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Hotwire review

Here is the skinny on hotwire.com. Avoid hotwire. Beware of hotwire. Hotwire sucks.

For the longer version, read on.

Next month I’m taking a little trip to Seattle with four unrelated people. My job was to book the hotel. Somehow I ended up on hotwire.com. They had an unnamed hotel in the location I needed for a good price*. Before booking I read all the rules, restrictions, terms of use, etc. on their site. One said, “room type will be determined by the hotel based on the number of guests provided at time of booking.” This worried me a bit as there are no couples in my group of five. Therefore, I needed at least five beds. So I called hotwire before booking and asked them if booking three rooms for five people meant three beds or five (or six) beds. I was assured that I would get at least as many beds as people. I was told to call the hotel after booking to confirm this.

So I booked the non-refundable rooms and called the hotel. The hotel told me that I was booked for three rooms with only one, double bed in each room. I explained my situation and asked if they had rooms available with two beds in each room. “Yes,” they replied, “we have plenty of those rooms open on the night you are staying here, but hotwire won’t let us give you those rooms.” “You will have to call hotwire and have them change you to the rooms with two beds.” I explained that hotwire told me to call them. “Sorry,” the hotel says, “hotwire will have to make the change. We can’t on our end.”

I contacted hotwire again. This time they said if I want two beds in two of the rooms I have to pay extra. We went back and forth in a dozen email messages and they wouldn’t budge. Each time a different representative regurgitated the same lines over and over again. “You should have read our terms of use.” I did. And I called you before booking just to be sure. “No refunds.” I know. That is why I called you first to make sure I wouldn’t need a refund.

Anyway, moral of the story. Don’t book with hotwire. Not only will you be stuck with something you may not have bargained for, they don’t follow through on any assertions or promises they make prior to booking. Once they have you in the non-refundable category, they have no incentive to please the customer or make you happy.

*To top it off, the hotel they booked me with has lower rates on their website than the rate I paid with hotwire. Lesson learned.

One Response to “Hotwire review”

  1. 1
    Jay:

    I have had similar issues with not only hotwire, but priceline as well. The hotel says that they would refund money but it is up to hotwire or priceline, and the reverse story from hotwire/priceline-they said they would refund the money, but it was up to the hotel. In the end, I got both the hotel and hotwire/priceline on the phone in a three way and we agreed to a 50% refund. (The issue was that we didn’t end up staying at the hotel, because Lindsay got sick).

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