With all of the news about grounded flights and struggling airlines during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the hotel industry got lost in the noise. In fact, hotels are struggling just as much as airlines as they've had to contend with occupancy rates in free fall. So what are hotels doing to ensure continuity and to entice bookings?
To address concerns about cleanliness, many hotels are installing hand sanitizers in their lobbies and public areas, as well as performing more rigorous deep cleanings of rooms and public spaces.
We've found that in general, date changes and cancellation are allowed for any stays up to April 30, 2020 if the booking was made directly with the hotel. For bookings made through travel agents or through online booking sites, travelers will need to contact them directly but are likely to be offered the same flexibility.
More information about direct bookings by hotel chain is below.
Accor has published a policy for free date changes for any non-flexible booking made directly, for travel between March 1, 2020 and April 30, 2020. For travelers whose trip is impacted by government imposed travel restrictions, such as for essential travel only, Accor is allowing these customers free cancellation or free modification.
This hotel chain operates a family of brands such as Clarion, Econo Lodge, Comfort Inn and Comfort Suites. For any direct booking through April 30, 2020 made directly, a cancellation can be made up to 24 hours before check-in. Bookings for stays in the United States are covered under this policy. Check this page for more information.
Wyndham Hotels & Resorts
This hotel chain includes popular budget brands Super 8, Days Inn, and Travelodge as well as more upscale brands such as Ramada and La Quinta, among many others. For any new or existing direct bookings for stays through April 30, 2020 cancellation is allowed up to 24 hours before check-in. People who are prohibited from traveling are allowed to cancel for free as well. For bookings after April 30, 2020 dates can be changed up to 48 hours before check-in, as long as the number of days is the same. Check this page for more information.
InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG)
IHG operates Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, Kimpton Hotels and Crowne Plaza among many others. They have announced a flexible rebooking and cancellation policy for direct bookings through April 30, 2020, up to 24 hours before check-in. After April 30, 2020 their regular policies go back into effect, which means you'll have to book a flexible rate if you think you may need to change plans. Check this page for more information.
Hyatt Hotels Corporation
Hyatt operates several related brands such as Hyatt Place, Hyatt Centric, and Grand Hyatt. They have announced a flexible rebooking and cancellation policy for direct bookings through April 30, 2020, up to 24 hours before check-in. Interestingly, Hyatt has extended this policy to any booking made between March 13, 2020 and April 30, 2020 for any travel date in the future. Check this page for more information.
Best Western operates the hotel brands Best Western, Best Western Plus and Best Western Premier. The hotel chain announced a simple policy to allow all direct bookings to be cancelled for any date for stays in the US, Canada, and the Caribbean, up to 24 hours before check-in. Check this page for more information.
Hilton is one of the largest hotel operators with brands such as Hilton Hotels & Resorts, DoubleTree, and the famous Waldorf Astoria in New York City. The company has announced a free rebooking and cancellation policy for any bookings made before April 30, 2020, for any travel dates, up to 24 hours before check-in. Check this page for more information.
In addition to the Marriott and Sheraton brands, this chain also operates the luxurious W Hotels, JW Marriott, and Ritz-Carlton brands. The company has announced a free rebooking and cancellation policy for any bookings made before April 30, 2020, for any travel dates, up to 24 hours before check-in. Some exclusions apply, such as special event restrictions or peak demand weeks. Some hotels are also excluded. Check this page for more information.