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JBloggs

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I am considering adding a $10 cancellation fee to bookings. Do you charge a fee, how has it been received by guests and potential guests? Do they fight it?
I don't want to cut off my nose to spite my face, but also don't like getting the shaft all the time.
 

Don Draper

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We have never had it questioned, and ours is $25. We do have many competitors and they all charge a similar fee so that doesn't hurt.
To my mind, if you take a deposit, you have to defray the credit card fee somehow if the person cancels totally, so this fee is reasonable.
Put it right up front on your policies and your confirmations and see how it goes. $10 is completely reasonable as far as I'm concerned.
 

Morticia

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Here's my opinion...a LOT of places are doing it. BUT, to get the $10 (and that's really not enough), you'll have to do the deposit and then refund the difference. Otherwise, you'll have a heck of a time charging them $10 on their cc. At least that's what I'm thinking. THEN, just taking the deposit may slow down some of the cancels. PLUS, you'll know if the card is good!
 

Don Draper

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Here's my opinion...a LOT of places are doing it. BUT, to get the $10 (and that's really not enough), you'll have to do the deposit and then refund the difference. Otherwise, you'll have a heck of a time charging them $10 on their cc. At least that's what I'm thinking. THEN, just taking the deposit may slow down some of the cancels. PLUS, you'll know if the card is good!.
Yes, should have clarified that we take a 50% deposit on all reservations, which is why we have the cancellation fee. Your deposit comes back less the $25 if you cancel within the time frame. I like knowing I have a valid card, plus it helps cash flow (esp this time of year!) so that is why we do the deposit.
 

EmptyNest

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I think most places charge a cancellation fee if the room can't be rebooked. Just consider how much a hassle you will have to deal with via running it through the credit card etc. etc. $25 would make it more worth your while.
 

gillumhouse

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I have an event in July (22-25) in Morgantown and am considering posting this to my Specials Page:
We do not raise our rates for X-Event and can either be 3 guestrooms with Rosi’s & Harris sharing a bathroom OR as 2 guestrooms with the Harris Room as a room with private detached bathroom for the same nightly rate as the Gillum Room ($129 + 6% tax per night). Since 2-Wheel Classics (your innkeepers) are part of the Vintage Motorcycle Show at X-Event, breakfast will be served between 6 AM and 8 AM each morning. There is a 2-night minimum. Full reservation payment is required on or before July 1, 2010 (personal check or credit card charge). Cancellations after July 10 will incur a $50 cancellation fee.
Have at it.
 

Suzie Q

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We charge room fee if they cancel less than 24 hours or one week, depending on the time reserved. It is held in the form of a credit, (not gift certificate) good for one year. Have considered a non refundable fee.
 

Morticia

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I have an event in July (22-25) in Morgantown and am considering posting this to my Specials Page:
We do not raise our rates for X-Event and can either be 3 guestrooms with Rosi’s & Harris sharing a bathroom OR as 2 guestrooms with the Harris Room as a room with private detached bathroom for the same nightly rate as the Gillum Room ($129 + 6% tax per night). Since 2-Wheel Classics (your innkeepers) are part of the Vintage Motorcycle Show at X-Event, breakfast will be served between 6 AM and 8 AM each morning. There is a 2-night minimum. Full reservation payment is required on or before July 1, 2010 (personal check or credit card charge). Cancellations after July 10 will incur a $50 cancellation fee.
Have at it..
Too confusing. You've got too much going on in that paragraph. Simply state that you have rooms available for this event. Guests can figure out the configuration by looking at your website. They can also figure out that the prices are the same as any other date. Include that breakfast will be from 6-8 to get everyone on their way so they don't miss anything. AND, as your innkeepers are part of the 'welcome committee' (or whatever), after breakfast we'll be joining the festivities ourselves!
Make it sound like you're doing the breakfast at that time for the guests, not so you can get out the door, too.
Certainly add the cancel fee.
I hope you meant 'have at it' as an invite to opine. If not, ignore everything I said!
A little amendment here- guests DON'T always know anything, so state, 'Great rates for X event!' Here's why I say to not make a big deal about the rates not going up when this is obviously a big deal event- it's a slam at anyone in the area who, rightly, does raise their rates. It's a commodity you're selling. If you can get more, do so. If you don't want to, don't knock the person who does. (Now, my take on this applies to things like hotel rooms for optional events. Gouging people when they need a warm place to sleep because the power is out everywhere but your inn, is not something of which I approve. But, my opinion.)
 

