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Old 03-07-2015, 01:41 PM   #41
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I made a booking, in Euros, from France, for a hotel in France, through the IHG (Holiday Inn, etc) web site a few months ago. The price shown on the final checkout screen was quite a bit higher than what had been displayed up until then. I took screenshots and phoned the hotel. They told me they would definitely find out what had gone wrong. I told them I didn't really care what had gone wrong, I just wanted them to honour the rate on the first page I saw. After some to-ing and fro-ing, they did. Apparently it was related to exchange rate issues within the site, even though it was a "local" transaction.

In the early days of Web booking, I would check the rate at booking.com, venere.com, etc, and phone the hotel to suggest that we split the difference between what the site was charging me and what they were paying the hotel. I've noticed that many hotels no longer accept this kind of negotiation; perhaps they've been bitten by mystery shoppers from the sites...
That's interesting. I've booked several European hotels directly on their website and never had a price switch on me at the end. I notice they are all careful to keep any taxes included in the price up front when you check their rates. The general hotel booking websites often do not quote these taxes up front when they display them. So at first you might think you're getting a discount, but then you realize not.

I usually get a better price and/or more room options if I go directly to the hotel.

The real reason I do this is that if something goes wrong, I don't want a middle man to muck up any fixing of the arrangements. I have heard of numerous problems including people being moved to a "sister" hotel due to booking conflicts.

So far, so good. Knock on wood!
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Old 03-07-2015, 01:42 PM   #42
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In the early days of Web booking, I would check the rate at booking.com, venere.com, etc, and phone the hotel to suggest that we split the difference between what the site was charging me and what they were paying the hotel. I've noticed that many hotels no longer accept this kind of negotiation; perhaps they've been bitten by mystery shoppers from the sites...
It depends.

I even had a phone in rate being lower than the walk-in rate (both lower than website). The clerk didn't realize I phoned earlier ..

You can also try and play with nights stayed. Book the first night on-line and get a discount for more nights afterwards (extend over the phone).

Booking.com is kind of evil though. Hotels need to garantuee that the lowest price is with them, or they lose their listing.

Smaller niche places where you deal with the owner tend to be more creative.
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Old 03-07-2015, 01:45 PM   #43
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I recently took advantage of the slump in the Euro do to some shopping on a couple of European retail websites. Even with the international shipping, I saved 20% on European goods compared to what I would have paid at US retailers.
Interesting, can you be more specific?

As in: which goods and from which country? electronic stuff from Germany I heard is a great deal.
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Old 03-07-2015, 01:52 PM   #44
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They are simply are doing the conversion to dollars from Euros.

.
I understand that.

My question is that if I book through Bookings.com a room for $100 today the cost would be about 90 Euros, today. If the Euro continues to fall say to 95 cents in July, the $100 costs about 105 Euros. What will I be charged in Euros when I check out? That is the question.

Obviously, I want to pay in Euros if the Euro continues to fall.
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Old 03-07-2015, 01:57 PM   #45
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I understand that.

My question is that if I book through Bookings.com a room for $100 today the cost would be about 90 Euros, today. If the Euro continues to fall say to 95 cents in July, the $100 costs about 105 Euros. What will I be charged in Euros when I check out? That is the question.

Obviously, I want to pay in Euros if the Euro continues to fall.
Don't book though booking.com if you can avoid it. This just adds a layer of confusion and potential for things to go wrong, IMO.

If you make a reservation, it should be in Euros, and you will pay that price in Euros when you arrive or checkout (some B&Bs and inns have you pay when you arrive).

If you pre-pay for a room, it will be whatever the conversion rate is on the day you pre-pay.

If you think of it all as being in Euros, it's straightforward.

When I look at hotel rates (TripAdvisor will display some when I select a date range) I always look in local currency. IMO it's too confusing to look at it in USD. All the browsing sites let you choose the currency to display.
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Old 03-07-2015, 02:06 PM   #46
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My question is that if I book through Bookings.com a room for $100 today the cost would be about 90 Euros, today. If the Euro continues to fall say to 95 cents in July, the $100 costs about 105 Euros. What will I be charged in Euros when I check out? That is the question.
Normally it's mentioned on your booking, but in virtually all cases you pay in local currency at the booked rate in local currency. So +/- 90 EUR, at the prevailing exchange rate on the day you pay (if you pay in USD, e.g. via credit card).

Only some large chain hotels and airlines take into account where you are booking from and charge differently as a consequence.
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Old 03-07-2015, 03:05 PM   #47
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When we have traveled to Italy, we have booked our hotels a variety of ways - some direct, some through booking sites like hotels.com and others. Each time, however, the bill was in euros when we checked out. We always pay with a credit card and the conversion rate is whatever they are using on the day the charge goes through.

One important thing is to get a credit card that does not charge you a foreign transaction fee (like one from PenFed). Amex and the big bank credit cards charge a fairly hefty one (3% in many cases).
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Old 03-07-2015, 11:39 PM   #48
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Most large issuer banks offer a "travel" credit card with no foreign transaction fee. I use the Bank of America Travel Rewards VISA with 1.5% rewards and no annual fee. I prefer this over my PenFed VISA overseas because the latter only gives me rewards on gas purchases. I do use the PenFed overseas on the rare occasion that a chip and PIN card is required.
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Old 03-10-2015, 04:15 PM   #49
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Dang! $1.068!!!
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Old 03-10-2015, 04:30 PM   #50
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They are simply are doing the conversion to dollars from Euros.

You can switch the currency to Euros if you want. That would be the true price the hotel. And when you pay, use a no transaction fee card.

I always go directly to the hotel website to make any bookings.
Some B&Bs don't have their own website. I've booked some bargains through the different hotel websites. They were priced in dollars. The question I have is how often do they update their price. The bargain status would disappear if they euro priced places remained the same.

I'm in the process of booking some places in France. What used to be expensive in my old mindset is now suddenly cheap. I'm still trying to drag DW to Spain/Portugal.
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Old 03-10-2015, 05:39 PM   #51
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Some B&Bs don't have their own website. I've booked some bargains through the different hotel websites. They were priced in dollars. The question I have is how often do they update their price. The bargain status would disappear if they euro priced places remained the same.

I'm in the process of booking some places in France. What used to be expensive in my old mindset is now suddenly cheap. I'm still trying to drag DW to Spain/Portugal.
A lot of Europe B&Bs require cash. One I deal with in Amsterdam requires a deposit via PayPal and that is billed in Euros, although PayPal will try to convert it for you. I dealt with an Austrian B&B Inn that sent you to booking.com to do their reservation, but they charged my credit card upon arrival in Euros.

I've never reserved or pre-paid a hotel room in US dollars. If you see prices displayed in dollars look for a currency symbol and change it to the local currency.

Every hotel booking website I've ever seen lets you change the prices displayed to local currency.
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