From a conversation on the old forum:
A guest phoned in a reservation for one of our largest rooms for this past Saturday. My housekeeper wrote in the reservation and took his name, telephone number, address, credit card number, and credit card expiration date.
She told him what our check-in time was, advised him that we have a 3 day of advance notice cancellation policy, and also advised told him what our late arrival check-in procedure is.
The guest thanked her and hung up.
Saturday rolled around and the guest didn’t arrive. At 5 PM, I closed the inn. Before closing, I wrote the name of the guest on an envelope. A welcome letter describing our amenties, keys to the inn, and hot breakfast order forms were placed inside the envelope. The envelope was put inside a plastic box attached to the front door. The light over the front steps was turned on. I shut the door, secured the inn, and closed for the day.
Before turning in at 9 PM, I did my customary walk through of the facility and noticed that the guests had still not arrived.
When I got up to make breakfast on Sunday morning – surprise, surprise – the envelope was still in the door. There were no calls on my answering machine. The guest had simply failed to show up.
I tried to bill the guest for his reservation but the credit card declined the bill. My T-7 scanner unit clattered as the printer printed out a slip with the words, “General decline.”
Why was the credit card declined?
The card may have been lost or stolen or maxed out.
The question is, what do I do now? Will I have to eat this loss? Should I call the guest and find out what happened? Should I send him an invoice?
Saturday was a busy day. I could have rented out this room but since it had a reservation, I held the room for the guest in question. The guest never showed up and now I have nothing to show for this reservation.
This is a new experience for me. During the nearly two years that I’ve been in business, nothing like this has ever happened.
Does anyone have any constructive advice?