gillumhouse

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I have an event in July (22-25) in Morgantown and am considering posting this to my Specials Page:
We do not raise our rates for X-Event and can either be 3 guestrooms with Rosi’s & Harris sharing a bathroom OR as 2 guestrooms with the Harris Room as a room with private detached bathroom for the same nightly rate as the Gillum Room ($129 + 6% tax per night). Since 2-Wheel Classics (your innkeepers) are part of the Vintage Motorcycle Show at X-Event, breakfast will be served between 6 AM and 8 AM each morning. There is a 2-night minimum. Full reservation payment is required on or before July 1, 2010 (personal check or credit card charge). Cancellations after July 10 will incur a $50 cancellation fee.
Have at it..
Too confusing. You've got too much going on in that paragraph. Simply state that you have rooms available for this event. Guests can figure out the configuration by looking at your website. They can also figure out that the prices are the same as any other date. Include that breakfast will be from 6-8 to get everyone on their way so they don't miss anything. AND, as your innkeepers are part of the 'welcome committee' (or whatever), after breakfast we'll be joining the festivities ourselves!
Make it sound like you're doing the breakfast at that time for the guests, not so you can get out the door, too.
Certainly add the cancel fee.
I hope you meant 'have at it' as an invite to opine. If not, ignore everything I said!
A little amendment here- guests DON'T always know anything, so state, 'Great rates for X event!' Here's why I say to not make a big deal about the rates not going up when this is obviously a big deal event- it's a slam at anyone in the area who, rightly, does raise their rates. It's a commodity you're selling. If you can get more, do so. If you don't want to, don't knock the person who does. (Now, my take on this applies to things like hotel rooms for optional events. Gouging people when they need a warm place to sleep because the power is out everywhere but your inn, is not something of which I approve. But, my opinion.)
.
Yes, have at it meant critique. All suggestions welcome.
 

gillumhouse

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I have an event in July (22-25) in Morgantown and am considering posting this to my Specials Page:
We do not raise our rates for X-Event and can either be 3 guestrooms with Rosi’s & Harris sharing a bathroom OR as 2 guestrooms with the Harris Room as a room with private detached bathroom for the same nightly rate as the Gillum Room ($129 + 6% tax per night). Since 2-Wheel Classics (your innkeepers) are part of the Vintage Motorcycle Show at X-Event, breakfast will be served between 6 AM and 8 AM each morning. There is a 2-night minimum. Full reservation payment is required on or before July 1, 2010 (personal check or credit card charge). Cancellations after July 10 will incur a $50 cancellation fee.
Have at it..
Too confusing. You've got too much going on in that paragraph. Simply state that you have rooms available for this event. Guests can figure out the configuration by looking at your website. They can also figure out that the prices are the same as any other date. Include that breakfast will be from 6-8 to get everyone on their way so they don't miss anything. AND, as your innkeepers are part of the 'welcome committee' (or whatever), after breakfast we'll be joining the festivities ourselves!
Make it sound like you're doing the breakfast at that time for the guests, not so you can get out the door, too.
Certainly add the cancel fee.
I hope you meant 'have at it' as an invite to opine. If not, ignore everything I said!
A little amendment here- guests DON'T always know anything, so state, 'Great rates for X event!' Here's why I say to not make a big deal about the rates not going up when this is obviously a big deal event- it's a slam at anyone in the area who, rightly, does raise their rates. It's a commodity you're selling. If you can get more, do so. If you don't want to, don't knock the person who does. (Now, my take on this applies to things like hotel rooms for optional events. Gouging people when they need a warm place to sleep because the power is out everywhere but your inn, is not something of which I approve. But, my opinion.)
.
Revision:
Great rates for X-Fest!. Breakfast will be served between 6 AM and 8 AM each morning so nothing will be missed during this event. We can give you a different routing for each day of this motorcycle funfest. Stop in at the Vintage Motorcycle Show to see John’s paintings! There is a 2-night minimum. Full reservation payment is required on or before July 1, 2010 (personal check or credit card charge). Cancellations after July 10 will incur a $50 cancellation fee.
 

