Reservations about reservations

JAMES Gilden’s column about missing hotel reservations struck a nerve with me [“Online Hotel Reservations Are Still Subject to Human Error,” the Internet Traveler, April 17].

We get “confirmed” reservations for hotels, airlines, cars etc., but the confirmation really is meaningless: Either the business has the thing you requested or they don’t, no matter what piece of paper you may have.

And the apologies you receive do nothing to resolve your immediate problem, which could wreck your vacation or meeting.

Ever had a “confirmed” airline reservation, paid in advance, but checked in only to find you had no seat assigned and none is available? I have, more than once. They had my money, and I had nothing, except apologies and the next available flight.


I wish the reservations we made, particularly the prepaid ones, were treated like contracts and subject to much stiffer penalties than the paltry ones currently in place.

Brian Cohen