It Can Happen to the Best of Us

Upgrade: Travel Better reported on his mistaken Priceline booking. He entered the wrong dates for a hotel reservation that he won, and managed to work with the hotel and Priceline to get them to shift his dates to what he originally wanted.

Just a few days ago I realized a similar boo boo myself, not on Priceline but with a similar prepaid, non-refundable booking at the Novotel Suvarnabhumi Airport hotel. Seems I had entered the exact right day – in the wrong month! I had booked for May instead of April, which is why the nice ladies at door 4 in the arrivals hall didn’t see me on their list of arrivals.

When I walked up to the checkin desk they couldn’t find my reservation either, so I handed them my printed confirmation. A little bit of typing, an embarrassed grin, and they pointed to me where I had booked the very same night for the following month.

Shoot, they could easily have made me eat that one! But I didn’t have a fight at all, the woman just said, “May I have your permission to move the reservation?” Why… yes you may! And a few keystrokes later my non-refundable, non-changeable booking had been changed to cover that very night. I was handed a key to my room and up I went.

It’s a good reminder though to always check and double check the dates you’re entering on a hotel or airline reservation, March could appear as May, June as July, and once you hit purchase you run the risk of losing a chunk of change.

That said, if you do make a mistake it never hurts to ask for forgiveness. And I’ve always had good luck with Expedia bookings, for what it’s worth, and their willingness to grant a “one-time exception” and cancel a booking made within 24 hours (I must have done this a dozen times, and they’ve told me they can do it with most air bookings though notably not with Airtran).

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. This is my worst nightmare, particularly since I’m usually the one that plans family trips and sometimes trips for friends. It’s no biggie if I screw up my own travel; I can deal with that. My big fear is arriving to Europe with the family and realizing we don’t have hotel reservations. 🙂

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