You’ve checked out and unpacked to confirm you didn’t forget any of your belongings—but there’s one more important thing you should always do after leaving a hotel. Set a reminder in your phone to check your credit card account 24 hours after you’ve checked out.
Why You Should Always Check Your Credit Card Statement After Stay in a Hotel
Almost all hotels will put a mandatory hold on your credit card when you check in. This hold is usually for the amount of one night’s stay, plus an extra $50-$100 to cover any incidentals (like minibar charges) or damages that may be incurred.
The hold is typically released from your credit card within 24 hours after checking out, but you should always make sure it’s actually been removed. Although 24 hours is the standard time for a credit card hold, some financial institutions take longer to remove holds, so you may have to check back again within a week if the hold is still pending after a day.
You want to make sure that the hotel actually removed the hold, and that it hasn’t become an actual charge on your credit card. There could have been a glitch in your system where the hold didn’t get removed, or you might have been incorrectly charged for something you didn’t do—like smoking in your hotel room. Be sure to ask for an itemized receipt when checking out so you can verify that these charges were not valid.
It’s important to catch this error quickly so that you have time to call the hotel to have the charge removed, or, in the worst case scenario, to dispute the charge with your credit card company before your bill is actually due.
Don’t think you’ll remember to check your credit card? Some banks offer the option to sign up for alerts when charges go through, so you can take advantage of this feature to automatically see any post-trip charges.
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