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FanimeCon Events and Discussionmentarianism => Hotel and Facilities => Topic started by: Foxberry on March 06, 2010, 04:17:25 AM

Title: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: Foxberry on March 06, 2010, 04:17:25 AM
After looking over something I found out on 4chan about hotel nightmares...

I came upon a commenter who said that they were charged 700$ for a deposit for only 3 nights!? I also looked through the forums here and found some old-out-of-date information about deposits.

I'm booked at the fairmont and I've read that they charge 100$+ per night? What is this? Why wasn't it mentioned on the hotel sites or the fanime housing?

I'm booked at 87-89$ per night for Thurs-Monday, I don't have that sort of money to be throwing out another 400$ on my credit card!? To equal nearly 800$ for these dates. Nearly a thousand dollars for the dates??

What is this? (I also read a little more and I do understand that it's an insurance thing I guess but still that means I'm out 400$ or rather my boyfriend is since he's covering the rooms)
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: Moonblossom on March 06, 2010, 06:58:19 AM
Deposits are returned to you at the end of the stay, assuming you didn't ruin or break anything in the room. It's not a full charge, it's a temporary hold on your credit card. It's not "throwing out" money, it's just to protect the hotel in case of unexpected events, but you will get it back.

Some hotels don't even charge it. I've *never* been charged a hotel deposit, I don't know why, maybe I'm just lucky.
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: michiko nakano on March 06, 2010, 09:30:40 AM
yeah moonblossom pretty much explained it, kudos!  

to further expound, they (hypothetically) would charge the amount of one extra night.  This is because if you change your mind that evening and decide not to stay, that means that they now have an empty hotel room that they won't make profit on for that first night.  so they make you pay for it.

of course, if you do use the hotel room and everything goes accordingly, they will put the money back on the card and bob's your uncle.
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: Kyra_Maverick on March 06, 2010, 11:34:57 AM
Last year I paid for my room at the Hilton with my debit card. Paying with debit is a little different so they took a hold for the total up front plus $50 for the whole stay. I got the $50 back a few days later.
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: Dany on March 06, 2010, 01:38:56 PM
Something else you can do:

If you booked your room through the online system to get the discount, give a call to them and just confirm if there will be any form of holds or deposits on your card before the event and when they will occur. There is usually some way to check that stuff beforehand from the agency itself, and perhaps to even have the terms provided in writing via email or other means. You might also be able to change your payment method if there is a problem.
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: MPLe on March 07, 2010, 04:23:41 AM
Moonblossom pretty much has it correct. Although keep in mind that although the deposits are a temporary charge, banks will handle it differently. I've seen some banks that will actually charge the amount and then refund it, while some will still allow you to use that amount (i.e. going over your limit instead of rejecting your card for the amount of the hold).

From talking to various people that have worked at a bank (and without getting too much into it), it seems that more banks will take debit account temporary charges as a hold and won't allow you to use those funds but will let you do this with a credit card.

These threads come up every few months... Maybe we should have a sticky? :P
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: FanFicGuru on March 07, 2010, 11:45:42 AM
Moonblossom pretty much has it correct. Although keep in mind that although the deposits are a temporary charge, banks will handle it differently. I've seen some banks that will actually charge the amount and then refund it, while some will still allow you to use that amount (i.e. going over your limit instead of rejecting your card for the amount of the hold).

From talking to various people that have worked at a bank (and without getting too much into it), it seems that more banks will take debit account temporary charges as a hold and won't allow you to use those funds but will let you do this with a credit card.

These threads come up every few months... Maybe we should have a sticky? :P

http://forums.fanime.com/index.php/topic,12444.0.html

>_>
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: Foxberry on March 08, 2010, 12:54:50 AM
Thanks guys, I'm going to contact the hotel and see if I can put the hold on another credit card or something. I understand that it's returned to me after the convention but even still that's something I'd like to avoid putting on my main credit card.
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: lyricaldanichan on March 08, 2010, 02:07:54 AM
If you can do it, I would just pay in cash for the room and the deposit on a credit card. Everything is then paid for and no unexpected purchases issues.
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: Moonblossom on March 08, 2010, 08:51:36 AM
Thanks guys, I'm going to contact the hotel and see if I can put the hold on another credit card or something. I understand that it's returned to me after the convention but even still that's something I'd like to avoid putting on my main credit card.

