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Fake Reservations

How to stop fake Reservations?

When I get a reservation I call the reservation phone number and when I get an incorrect number or the people say they did not make reservations with the hotel, I then know that it is a fake reservation. So I send them a (Request to cancel reservation) But of course they don’t reply because it is a fake reservation. Now what can I do next to open the room up to be bookable again and make sure I don’t have any other problems with those guests that made the fake reservations?

On the weekend and Holidays some of my competition will book us up with fake bookings so that they get the real bookings. How can we stop this abuse?


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BrookAve 4 years ago

 

 

Hi Maxima,

 

That is more than a bit of stretch accusing the competition, especially without hard cold facts and evidence.

 

For potential fake bookings, simply pick up the phone and call support team direct.

 

They will never monitor these topics and  call you.

 

See below for contact info.

 

 


 


Kind Regards

 

 

Consider linking your Property link into your partner profile as it helps other partners assist you, especially when starting out .

 

How To Guide :

https://partner.booking.com/en-gb/community/tips-tricks-more/how-why-ad…

 


How To Contact Booking.com:

 

If  urgent,  call the dedicated phone number* found in your extranet Inboxtab.

Under Booking.com Messages,
Click on Contact us to reveal the phone number.
 

For more general info you can contact one of our main lines for help.

 

Got a specific financial question?

Call the dedicated  phone number* found in the ‘Financial Overview’ section of the ‘Finance’ tab in your extranet.

Please note that our finance team is available during business hours, Monday to Friday only.

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Maximahostal 4 years ago

 I don't have cold facts those are pretty hard to get using Booking. Can't trace the e-mails. They give fake phone numbers. Now I call back all my reservations and send them an e-mail to confirm.

There needs to be a way that we - us (Hotels) can cancel a booking. For a reason.

These fake booking seem to happen a lot on Holiday and weekends. In fact, I get about six a month and I only have four rooms to sell. Sounds a little suspicious when I call and the phone numbers are of people who have not made reservation or some don’t even work.

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BigBlue Waters 1 year ago

I received 2 last minute bookings for same guests name using same number that a lot of partners have received and reported but seems nothing is happening. The apparent guest is not responding to messages nor does the mobile phone provided working and office address given again same complaints from other partners Prudential Towers Bangkok. So no show for 2 bookings for 2 nights. Great times. Anyway to stop this? 

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BrookAve 1 year ago

 

 

 

That is not a fake booking thats an Agoda Reservation with that address.

 

How I would stop it is by making them doone or both of the following

1. Send Passport ID with in x hours.

2. Prepay for last minute is to be done via X,Y ,Z. Add this process into the NEw Reservation template.

3. Create a Last Minute Prepay method new manual use template, so you can send it as soon as you see a last minute booking with same info as a reminder, Both templates should include warning that if no prepayment done and no photoIDs for ALL guest, you will cancel immediately.


e.g. paypal.me/name short link , paypal invoice, or other 3rd party similar service

maybe some thing like Revolut  or similar for near instant transfer.

 

 

PS: the big blue button top right area called "Start a Conversation...." use that instead of replying to a 2year old topic please, thanks.

 

 

 



C1

C2

 

 

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Stephen Mogg 11 months ago

For potential fake bookings, simply pick up the phone and call support team direct.

That's the funniest advice I have ever heard.  Booking.com makes it impossible to cancel any booking, even obviously fake ones.

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Bob Cane 3 months ago

Phone the support team???

If you can find the number. I can’t. I can only call as a customer not/never a partner. My life with this company would be so much easier if I could call a service representative. 

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Don Burns 4 years ago

All of my future Booking,com guests must pre-pay for their stay, when making their online reservation.

 

That is a lot of trouble for a guest to give Booking,com their credit card information, and then later cancel their "fake" reservation.

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Jack Server 2 years ago

Do you mean booking.com collects the payment? If not, they can always charge back.

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Marion Holmes 7 months ago

I have tried that but BdC will not allow me to do that....

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M Adamopoulou 4 years ago

Having more strict policies, or non-refundable rates might help.

Fewer but not fake reservations and less cancellations.

Cheers!!!

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Maximahostal 4 years ago

Us Hotels need a way to cancel reservations.

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Jack Server 2 years ago

You can cancel, but they can just rebook again with a fake credit card.

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M Adamopoulou 4 years ago

You can cancel reservations but you might have penalties so maybe it’s better to first contact BDC directly.

Wish you luck.

