PLEASE FIND BELOW ARTICLE FROM HERALD SUN – ESCAPE TRAVEL FOR MORE INFORMATION ON PRE-AUTHORISATION.

Hotels routinely take an imprint of guests’ credit or debit card.

THE BEST CREDIT CARD TO BOOK A HOTEL AND WHY YOU SHOULDN’T USE A DEBIT CARD

KIM CULYER, ESCAPE Hotels routinely take an imprint of guests’ credit or debit March 16, 2016 1:00pm

WHAT is the pre-authorisation fee charged by hotels when I check in and why is this necessary?

DOC: Each time you check in to a hotel the reception clerk will ask to take an imprint of your credit or debit card.

This is known as a pre-authorisation and is for any incidental charges to your account. It will only be used for things such as minibar purchases, stolen or broken items in the event these are not mentioned or discovered at the time of check-out. Basically, it is a safeguard for the hotel to ensure they are not out of pocket.

What you need to be aware of is, even though your card is not actually billed at first, it will be a pending transaction, thereby reducing your available funds for withdrawal.

If you are using a debit card, then the funds are withdrawn immediately from your available balance and placed on hold by the card merchant.

There is no set industry amount or limit to what hotels can and do hold as a pre-authorisation amount. It varies between countries and hotel chains.

The Accor group, for example, calculates the pre-auto amount using your total accommodation cost, plus an extra $50-$100 a night. As a general rule of thumb, this calculation is pretty standard throughout the industry.

I suggest you don’t use a debit card, as the hold on the funds seems to take longer by the card issuers than those on a credit card. An Amex credit card is ideal if you have one; use this each time for your pre-authorisations as they have no spend limits, therefore no blocking of your funds.

Some hotels provide a pre-authorisation exemption through their membership programs. Accor only requires the sighting of a credit card for their Gold and Platinum Le Club members. It is assumed there’s enough information in the guest’s profile if they ever need to be tracked down.

It is important to keep your eye on your statement if you’re on a long trip or staying at multiple hotels. Bear in mind each property is reducing your available spending amount sometimes by up to 14 days. Most hotels say the pre-authorised amount is released back to the card 24 hours after check-out. While this may be the case, I have never had the pleasure of a card merchant adhering to this. Usually it takes 10-14 days to see your money back as available funds – not great when you spot that ideal pair of shoes in a shop you will never pass again.

It is important to keep your eye on your statement if you’re on a long trip or staying at multiple hotels. Bear in mind each property is reducing your available spending amount sometimes by up to 14 days. Most hotels say the pre-authorised amount is released back to the card 24 hours after check-out. While this may be the case, I have never had the pleasure of a card merchant adhering to this. Usually it takes 10-14 days to see your money back as available funds – not great when you spot that ideal pair of shoes in a shop you will never pass again.

I travel with a spare credit card at all times. It’s reassuring to know you have backup if needed and comforting to know I can grab that special souvenir of my trip, if and when I want.

Got a question for Doc Holiday? Email us at doc@docholiday.com.au. Personal replies from the Doc are unfortunately not possible.

How much is a pre-authorisation?                                                                         $100.00

When is the card pre-authorised?                                                                          At time of Checkin

When does the pre-authorisation get released from the credit card?               The Moe Motor Inn releases the pre-authorisation within 24 hours of your departure, however some banks can take up to 10 working days to clear the pre-authorisation

Please note - that if you Checkin via our 24 hour Kiosk a payment $100 is processed on Debit Credit cards.

ADDRESS

3-13 Fowler Street, Moe

Victoria 3825 Australia

CONTACT

info@moemotorinn.com.au

Tel: 03 5127 1166

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