They should be more than willing to do this. Every direct hotel staff I've ever dealt with (not counting morons at 1-800 reservation numbers, but that's a whole other ball of wax) has been pleasant and eager to help me with even the smallest, niggliest details. They're there to make you comfortable and cater to your needs, it's part of their job. Good luck!
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: FanFicGuru on March 08, 2010, 10:02:04 AM
Thanks guys, I'm going to contact the hotel and see if I can put the hold on another credit card or something. I understand that it's returned to me after the convention but even still that's something I'd like to avoid putting on my main credit card.

I've been told that checks work as well...you might want to ask about that option. ^_^
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: Jerry on March 08, 2010, 10:17:48 AM
After looking over something I found out on 4chan about hotel nightmares...


not that everything on the internet is "true" - especially from the internet pages of 4chan  ::)

Hotels are always suppose to tell you upfront verbally and/or have DETAILED description in writing why said charges [deposit & otherwise] are being made.

as others have suggested in this thread- if your paying cash/ debit card - they will ask for a deposit [varies on hotel]
if your are paying by Credit Card - a deposit will be on a "hold" phase - until the stay is complete and again assuming no additional charges are made*

That or whoever stayed in the hotel really messed up the room.

* -> also be weary of those pesky TV remotes, Internet Access ports, and Telephones in the hotel room.

additional charges can easily add up if you use the hotel room phone [any call even local], pressing random buttons on the TV remote [always dangerous], and/or acesss internet [if the hotel doesnt tell you "internet is free"

so theres ALOT of factors for "random" charges on any hotel bill - so be careful and mindful of what the hotel policies are and what goes on in the room if you have lots of people in it.

better safe than sorry!
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: FanFicGuru on March 08, 2010, 12:29:24 PM
After looking over something I found out on 4chan about hotel nightmares...


not that everything on the internet is "true" - especially from the internet pages of 4chan  ::)

Hotels are always suppose to tell you upfront verbally and/or have DETAILED description in writing why said charges [deposit & otherwise] are being made.

as others have suggested in this thread- if your paying cash/ debit card - they will ask for a deposit [varies on hotel]
if your are paying by Credit Card - a deposit will be on a "hold" phase - until the stay is complete and again assuming no additional charges are made*

That or whoever stayed in the hotel really messed up the room.

* -> also be weary of those pesky TV remotes, Internet Access ports, and Telephones in the hotel room.

additional charges can easily add up if you use the hotel room phone [any call even local], pressing random buttons on the TV remote [always dangerous], and/or acesss internet [if the hotel doesnt tell you "internet is free"

so theres ALOT of factors for "random" charges on any hotel bill - so be careful and mindful of what the hotel policies are and what goes on in the room if you have lots of people in it.

better safe than sorry!

Note: Especially the phone. Good lord, don't ever pick that thing up unless you're calling the front desk. >_<
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: tenton on March 08, 2010, 02:17:30 PM
Note: Especially the phone. Good lord, don't ever pick that thing up unless you're calling the front desk. >_<

Usually room to room calls are fine, too. At least I've never had a problem with that before (I haven't tried that in any of the Fanime official hotels, but room to room in the same hotel is typically free).
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: Dany on March 08, 2010, 04:10:59 PM
Note: Especially the phone. Good lord, don't ever pick that thing up unless you're calling the front desk. >_<

Usually room to room calls are fine, too. At least I've never had a problem with that before (I haven't tried that in any of the Fanime official hotels, but room to room in the same hotel is typically free).