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Tania & Johnny 1 year ago

We do contact BDC directly, and we are told there's nothing they can do - they don't view these obviously fake bookings (multiple 3-month reservations costing up to 5000 Euros - we are a tiny B&B) and say there's nothing we can do.  I've posted elsewhere the work-arounds we use to manage this problem, but my posts keep being deleted by the moderators!  

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Roland Steiner 1 year ago

Clearly a huge problem for booking.com

We have many fake fraudulent bookings since some time.

booking.com does not collect money for us and we are not allowed to pre authorise credit cards.

Always same MO, Long expensive bookings for multiple rooms in peak periods.

Fake Phone Number

No Address provided

No reply to Messages.

All we can do is request cancel, of course no answer

Then these become No Shows, we mark as No Show and eventually get credit card info, When we try to run the card (we have a 21 day 100% cancelation policy) the cards are invalid.

We have 100% damage.

Booking Supports sends the same old chat bot messages back and it is an uphill battle to cancel these fakes.

Booking says they check credit cards at booking which is clearly not true.

This is causing us huge damage and Im sure there are many more.

This needs to stop

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Tania & Johnny 1 year ago

The situation is bizarre.  We don't understand why Booking.com doesn't take this problem seriously, because it must surely impact their bottom line.  If we don't earn money from legitimate reservations becuase our calendar is blocked up with fake bookings (currently almost every night for the next 6 months is blocked), BDC doesn't earn commission. 

We would love a moderator to respond to this! 

Our next step is to approach the media - has anyone else considered or tried this?

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Roland Steiner 1 year ago

They seem too big to care, especially about the smaller resorts. If Hilton had this problem they would be all over it.

Just give smaller resort the possibility to pre authorize cards or take deposits for them, problem solved.

I talk to BDC Support every day, they promise to escalate the matter but nothing happens, next day, new fake bookings taking a lot of out time and killing our business and I get the same old chat bot answers when I inform BDC. It's like Groundhog Day except that every day is killing our business.

We can't be the only ones with thi problem

 

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Tania & Johnny 1 year ago

If you search these forums for FAKE and FRAUD, you'll find dozens of similar threads with the same problem.  So it's widespread and clearly - in our view - an organised activity. 

One fake booker actually engaged in a WhatsApp discussion with us (becuase we had requested a deposit for their 4-month long €5500 'reservation').  During this conversation, they accidentally sent us a message which was clearly intended for others; they deleted it almost inmmediately, but we had already copied it.  It said (in Brazilian Portuguese), "Hi guys, I received a message from a hotel where I made one of the reservations (3) asking for a deposit or they will cancel, even though the information at the time of booking was for no card needed, and free cancellation.  Did anyone else have this experience?" 

We would really love to know the root source and motivation behind this activity.  We're getting fake bookings from all over the world (it seems), including Saudia Ariabia, Russia, Brazil, Morroco, India, Argentina, Algeria, Serbia.....

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C Vanlalengkima 11 months ago

I too get lot of fake bookings from the past month. Contacted Booking.com and they asked me change the policies and this obviously did not help. I'm contemplating on leaving this platform if Booking.com does not find a way to resolve it.

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M Adamopoulou 11 months ago

Fake reservations is a big problem. 

Unfortunately BDC it doesn't seem that BDC can help us on solve this issue.    😕 

 

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Jurgen Zerellari 11 months ago

Your And I have the same problem, I am blocked by every fake reservation. A solution to not close the activity is. If you have noticed, the false pronotations are done robotically. Place the reservations once, you cannot stay for less than 5 nights. Because they always recommend either 2 nights or 4. I decided on 5 nights. The idea is for you to decide the opposite of what the bad guys pronotate.🙂

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05020.hotel.be… 8 months ago

Have you tried marking the card as invalid? There's an option on Booking Extranet to do so and if the card info isn't updated in x amount of hours, it'll give you the option to cancel without penalty. I hope this helps!

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Roland Steiner 1 year ago

I'm talking to a Friend who owns a Cyber Security company, he did some research. One possibility is Visa Scammers who need proof of a Reservation for fake visas.

Anyway, booking.com should take notice as this is clearly known to them as their own support staff have told me.

They are facilitating fraud through their platform...

 

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M Adamopoulou 1 year ago

Hi!!!

Fake reservations is very frustrating!!!

It has happened to me many times…especially from Visa scammers…

I changed my policies to more strict ones and fake reservations have been almost eliminated…

Prepayment is also another way to eliminate fake reservations…

Less reservations but more secure reservations…

 

Wish all a happy weekend!!!

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Tania & Johnny 1 year ago

Yes, but with BDC taking a higher commission, of course.  Interested to know what your "more strict"  policies were, tho, if you donçt mind sharing details.

