COVID-19 Travel Updates: Hotel Cancellation Policies and Closures

As COVID-19 continues to spread around the globe, travelers' plans have been disrupted near and far. It's an incredibly difficult time for everyone, but there is some good news, at least, when it comes to changing your travel plans. Most sectors of the travel industry have adopted flexible policies for cancellations and rescheduling, including many hotel chains and brands. Some are offering no-fee cancellations and full refunds, while others are offering free rescheduling. Note that what follows only applies to travelers who have made direct bookings with their hotel. If you've used an online travel agency like Expedia or Booking.com, you should consult our sister site, SmarterTravel, where they've detailed OTA cancellation policies during the COVID-19 pandemic.

If you've booked a vacation rental, check out the COVID-19 vacation rental policy updates from our sister site, Family Vacation Critic.

Cancun's beach and the Caribbean Sea/Oyster
Cancun’s beach and the Caribbean Sea/Oyster

1 Hotels

1 Hotels, a small chain of sustainable luxury hotels, is allowing travelers with non-refundable stays that were scheduled through April 30, 2020 to reschedule their booking without penalties. If you’re booking a new stay, the 1 Hotels recommends using their Cancel Anytime rates if you’re concerned about potentially unpredictable travel in the future. However, if you are visiting a 1 Hotels property and are coming from an area with travel restrictions in place, the hotel will waive cancellation fees and offer full refunds (or help you reschedule for a later date). There are 1 Hotels properties in the United States and China.

AM Resorts (Secrets, Breathless, and Others)

AM Resorts is a portfolio of some of the most well-known all-inclusive properties in the world. Their brands include Secrets, Breathless, Zoetry, Dreams, Now, Reflect, Alua, and Sunscape. The entire portfolio is enacting a “Move the Date, Keep the Rate” policy in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. This allows travelers to move an existing booking to any date later in the year, so long as it takes place before December 22, 2020. Your rate will remain the same as the one you paid with your original booking. The brand is also allowing travelers to utilize this policy across brands and around the world. So if you decide you’re not comfortable traveling to one region, you can switch to a different destination and different brand, while keeping the same rate. The December 22, 2020, date restrictions still apply.

Accor Hotels

Accor Hotels policies are a bit more restrictive than most other major hotel brands at this time. The brand is allowing guests with nonrefundable reservations for stays through April 30, 2020 to reschedule their stay for another set of dates without penalties. Those rebooked stays must take place before December 31, 2020.

Cancellations of nonrefundable bookings will not result in a refund, unless guests fall into certain categories. Travelers from China, Hong Kong, Macau, South Korea, and Taiwan (as well as travelers with reservations at Accor Hotels in those destinations) may cancel or reschedule without penalties for stays prior to March 31, 2020. Travelers staying at Accor Hotels in Italy may cancel or reschedule without penalties for stays planned through April 3, 2020. If your booking is for an Accor Hotel in Kuwait, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt, or Qatar, fees and penalties for cancellations are also waived.

Accor Hotels include Raffles, Banyan Tree, Delano, Sofitel, Fairmont, SLS, Rixos, M Gallery, Mondrian, Pullman, Swissotel, Angsana, Ibis, Movenpick, Adagio, Novotel, Mercure, Mama Shelter, and Thalassa, among others.

Atlantis Resorts

The Atlantis Resorts in the Bahamas are easing their cancellation policies due to developments around COVID-19. All nonrefundable bookings through May 1, 2020 are eligible to be rescheduled without penalties, so long as you provide 24 hours notice. Note that any booking credit or rescheduling must take place within 18 months of your original reservation, or you will lose your payment. Additionally, the resorts are not guaranteeing that you’ll pay the same rate for a room upon rescheduling — travelers must cover any differences in prices.

Atlantis Dubai is subject to tighter regulations at the time of publishing. The resort’s many theme parks and attractions — including the Atlantis Aquaventure — are closed, though the resort itself remains open. If your flight to Dubai has been cancelled, the resort will refund you your payment with 24 hours notice for bookings scheduled through May 31, 2020.

Barcelo Hotels

Barcelo Hotels currently has one of the most long-range change policies during the COVID-19 outbreak. As of publishing, the Spanish chain (with properties around the world, but especially in Mexico and the Caribbean) is allowing changes without fees on stays that are booked for dates through May 31, 2020. Barcelo is allowing guests to reschedule these bookings for a period of 12 months from the original date of stay.

Disney Hotels and Resorts

Disney’s theme parks have shuttered at least until the end of March. So it’s no surprise that all Disney hotels and resorts are likewise closed. Guests who had a stay booked through March 31, 2020, will receive automatic refunds if they do not reach out to the hotel to change the dates of their booking. There will also be no penalties on changes or cancellations for bookings scheduled through June 30, 2020. Note that this policy not cover hotels near the Disney parks that are not directly affiliated with Disney — travelers should reach out to those hotels directly.