I don't think I've stayed at a hotel yet that does not allow you to call another room free of charge, least of all a chain hotel, which nearly all the main hotels are. Other rooms, room service, the front desk, the spa...it's all interconnected in some way so the hotel itself is covered for it in their monthly business rates. That's why they don't have to charge you for calling in-house services.

If you ever wonder, there is usually a list somewhere in the room, whether it's on the phone, in a little binder on the desk, whatever, that will tell you what calls are charged and what are not, and how much you will be charged per call.  And if anything unusual comes up? Dispute it at the front desk BEFORE checking out. It's much easier to do it then than to try to do it after you've left.
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: lyricaldanichan on March 08, 2010, 06:50:07 PM
I was actually surprised that the hotels are doing deposits now. I just hope this is not because of the attendees and this is standard practice for anybody who stays.
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: Foxberry on March 08, 2010, 11:22:59 PM
not that everything on the internet is "true" - especially from the internet pages of 4chan

I'm not saying that it IS true. I'm saying even checking here people (and quite a few) are saying that it's 100$ extra per night at Fairmont which is STILL putting my bill near a thousand dollars for the stay. Whether or not it's held and returned to me I'd rather not take a chance of maxing out a card or something along those lines, please understand where I am coming from. I have every right to worry over something that I've never heard of. Which is why I've come here to ask, if I believed it completely I'd not mention it here or I'd overreact on the telephone. I just wanted answers before I talk with the hotel staff. Also when we booked the hotel, there was nothing that stated this deposit stuff. I'm just glad that I found out.

As for those suggesting that I pay in cash, we've already used the credit card to book the Fairmont. Also we prefer to use credit card and to leave cash open for our time there, it's easier to gauge our use money that way. I don't go crazy at dealers halls or AA's so the majority of our money will be used for food or little things. So again it's easier just for us to keep money for our food needs and emergancy and use the credit card only for hotel room.

Moonblossom; Thank you, I'm glad to hear that. I've just never did this before. We've never had to get a hotel room ourselves for any convention. Either we've stayed at a friend's room or we were just very close to the con.
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: kohana ichibana on March 09, 2010, 07:05:40 AM
I asked the fairmont and this is my reply. (I emailed because my phone had died and I really wanted to know)

Fairmont:
"If a deposit is taken for your reservation, the information on the amount should be provided on the website where it was booked." Meaning Fanime Housing website. I was also told to contact the website which I booked on.

This is what I was told by Fanime Housing:
"If you are referring to the deposit that the hotel request when you check in, that will be $100 per day whether you pay in cash or swipe a credit or debit card. This $100 per day is in addition to the cost of your room."

They also told me the hotels don't usually do this. So I have no idea and I think I'm going to verbally call them this time.
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: michiko nakano on March 09, 2010, 09:45:42 AM
crap, now i'm starting to get a little worried.  if my room's gonna cost around 352 for the entire weekend, plus 100 for each night, it's gonna be 752 for the whole weekend?  Jesus Christ, and i'm paying with a debit card...

...even if people assure me that won't happen i'll still be super nervous...  maybe i should consider putting it on my parents' credit card D:
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: Dany on March 09, 2010, 10:51:43 AM
As for those suggesting that I pay in cash, we've already used the credit card to book the Fairmont. Also we prefer to use credit card and to leave cash open for our time there, it's easier to gauge our use money that way. I don't go crazy at dealers halls or AA's so the majority of our money will be used for food or little things. So again it's easier just for us to keep money for our food needs and emergancy and use the credit card only for hotel room.

