How to Complain at a Hotel and Get Your Money Back

iEditorial Note: These blog posts represent the opinion of DoNotPay’s Writers, but each person’s situation and circumstances vary greatly. As a result, you should make sure to do your own independent research. Because everyone is unique, our self-help tools are never guaranteed to help with any specific situation. DoNotPay is not a law firm and is not licensed to practice law. DoNotPay provides a platform for legal information and self-help.

How to Complain at a Hotel and Get Your Money Back

Not every hotel visit ends with a 5-star review and a recommendation for others to stay there. In fact, a commonly searched phrase is, "how to make a complaint about my hotel stay." From poor service to bug infestations, and even neighbors wanting to report unruly guests, there are a number of valid reasons why you may need to know .

DoNotPay can help. We'll assist you with the complaint process and ensure that you receive compensation for your troubles.

Which Issues are Worth Complaining About?

If you feel an issue is large enough, you are always free to make a complaint about it. Whether it hinders your stay, or you simply wish for staff to be aware, it's worth reporting. Some valid issues worth complaining about include:

  • Unsanitary conditions in your room, the lobby, hallways, or other areas of the hotel
  • Bed bugs or other infestations
  • Excessive noise from neighbors in the middle of the night
  • Damages were noticed in the room immediately upon arrival

If you don't report certain instances promptly, such as bed bugs or damages, the hotel may fault you for the occurrence. As soon as you arrive to your room, you should always take a thorough walk-through and ensure nothing is out of place to report.

How Can I File a Complaint?

You have a few options when it comes to filing a complaint with a hotel:

Walk down to the lobby:If you are in the hotel, walk down to the lobby and report it to the front desk. You can also ask to speak with the hotel manager.
Over the phone:You can call the hotel’s corporate offices and report the particular hotel location.
On social media:Most hotels have a Facebook page, at the very least. You can also report it to sites like Yelp.
Call the police, if warranted:Call the police if the situation warrants it, such as when excessive noise complaints go unaddressed or you hear a dangerous fighting situation.

Sample Hotel Complaint Letter

If you wish to file a written complaint, it's ideal to have a sample letter to start from to help point you in the right direction. You should express your anger in a proper manner. Do not make threats or use aggressive language. Write eloquently and without profanity.

Make sure that you indicate when you stayed at the hotel, the hotel's precise location, and your room number. Begin by stating things you appreciated about the hotel, such as the view, its proximity to local hotspots, or the amenities offered. Starting with a kind word can often help you see better results.

Then, let them know about your grievance and request compensation that you feel would suffice. Do not over-exaggerate the circumstances, such as asking for a full refund if the room was only slightly unclean, yet you took care of it yourself and still stayed for the full duration.

Be sure to end your note with your contact details and thank them for their time.

Are There Any Hotel Refund Laws?

There are no federal laws pertaining to hotels issuing refunds. However, there is a Cooling-Off Rule enacted by the Federal Trade Commission. This gives you the opportunity to cancel any purchases you made while staying at the hotel. It only applies in limited circumstances, though.

Each hotel will also have a policy described on their website or provided to you when you arrive. It's always wise to check these policies promptly so you know when you may receive a refund and what situations do not permit them.

Let DoNotPay File a Hotel Complaint for You

Instead of trying to figure out , you can instead let DoNotPay handle it for you. Our Hotel Bill Complaints & Refunds products works in just a few steps:

  1. Go to the Hotel Bill Complaints & Refunds product on DoNotPay.

  2. Tell us the details of your experience and complaint, including how it negatively impacted your stay, and provide photographic evidence if available.

  3. Enter the details of your reservation, including the check-in/check-out dates and hotel room number.

  4. Tell us whether this is for a past reservation or you're still at the hotel (this helps us decide whether negotiation or chargeback is a better option for your case).

  5. Choose whether you want us to contact the front desk or the general manager (if you've already tried contacting the front desk already).

The goal is to assist you promptly and ensure you receive some sort of refund or complimentary service.

What Happens If the Complaint Goes Unhandled?

Though most hotels will attempt to rectify the situation, you may experience a circumstance where your complaint goes entirely unhandled. You may be able to sue the hotel if the grievance is serious enough. DoNotPay can help with that as well with the Sue Now product.

  1. Select the "Sue Now" product after you log into DoNotPay.
  2. Enter the dollar amount you believe you are owed - typically the amount charged for any hospital bills.
  3. Select between the demand letter or court filing forms.
  4. Describe your reasons for filing the claim and submit any details about your case.

What Specific Hotel Situations Can DoNotPay Help Me Address?

Aside from filing a general complaint at any hotel, DoNotPay can help you:

Does DoNotPay Help With Other Services?

DoNotPay works across a wide variety of companies, not just hotels. We'll assist you with:

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