So, you found this homestay or B&B in booking.com, and then you selected the dates and what you especially liked, is that “no credit card is needed” sign appears near the listing.
So, you booked it.
You saw something like this:
Time to relax and look forward for the trip?
Well, not really. Somehow almost always with B&B and Homestays, and sometimes even a fairly large hotels (however, this is not a case with such behemoths like Chateau Beach resort or Caeasars Palace Kenting – they are perfectly fine with your credit card, you suddenly get a message in your booking.com messaging system, that says something like this:
So, now, if you do not speak or read chinese, it might suprise you, and you might even ignore it.
But you better don’t, because this message tells you pay 1750 NTD (New Taiwan Dollars) to below bank account in Taiwan bank, and they give you time till 1/17.
Yes, you read it right. You don’t pay now – you will not get room reserved for you.
Sometimes, these amounts are 50%, and then another 50% you need to pay in cash at check-in day, but more often than not, it is whole 100% to be paid now.
If you do not have internetbank, basically an app on mobile in your phone, in this case you might need go to ATM to do that, or, you will need ask someone for help.
In this case, message at least looks (even if it is copy-pasted) it is still kind, and it asks 50% only.
In some cases, you will get LITERALLY this:
Here, laconic message asks you pay, and gives you this photo of his bank book attached.
Yes, that easy. Now, you need to be able to read from this bank book, to which account you need to send, what is the bank name and branch.
Message is so short, that it even does not tells you whether you need to pay full amount or part only. As it turned out later, their bad communication was already a first sign of bad maintenance of the whole place as well.
Again, MAYBE, all of this is because my location is Taiwan in booking.com platform, and I am treated as local – maybe yes, maybe no – however, chances are that you also might be staying in Taiwan (or planning to stay) for a long, and you might get into this situation.