Wife and I prebooked a room via Priceline to stay at a Courtyard by Marriott for two days. When we checked in, even though the room was prepaid, they asked for a credit card for "incidentals." No problem, usually, since I just don't use the incidentals at a hotel.
When I checked out, they tried to charge me a $1.08/per night for a "Room Safe Warranty." I mentioned that I had paid in advance and that per the agreement with Priceline, they had agreed to give me a room for the price quoted.
I got a canned response that this was a "standard" policy and that this charge was not covered in the price of the room because it was an incidental.
Huh? Since when? Incidentals are things you request over and above the cost of the room or which you can opt out of by not using. A safe is in the room, whether you use it or not and they know it will be part of the room when they get the offer for the price. This is not like a movie or Internet service where the person can agree on the additional charge when they use the service--this was added just for it being there to use if I wanted it.
I swear, all I could think about was that song in Les Miserables:
"Charge em for the lice..
Extra for the mice...
Two percent for looking in the mirror twice!
Here a little slice,
There a little cut...
Three percent for sleeping with the window shut!"
Courtyard by Marriott, when the first thing that comes to someone's mind when they hear your name is the Thernardiers, you have a corporate image problem.
CC to Priceline, too...if the customer can't be assured that the price the hotel "agrees" upon when you book through Priceline is the actual price he will have to pay, then what is the point of using your service? So, if I were Priceline, I would tell Courtyard that they need to cease this practice or I won't send them customers. Their dishonesty hurts the faith customers have in YOUR service.