I agree completely with this rationale. In fact, I have one credit card that I now devote exclusively to travel expenses, including flights, hotel, and occasionally incidentals on the road. I just pay it off after the convention is done so that all the holds/deposits/etc resolve and I'm only left with what is required of me. The advantage is that if it's a little more than I expect, or if I miscalculate my budget, it doesn't hit my checking account and risk things like bouncing the rent check :) It also gives me a nice snapshot of nearly every expense on my trip, so I can have a realistic idea of just how much the event cost me.

crap, now i'm starting to get a little worried.  if my room's gonna cost around 352 for the entire weekend, plus 100 for each night, it's gonna be 752 for the whole weekend?  Jesus Christ, and i'm paying with a debit card...
...even if people assure me that won't happen i'll still be super nervous...  maybe i should consider putting it on my parents' credit card D:

You might be able to go that route! Traditionally they ask for the actual card at check-in, but way to get around this is to see if your hotel will accept a third-party authorization form. It's a form that the hotel sends to the cardholder in order to get authorization for use of their card without the cardholder being present.  Your parents would sign it, send it back (maybe with a copy of the front and back of the credit card), and the hotel notes it on your reservation.

This can be really helpful because in some cases your parents can sometimes specify what is allowed to be charged.  For example they can authorize room and taxes only, and you can present your debit card for incidentals such as room service, phone use, etc.  At the end of your stay, you can ask that the rest of the charges be put on your debit card instead. :)
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: Gwydion on March 09, 2010, 03:12:26 PM
You know, I've never been charged more than what I estimated on my debit card. (Don't own a credit card) Last year it was about $330-350 for the weekend, and that was all I had taken out. One year I was told about a deposit (at Sainte Claire), but it was like 50 bucks a day. The way they explained it, it was just a hold on the money that was released at the end of the stay. And I never lost anymore than what the room cost in the first place after the con was over.

Of course, I always make sure to keep at least $500 in checking to cover any incidentals, and since it's where I pay everything there's often more. But I doubt they're going to charge you more than the rate we're given in the first place.
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: Foxberry on March 09, 2010, 03:39:14 PM
I asked the fairmont and this is my reply. (I emailed because my phone had died and I really wanted to know)

Fairmont:
"If a deposit is taken for your reservation, the information on the amount should be provided on the website where it was booked." Meaning Fanime Housing website. I was also told to contact the website which I booked on.

This is what I was told by Fanime Housing:
"If you are referring to the deposit that the hotel request when you check in, that will be $100 per day whether you pay in cash or swipe a credit or debit card. This $100 per day is in addition to the cost of your room."

They also told me the hotels don't usually do this. So I have no idea and I think I'm going to verbally call them this time.

...But Fanime's site never said anything about deposits. -_- I'm really not liking this even more now.

michiko nakano : Ugh see that's what I'm worried about. I honestly don't think it's right that it's 100$ per night and that's charging nearly maxing out our credit card. How is this even legal if hotels don't normally do this? I'm even more frustrated now than I was before.
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: FanFicGuru on March 09, 2010, 04:19:03 PM
I asked the fairmont and this is my reply. (I emailed because my phone had died and I really wanted to know)

Fairmont:
"If a deposit is taken for your reservation, the information on the amount should be provided on the website where it was booked." Meaning Fanime Housing website. I was also told to contact the website which I booked on.

This is what I was told by Fanime Housing:
"If you are referring to the deposit that the hotel request when you check in, that will be $100 per day whether you pay in cash or swipe a credit or debit card. This $100 per day is in addition to the cost of your room."

They also told me the hotels don't usually do this. So I have no idea and I think I'm going to verbally call them this time.

...But Fanime's site never said anything about deposits. -_- I'm really not liking this even more now.

michiko nakano : Ugh see that's what I'm worried about. I honestly don't think it's right that it's 100$ per night and that's charging nearly maxing out our credit card. How is this even legal if hotels don't normally do this? I'm even more frustrated now than I was before.

Hotels DO normally do this. The amount and method may vary, but security deposits are not rare. Having stayed in hotels all across the country (and internationally) I can attest to this. The fairmont charging $100/night is a bit expensive, as the Marriott and the Hilton both charge $50/night for their deposit, but again, that is the hotel's policy.

This deposit is usually posted as an "authorized" charge. Meaning that you won't see it when the official charge is processed, but it will be pending on your account and tie up these funds for the weekend, especially considering that it's a holiday weekend, which is why attendees need to be particularly attentive if they have a very tight budget. If the room at the Hilton is going to run you $300 for 3 nights, expect the authorizing charge to be ~$450. When the charge finally goes through roughly 1-3 business days following checkout, it will be that original $300, but the security deposit is to cover the hotel in case you thrash the room and take off.

