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Jenny
Jenny, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 6342
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor specialising in Employment Law and general legal matters. Please start your question For Jenny Only
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I booked a 2 night New Years Eve package wife and

Customer Question

Hi I booked a 2 night New Years Eve package for my wife and myself with an upmarket hotel and chose from a choice of two rooms available online. Booked one at £750 with 50% deposit and balance payable to the hotel once there. They sent me a confirmation of the booking with a booking reference by email.
at midday the following day I received a phone call to say that they had no rooms available and had sold the last room the previous day. I was very unhappy as there were no suitable alternative venues available. So I emailed them and as their cancellation policy required a penalty of 50% of the cost, asked them to send me the 50%. They replied to say that this only applied when the customer cancelled a booking. This was not spelled out in the T & C's. In subsequent emails I advised them that a confirmed booking was a binding contract and that compensation would be payable. They claim this is not so. Does any consumer protection legislation apply in this case which is the reverse of the normal situation? Thanks
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jenny replied 2 years ago.
Hello my name is ***** ***** I am happy to help you today. Is the 50 % you refer to a refund of the deposit or additional compensation as I am not clear from your question?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
They didn't take my payment, but their cancellation policy states 50% penalty to be paid in event of cancellation. However it does not state which side this applies to, they claim it only applies when customers cancel. This is what I am disputing as they are in breach of a binding contract and I believe that they should also pay if only because they have not spelled out their own rules correctly. I have a confirmed reservation from them which they subsequently cancelled
Expert:  Jenny replied 2 years ago.
Do you have the exact wording of the contract that you are relying on?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I have the on line booking confirmation which I understand forms the contract. it spells out the reservation and payment details along with the cancellation policy
Expert:  Jenny replied 2 years ago.
Ok if, as you say, the contract states that 50 % compensation is payable in the event of a cancellation and there is no other clause to protect the hotel then , as they have breached the contract with you then you can claim this sum in breach of contract. The hotel may defend a claim by saying that the contract is worded to apply only to the customer or that the contract was entered into by mistake, there may be a 'get out' clause in the contract to assist them with this. However there is nothing wrong with your starting point being that in accordance with your contract you are owed these monies. You can send a letter before action and if they fail to pay you you can raise a claim in the small claim court using the money claim online service. www.moneyclaim.gov.uk Good luck.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
OK thanks for that.
Expert:  Jenny replied 2 years ago.
no problem, good luck. I would be grateful if you would take the time to rate my answer. Thank you and all the best.
Expert:  Jenny replied 2 years ago.
Hello is there anything further you would like to know about this as I can see you have not yet rated my answer which is an important part of the process?