Booking a hotel stay can be confusing when it comes to understanding the payment policies, especially a big chain like Marriott with so many brands and properties. If you’ve ever wondered whether Marriott charges your credit card at check-in or check-out, you’re not alone.
If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: Marriott typically authorizes your credit card at check-in to cover incidentals, but the full payment for the room and tax is not charged until check-out.
In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about Marriott’s payment and billing practices. You’ll learn about authorization holds at check-in, final charges at check-out, impacts on your credit card, policies for prepaid and non-refundable rates, and tips for avoiding surprises on your hotel bill.
Authorization Holds at Check-In
When you check into a Marriott hotel, you may notice that your credit card is temporarily charged for an amount that is higher than your expected final bill. This temporary charge is known as an authorization hold.
Description of Authorization Holds
An authorization hold is a common practice in the hotel industry. It allows hotels to ensure that guests have sufficient funds available to cover their expenses during their stay. The hold is placed on your credit card at check-in, and it temporarily reduces your available credit limit.
The purpose of the authorization hold is to protect both the hotel and the guest.
For the hotel, it guarantees that they will be paid for any additional charges incurred by the guest during their stay.
For the guest, it ensures that they won’t exceed their credit limit and face potential declined transactions.
Amount of Hold
The amount of the authorization hold can vary depending on the hotel and the length of your stay. It typically includes the estimated cost of your room rate, plus an additional amount to cover incidentals such as room service, minibar purchases, or damages to the room.
It’s important to note that the hold is not an actual charge; it’s just a temporary hold on your credit card funds. The final amount you are charged will be adjusted at check-out to reflect your actual expenses during your stay.
Impact on Credit Limit
The authorization hold can have a temporary impact on your available credit limit. While the hold is in place, the amount that is being held will not be available for other purchases or transactions. It’s important to keep this in mind when budgeting for your trip.
If you have concerns about the hold or need clarification on the amount being held, it’s best to contact the hotel directly. They will be able to provide you with more information and address any questions or concerns you may have.
For more details on authorization holds and how they work, you can visit Marriott’s official website.
Final Charges at Check-Out
At check-out, Marriott will provide you with an itemized bill that outlines all the charges incurred during your stay. This includes room charges, taxes, fees, and any additional services you may have availed of, such as room service or spa treatments.
The itemized bill allows you to have a clear understanding of what you are being charged for and review it for accuracy.
It’s important to note that some charges, such as parking fees or minibar charges, may not be reflected on the bill immediately. These charges may take a day or two to be added to your final bill. If you have any concerns about potential charges, it’s always best to clarify with the front desk before checking out.
Reviewing Your Bill
Before settling the remaining balance, it’s a good practice to carefully review your bill. Take the time to go through each item and ensure that you recognize and agree with the charges.
If you notice any discrepancies or have questions about specific charges, don’t hesitate to bring them up with the hotel staff. They will be more than happy to assist you and make any necessary adjustments to your bill.
Marriott understands that mistakes can happen, and they strive to provide excellent customer service. If there are any errors on your bill, they will work with you to resolve the issue promptly.
It’s always better to address any concerns at the time of check-out, rather than discovering them later when you have already left the hotel.
Settling Remaining Balance
Once you have reviewed your bill and are satisfied with the charges, it’s time to settle the remaining balance. You can do this by paying with a credit card, cash, or any other payment method accepted by the hotel. If you have any rewards or discounts, make sure to inform the front desk staff so they can apply them to your bill.
Prepaid and Non-Refundable Rates
When it comes to prepaid and non-refundable rates at Marriott, there are a few important things to keep in mind. These rates typically require upfront payment at the time of booking, and they come with certain restrictions and cancellation policies.
With prepaid rates, you will be required to pay for your stay when you make the reservation. This means that the charges will be processed upfront, either at the time of booking or shortly after. By paying in advance, Marriott is able to offer these rates at a discounted price.
It’s important to note that the upfront payment is non-refundable, so if you need to cancel or change your plans, you may not be able to get a refund. However, Marriott does offer a certain level of flexibility with their cancellation policies, which we’ll discuss further in the next section.
Prepaid rates often come with certain restrictions that you should be aware of.
For example, these rates may be non-transferable, meaning that you cannot change the name on the reservation or transfer it to someone else.
Additionally, some prepaid rates may have specific stay requirements, such as a minimum number of nights or a maximum number of guests.
It’s also worth noting that prepaid rates are typically subject to availability. This means that if the hotel is fully booked for the dates you have chosen, you may not be able to make a reservation using a prepaid rate. It’s always a good idea to book in advance to secure your desired dates and to take advantage of these rates.
While prepaid rates are generally non-refundable, Marriott does offer some flexibility when it comes to cancellations or changes. The specific cancellation policies may vary depending on the hotel and the rate you have booked.
Some prepaid rates may allow you to modify your reservation, although additional charges may apply. In other cases, you may be able to receive a credit for a future stay instead of a refund.
It’s important to carefully review the cancellation policies before booking a prepaid rate. If you think there’s a chance that you may need to cancel or change your plans, you may want to consider booking a flexible rate instead. These rates usually require payment at check-out and allow for cancellations or modifications without any penalty, within a certain timeframe.
Tips for Avoiding Surprises
Understand All Charges
When staying at a Marriott hotel, it is important to understand all the charges associated with your stay. Marriott typically charges for the room rate, taxes, and any additional services or amenities you may use during your stay. These charges can vary depending on the hotel and the services you choose. It’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the hotel’s pricing policies and any additional fees that may apply.
Check Statement After Stay
After your stay at a Marriott hotel, it is important to check your statement to ensure that you have been charged correctly. Mistakes can happen, and it’s better to catch them early rather than dealing with any issues later on. Take a few minutes to review your bill and make sure that all the charges are accurate and expected.
If you notice any discrepancies or have any questions about the charges on your statement, don’t hesitate to reach out to the hotel’s front desk or customer service. They will be able to assist you and provide clarification on any charges that you may not understand.
Activate eFolio Emails
To stay on top of your charges and avoid surprises, Marriott offers an eFolio service that sends you a detailed summary of your bill via email. This allows you to review your charges before you check-out and address any concerns or questions in advance.
To activate eFolio emails, simply provide your email address at the front desk during check-in or update your preferences through Marriott’s online portal. By receiving regular updates on your charges, you can stay informed and take proactive steps to avoid any unexpected fees.
By following these tips and staying informed about the charges associated with your stay at a Marriott hotel, you can avoid any surprises and have a smooth and enjoyable experience.
Understanding Marriott’s payment policies can help you avoid surprises on your hotel bill. Now you know they authorize a hold on your card at check-in and charge the full balance at check-out. For prepaid rates, all charges are paid upfront. Review bills carefully and activate eFolio emails to monitor charges.
With this knowledge, you can book your next Marriott stay with confidence, knowing exactly what to expect payment-wise during your stay. Safe travels!