Breakfast Diva

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I have an event in July (22-25) in Morgantown and am considering posting this to my Specials Page:
We do not raise our rates for X-Event and can either be 3 guestrooms with Rosi’s & Harris sharing a bathroom OR as 2 guestrooms with the Harris Room as a room with private detached bathroom for the same nightly rate as the Gillum Room ($129 + 6% tax per night). Since 2-Wheel Classics (your innkeepers) are part of the Vintage Motorcycle Show at X-Event, breakfast will be served between 6 AM and 8 AM each morning. There is a 2-night minimum. Full reservation payment is required on or before July 1, 2010 (personal check or credit card charge). Cancellations after July 10 will incur a $50 cancellation fee.
Have at it..
Too confusing. You've got too much going on in that paragraph. Simply state that you have rooms available for this event. Guests can figure out the configuration by looking at your website. They can also figure out that the prices are the same as any other date. Include that breakfast will be from 6-8 to get everyone on their way so they don't miss anything. AND, as your innkeepers are part of the 'welcome committee' (or whatever), after breakfast we'll be joining the festivities ourselves!
Make it sound like you're doing the breakfast at that time for the guests, not so you can get out the door, too.
Certainly add the cancel fee.
I hope you meant 'have at it' as an invite to opine. If not, ignore everything I said!
A little amendment here- guests DON'T always know anything, so state, 'Great rates for X event!' Here's why I say to not make a big deal about the rates not going up when this is obviously a big deal event- it's a slam at anyone in the area who, rightly, does raise their rates. It's a commodity you're selling. If you can get more, do so. If you don't want to, don't knock the person who does. (Now, my take on this applies to things like hotel rooms for optional events. Gouging people when they need a warm place to sleep because the power is out everywhere but your inn, is not something of which I approve. But, my opinion.)
.
I totally agree with Morticia on this.
You might consider just using bullet points instead of texty paragraph(s). People pay more attention to bullets, especially if they're in bold and short and sweet.
 

Don Draper

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I have an event in July (22-25) in Morgantown and am considering posting this to my Specials Page:
We do not raise our rates for X-Event and can either be 3 guestrooms with Rosi’s & Harris sharing a bathroom OR as 2 guestrooms with the Harris Room as a room with private detached bathroom for the same nightly rate as the Gillum Room ($129 + 6% tax per night). Since 2-Wheel Classics (your innkeepers) are part of the Vintage Motorcycle Show at X-Event, breakfast will be served between 6 AM and 8 AM each morning. There is a 2-night minimum. Full reservation payment is required on or before July 1, 2010 (personal check or credit card charge). Cancellations after July 10 will incur a $50 cancellation fee.
Have at it..
Too confusing. You've got too much going on in that paragraph. Simply state that you have rooms available for this event. Guests can figure out the configuration by looking at your website. They can also figure out that the prices are the same as any other date. Include that breakfast will be from 6-8 to get everyone on their way so they don't miss anything. AND, as your innkeepers are part of the 'welcome committee' (or whatever), after breakfast we'll be joining the festivities ourselves!
Make it sound like you're doing the breakfast at that time for the guests, not so you can get out the door, too.
Certainly add the cancel fee.
I hope you meant 'have at it' as an invite to opine. If not, ignore everything I said!
A little amendment here- guests DON'T always know anything, so state, 'Great rates for X event!' Here's why I say to not make a big deal about the rates not going up when this is obviously a big deal event- it's a slam at anyone in the area who, rightly, does raise their rates. It's a commodity you're selling. If you can get more, do so. If you don't want to, don't knock the person who does. (Now, my take on this applies to things like hotel rooms for optional events. Gouging people when they need a warm place to sleep because the power is out everywhere but your inn, is not something of which I approve. But, my opinion.)
.
Revision:
Great rates for X-Fest!. Breakfast will be served between 6 AM and 8 AM each morning so nothing will be missed during this event. We can give you a different routing for each day of this motorcycle funfest. Stop in at the Vintage Motorcycle Show to see John’s paintings! There is a 2-night minimum. Full reservation payment is required on or before July 1, 2010 (personal check or credit card charge). Cancellations after July 10 will incur a $50 cancellation fee.
.
I really like this! Good edits.
 

