You’ve probably heard of booking.com even if you have never used the website. The advertisements featuring the slogan “booking dot com? booking dot YEAH” have been circulating for years. While booking.yeah is not actually a website, booking.com is a leading online service for booking travel and accommodation around the world. It is not actually a travel agency itself but offers a marketing platform for accommodation providers. It is an intermediary, arranging bookings between these businesses and the customers who find them through the website. Much like MoneySupermarket or Compare the Market, booking.com is a comparison website. It allows you to adjust search filters and then displays the most suitable results so that you can locate the best hotel or flight quickly and easily.
How to Make a Booking.com Reservation
Making a booking is easy. Just enter a location into the search bar at the top of the homepage, add the travel dates, and adjust the number of rooms and guests. You can enter a specific landmark instead of the city name if you want to stay somewhere close to it. If you tick the box for showing results on a map, you will be able to see the locations of the hotels. You can then filter the results by price, review scores, or distance. This saves you the time and energy you would spend scouring the internet to compare accommodations yourself. Select a property to read more about the facilities, look at photographs, and see which rooms and rates are available. The site will specify if the booking is non-refundable or if you can choose free cancellation. Just press the “I’ll reserve” button and enter your details.
When Does Booking.com Take Payment?
Look carefully at the conditions of the booking before you make a reservation. You might want to take a screenshot of it just for reference. Then you can agree to the booking and reserve the room. It depends on the accommodation provider whether you must pay upfront, pay a deposit, or pay in full upon arrival. You’ll still have to enter your card details to successfully reserve the room, even if they do not charge the card straight away. Make sure that you are happy with the payment arrangement for that accommodation before you book with them. If there is an error with the payment after making a booking, then contact the accommodation provider directly first. They can confirm the status of your reservation and payment. If it differs from the website, send them and booking.com the screenshots.
Can I cancel my booking with Booking.com?
The website tells you the terms of cancellation at the time of reserving the accommodation. The page will display whether free cancellation is available or not, and the final date for free cancellation. After this date, you will not be able to cancel without paying some or all of the booking cost. This can be as late as the day before, or the day of arrival before a certain time. It all depends on the accommodation provider. Some of them will allow you to pay on arrival, but if you cancel before then you will still have to pay. If you don’t want to cancel but you have to make an amendment, log in with your e-mail address and password or confirmation number and PIN code. You can make changes to a reservation and contact the provider to make requests. It is not guaranteed that they can amend it.
What is Booking.com Genius?
The loyalty programme for frequent users of booking.com is called Genius. After completing five reservations in a year, you will automatically achieve Genius status. Becoming a Genius booker gives you access to extra discounts and services. Selected properties will offer a 10% discount for Genius members. Some will even offer extra perks that they don’t offer to everyone. These could include free wifi, a complimentary welcome drink or food treat, or a later checkout time. When you are searching on booking.com, you will see the Genius icon on properties offering the Genius bonus. Any additions to the 10% discount will vary from provider to provider, and are not guaranteed for every Genius booking. With such low entry requirements, it is worth making a few reservations to unlock discounts.
What is Booking.com for Business?
If you have your own business, you can manage employee travel with a booking.com Business account. You’ll save money with Genius discounts and price matching. Whether you are an individual businessperson or responsible for organizing travel for an entire company, you can easily manage bookings. Control your spending by tracking travel costs per employee, team, or department. Business accounts are free to open and maintain with no subscription fees or contract. You can receive dedicated customer service from booking.com for business customers. The site is just as popular for business travellers as it is for those making leisure bookings. Register for the convenience of having all of your business travel bookings in one place. You could even become an affiliate to earn commissions.
Is Booking.com Regulated?
There is no regulatory body which booking.com has to answer to. They are not a retailer or reseller, as they do not take responsibility for what accommodation providers offer. Your payment goes to the provider, not booking.com. The provider later pays commissions on reservations to booking.com. When you make a reservation, you agree to the terms and conditions that booking.com is not liable and you understand that the provider is responsible for the service you receive. This generally means that your bookings are not protected by any kind of warranty or insurance cover. You can still submit complaints to booking.com within 30 days so they can pursue issues with your provider. This is why it is important to take screenshots, so that you can prove what you agreed to. The registered office for booking.com is in the Netherlands, so they are not bound by UK laws. Providers are also only bound by local laws.