Hotels Now Charging Airline-like Penalty Fees

Another week, another big winter storm threatening millions of people across the United States, including parts of the Carolinas.

If you've got a golf trip planned, I hope you're able to catch your flight to somewhere warmer and greener.

If not, I've got some potential bad news (on top of your already cancelled flight).

Let’s just say that even though you may not make it to your destination, your money definitely will...

See, it used to be at many hotels you could cancel your reservation anytime before 6 pm on the night you were scheduled to check in.

But as of January 1st of this year, two of the largest chains -- Marriott and Hilton -- modified their cancellation policies...(i.e. they added hotel cancellation fees).

Now, if you don't cancel a reservation by the day before your scheduled arrival, you'll be charged a fee equal to one room night.

And guess what? That's getting off easy.

In a recent New York Times article, Bjorn Hanson at the New York University Tisch Center for Hospitality and Tourism said, "at some [other] resorts [the penalty] might be three nights. And at some destinations it's the entire stay."

I should note, these changes only affect Marriott and Hilton hotels that previously offered a liberal, same-night cancellation policy. Other hotels under their control have always required longer notice.

Still, this policy change doesn't make traveling any easier, and my fear is it's going to catch on...and spread beyond hotels.

We've already started seeing some golf courses across the pond charging, "nonrefundable deposits."

What do you think? Are you starting to be (unpleasantly) surprised by new cancellation policies at hotels, golf courses, etc?

Please share your thoughts or read what others are saying below.

Tim Gavrich is a Senior Writer for Golf Advisor and the Managing Editor of the Golf Vacation Insider newsletter. Follow him on Twitter @TimGavrich and on Instagram @TimGavrich.
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Hotels Now Charging Airline-like Penalty Fees
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