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M Adamopoulou 1 year ago

Hi Tania,

I changed my rates to non- refundable…

 

Not only me but every property in my small village changed to non-refundable when w had faked reservations…

 

Now that fake reservations have stopped I have non refundable rates and standard rates…with 15 days cancellation before arrival… 

 

Keep well!

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Jack Server 1 year ago

1. Require credit card for reservations. Then preauthorize credit card.

2. I find same day bookings are prankster prone. Either require 3 day advanced reservation or only accept prepaid for same day.

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Tania & Johnny 1 year ago

Jack, I think you missed the details at the start of the thread.  These fake bookings are often made weeks in advance, and for durations of many weeks, often several months.  So our calendar has been almost completely blocked out with fake bookings for the whole of the 2023 season.  Where we live, credit cards are rarely held, and the very large majority of our bookings in the past have been from the native population, not overseas travellers.  

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Jack Server 1 year ago

That's different from the fake bookings I get. 

I'm not sure what you mean by 'rarely held'.  You don't require credit cards?

You don't pre-authorize the credit card?

Also you can do a google map search of the address provided to see if it's a real residential address.

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Marion Holmes 11 months ago

I have pre authorise in my policy but BDC will NOT allow me to see the credit card details - so I cannot make sure the booking is legit.  This is the ONLY agent that does this - all other agents I deal with a 50% non refundable deposit is required before confirmation. I have had fake reservations where the credit card details were also fake and when I tried to run them after a no show it told me that it was declined. This leads me to be out of pocket.

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Roland Steiner 1 year ago

I have noticed that in most of these fake booking the booker has no address.

So I have now changed the settings to require a booker to have an address
Anyone have experience with this ?
Do your Fake bookings have an address ?

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Roland Steiner 1 year ago

Most of my Fake bookings have no address

Do your fake bookers have addresses ?

 

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Tania & Johnny 1 year ago

Hi, Roland, yes they do, but usually only partial ones, so for example just the name of a village and the country, or a street but no house number. 

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Marion Holmes 11 months ago

Mine also have partial or nonsensical addresses

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Roland Steiner 1 year ago

Are your settings in BDC such that you require Booker Address ?

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Didem - Commun… 11 months ago

 

Hi everyone,

Hope you're all well.

My colleague has recently shared some good suggestions under this AMA on preventing low or non intent bookings.

I'm sharing them with you below and hoping that they might help you, too.

"In general, there are few things that could be done to prevent / reduce reservations with low or no intent to stay.

  1. Set up strict cancellation policies. Having non-refundable policies ensures that guests cannot cancel without paying the full price.
  2. Set up prepayment policies (if you accept credit card bookings) to ensure guests pay (part of) the reservation price upfront.
  3. Opt-in to Online Payments by Booking.com. You can see if you’re eligible for Payments by Booking.com in the ‘Finance’ section of the extranet. This article describes how you can see whether you are eligible for Payments by Booking.com.
  4. Set up a maximum length of stay restriction. This could prevent your calendar from being blocked over a longer period of time.

Please note that it’s important to take into account your specific situation. For instance: when applying a maximum length of stay restriction, first look at your average length of stay across your bookings to inform you on what value to put in place. This ensures that you can still capture the length of stays that typically are booked for your property and only filter out outliers. You can find this information under the ‘Analytics’ tab on the extranet."

Wishing you all a great day ahead!

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Roland Steiner 10 months ago

Dear Didem  (or Chat GPT)
What a pitty that again you guys are not listening to what we are saying. Let me break it down:
Many of us do have prepayment and strikt policies.
However Booking.com claims to verify credit card info which is not true and we only get credit card info when it's too late, damage already done, NO SHOW with invalid credit card !
This could be spotted before, (at time of booking)

We want Online payments by booking.com but you will not give it to us. So thanks for the advice above.

The fake bookings also have fake names which make no sense, fake addresses which make no sense, just mambo, jumbo and fake telephone numbers. This could be checked and verified quite easy.
When we call out such fake bookings to booking.com often you won't let us cancel them even thought they are very clearly fake as per above. Its obvious at first glance.

Put simply, no one at booking.com, cares and if we call a Spade a Spade here on this forum, our contribution gets deleted by you...

PLEASE listen to us and really read what we say.

