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I have 3 different properties listed on B.com. 2 of these properties have condos and 1 property has 16 rooms.
My first condo property has a set up where Bcom collects payment from the customer directly which works the best.
The second condo property I have, I have to collect the prepayment and balance from the guests which works sometimes okay and sometimes not.
3rd property where my smaller and cheaper rooms are, I have to collect the prepayment and the balance.
So the first property works like charm. Payments are handled by Bcom and customers rarely cancel. In fact, I think I had 2 or 3 cancellations at most last year.
2nd property also gets rare cancellations but customer often complain that they didn't know we would collect a prepayment.
My 3rd property is a disaster when it comes to reservations. I get so many cancellations after I try to charge a prepayment, it's not even funny. Just last fall, due to large availability, I had changed the policy to no credit card required for same day bookings and I received a fake reservation for 6 rooms or more ( I can't remember) and of course they were no show. If I don't charge a prepayment some people show up and some people don't. They don't even pick up the phone when trying to call to see if they're actually going to arrive because it's past 11 pm and my office closes at 10:30 pm.
This is getting very old. Bcom has to see that almost everyone is fed up with fake reservations and customers. Read the comments here and see for yourselves. Creating a trend where property owners are put at unfair situations like that is a bad business. You have got to do something to better handle transactions.
Most of my bookings are bad ones too. I require a prepayment with a 30 day cancellation time frame. Two things happen frequently.
a) The credit card is invalid and it's impossible to get a response back from the customer so I have to wait for 24 hours to request cancellation.
b) If I charge a prepayment, I either get a cancellation right after this or they call to cancel claiming that they thought they were not supposed to pay until they got to our facility.
It's been very frustrating.
On the other hand, if I keep the reservation even after the card has been declined some do show up. So I play it by ear. I own a resort so I can set aside a few rooms at least
For the past 15 years I have owned my resort my resv & cxl policy has been collecting a prepayment and if they cancel more than 21 days before I refund the deposit minus the $40 cxl fee. If less than 21 days then no refund on the deposit.
I can't even find a policy that's close to that.
Some suggested nonrefundable policy but in a website where everyone else offering free cancellations, people wouldn't book a non refundable room. At least this is what I think.
So right now, I have no choice but to struggle between decisions on how to handle all this.
This is one problem we've been running into too. We require a 1 night prepayment in order to hold the booking because we hardly get any walk ins. Our business depends on the advanced bookings and a prepayment ensures that customers commit to their reservations and not leave us with an empty room. Unfortunately, our cancellation rate has been so high because of the declined credit cards even sometimes for an amount as low as $60. When we send a notification to the customer, they either ignore our message on B.com or they immediately cancel. When we do get a hold of them over the phone because messaging has failed, they cancel the booking. It's been so frustrating. On desktops or laptops, it clearly states that one night prepayment will be charged but then there are contradicting sections during reservation process that state 'credit card needed to hold the booking" This statement right there tells the potential customer that we will not charge them anything prior to your arrival. So if we do, they throw the biggest fit. They tell us immediately" I'm not paying you anything right now. That's not what it said on B.com" Needless to say, for these people to expect us to hold a room without any gurantee of arrival is just unfair. There has got to be a way to make the prepayment policy very clear to the customers. I also noticed that on mobile bookings, prepayment policy is not visible at all. I have tried various reservation and cancellation policies but the root of the problem is there's not a clear or concise notification to the customers prior to booking. If B.com can resolve the payment issues, I truly believe they will make us the property owners and the potential customers happier.