HotelsFrom international, boutique to regional names, here’s how hoteliers globally have relaxed cancellation policies as they work around the Covid-19 disruption

Last minute cancellations? Hotels are here to help

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We list a quick rundown of changes to booking policies hotels have made to work around the Covid-19 disruption
We list a quick rundown of changes to booking policies hotels have made to work around the Covid-19 disruption Photo Credit: Getty Images, Michael Blann

SINGAPORE – Apart from keeping strict hygiene and cleaning standards issued by World Health Organization and similar bodies, hoteliers worldwide have found another way to lend a helping hand to valued guests: adjusting cancellation and change policies.

It started as early as late January this year, when Trip.com Group announced they’d be enforcing cancellation waivers to reservations for hotels in China. Subsequently, this ‘Cancellation Guarantee’ initiative was extended to include bookings beyond Chinese borders – the equivalent of about 30,000 hotels globally.

Ooi Joon Aun
Ooi Joon Aun

“This is an extremely challenging period for everyone around the world, but as an industry, we need to rally together, maintain our calm and continue to adapt to the ever-evolving situation,” said Joon Aun Ooi, President and Managing Director, Wyndham Hotels & Resorts, SEAPR.

Sharing similar sentiments to a few other travel trade companies Travel Weekly Asia spoke to, Wyndham has made clear their determination amid this time, “taking steps to ensure that when the industry regains confidence and starts moving towards recovery, our hotels are well-positioned for the long run”.

Here’s a quick rundown of updates to booking policies at various international, boutique and regional brands:

Accor
For stays before 30 Apr 2020 booked on non-flexible rates, reservations may be changed for future travel through 31 Dec 2020 for free.

Guests are advised to get in touch with their online travel agents for change requests for non-direct bookings.

For regions affected by government restrictions, find full details here.

BWH Hotel Group
No brand cancellation or change guidelines have been announced yet. Hotels under the Group have been advised to be flexible, understand and assist guests as much as possible in this time.

Rewards members will have their current status maintained through 31 Jan 2022, without fulfilling the usual necessary qualifications. Details here.

Centara Hotels & Resorts
One of the first hotel groups to respond to the Covid-19 situation, in the words of CEO of Centara Hotels & Resorts: "Let's support each other and come back stronger".

The brand has extended their free cancellation policy to 31 May, 2020, and has indicated that they will remain flexible, flowing with the situation and updating the above date as necessary so guests can book with confidence. Details here.

Far East Hospitality
All cancellation requests related to Covid-19 will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

Furama Danang
As of this article’s publish date, each booking cancellation or change is reviewed on a case-by-case basis. The hotel has expressed that guests should email the reservations department directly for advice.

Hilton
Change fees have been waived, otherwise full refunds are offered to affected travellers across three categories: Government restrictions, existing reservations, and new reservations. Details here.

For regions affected by government restrictions, the above apply for guests travelling to, through or from Israel, Spain, France, South Korea, United States, Italy, Saudi Arabia, China, and selected European countries. Contact Hilton directly for exact dates applicable.

Mandarin Orchard Singapore
Cancellation policy has been relaxed to now allow for changes 48 hours prior to arrival, applicable for special stay packages and rooms booked at discounts off best flexible rates. For best flexible rates booked directly, on-day cancellation is allowed.

Cancellations for confirmed bookings from today to 30 April 2020 will also be waived. Guests who wish to postpone their stays are allowed a one-time free change, subject to rate differences.

Marriott International
Full changes or cancellations are allowed with waivers up to 24 hours before arrival, for guests with existing reservations for any future arrival date. Requests must be made by 30 April 2020. Changes to new reservations booked from now until 30 April will also be honoured – but subject to availability and rate differences.

Guests are advised to get in touch with their online travel agents for change requests for non-direct bookings. Details here.

Millennium Hotels and Resorts
Guests who have booked for stays before 30 Apr 2020 will be allowed to modify reservations for free, or receive a full refund for cancellations where applicable. This applies to bookings made directly with hotels, in Greater China, South Korea, Japan, Italy, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Iran and UAE.

New reservations (direct bookings) will have the flexibility of being cancelled up to three days prior to arrival.

Guests are advised to get in touch with their online travel agents for change requests for non-direct bookings. Details here.

One Farrer Hotel
As of this article’s publish date, each booking cancellation or change is reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

For local guests (staycations) not affected by travel restrictions, stay dates are allowed to be changed for a later date within 2020; subject to availability.

Guests are advised to get in touch with their online travel agents to request cancellation for non-direct bookings.

Pan Pacific Hotels Group
All cancellation charges for bookings from now till 30 June 2020 will be waived. Details here.

Wyndham Hotels & Resorts
All bookings made till 30 April 2020, for stays through 7 Sept 2020 will have cancellation or change penalties waived. This applies to any of its 20 hotel brands.

For bookings after April, all properties will allow non-cancellable reservation changes – only for requests received at least 48 hours prior to arrival. Details here.

*Note: This list is accurate as of date of article, is by no means exhaustive, and is subject to future changes as the Covid-19 situation evolves.

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