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Tania & Johnny 10 months ago
Didem, thank you for your response, but most of your suggestions are not applicable to many Partners, including us. What is Booking.com itself doing to prevent fake and fraudulent reservations? Why is the onus on Partners to bare responsibility for managing it? We are your customers and we deserve a better service. Why doesn't Booking.com ensure guests are validated before they can create an account with you, like other platforms do? (Passport or ID card checks; photo corroboration; legitimate address)?
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Marion Holmes 11 months ago

Although I have set up a prepayment policy, for some reason, Booking.com will NOT allow me to see the credit card details until the client has checked in. This does NOT help at all - the fake reservations usually have incorrect credit card information and any attempted transactions is declined after them being a no show. 

I cannot seem to find an online payments option for us here in South Africa?  Also, it says on my extranet that I cannot set up non refundable rates if I don't set up flexible bookings - that defeats the whole point!

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Roland Steiner 10 months ago

Exactly, and Booking.com says they "validated" the credit card which is clearly no so.

So sad that this fraud is not taken seriousely

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garf bai 8 months ago

so I am thinking many everyone union together to quit from booking , it would be a good way to let booking know how bad services they provided.

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Tania & Johnny 8 months ago

Agreed, Garf Bai. 

We are already looking at our options with other platforms and our own publicity.  And we are also approaching travel journalists, to ask if any would run a story on this.  (If anyone has any contacts, that would be great...) 

Bad publicity and loss of revenue are probably the only things that would make BDC senior executives take any notice of this problem.    

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Michael 8 months ago

Credit cards attached to these fake bookings are fake too, I would find a way to charge their card, or place a hold on their card, even if it's just for $1. If it doesn't work, you can report the credit card as invalid in partnercentral, and you can cancel the reservation 24 hours after through partnercentral, as they won't update the credit card

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M Adamopoulou 8 months ago

Hi!

Fake fake everywhere!!!

I don't use cards but a friend that uses them he requests a 30% prepayment and that way he doesn't get fake reservations. 

Maybe that helps.

 

Wish you a nice day.

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Martina Ferracane 8 months ago

It appears to me that this situation nudges users towards using booking payments... when I called booking, the answer has been to use their payment system to avoid this. While it would be easily fixed if they really verified the cards as they claim.

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M Adamopoulou 8 months ago

Well, I use BDC Payments without problems. 

Some partners though have problems withgreat delays in transfers.

Payments are always an issue.

 

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Dino A_D 8 months ago

This is a summery of our problems in a complaint letter to bdc, sent just about a few minutes ago.

Thank you everyone for highlighting some of the issues that we are facing too. This is a great platform to express our frustrations, perhaps one day we can share a few jokes :-)

Subject: Urgent: Addressing Persistent Issues with Fraudulent Bookings

Dear Booking.com Team,

I trust this message finds you well. I write on behalf of XXXX, a dedicated and committed partner of Booking.com.

In recent times, we have encountered a persistent and increasingly troubling issue of fraudulent or "fake" bookings on our property listings via your platform. These bookings have caused significant disruption to our operations and substantial financial loss due to no-shows linked to invalid credit card information.

Despite implementing rigorous prepayment policies and strict cancellation rules, we find ourselves continually at the mercy of these malicious activities. The major challenge here lies in the inability to verify credit card details until after a guest checks in, a policy which offers us little protection against fraudulent bookings.

Additionally, we have observed a pattern of incomplete or nonsensical addresses associated with these fake bookings. Despite modifying our settings to require complete address details from bookers, the problem persists unabated.

We appreciate that Booking.com has suggested we opt-in for Online Payments as a potential solution. However, this option does not seem to be available to us in our location, and we understand from our fellow partners that this solution has not fully resolved their similar concerns.

While we value our partnership with Booking.com and the numerous benefits it brings, we find ourselves in a precarious situation that is causing severe financial distress to our business. We implore you to take our concerns seriously and treat this matter with the utmost urgency it demands.

We strongly believe that more stringent and effective verification procedures, particularly around payment information, should be implemented. More transparency in these processes will greatly enhance our protection against these fraudulent bookings and ultimately improve the overall experience for all Booking.com partners.

Additionally, we wish to express our interest in having Booking.com manage our payments. We believe that a system wherein Booking.com handles the entire payment process – from pre-booking payments to full transaction management – would greatly alleviate our current issues. This could effectively counter the fraudulent bookings and increase the security and trust within the platform, benefiting both us as a partner and our potential guests. We kindly request you to consider our eligibility for the "Payments by Booking.com" program or similar alternatives that could support us in this matter.

We look forward to an expedient resolution of these issues, and we remain open to any further discussions or suggestions you may have to offer. We are confident that, together, we can find a solution that meets the needs and expectations of all parties involved.

Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter.

Best regards,

Dino