Josh doesn’t have a lot of money. When he and his girlfriend went to check in to the Crowne Plaza hotel room they reserved on Priceline, he handed over his credit card to confirm the reservation, and his card was declined. They wouldn’t accept his girlfriend’s card to put on file for incidentals, and they were ultimately turned away, losing the reservation…and the money they paid Priceline for the room.
Much like that nasty little gas station problem we talked about awhile back, hotels just love to slap holds on your debit or credit card accounts for “incidental charges.” There’s nothing wrong or uncommon about the practice, but its difficult or impossible to tell exactly how much the hold might be — and for some consumers who aren’t expecting it, the holds can cause big problems. Reader Eric recently got slapped with a $253.13 hold from the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Kansas City, and he’s a little irked because they didn’t disclose the hold when he was checking in, and they only refunded $160 of it when he checked out.