Morticia

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I have an event in July (22-25) in Morgantown and am considering posting this to my Specials Page:
We do not raise our rates for X-Event and can either be 3 guestrooms with Rosi’s & Harris sharing a bathroom OR as 2 guestrooms with the Harris Room as a room with private detached bathroom for the same nightly rate as the Gillum Room ($129 + 6% tax per night). Since 2-Wheel Classics (your innkeepers) are part of the Vintage Motorcycle Show at X-Event, breakfast will be served between 6 AM and 8 AM each morning. There is a 2-night minimum. Full reservation payment is required on or before July 1, 2010 (personal check or credit card charge). Cancellations after July 10 will incur a $50 cancellation fee.
Have at it..
Too confusing. You've got too much going on in that paragraph. Simply state that you have rooms available for this event. Guests can figure out the configuration by looking at your website. They can also figure out that the prices are the same as any other date. Include that breakfast will be from 6-8 to get everyone on their way so they don't miss anything. AND, as your innkeepers are part of the 'welcome committee' (or whatever), after breakfast we'll be joining the festivities ourselves!
Make it sound like you're doing the breakfast at that time for the guests, not so you can get out the door, too.
Certainly add the cancel fee.
I hope you meant 'have at it' as an invite to opine. If not, ignore everything I said!
A little amendment here- guests DON'T always know anything, so state, 'Great rates for X event!' Here's why I say to not make a big deal about the rates not going up when this is obviously a big deal event- it's a slam at anyone in the area who, rightly, does raise their rates. It's a commodity you're selling. If you can get more, do so. If you don't want to, don't knock the person who does. (Now, my take on this applies to things like hotel rooms for optional events. Gouging people when they need a warm place to sleep because the power is out everywhere but your inn, is not something of which I approve. But, my opinion.)
.
Revision:
Great rates for X-Fest!. Breakfast will be served between 6 AM and 8 AM each morning so nothing will be missed during this event. We can give you a different routing for each day of this motorcycle funfest. Stop in at the Vintage Motorcycle Show to see John’s paintings! There is a 2-night minimum. Full reservation payment is required on or before July 1, 2010 (personal check or credit card charge). Cancellations after July 10 will incur a $50 cancellation fee.
.
'...so you will be able to see everything...'
Focus on the guest. I like the different routings, that's giving them something tangible.
 

gillumhouse

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I have an event in July (22-25) in Morgantown and am considering posting this to my Specials Page:
We do not raise our rates for X-Event and can either be 3 guestrooms with Rosi’s & Harris sharing a bathroom OR as 2 guestrooms with the Harris Room as a room with private detached bathroom for the same nightly rate as the Gillum Room ($129 + 6% tax per night). Since 2-Wheel Classics (your innkeepers) are part of the Vintage Motorcycle Show at X-Event, breakfast will be served between 6 AM and 8 AM each morning. There is a 2-night minimum. Full reservation payment is required on or before July 1, 2010 (personal check or credit card charge). Cancellations after July 10 will incur a $50 cancellation fee.
Have at it..
Too confusing. You've got too much going on in that paragraph. Simply state that you have rooms available for this event. Guests can figure out the configuration by looking at your website. They can also figure out that the prices are the same as any other date. Include that breakfast will be from 6-8 to get everyone on their way so they don't miss anything. AND, as your innkeepers are part of the 'welcome committee' (or whatever), after breakfast we'll be joining the festivities ourselves!
Make it sound like you're doing the breakfast at that time for the guests, not so you can get out the door, too.
Certainly add the cancel fee.
I hope you meant 'have at it' as an invite to opine. If not, ignore everything I said!
A little amendment here- guests DON'T always know anything, so state, 'Great rates for X event!' Here's why I say to not make a big deal about the rates not going up when this is obviously a big deal event- it's a slam at anyone in the area who, rightly, does raise their rates. It's a commodity you're selling. If you can get more, do so. If you don't want to, don't knock the person who does. (Now, my take on this applies to things like hotel rooms for optional events. Gouging people when they need a warm place to sleep because the power is out everywhere but your inn, is not something of which I approve. But, my opinion.)
.
Revision:
Great rates for X-Fest!. Breakfast will be served between 6 AM and 8 AM each morning so nothing will be missed during this event. We can give you a different routing for each day of this motorcycle funfest. Stop in at the Vintage Motorcycle Show to see John’s paintings! There is a 2-night minimum. Full reservation payment is required on or before July 1, 2010 (personal check or credit card charge). Cancellations after July 10 will incur a $50 cancellation fee.
.
'...so you will be able to see everything...'
Focus on the guest. I like the different routings, that's giving them something tangible.
.
some of the happenings are rides, races, participation stuff. That is what brings them out by the thousands, Estimates last year were over 70,000. There were so many going to the main event area that they closed the Interstate Exit due to the backup ON the Interstate. I just want a little piece of that action! (and a couple commissions for paintings will also be welcome!)
 

