On Friday, when I searched Homewood Suites Phoenix, I realize now that the first ad that appeared on the page was the Hilton ad. I do not believe the banner said “Official Site.” I cannot recall. I believe it was just the site that said Hilton.com – Hilton Homewood Suites. The second ad on the page said “Homewood Suites Phoenix – Biltmore Area" and then gave the address of 2001 E Highland Ave. That is the one that I clicked on, and that brought me to the page that appeared to be a Hilton page. Honestly I just thought it was another Hilton site that would diminish my need to search for a location once I entered the site. There was no clear indication that I was on a site such as Hotels.com, Trivago, Travelocity or the like.
Once I entered the site I decided to call because I wanted to ensure that I could bring my dog and I was uncertain regarding the length of my stay. To be fair, the phone message says something like “thank you for calling the reservation sales and support center,” but given all the brands under the Hilton umbrella I was not caught off guard. I spoke with the agent and explained my situation. He stated he would just book me for the three nights and if I needed an additional stay I could just extend at the hotel. I agreed to three nights and provided him with my credit card number. I was under the impression that I was still dealing with Hilton. I was never advised that the charge would be to Hotel Book Online.
I became aware of this problem on Saturday morning as I was trying to log on to the internet. I decided it would be best for me to join the Hilton Honors program because most of the hotels I choose to stay at are under the Hilton brand. I then called down to ask to have my current stay added to my new account and was shocked to learn that I had booked through a third party. I showed the ad to Annette and she initially noticed that the rates were not the same as the hotel rates, they were 40% higher. At this point I looked for a receipt and realized that I had not received one.
I now notice that the number I initially called, 1-800-296-1330, is not even listed on the website when I click through. Currently the website has a number of 1-844-206-6845, the number that was listed on the website on Saturday when I saved the screen shot was 844-220-8535. When I called and asked for the CEO I was given a customer support number of 855-475-0010.
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