Traveling with a companion is more fun than being alone. What if your companion is arriving ahead of you but the room is reserved under your name? Will the hotel allow someone else other than you to check in?
Someone else can check into the hotel but will be required to present proof of identification and a credit card. Read on further to get insights on hotel check-in policy.
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Hotels normally ask for the surname and booking number when checking in. This is to verify the reservation.
Add the Guest’s Name
Hotel staff may be wary if an individual checks in under the room reservation with a different name.
On the other hand, the hotel staff will allow someone else to check in under your booking as long as the name of the person appears on their system.
Add the person’s name when booking through the different sites to avoid any issues upon checking in. One may also call the hotel’s front desk or send an email to inform them of the other person’s details after the booking is done.
Valid Identification Card
In general, adults must show a government-issued identification card (ID) or passport to check reservation details.
The valid ID also shows the person checking in is of legal age. Some hotels allow an 18-year-old to check in. Others may require you to be at least 21 years of age. Skyscanner explains:
“US hotels restrict travelers to a minimum age of 18 because your check-in is the equivalent of signing a contract. Contracts with minors cannot be enforced by the hotel, thus leaving them at risk of not recovering their money if a minor leaves without paying their bill.”
A valid ID is required as well for the person checking in other than the primary guest. This makes it possible to quickly verify in the hotel’s reservation system if a different person registers.
If you are the companion or secondary guest, bring a copy of the booking details as well as the primary guest’s valid ID.
The secondary guest needs a valid credit card. This is a guarantee for the incidental costs and potential damage and theft during the stay.
Guests can incur mini-bar purchases or order room service. The hotel will charge these to the credit card presented upon check-in.
Items such as towels, bathrobes, television, remote control, iron, hair dryer, etc. inside the hotel room are hotel property. But towels and bathrobes can be found missing after a guest checks out. The hotel may opt to charge these missing items to the credit card details given to them upon booking.
However, if the guest checking in cannot provide a credit card, the credit card used for booking can be used.
The primary guest has to fill out in advance the hotel’s credit card authorization form to put all the charges on the credit card used for booking. This form should have the complete name, mailing address, and contact numbers of the person paying for the room and incidentals.
Copy of the credit card – front and back is also required with the authorization form. The signature on the form should be the same as the one that appears on the credit card.
Can I Book for Someone Else?
Yes, you may book a room for another person but use their name when booking. Hotels will also allow the use of your credit card to pay for a hotel booking under another person’s name.
However, the guest has to present a copy of your valid ID and credit card. So, give the guest a copy beforehand to avoid check-in issues.
Can I Use My Reward Points to Book a Room for Someone Else?
Using rewards points to book a room under a different person’s name have to follow the hotel’s policies. A hotel may have restrictions on the use of rewards points. Also, the process and terms of redeeming the points are different for each hotel.
Knowing the terms and conditions of the rewards point’s issuer allows the use of the points for someone else. Here is the InterContinental Hotels Group’s (IHG) policy on third-party reward night beneficiaries:
“In Greater China (Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan) if a Member books a Reward Night on behalf of another person/beneficiary, the Member must contact IHG Customer Care no less than 7 days before the stay date.
The Member must provide specific personal details for the guest who will be using the Reward Night, as requested by IHG.
Does the Person Who Booked the Room Have to Check Out?
Checking out from the hotel allows you a chance to check on the charges on your credit card. This lets you check items that you may not have used or ordered.
Surrendering the hotel card keys when checking out helps the hotel save on costs. The card keys can be reused and reprogrammed for the next guests.
When you check out, this sends a message to the hotel staff that the room is available for cleaning. Doing so helps them prepare the room so the next guest does not have to wait long.
In conclusion, checking in by another person should not be a problem as long as you inform the hotel in advance.
Give the person a copy of your valid ID and credit card to facilitate the check-in process. Advise your companion as well to bring a valid ID and credit card when checking in.