Again, it seems that Moonblossom has had some exceptional service from some of their hotel staff, so perhaps speaking with some of the staff at the hotel in person can help you circumvent this, but I would not hold my breath, nor would I try to "lock in" a no-deposit deal right now, over 8 weeks before Fanime is supposed to happen. Why?

Now:
Fanime attendee: Hey, what's this about a deposit? Is there any way I could just pay my room cost with no deposit fee?
Helpful attendant on the phone: Sure thing. Anything to please the customer!

At Fanime:
Fanime attendee: Right, and I"m not being charged a deposit right?
Check-in attendant: Actually, you are.
Attendee: But...I spoke with someone...uh...Jennifer was her name?
Attendant: Jennifer no longer works here. I'm sorry, we expect deposits from everyone.
Attendee: X_X

In short: plan on the deposit.
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: Moonblossom on March 09, 2010, 07:54:08 PM
Just in case I was unclear earlier - I was not in any way suggesting anyone ask the hotel staff to circumvent deposits. What I suggested that she ask, and that the hotel would likely be amenable to, was to make a note ahead of time that she would be checking in with one credit card but paying with another. It was in reply to the "see if I can put the hold on another credit card or something" part of the statement.
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: Dany on March 09, 2010, 08:24:22 PM
Now:
Fanime attendee: Hey, what's this about a deposit? Is there any way I could just pay my room cost with no deposit fee?
Helpful attendant on the phone: Sure thing. Anything to please the customer!

At Fanime:
Fanime attendee: Right, and I"m not being charged a deposit right?
Check-in attendant: Actually, you are.
Attendee: But...I spoke with someone...uh...Jennifer was her name?
Attendant: Jennifer no longer works here. I'm sorry, we expect deposits from everyone.
Attendee: X_X

In short: plan on the deposit.


Or get things in writing and bring it with you to the hotel.
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: Foxberry on March 09, 2010, 11:59:03 PM
Just in case I was unclear earlier - I was not in any way suggesting anyone ask the hotel staff to circumvent deposits. What I suggested that she ask, and that the hotel would likely be amenable to, was to make a note ahead of time that she would be checking in with one credit card but paying with another. It was in reply to the "see if I can put the hold on another credit card or something" part of the statement.

Yeah that's about right, using one credit card for deposit, the other for the actual payment. ^^
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: Moonblossom on March 10, 2010, 10:16:37 AM
The more I think about it, the more that's a really good idea.

I'm exceptionally lucky in that my credit limit is kind of ridonkulous, since I shared a credit card with my folks for nearly a decade. I could pay for an entire car (we're talking like a Honda Civic or something here, not a Bentley or a Lambo) on my card in one shot, were I so inclined. But I know several people who would basically hit or surpass their limits on a $500 hotel bill and $100 a night deposit charges, leaving no room for emergencies.
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: jAded on March 11, 2010, 10:11:29 AM
I usually reserve with one card and check in with another card and it's never been an issue.

As with what people have been saying, most, if not all hotels, usually put a deposit on your account and that deposit is returned when you stay the days that you are supposed to after you check out, pending there was no damage to your room.

It usually takes a few business days for that transaction to go through.
Title: Re: ...What is this about hotel... Deposits???
Post by: KyraEnsui on March 12, 2010, 09:20:29 PM
As outdated they are, it is true even on the hotel's website that they do charge security deposits. There are few threads are posted in advance to tell that it is best to add into your budget. It was created so a thread like this won't come up too many times like in the past and it is usually when Fanime is rolling by fast. Plus, each hotel charges differently on deposit like Hilton. I made a budget sample here: http://forums.fanime.com/index.php/topic,12631.msg332614.html#msg332614 about it.

Other than that, it is best to have a back up for any situations.