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Beware Best Price Guarantee at IHG

Wales
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Beware Best Price Guarantee at IHG

I am visiting hospital in London & need to stay overnight the Holiday Inn Regents Park seemed perfect for me.

I checked the IHG website & the best price for 28 February was the 21 day super saver rate of £156, a rate that has

a non refundable deposit in the event of cancellation.

Never one to accept advertising claims at face value I searched a couple of sites to check the price, & within 5 minutes

found the same room at the same hotel on the same dates with the same terms for £106.

I therefore called the Best Price Guarantee helpline (overseas call centre) & was told I had to pre-book & pre-pay for

my room via the IHG website @ £156 then submit a claim.

What concerned me was that by the time IHG decided to verify my claim the cheaper price with Hotelopia would no longer

be available. When I asked about this I was just told to read the T & C's which wasn't very helpful at all.

I therefore decided to call guest relations to ask about the prices & promise of the best price.

Firstly I was told that the guarantee did not apply to customers who had searched for a cheaper price before booking with IHG,

which I found to be a rather incredible statement which indicates that IHG rely on customers blindly believing the web site claim

of best price guaranteed!

Upon further questioning I discovered that even if I had risked following IHG's crazy procedure for getting best price guaranteed,

that they would not have honoured it anyway because Hotelopia are not an affiliated booking agent.

I was categorically told that they will only honour the best price guarantee offer if a cheaper price is found with an affiliated booking agent.

Talk about a stitch up - clearly they are going to regulate the prices offered by affiliated booking agents.

To me this is at the very least false advertising, if not downright misleading & even fraudulent.

Edinburgh, United...
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11. Re: Beware Best Price Guarantee at IHG

So you think Expedia changed their price so that Holiday Inn didn't have to pay you £10? I somehow doubt companies that must have 1000's of customers every day would go that much trouble. But good luck getting your teeth into it.

Ashby-de-la-Zouch...
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12. Re: Beware Best Price Guarantee at IHG

It's amazing what large companies will try, just look at the banks recently! I just feel there is an element of not quite fair play here. Especially when I rang the hotel direct today to be told I could have the room for £59 by the nice lady on the desk!! Thanks for wishing me good luck and I will post the outcome. I'm not done by a long way yet!

Milwaukee
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13. Re: Beware Best Price Guarantee at IHG

I wrote in a post over a month ago that I think it's a lot easier to simply book your hotel at the lowest rate you can find rather than trying to jump thru the hoops to get this price guarantee.

From the terms and conditions:

>>>>>>>>>The average nightly lower room rate must be available for booking at the time of claim verification <<<<<<<<<<<<<<

If I read that correctly the lower rate has to still be available when they are verifying the claim, not just at the time you book. When you think about it by the time they look at your claim there is no way they can check to see what the rate was in the past on some other website.

That just does not seem like a good gamble to me. I'd rather take my money to a casino and play it on red. At least that would be fun and the odds of beating an IHG price guarantee sound even worse than the odds of beating a casino.

Ashby-de-la-Zouch...
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14. Re: Beware Best Price Guarantee at IHG

I read your post, sound advice, after falling foul of the Best Price Guarantee deal! It would seem I'm not on my own with my less than happy experience. Lesson learned..go for the better deal real time!! And yes, the casino option is sounding good to me!

United Kingdom
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15. Re: Beware Best Price Guarantee at IHG

As I said above, if you see it cheaper book it as by the time you go to someone else to match it, it could be gone.

Prices reflect supply and demand and are just a snapshot in time. If you cannot capture it, then the IHG best guarantee rules are against the consumer.

The very fact that 3rd party agents can undercut IHG hotels own website means that they are not the lowest priced.

SW Scotland
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16. Re: Beware Best Price Guarantee at IHG

But you misunderstand Best Price Guarantee if succesful does not just match the better price but also gives you the first night of booking free. Maybe I was one of the lucky ones with a succesful claim getting a free night B&B at Crown Plaza Glasgow

Milwaukee
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17. Re: Beware Best Price Guarantee at IHG

Loskie,

I think you were one of the lucky ones. I made the analogy of casino gambling in my post and I'll use it again. Once in awhile someone gets lucky and wins at the casino. That doesn't mean you will win every time.

I'm sure we will never know, but I wonder what percentage of people who apply for the price guarantee actually collect?

You do make an important point that was overlooked in many of the replies. The price guarantee is more than a simple price match of the lower price. I understand you do get a free night's room, if you get lucky.

Edited: 01 July 2012, 14:59
Wales
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18. Re: Beware Best Price Guarantee at IHG

This sharp practice continues & IHG don't seem bothered - I suggest that everyone who has fleeced by this outragious claim email the CEO directly:

stephen.mccall@ihg.com

As supplier to the London Olympics I doubt he will want too much bad publicity - so if enough people act he may be embarrased into doing something....

Milwaukee
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19. Re: Beware Best Price Guarantee at IHG

When you originally posted this back in December a rep from IHG responded and wanted to discuss this with you. I would be interested in hearing details of your communications with IHG.

Wales
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20. Re: Beware Best Price Guarantee at IHG

przyk - I did receive a message from 'ben j' at IHG that simply asked for details - I found this rather pointless as I felt that my post here was fairly well detailed.

Nevertheless, I responded to the email address provided & included the dates & approximate times I called along with which sites I used & my best recollection of the conversations I had.

I also emailed IHG customer care regarding this matter & Group CEO Richard Solomons - no response was forthcoming from anyone.

I think they choose not to respond because they cannot defend their dubious business practices....