Earlier this year we contracted with Indian Moments, in Jaipur, for a 16-day trip with car, driver, hotels, etc. I read good things about Indian Moments on TripAdvisor and other travel forums (Lonely Planet, Frommer's, etc.). They are on the official Incredible India list. We sent them 50% of the trip cost in June, with the balance due 45 days ahead our arrival (Nov. 28, 11).
Today I received an email from Indian Moments asking if we could please send the balance now, because of "unexpected change in the policies of the hotels wherein they are now demanding full deposit, 90 days prior to the check-in date." Our contact stressed that this early payment was optional, yet at the same time seemed to say this was the only way to insure our hotel reservations.
Can anyone confirm this change in hotel policies?
Is this a usual occurrence when dealing with Indian travel agents?
Should I send some money now, not too much, and the balance on the original date?
Should I look for a new agent??
I hope someone has some answers. Thanks.