The Excellence Collection

The Excellence Collection — which includes Excellence Resorts, Finest Resorts, and Beloved Hotels — already had an incredibly generous cancellation policy for direct bookings before the COVID-19 outbreak. The policy allowed for no-penalty cancellations up to seven days before arriving. However, Excellence has now relaxed that window of time to three days, and is allowing guests to both change their reservations and keep their existing rate. Some exceptions do apply, but generally, whatever rate you booked your stay will apply for any other set of dates through the end of 2020. Going forward, any new bookings made will be given a three-day penalty-free cancellation policy.

Four Seasons

Four Seasons is allowing any guest with a reservation at any of their hotels and resorts to change or cancel the reservation before April 30 (not just for travel that was scheduled to take place by April 30, which is what most brands are offering). Note that you must cancel or change your dates with 24 hours notice. Additionally, any new reservations made during the same period of time (through April 30) will also be granted free cancellation or rescheduling with 24 hours notice.

H10 Hotels

Located throughout Europe and Spain, H10 Hotels offers a generous cancellation policy in the wake of COVID-19. All reservations at H10 Hotels in Europe (including Spain) can be cancelled and refunded for stays booked through the end of April. The hotel chain is also offering a cancel anytime policy on future bookings. In addition to all H10-branded hotels, the portfolio includes The One Hotels and Ocean by H10 Hotels.

Hard Rock Hotels and Resorts

At the time of writing, Hard Rock Hotels and Resorts did not have a universal policy in place to address cancellations and refunds with regard to COVID-19. Travelers should check with each individual property for questions regarding their reservation.

Hilton Hotels

Hilton Hotels is waiving change fees and providing full refunds for travelers. The generous policy is also true for bookings made at hotels in COVID-19 affected regions and countries, and bookings made by travelers departing from affected regions and countries. Additionally, the policy also applies to bookings that were made under non-cancellable terms (so long as the stay was scheduled to take place before April 30, 2020). If you make a new booking before April 30, 2020, it’s subject to the same cancellation policy (even if the rate booked is deemed non-refundable at the time of booking).

Hilton Hotels is a huge portfolio that includes Hilton, Conrad, Waldorf Astoria, LXR, Canopy, Signia, Curio Collection, DoubleTree, Embassy Suites, Tapestry Collection, Tempo, Motto, Hampton Inn, True, Homewood Suites, and Home2Suites. All of the company’s brands are included in the refund and cancellation policy during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Hyatt

Like other major hotel groups, Hyatt is offering flexible cancellation and rescheduling policies. Any reservation through April 30 can be fully refunded or rescheduled without penalty. This also includes reservations made under the hotel group’s Advanced Purchase Rates (which are typically non-refundable). Additionally, any new reservations made during this same time period are subject to the same generous cancellation, rescheduling, and refund policy (so long as you’ve provided 24-hour notice). The company is also easing restrictions on its loyalty program, World of Hyatt, by suspending point expirations through May 31.

Hyatt’s portfolio includes all Hyatt-named hotels, plus subsidiaries including Andaz, Alila, Thompson, The Unbound Collection, Destination Hotels, and Joie de Vivre Hotels.

IHG

IHG — which stands for InterContinental Hotels Group — was one of the first hotel portfolios to implement flexibility around the COVID-19 outbreak, a move which Skift lauded. The other major hotel brands quickly followed suit. With that in mind, the cancellation, refund, and stay change policies at IHG are essentially the same as the other hotel groups. Travelers with stays booked until April 30, 2020 are able to cancel their reservation for a full refund or reschedule it without paying a penalty. For new bookings made after April 30, 2020, IHG recommends using its Best Flexible Rate, which allows for changes and cancellations.

InterContinental Hotels Group includes all InterContinental properties, Regent Hotels, Kimpton, Crowne Plaza, Hotel Indigo, Even Hotels, Holiday Inn properties, Avid Hotels, Staybridge Suites, and Candlewood Suites.

Iberostar

Until further notice, Iberostar has closed its hotels in Spain and Greece. Any new bookings for all worldwide Iberostar hotels will be granted a cancel-at-anytime agreement for the time being, and the chain is offering unspecified flexibility with bookings made for March, April, and May. Your best bet is to reach out directly to the property where you had planed on staying. Note that Iberostar’s policies only apply to those who made direct bookings with the company.

MGM Resorts

MGM temporarily closed its Las Vegas resorts through April 16, 2020. At this time, it is accepting reservations for stays starting April 17. All stays that were previously booked through April 16 will be automatically refunded by MGM. Additionally, any tickets that were booked for performances or events through April 16 will also be refunded. At the time of publishing, MGM Resorts in other parts of the United States and globally were open or partially open.

