Partial refunds on gift certificates?

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Alibi Ike

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Guests are coming on a gift certificate who have chosen our least expensive room for 2 nights and want the difference refunded to them so they can go out for dinner. They deliberately chose this room so they could get the money refunded. (They said so on the phone.) This is not something we usually do if it is over $50. We put the remaining money on file for another stay. They don't want to come back, they want the money. Just give it to them?
 

One Day

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my thought..
Yeah, give it to them.......if the certificate is $150 and the room is $100....you would be obligated to refund the difference.
Unless.........you have verbage on the certficate stating that there is no cash value. that it is for the night/s stay......or the certificate states for a specific room.
I think it's pretty smart of those folks to think it through to arrive at that conclusion.
Yeah....sucks to give $ back......
 

Breakfast Diva

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No way! Our GCs say "This certificates reduces your bill for your stay by $xxxx." That way, they can only use the GC to reduce their bill, no cash value. If there is left over, they can use the remainder to purchase items from our gift pantry. At the very least, the certificate should say "no cash value".
The guests who checked-out this morning had a certificate that was expiring in December. Yes, we can have expiration dates in my state. There was $25 left unused on their certificate and they wanted to hold that over onto another certificate they have that expires sometime next year. They were told they would have to purchase $25 worth of items from our gift area and could not transfer the balance to their other GC. Different tax years, different accounting. They left very happy, with stocking stuffers from our gift pantry.
 

JBloggs

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Does the gc say $150 toward a stay in any room of your choice, then it is toward a stay. They can add flowers on for the extra $.
NON REFUNDABLE - NO CASH VALUE it should say on them.
 

Paradise

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Are you kidding? NO WAY would I hand over any cash. You are generous to provide gift certificates. There is no "cash back." No! NO! NOOO!!!
They CHOSE they least expensive room. That was their option. They can choose to stay in the $150 room or stay in the $100 room w/the GC, but that's it. NO cash. That is just insane.
Sorry for rambling on... that is just a crazy idea (demanding cash?!!?).
 

JBloggs

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Usually what happens is they are too cheap to fork over the extra $20 for the next room up.
Speaking of funny...I can't believe i have a guest named Lebowski, help me please, somebody...I am going to call him DUDE I just know it!
 

Alibi Ike

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Why I'm a lousy business person:
  • GC has 'may not be redeemed for cash' right on it
  • GC states 'to be used toward your stay'
  • I have add ons they could buy but didn't think to mention them on the phone
  • I'll still refund the money. It won't do me any good to keep it. They won't come back. They'll go away unhappy they had to come here AND pay for their own dinner.
They probably won't tell the person who bought it unless they already discussed it with her about getting the money back.
 

Alibi Ike

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Usually what happens is they are too cheap to fork over the extra $20 for the next room up.
Speaking of funny...I can't believe i have a guest named Lebowski, help me please, somebody...I am going to call him DUDE I just know it!.
Joey Bloggs said:
Usually what happens is they are too cheap to fork over the extra $20 for the next room up.
Getting the best room would have used the entire GC, with $1.57 back in change. Their friends really wanted them to be able to come at any time so they maxed out the amount.
 

One Day

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Hey........don't fret it.
You did what you did, and that's it
Certificate states no cash value.........slap yourself upside the head :)
 

Don Draper

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NO WAY. Firstly, remember that if someone purchased a $100 gift certificate and used a credit card, you got less than $100 to begin with. We NEVER refund cash, and neither do any other businesses that I have worked with, so these guests obviously think they can just pull one over on the poor, unsuspecting innkeeper.
Now, having said that, did I ever refund cash on a gc? Of course, our first year here. When they get aggressive about it of course your first instinct is to be obliging. It's not 'til you walk away and have time to think about it that you realize you got rail-roaded. So don't fret it, you're prepared with the right answer for the next one who tries it.
A la "A Bronx Tale", for $50 they're out of your life forever! GC recipients are NEVER repeat guests here. I usually can't stand them, it's usually the person who PURCHASED the GC who is your real guest, so hopefully they'll be happy with how you handled these cheap people and you'll get THEM to come back.
 

JBloggs

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I will say "Gift certificate recipients are never B&B people and those who give them the GC want them to enjoy the B&B experience as much as they do..."
Point #2, being given a stay as a gift SHOULD make them relish every last minute of their stay, and for some reason they rarely do, they are the opposite.
Thus the old discounted B&B.com gift cards online or at costco where we get less than the dollar amount and that we complain about. There is a reason we complain. Although, B&B.com states repeatedly that most GC stays are 4 nights or some crazy amount, I have yet to see that, GC are one nighters, always have been in my experience. On occasion there will be a 2 night purchased by some desperate relative because they forgot a major anniversary. LOL
 

