Cancellation of reservation - what do I need to know?

Cancellation of reservation - what do I need to know?

Cancellation of reservation - what do I need to know?

Whether you have found yourself in the role of a guest or in the role of the owner of a villa for rent in Croatia, you have surely encountered the cancellation of a reservation. You can find yourself in a very unpleasant situation if you are a guest and have not previously familiarized yourself with the cancellation policy. On the other hand, as the owner of a villa for rent, you can also find yourself in a very disadvantageous position due to lost booking and funds if you have not set up the cancellation policy properly. As a rule, cancellation conditions are stricter the closer to the date of stay.

When we talk about cancellation policies, the COVID 19 pandemic briefly changed the practice in case of cancellation of reservations. The conditions were extremely flexible and favorable for the guest, which was to be expected in such a situation. Unfortunately, this practice did not last long. In an area like Croatia, where the season lasts a maximum of 6 months (only in certain destinations), and most of the inhabitants live from tourism, the option of free cancellation of villas for rent in Croatia is simply not in the interest of renters who make a living from it. Such policies actually filter out "non-serious" guests and reduce the possibility of a missed opportunity for income for the renter. Of course, not all guests are "non-serious". Under the category "non-serious" we mean those who, due to free cancellation policies, book 3 or even more accommodations and in the end, before the free cancellation option expires, they see where they would actually stay and cancel the rest of the reservations. We will agree, it is the guest's right, but it is also the renter's right to protect himself from such reservations. Of course, this is not ideal for guests, but from the point of view of renters, they must make the most of the season they have and know everything at least 30 days in advance.

Most agencies for renting luxury villas in Croatia have non-refundable policies where you pay 30% of the non-refundable deposit immediately, and the remaining 70% is usually charged up to 30 days before arrival. If you cancel in less than a month, all funds remain with the owner/agency. In fact, this practice is so common that only the number of days changes! Some owners of luxury villas in Croatia think that they can fill a canceled period in 15 days, so that number does not necessarily have to be 30. It can be said that we really can't be sure of anything anymore regarding the filling of canceled appointments because the world political and the economic situation is extremely changable. Therefore, non-refundable deposits or the measure that everything is charged within a month and not returned, is understandable. If you, as a guest, have thoroughly familiarized yourself with the villa's cancellation policy, then you really have nothing to worry about.

What if the reservation is canceled by the owner

If you have booked a luxury villa in Croatia and the owner of the villa or the agency cancels your reservation, first carefully read the reservation conditions and the cancellation policy. If you have paid for the reservation, and the owner cancels the reservation, then you have the right to a full refund of the amount paid until then. Owners cancel reservations most often due to overbooking, sudden breakdowns of devices and equipment that lower the quality of the stay in the villa to a significant extent, repairs that urgently need to be performed (broken pipes). Realistically speaking, situations with overbookings are not rare, and are a normal in renting business, no matter how hard the owners and agencies try to put an end to it. Breakdowns and repairs that follow, such as broken pipes, pool equipment failure, come suddenly and are not something that can be predicted. Absolutely every renter or agency will return the amount paid until then, which they are obliged to do. Often, the landlord or agency will try to offer you another accommodation in the same price range and period, making it easier for you to search for alternative accommodation. On the other hand, there are cancellations by the owner or the agency that are justified because you, as a guest, did not make the payment on time. If you haven't paid the deposit by the due date, the renter or the agency has the right to release the dates (cancel the reservation) and inform you about it. When it comes to the delay in the payment of the second part of the reservation, then you can always communicate with the agency or the villa owner when you will pay and send them a payment confirmation so that they don't have to wait a few more days until the funds are visible on the account. Otherwise, if you simply say that you will not pay the remaining part or ignore their instructions and e-mails, then this falls under classic cancellation and the amount paid until then (deposit), is kept and the dates are open for new reservations.

What if the reservation is canceled by the guest

When guests cancel a reservation, it is most often because they have the right to cancel for free! Free cancellation is most often offered by accommodations such as hotels or hostels that have a high turnover of guests and it is common for them to receive reservations the day before the stay, on the day of the stay, or receive guests on a walk-in basis. Such facilities do not lose as much as luxury villas for rent because they work in a different way. If it is a cancellation with the loss of the deposit or the entire amount of the reservation, guests do this exceptionally if they are prevented from coming, i.e. due to force majeure. These are events that cannot be influenced (eg war, natural disasters, death, illness, etc.) In such cases, it is necessary to have understanding and act morally and make a refund of all or part of the paid reservation amount. If guests cancel a reservation due to force majeure, guests may be asked to provide written proof. Although it is difficult to verify the truth in such situations, the possibility that the guests lied is reduced. Possible negative reviews and bad reputation can bring more negative consequences than the returned accommodation deposit or at least part of the full booking amount in such cases. In all other cases, i.e. cancellation without justifiable reason, the owner acts according to the cancellation policy and keeps funds in the amount as regulated by the policy. Of course, you can always ask the owner or the agency to meet you with the return, but that again all depends on the good will of the host or villa rental agency. With the amount retained from the cancellation, the owners of the villa cover at least part of the loss of the missed opportunity and the costs that certainly exist regardless of whether the guest stays in the villa or not. Also, if the guest cancels a month in advance, the risk of empty villa still exists. All of the above justifies keeping the deposit, even the full amount, depending on the situation.

In order to avoid inconvenience and problems, it is most important for both parties to be well acquainted with their rights and obligations. In whatever role you find yourself good communication and a prompt reaction are the key.

For a peaceful vacation in Croatia and accommodation in villas with secure reservations, choose HomeRent. For more information about Croatia and useful tips for your vacation, see our blog page Croatia in style.