Last week, I booked a 4-day stay in Berlin via booking.com. I chose the cheapest option, which means I cannot cancel and get my money back (it states that if I cancel, I still lose the money). However, my card was rejected because a payment I was supposed to get was late.

I thought I had lost the booking as I was not able to fix the issue within 24 hours as I was urged to do in the email I received, so I booked again when I actually received the money. But now it looks like I have made the booking twice.

Has anyone ever been in this situation? Does anyone have any advice on what I could do?

Update: I emailed booking.com via the contact form on their website and they contacted the property who have fortunately agreed to waive the cancellation fee for my second booking. Now that happened to be the one they had already taken the money for, but I got my money back within a couple of days and I made sure there were money in my account for them to take for the first one.

Thank you!

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    This happened to me once, but the system prevented me from making a double booking. Are you sure your original booking was not cancelled? Try contacting the hotel directly. – Burhan Khalid Mar 16 '18 at 20:37
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    I've cancelled non-cancellable bookings before by calling the hotel. They always have the ability to make an exception – Berwyn Mar 16 '18 at 22:09
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    @Berwyn it's been a while, but I wanted to mention for others that bookings made through third party web services like Expedia or Hotels.com often cannot be changed by the hotel, or at least not as trivially. Also, thanks to OP for posting back with the update, I wish more folks on SE reported how things worked out for them. – A C Jul 22 '19 at 0:17

Contact booking.com customer service and explain your error. They may choose to help you.

Unfortunately, it sounds like if they refuse, you will be on the hook. But be polite and apologetic (since it was your error) and see what they have to say.

  • @Ana Let us know how you make out, and good luck! – Jim MacKenzie Mar 16 '18 at 19:53
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    If they insist on double payment, make sure you mess up both beds, use both bathrooms, use up the towels in both rooms... – gnasher729 Mar 16 '18 at 21:48
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    I've heard the opposite problem where two people with identical names booked a room, and the hotel removed the double booking :-( – gnasher729 Mar 16 '18 at 21:49
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    @ZachLipton Double charges are grounds for dispute if the company double charged you. I'm not so sure they're grounds for dispute if you ordered something twice! – Berwyn Mar 16 '18 at 22:48
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    @Berwyn That's obviously an argument to have out with the credit card company, but I'd imagine the OP has a decent argument since they didn't intend to authorize two charges. There's a chargeback reason code for duplicate charges, and it would be up to the merchant to provide proof two transactions were intended. Ethically speaking, I'm assuming that the OP intended to only have one transaction and believed the first booking was cancelled when they made the second booking, and they promptly reported it. – Zach Lipton Mar 16 '18 at 22:56

It’s up to the hotel to decide whether or not to refund you. You will need to call Booking.com and they will contact the property. You should also call the property and speak with the manager and get her name so that Booking.com CSR knows who to ask for.

I’ve had similar situations and the only time I was refunded was when I was denied access because of my service dog.

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