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I recently reserved an apartment in Budapest through Booking.com, which was free of charge.

Once I’d reserved the apartment, I got an e-mail from the host of the apartment asking me for a pre-payment of 50% of the total cost, with the other half to be paid upon arrival.

The host requested I bank transfer him this money.

Is this legitimate? Is this standard practice? It seems a little odd to me.

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    I would check this out with Booking.com. I wouldn’t pay anything other than by credit card – Traveller Jun 18 at 14:54
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    When booking on booking.com, you will read and accept (at least accept, not necessarily read) the conditions of payment, which may be significantly different from offer to offer. Which payment conditions were you presented with from booking.com? Neither pre-payment nor payment by bank transfer are per se anything odd. – Tor-Einar Jarnbjo Jun 18 at 15:07
  • I was aware that I’d be paying a 50% pre-payment, it just seems bizarre that it’s through a wire transfer? I’ve never encountered this before and it feels pretty unsafe. – the man Jun 18 at 15:09
  • Booking.com will unlikely not just tell you that a 50% pre-payment is required, but also show you which means of payment are accepted. Which means of payment were offered by booking.com? – Tor-Einar Jarnbjo Jun 18 at 15:41
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    A recent question suggests that it can be normal, depending on the location. – Weather Vane Jun 18 at 17:07

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