Alibi Ike

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I will say "Gift certificate recipients are never B&B people and those who give them the GC want them to enjoy the B&B experience as much as they do..."
Point #2, being given a stay as a gift SHOULD make them relish every last minute of their stay, and for some reason they rarely do, they are the opposite.
Thus the old discounted B&B.com gift cards online or at costco where we get less than the dollar amount and that we complain about. There is a reason we complain. Although, B&B.com states repeatedly that most GC stays are 4 nights or some crazy amount, I have yet to see that, GC are one nighters, always have been in my experience. On occasion there will be a 2 night purchased by some desperate relative because they forgot a major anniversary. LOL
.
Joey Bloggs said:
Point #2, being given a stay as a gift SHOULD make them relish every last minute of their stay, and for some reason they rarely do, they are the opposite.
We have a young couple who love it here. They gave GC's to their respective parents as a thank you for all the help the parents gave for the wedding. Never met such an unhappy couple as the groom's parents, and he's the one who bought the GC's. They had money left over on the GC so we issued another one for another stay. We all would have been happier to just give them the money than have them come back again, but it was for a substantial amount in that case. (Another room night's worth.)
I am really trying to think of anyone who has come here on a purchased GC who has wanted to come and has not just showed up because they didn't want to waste their loved ones' money. Can't come up with a single one. So why sell GC's? I'll have to think about this one some more.
 

muirford

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I will say "Gift certificate recipients are never B&B people and those who give them the GC want them to enjoy the B&B experience as much as they do..."
Point #2, being given a stay as a gift SHOULD make them relish every last minute of their stay, and for some reason they rarely do, they are the opposite.
Thus the old discounted B&B.com gift cards online or at costco where we get less than the dollar amount and that we complain about. There is a reason we complain. Although, B&B.com states repeatedly that most GC stays are 4 nights or some crazy amount, I have yet to see that, GC are one nighters, always have been in my experience. On occasion there will be a 2 night purchased by some desperate relative because they forgot a major anniversary. LOL
.
Joey Bloggs said:
Point #2, being given a stay as a gift SHOULD make them relish every last minute of their stay, and for some reason they rarely do, they are the opposite.
We have a young couple who love it here. They gave GC's to their respective parents as a thank you for all the help the parents gave for the wedding. Never met such an unhappy couple as the groom's parents, and he's the one who bought the GC's. They had money left over on the GC so we issued another one for another stay. We all would have been happier to just give them the money than have them come back again, but it was for a substantial amount in that case. (Another room night's worth.)
I am really trying to think of anyone who has come here on a purchased GC who has wanted to come and has not just showed up because they didn't want to waste their loved ones' money. Can't come up with a single one. So why sell GC's? I'll have to think about this one some more.
.
Alibi Ike said:
So why sell GC's? I'll have to think about this one some more.
That's why we don't. We refer them to bnbfinder or Select Registry, because then we figure if the recipient checks us out and doesn't like what we have to offer, they have other options. It's working out well. One December I missed out on about $3000 of revenue, but I suspect the headaches would have been in the stratosphere (gifts for groomsmen!). We haven't sold any in more than a year and we're still happy with the decision.
 

agoodman

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Just an FYI, you can "say" whatever you like on Gift cards, gift certs etc but there are LOTS of new laws governing these so think carefully about how you handle them - I KNOW and I AGREE that we should NOT have to give the $$ back esp since we often encounter cc processing fees but just weigh the pros and cons and it may be worth the backing down than getting into a legal headache or even spending the time on research on the legal side
As much as I hate the comm I have to pay on B&B.com GC's, at least there is no hassle and they pay within days - remember that any GC's that you have "outstanding" have to be shown as a "liability" on your books for your taxes (in most states)
 

Don Draper

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I will say "Gift certificate recipients are never B&B people and those who give them the GC want them to enjoy the B&B experience as much as they do..."
Point #2, being given a stay as a gift SHOULD make them relish every last minute of their stay, and for some reason they rarely do, they are the opposite.
Thus the old discounted B&B.com gift cards online or at costco where we get less than the dollar amount and that we complain about. There is a reason we complain. Although, B&B.com states repeatedly that most GC stays are 4 nights or some crazy amount, I have yet to see that, GC are one nighters, always have been in my experience. On occasion there will be a 2 night purchased by some desperate relative because they forgot a major anniversary. LOL
.
Joey Bloggs said:
Point #2, being given a stay as a gift SHOULD make them relish every last minute of their stay, and for some reason they rarely do, they are the opposite.
We have a young couple who love it here. They gave GC's to their respective parents as a thank you for all the help the parents gave for the wedding. Never met such an unhappy couple as the groom's parents, and he's the one who bought the GC's. They had money left over on the GC so we issued another one for another stay. We all would have been happier to just give them the money than have them come back again, but it was for a substantial amount in that case. (Another room night's worth.)
I am really trying to think of anyone who has come here on a purchased GC who has wanted to come and has not just showed up because they didn't want to waste their loved ones' money. Can't come up with a single one. So why sell GC's? I'll have to think about this one some more.
.
Working on bookkeeping right now, and over the last 4 years we averaged $8000-$10,000 per year on GC sales. So I hate them, but this is why we sell them. It really gets us through the winter.
 

