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Cancel Guest booking or risk fraud?

 
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ianthy



Joined: 12 Mar 2006
Posts: 520
Location: Bologna, Italy

PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2017 9:17 am    Post subject: Cancel Guest booking or risk fraud? Reply with quote

Hi

Some months ago I took a booking via Booking.com paid for via PayPal. The guests are from China visiting a business conference in Italy and have been very communicative. It now transpires that the lead guest that has paid for the stay will now not be travelling with the group. As I have experienced card fraud and charge backs before, I have requested a copy of passport and a photo of the card holder holding the C'Card used to pay for the stay. Passport ID before the stay form part of our terms.

Despite numerous requests, the lead guest has so far not complied, stating that the payment has been guaranteed by PayPal. Of course, this is not the case. I have just called the lead guest in China and given her 1 last chance to send the info by close today.

In the event that it does not arrive, I think my only option is to cancel the booking, which is due to arrive in 15 days time. In 10 years, I have never had to cancel a guest booking but clearly I don't want to suffer another charge back due to c'card fraud. Is there anything I am missing or something else that I should do? what do I do about the payment they have made via PayPal?

Thanks for reading.
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Sam V



Joined: 20 Nov 2009
Posts: 1610
Location: Villa in Gale, Algarve, Portugal. At home in Fetcham, Surrey, UK

PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2017 9:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd be very uncomfortable with this booking situation too. Is the business conference they are attending genuine? Are they on a guest list? My gut feeling is if they are genuine then maybe they should cancel the booking and rebook through one of the attending guests. You could also state that the booking needs to be made by a guest who will be staying in your property.
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Ecosse



Joined: 29 May 2014
Posts: 682
Location: Saint Gervais les Bains, France

PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2017 10:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Like Sam V, I would be uncomfortable, too. It may be a language barrier issue, but equally, if you've been bitten before, I doubt you want to be again.
It would be worth doing as Sam V suggests and seeng if this conference exists and that they are on the guest list. You have already stated that your t&cs state that passport details have to be provided before arrival and if they don't provide them, then that's breach of contract.

The only other thing I would do is contact booking.com and explain the situation. I'm sure they are very careful to avoid card fraud and money laundering (not that this sounds like a case of that) and may be able to help you/give you some suggestions.
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COYS



Joined: 06 Jun 2015
Posts: 660
Location: Greek Islands

PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2017 12:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, I'd go along with SamV too. Either rebook with an actual staying guest or drop it.
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zebedee



Joined: 12 Sep 2014
Posts: 759
Location: yorkshire dales

PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2017 5:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is interesting. My terms and conditions start by saying in some wording that the lead guest is responsible for all the occupants during the holiday, or in other words, the lead guest would be the person I pursued if there was a problem.

If your lead guest is not going to stay during the booking, who could you hold responsible if there is a problem??

This would be the formal excuse I would give for cancelling what now appears to be to be a possible scam. It certainly is suspicious and I would be worried. SamV makes some very good suggestions you could try first.
Life is too short to have the stress this booking would give you.
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e-richard



Joined: 17 Oct 2004
Posts: 4881
Location: Algarve, Portugal

PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2017 7:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

eeeek.

My scamometer is twitching quite heavily.
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ianthy



Joined: 12 Mar 2006
Posts: 520
Location: Bologna, Italy

PostPosted: Thu Mar 02, 2017 1:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi

Just an update the - passport details and card photos have been confirmed. I have checked with PayPal and it's the same card used to make the payments.

The guests are attending a conference in Bologna - CosmoPro and their company appears on the list. I have also checked out the company and it exists, with the person booking the trip as an employee with co emails yesterday. Booking.com also called me, as the guest had called them concerned that I was about to cancel their booking days before the event. Accommodation locally, if you can find it, is now 350 a night for 2 people during the conference period.

It now seems resolved but roll on the straight forward bookings - click and book! There just has to be away of taking cc payments without risk of fraud.
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e-richard



Joined: 17 Oct 2004
Posts: 4881
Location: Algarve, Portugal

PostPosted: Thu Mar 02, 2017 1:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Glad I was wrong Smile
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Ecosse



Joined: 29 May 2014
Posts: 682
Location: Saint Gervais les Bains, France

PostPosted: Thu Mar 02, 2017 2:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Glad to hear it - it sounds like it was just a language barrier rather than anything more sinister.
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FaithfulTravels



Joined: 30 Jan 2017
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2017 5:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Had a similar situation that did turn out to be a scam. Thankfully I was able to cancel it before any damage was done. Glad your turned out to be legit.
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