Do Hotels Charge for No Show?

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Certain things in life happen when you least expect them. Some of them include those that can keep you from being in the hotel at the designated check-in time.

If you fail to inform the hotel that you will not be able to turn up, it is referred to as no show. Most of the time, there are repercussions to this.

So, do hotels charge for no show?

The majority of hotels charge their guests for not showing up. In many instances, the fee amounts to the entire rate of a full night’s stay. There are cases, too, in which the no show fee charged by hotels is equivalent to the full amount of the pre-booked stay.

Fortunately, there is a way to prevent being charged for no show if you will not be able to turn up at the designated check-in time. Such is by means of canceling your hotel room reservation.

However, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the hotel won’t charge you for it. Most hotels have cancelation fees, although the amount is usually just a fraction of their no show fees.

Read on to learn more about some important matters about no show and canceling, too.

If you have family members and friends who love to travel but are always changing their minds because they have unpredictable schedules or impulsive behavior, please share this article on social media.

No Show vs. Canceling: What is the Difference?

Many people have no idea about the difference between no show and canceling. Because of this, they tend to use them interchangeably.

And it is also due to this why confusion usually arises the minute that they get their credit card bills. Knowing what sets no show and canceling apart, therefore, is a definite must for any traveler.

Put simply, no show means that the guest did not turn up in the hotel at the check-in time.

There is one important element that makes a circumstance a no show. It’s none other than the absence of prior notice. So, in other words, the guest decided not to show up without informing the hotel beforehand.

As a result of this, the hotel is likely to charge for no show. The amount of a no show fee is usually 100% of the rate of a one night’s stay.

However, it is important to note that the no-show fee may vary from one hotel to another. It all depends on the no show policy. For instance, some hotels may charge only 50% of the first night.

Canceling, on the other hand, means that the guest is able to get in touch with the hotel to confirm that he or she would like to call off the reservation.

This way, the hotel can avoid going to great lengths just to make the room available for others without potentially losing a lot of money.

Many hotels require their guests to cancel their room reservations anywhere from 24 to 72 hours before the check-in time.

Like no show, canceling may come with a fee. However, a cancellation fee is not as steep as a no show fee.

If you do not want to be charged for an entire night by the hotel for not turning up, it is a good idea to cancel your booking.

Being Charged at Least One Night is Not Always the Case

As mentioned earlier, a no-cost fee usually amounts to the rate of a one night’s stay. In some hotels, the charge for no show amounts to less than 100% of the value of a 24-hour stay.

Unfortunately, especially for budget-conscious travelers, this is not always the case. There are cases in which hotels may impose a no show fee amounting to the entire booking!

More often than not, this is what is likely to happen if the hotel is located in an exotic area in which the reserved room may not be occupied immediately by another guest.

Such a hotel may do so to get back the amount of profit that it has lost for not giving the room to a different guest.

Hotels that are situated in big or busy cities where there are many people looking for rooms are less likely to charge their no show guests the full pre-booked stay.

But because different hotels have different policies when it comes to no show, it is recommended to check very carefully with the hotel of your choice.

What Hotels Do to Help Reduce No Shows

Even though hotels love to make a profit, they do not like it if they will have to charge their guests for a no show.

Sometimes, they have no other choice but to enforce their no show policy even if it can inconvenience their guests as well as the hotels themselves, to a certain extent.

This is why many hotels are doing their best to keep no shows to a minimum. This way, they can be spared from breaking the hearts of the guests and also save themselves from having to take the necessary steps to get the rooms occupied.

Here are some of the things that many hotels do to prevent or minimize no shows:

  • Include a cancelation policy in the hotel reservation system. If a guest believes that he or she will not be able to show up in the right place and at the right time, he or she may choose to cancel the booking if there is a cancelation policy. However, in many instances, canceling doesn’t come free of charge. The good news is that the cost of canceling is smaller than the cost of no show.
  • Send reminders about the booking. Many hotels these days use hotel booking software that can politely remind guests that their chosen hotels are looking forward to their stay. This way, the guests won’t forget about their bookings and potentially end up being charged for not showing up. Some advanced software tools are capable of automatically sending notifications or alerts to the guests, not only via email but also by SMS.
  • Provide discounts for confirming bookings. Whether traveling on a budget or not, many love to save money. This is why discounts, such as those offered by many hotels for confirmed bookings, can be so enticing. Confirming bookings won’t completely drive away no shows because, as always, anything can happen. However, since discounts are involved, the guests may do their best to turn up.

If none of the steps mentioned above can prevent a no show, hotels will have to charge their guests for it. That is if they have such a policy.

In some cases, a hotel may contact the guest who didn’t turn up and kindly ask about the reasons for it. Then they nicely inform them about issuing a no show fee.

Just Before You Decide to Not Turn Up

Most hotels charge for no show. Some of them impose a no show fee amounting to the entire rate of a one night’s stay. Others charge no show guests a fraction of the cost only.

There are hotels, too, whose no show fees are equivalent to the full price of the pre-booked stay. Usually, they are the ones that are situated in exotic locations.

If you are 100% sure that you will not be able to turn up at the check-in time, it is a much better idea to cancel your reservation than do a no show act. This can help save you from being charged exorbitantly by the hotel.

Related Questions

Do hotels charge for changing my mind after making a reservation?

Some hotels charge a cancelation fee. If the hotel that you booked with has such a policy, a certain amount will be charged from your credit card for canceling. Otherwise, you don’t have to worry about any cancelation fee for changing your mind.

Can I get a refund for nonrefundable hotel rooms?

Fortunately, there are ways to get your money back after reserving a nonrefundable hotel room. One of them is having a valid medical excuse. Another is not being satisfied with the stay because the hotel or package is not the same as advertised.

Photo credit: ©canva.com/Addoro

Reed Harris

Reed is a traveler and blogger. He's planning to visit all states in the USA. He's been in 31 states so far.

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