Hangfive

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Back to the orig. question. We charge a $35 cancellation fee, if they cancel prior to 2 weeks out. After that the deposit can be used to rebook within the next 12 months less a $35 rebooking fee. Cancellation within 7 days then it's the full reservation cost penalty. That's the policy but we don't always charge the rebooking fee and have given credit for future bookings with cancellations after 7 days if the seem nice on the phone. If they call bitching then forget it I'm not budging. Just won my first charge back on a real PIA that cancelled.
Also, I think that your competition has some sort of bearing on what you can charge. In my area most Inns charge $25 to $50, and a few are higher.
 

Tomtrex

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We charge a deposit at time of the reservation. If one cancels in a timely fashion we refund the deposit less a $10.00 fee. We've been in business since April 1998 and I can't remember anyone complaining about being charged the $10.
We have a strong cancellation policy on our website which is reiterated in the confirmation email sent out. Here's what ours says :
"Hotels, motels, rental cabins, airlines, major sports events, concerts & performances as well as B & B's all have cancellation policies...it is to your benefit to become familiar with our cancellation policy and to understand your financial responsibility in the event you must cancel http://www.bairdhouse.com/rooms_rates.htm. Regrettably, the Baird House is not responsible for ANY situation which may change guests' plans resulting in guests being unable to keep their reservation. There are many companies which offer Trip Cancellation Insurance and can be found by " Googling" that subject. We do take a deposit by charging the credit card you provided at the time of reservation.In the event of a cancellation during the cancellation period or during your stay here your balance, if any, will be charged to your credit card & we'll make reasonable efforts to re-rent your room. If it is re-rented some or all of the monies charged will be refunded to your credit card. If your room can not be rented then the charged balance is forfeited. Please contact us immediately if you have any questions or concerns."
Our policy has prevented alot of problems/chargebacks... it has been called "harsh" by one caller but our business is important to us and we don't want to be taken advantage of.
 

Don Draper

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We charge a deposit at time of the reservation. If one cancels in a timely fashion we refund the deposit less a $10.00 fee. We've been in business since April 1998 and I can't remember anyone complaining about being charged the $10.
We have a strong cancellation policy on our website which is reiterated in the confirmation email sent out. Here's what ours says :
"Hotels, motels, rental cabins, airlines, major sports events, concerts & performances as well as B & B's all have cancellation policies...it is to your benefit to become familiar with our cancellation policy and to understand your financial responsibility in the event you must cancel http://www.bairdhouse.com/rooms_rates.htm. Regrettably, the Baird House is not responsible for ANY situation which may change guests' plans resulting in guests being unable to keep their reservation. There are many companies which offer Trip Cancellation Insurance and can be found by " Googling" that subject. We do take a deposit by charging the credit card you provided at the time of reservation.In the event of a cancellation during the cancellation period or during your stay here your balance, if any, will be charged to your credit card & we'll make reasonable efforts to re-rent your room. If it is re-rented some or all of the monies charged will be refunded to your credit card. If your room can not be rented then the charged balance is forfeited. Please contact us immediately if you have any questions or concerns."
Our policy has prevented alot of problems/chargebacks... it has been called "harsh" by one caller but our business is important to us and we don't want to be taken advantage of..
Awesome, I love the language and it is just crystal clear. We take the same attitude...we're sorry but making a reservation here is a commitment on your part and our part...we will hold up on our end of the deal and expect you to do the same. If someone views it as harsh, they need not book in the first place.
 

Tomtrex

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Also, I use Readnotify when I email them this info so that they can not say they didnt know about the policy. Are you familiar with ReadNotify and its usefulness?
 

JBloggs

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Also, I use Readnotify when I email them this info so that they can not say they didnt know about the policy. Are you familiar with ReadNotify and its usefulness?.
Tomtrex said:
Also, I use Readnotify when I email them this info so that they can not say they didnt know about the policy. Are you familiar with ReadNotify and its usefulness?
When they book online they have to tick the box that they have agreed to our policies. How would readnotify be more valuable than the actual booking itself? Or are you saying for those bookings over the phone that you confirm via email - is there something THEY check that says they agreed to policies?
Thanks for sharing the info.
 

ginocat

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I have a $50 cancel fee and a 14 day cancel policy. $50 from time of booking and I have charged it. I don't take it at the time of booking - only if I need to. When I mail them their CC copy for the charge I tell them that if they give me their cancel number (and I always give a cancel number) I will deduct that $50 from their stay.
 
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