Everything You Need to Know About A Hotel's Credit Card Hold
When you stay at a hotel, you have to consider several different factors to help your stay go as smoothly as possible. From checking the hotel's policies such as quiet hours and the max number of guests per room to knowing your check-in and check-out times, understanding all the details of your stay helps prevent any surprises during the trip. Learn more about the common hotel booking mistakes to avoid.
Many hotels put a hold on your credit card as a liability for themselves. While the majority of guests see this hold charge disappear a few days after their stay, it's important to know why these fees exist and why you may see this charge on your credit card.
What Is a Credit Card Hold?
After you arrive at your hotel, the front desk receptionist will need a credit card to put on hold before handing over the room key.
A credit card hold is an insurance policy for the hotel. Specifically, the hold covers incidentals such as damage to the room, room service and dips into the minibar.
Depending on the hotel, this hold could be a charge for your entire stay or charged each night. Be sure to ask the front desk attendant about the hotel's policy on credit card holds when you check-in.
How Are Credit Card Holds Used?
When you use a credit card for the incidentals of your room, the hotel puts the charge on your room temporarily. If the hotel finds you damaged the room, they'll deduct the amount of money necessary to cover the repairs. If you ordered room service or took items out of the minibar, the cost of those items gets deducted.
If you leave your room in good condition, avoid ordering room service and resist the snacks and drinks in the minibar, the hotel will remove the charge from your card.
How Long Do Credit Card Holds Last?
The length of the hold varies by hotel. When you check in, the front desk attendant will tell you when the hold will get removed from your card. The length of the hold will last anywhere between a few days after you check out to about a week.
Before you arrive at the hotel, it's important to check your credit card balance. You don't want to arrive at your hotel to find that the hold could put you over your balance.
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