Hotels & Resorts - Poor complaint handling
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- Your hotel accommodation should be as shown on the website or any sales material or advertisements.
- If you're unhappy with the quality of your hotel or resort, you should first go to the front desk or the hotel manager. They should be able to resolve your issue quickly.
- We recommend that you raise the issue immediately whilst at the hotel premises, so you give the hotel or resort a chance to put right any problems.
- Always be fair and reasonable in your expectations and your approach to the hotel business and focus on how to resolve the issue.
- If you're still unhappy, you should raise a case via Resolver.
How to raise an issue against a hotel or resort?
There's nothing worse than meticulously planning a holiday, only to arrive and find out that your hotel is under construction! Things can get especially confusing if you've booked through a third party, making it difficult to figure out who is responsible for fixing the situation.
- First of all, you should try and gather as much evidence as possible about your issue, while you are at the hotel or the resort. Your smartphone will come in handy for this- record videos and take pictures of your concern. Keep the receipts safe.
- Approach the manager or the concerned person immediately available at accommodation. Explain your issue in detail and wait for an effective resolution. If you’ve booked the hotel through an online website or a third party, approach them and raise your issue with them as well. Online hotel booking websites generally have appropriate consumer care cells in place to cater to your issue.
- Hotel chains and resorts also have guests’ complaint resolution mechanism and policies in place. The hotel staff should assist you with the same.
- As per Resolver's experience, your complaint should be resolved immediately or within 7-10 days. If the hotel authorities fail to do so, or if you are not satisfied with the outcome, then you have the option to escalate the matter to an appropriate consumer forum.
- Before approaching the consumer court, you must serve a month's notice to the hotel or resort stay business to allow them a chance of rectification. If they still fail, then you should file a formal consumer case for "deficiency of services". The legal recourse generally takes a lot of time to reach a conclusion, so choose wisely. However, raising a case can show to the hotel that you are serious and you can withdraw your case at any time.
Is there an ombudsman or a regulator?
For the hotel & resorts industry in India, there is no ombudsman or regulator yet. There are some independent organisations but they do not cater to consumer complaint redressal.
The hotel could not resolve my issue, what to do?
If you cannot resolve the issue whilst you are staying at the hotel, then you should submit your complaint after returning home. When you email the hotel through resolver, try to attach as much supporting information as possible such as your invoice, photos, etc, to help express your issue clearly to the business.
I booked through a third party website
If you booked your hotel through an agent or an online hotel booking website, you should still raise your issue with the hotel directly. They do need to ensure that the information provided by them is accurate. If you feel the issue was caused by the website or due to the agent’s fault then you should raise the issue with them and not the hotel.
I was asked to pay more when I arrived at the hotel!
Hotel booking sites should make any charges clear to you upfront. This includes taxes and booking charges. If you find that charges have not been made clear to you, you should use Resolver’s free Hotel Booking Complaint Tool to raise your issue with the site.
Can I cancel my hotel or resort booking?
Unfortunately, you won't normally have the right to cancel your hotel booking. You may be charged a small fee if you do so. This is, however, dependent on your hotel’s terms and conditions. Some online hotel websites also provide free cancellation.
I booked through a travel agent – can I get a refund from them?
Generally, your travel agent is only liable if they’ve made a mistake in your booking or in the information they’ve provided you. You should approach your hotel operator first with any problem.
Submit your issue for free via Resolver
The resolver system holds the contact details for hotels and resorts and will help you deliver and manage your complaint as it is important that you keep a complete record of all dealings you have with the guest accommodation business.
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