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Quick update on our situation - which is stil running - I initially said they could have a refund but like you discovered within 30 minutes that their complaints were unfounded and so retracted that offer while they were still in the chalet (they still had the keys at that point). We have stuck to our guns, and booking.com supported us in this since their policies said we are not required to give a refund. Try calling them, they are very helpful - in the end of the day they need to keep property owners happy. I marked them as a "no show" and then BDC got in touch with both them and us to find out what had happened, nobody left any reviews for anyone as
As for our guests - we refused to refund the rental price (we did refund them for extras such as linen hire and so on) and offered them the opoprtunity to return in the future at a week of their choice, subject to availability at the time. They have chosen not to take up this offer and still insist on a cash refund. We are sticking to our guns, the last email from them threatened legal action if we do not refund them in cash. We will see where this goes.
Good luck Savitri, sometimes guests do try it on and its worth being firm.
HI thank you both.... we accept paypal and direct bank transfers but because we're just a family, not a business, we can't accept credit card payments. Booking.com doesn't allow us to put in paypal or bank transfer details, so our page says we can only accept cash. All previous guests have always been happy to make their payment via bank transfer or Paypal, but these new ones will only pay by credit card (and they tell me booking.com has charged an amount from their credit card already). I've said to them that they can cancel and have enabled that in their reservation but they are holding on to it for now! Any suggestions?
Thanks in advance