not the only one. It's happened to me twice, unfortunately. We sent them elsewhere.

Madeleine's picture
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I just read the rest. I will say that just emailing the guest and telling them sorry is not a good idea. They may never read the email. They may think it is their confirmation. They may not get the email. There is a whole list of things they may think and then show up at your door.

You should handle the arrangements. And call the guest and speak with them. Apologize. Say you found accommodations for them at xyz. Will that be acceptable?

We just got 2 room nights from a similar situation here. And I will say that even tho the guest got an upgraded room with a fireplace here they were still grousing about the other inn when they left. We went out of our way to make their stay pleasant and to 'explain' what happened at the other inn and to say how nice the people are and so forth and so on and they were still not happy. (Happy with us, but not happy the error occurred.)

TheBeachHouse's picture
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I thought about the lost email angle.  The person got a cancellation note from the booking system, a personal email from Hubby and also a personal phone call from Hubby.   So I guess bases are covered as far as letting him know.  The booking is not this weekend, so there is time for him to get the messages. (Thank goodness.)

Joey Camb's picture
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whatever the weekend - now its sorted you will get a cancellation, its sods law

Madeleine's picture
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camberleyhotelharrogate@yahoo.co.uk wrote:

whatever the weekend - now its sorted you will get a cancellation, its sods law

We asked two different guests to switch rooms this weekend so other guests could have a straight run for 6 nights and 3 nights. The 6 nighter canceled right after the one room upgraded. The 3 nighter is still coming as far as I know.

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Finagle's Law of Dynamic Negatives - Anything that can go wrong, will— at the worst possible moment

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TheBeachHouse's picture
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camberleyhotelharrogate@yahoo.co.uk wrote:

whatever the weekend - now its sorted you will get a cancellation, its sods law

 

LOL

Madeleine's picture
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So, firstly, always, always, always use your online booking engine to make phone reservations. Then, problem solved on forgetting to enter it.

OK, mom is done, now onto the problem...who else in town has rooms? Pick a good/better place and send your guest there. If there is a difference, YOU pay it. If it's the same price, then have flowers sent to them. Or wine. Or something.

Apologize profusely. Say how sorry you are that the two reservations came in at the same time. That because you were speaking with the person on the phone, they get priority. Sorry. We would like to arrange for you to stay at ... would that be ok with you?

If yes, make the reservation for the guest and send over something as a thank you. If no, then offer a discount on a future stay and apologize some more.

gillumhouse's picture
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Can you find another room for him at another facility? Try to locate something first. THEN call the guest and tell them the situation and that you have located a room at ________ and give him the number. Also send him a certificate (make one up on your computer) for 50% off when he comes BUT put a 1 year expiration date on it (since we are almost at the end of the "season").

TheBeachHouse's picture
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My husband found a room at the Inn next door and sent the info in an email reply. 

gillumhouse's picture
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Excellent to give a quick resolution. Now lure him in with the GC - give a good for $xx off on you stay - make it a dollar amount rather than a % in cas he books for a week, the 5 would kill you.

TheBeachHouse's picture
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I sent my husband the suggestion to send the man the discount.  Haven't heard what he decided.  

Generic's picture
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Take responsibility. Offer them a GC for future use for about 10% of the value. Ask if they need help finding another place and if they do, help them.

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FYI give this very valuable info to your hubby for me "Have him book the room ONLINE as the guest would" then you have it pulled from inventory as he is filling in the fields, same as they would be doing on their own. Just go to the guest side, and fill it in from there...no more double booking.

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Tell who...your hubby?? cheeky

Just call them back and tell them the truth. Your husband had already booked the room and forgot to put it in the system. That's all you can do. No other rooms left????  If yes, switch them to another room.

Chalk up to lesson learned and tell your husband to remember next time.devil

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