what kind of reservation do you have?Hi Roxy –

I’m hoping you can clarify something that has been worrying me. Via the hotel booking tool, we found a great advance rate for hotels for our east coast road trip – we’re trying to plan our budgets by booking our hotels several months out. Anyway, my question is… one of our bookings is a “non-refundable confirmed reservation” and in the fine print, it says our room is not guaranteed. Is that normal for a room to not be “guaranteed“? Isn’t the hotel legally required to give us a room if we have a reservation?

I’m not freaked out, but – ok, maybe I’m kind of freaking out. I was going to call the hotel, but I was curious on your opinion and wanted to see if this is a common occurrence?

Thanks, Roxy.

– Janice from Chicago

It’s okay, Janice, don’t panic! If you have a room that is a “non-refundable, confirmed reservation,” that means they have billed you for at least one night’s lodging. If you cancel this lodging, you will not receive a refund. You will not pass GO, you will not receive $200…or whatever the deposit was! There are several online booking sites that utilize this method because it’s less work for them than trying to maintain proper inventory that re-enters the system due to cancellations. It is not a bad method. Just make sure your plans are in stone before clicking the button on this one or it will be a bad shake for sure! (Sorry, I couldn’t resist continuing the Monopoly reference.)

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