MGM’s Las Vegas properties include Bellagio, Aria, MGM Grand, Mandalay Bay, Delano Las Vegas, Park MGM, NoMad Las Vegas, The Mirage, New York New York, Luxor, and Excalibur.

Mandarin-Oriental

Like most other major international chains, Mandarin-Oriental is relaxing its cancellation and change policies. Any booking made directly with Mandarin-Oriental — regardless of restrictions advertised at the time of booking — can be cancelled or rescheduled without penalty up to 24 hours before your scheduled arrival. Cancellations will result in refunds, while those choosing to reschedule may have to make up any differences in rates for your new set of dates.

Marriott

Marriott Hotels is waiving change and cancellation fees to provide full refunds to travelers — even if their original bookings weren’t eligible for refunds. This applies to all bookings that were scheduled to take place before April 30, 2020. Note that the cancellation or changes must be made 24 hours prior to the date of stay at any Marriott property. This policy also extends to any new bookings made before April 30, even if the rate booked says that cancellations or changes cannot be made.

Marriott is also lifting expiration dates on several of its loyalty program features through Marriott Bonvoy. This includes an extension of points expiration dates and free night awards.

Brands in the Marriott portfolio include all Marriott-branded properties plus Ritz-Carlton, St. Regis, The Luxury Collection, W Hotels, Edition, Sheraton, Delta Hotels, Le Meridien, Westin, Renaissance Hotels, Gaylord Hotels, Courtyard Hotels, Four Points, SpringHill Suites, Protea Hotels, Fairfield Inn & Suites, AC Hotels, Aloft, Moxy Hotels, Residence Inn, TownePlace Suites, Element, Autograph Collection, Design Hotels, and Tribute Portfolio. The cancellation and change policies apply to all brands in the portfolio.

NH Hotels

This Spanish chain has continued to expand around the globe in recent years. While it doesn’t offer a concrete refund policy at the moment for bookings related to or affected by COVID-19, NH Hotels assures travelers that they “are providing flexibility in all reservations.” It’s not entirely clear what that means, so your best bet is to reach out directly to the property where you’ve made your booking (provided that you made a direct booking).

NH Hotels include all NH-branded properties plus Tivoli, Anantara, Avani, and Elewana Hotels.

Palladium Hotel Group

At the time of publication, the Palladium Hotel Group has not offered an official refund or cancellation policy related to COVID-19. However, direct bookings with the hotel group are generally fully refundable. Restrictions may apply, though, so if you booked directly with a Palladium Group hotel refer to your agreement.

Palladium Hotels include TRS Resorts, Grand Palladium, Fiesta, Ushuaia, Hard Rock hotels in Ibiza and Tenerife, and Only You.

Peninsula Hotels

Peninsula Hotels is waiving all cancellation or rebooking fees through the end of April. This includes rates that were originally booked under nonrefundable policies. Peninsula is offering a 12-month rescheduling window for travelers looking to postpone their trip rather than cancel it outright.

Riu Hotels & Resorts

At the time of publication, Riu had not put into place an official cancellation or refund policy for COVID-19. Reach out directly to the property where you’re booked for clarification.

Rosewood Hotels

For travelers with reservations from now through April 30, 2020, Rosewood is offering refunds for stays if their booking was for a Rosewood property in Europe or the Asia Pacific region. Guests from Europe, the Asia Pacific region, Iran, and South Korea with reservations at any of Rosewood’s hotels or resorts may also cancel for a refund or reschedule without penalty. For any new booking made between now and April 30, 2020, the hotel is offering a full refund on cancellations made 24 hours before your stay, so long as the stay is scheduled to happen before the end of September.

Sandals Resorts

While Sandals Resorts — and their subsidiary, Beaches Resorts — are located in Caribbean destinations that are relatively unscathed by the COVID-19 pandemic (at the time of publishing) many travelers visiting their properties are from affected regions. For stays that are booked for dates through April 30, 2020, Sandals is allowing travelers to change the names on their bookings without penalties — seemingly allowing guests to gift their stay to others (or, possibly, sell them to others at cost). While that might not be particularly helpful, they are also allowing guests with bookings for stays through April 30 to change their dates and keep their current rates for up to 12 months from the original booking (blackout dates do apply).

Six Senses

This luxury hotel and resort brand, with numerous properties throughout Asia and the Middle East, has long provided many a honeymooners dream. They are also offering generous cancellation policies at this time. Cancellation fees for any existing Six Senses bookings through April 30, 2020, will be waived (as will any penalties for rescheduling). New reservations made through April 30 will also be offered the same no-penalty cancellation policy.

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