agoodman

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I will say "Gift certificate recipients are never B&B people and those who give them the GC want them to enjoy the B&B experience as much as they do..."
Point #2, being given a stay as a gift SHOULD make them relish every last minute of their stay, and for some reason they rarely do, they are the opposite.
Thus the old discounted B&B.com gift cards online or at costco where we get less than the dollar amount and that we complain about. There is a reason we complain. Although, B&B.com states repeatedly that most GC stays are 4 nights or some crazy amount, I have yet to see that, GC are one nighters, always have been in my experience. On occasion there will be a 2 night purchased by some desperate relative because they forgot a major anniversary. LOL
.
Joey Bloggs said:
Point #2, being given a stay as a gift SHOULD make them relish every last minute of their stay, and for some reason they rarely do, they are the opposite.
We have a young couple who love it here. They gave GC's to their respective parents as a thank you for all the help the parents gave for the wedding. Never met such an unhappy couple as the groom's parents, and he's the one who bought the GC's. They had money left over on the GC so we issued another one for another stay. We all would have been happier to just give them the money than have them come back again, but it was for a substantial amount in that case. (Another room night's worth.)
I am really trying to think of anyone who has come here on a purchased GC who has wanted to come and has not just showed up because they didn't want to waste their loved ones' money. Can't come up with a single one. So why sell GC's? I'll have to think about this one some more.
.
Working on bookkeeping right now, and over the last 4 years we averaged $8000-$10,000 per year on GC sales. So I hate them, but this is why we sell them. It really gets us through the winter.
.
Don Draper said:
Working on bookkeeping right now, and over the last 4 years we averaged $8000-$10,000 per year on GC sales. So I hate them, but this is why we sell them. It really gets us through the winter.
If I was doing that kind of volume on GC sales, I would not mind the hassle!!
 

Alibi Ike

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I will say "Gift certificate recipients are never B&B people and those who give them the GC want them to enjoy the B&B experience as much as they do..."
Point #2, being given a stay as a gift SHOULD make them relish every last minute of their stay, and for some reason they rarely do, they are the opposite.
Thus the old discounted B&B.com gift cards online or at costco where we get less than the dollar amount and that we complain about. There is a reason we complain. Although, B&B.com states repeatedly that most GC stays are 4 nights or some crazy amount, I have yet to see that, GC are one nighters, always have been in my experience. On occasion there will be a 2 night purchased by some desperate relative because they forgot a major anniversary. LOL
.
Joey Bloggs said:
Point #2, being given a stay as a gift SHOULD make them relish every last minute of their stay, and for some reason they rarely do, they are the opposite.
We have a young couple who love it here. They gave GC's to their respective parents as a thank you for all the help the parents gave for the wedding. Never met such an unhappy couple as the groom's parents, and he's the one who bought the GC's. They had money left over on the GC so we issued another one for another stay. We all would have been happier to just give them the money than have them come back again, but it was for a substantial amount in that case. (Another room night's worth.)
I am really trying to think of anyone who has come here on a purchased GC who has wanted to come and has not just showed up because they didn't want to waste their loved ones' money. Can't come up with a single one. So why sell GC's? I'll have to think about this one some more.
.
Working on bookkeeping right now, and over the last 4 years we averaged $8000-$10,000 per year on GC sales. So I hate them, but this is why we sell them. It really gets us through the winter.
.
Don Draper said:
Working on bookkeeping right now, and over the last 4 years we averaged $8000-$10,000 per year on GC sales. So I hate them, but this is why we sell them. It really gets us through the winter.
That is an excellent revenue stream.
 

JBloggs

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So what did you do? Give them the money back?
At times, when we talk door mat, I get frustrated as we have policies but basically let people do what ever they want to do, and that makes me mad.
I can imagine going to Macy's and spending $125 of the $150 and asking for cash back on it. Yeah right.
 

Alibi Ike

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So what did you do? Give them the money back?
At times, when we talk door mat, I get frustrated as we have policies but basically let people do what ever they want to do, and that makes me mad.
I can imagine going to Macy's and spending $125 of the $150 and asking for cash back on it. Yeah right..
They haven't arrived yet. There is now dissension in the ranks as to exactly what was said by whom and what actually was transacted. It makes no sense at this point to keep the money, they won't be back and yet that money will sit there accruing stress.
I still have a GC for $83 hanging around. It was not a brilliant move on the part of the buyer to only pay half the fee. She was absolutely certain the guests would come during a sale we had in March where rooms were half off for a 2-week time frame. Of course they didn't come then. And now they have to come up with the other half of the room on their own.
 

JBloggs

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So? What are you thinking? Any adjustment to how you sell GC's? We all do it differently, for what works most of the time for us.
 
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