Have you heard the rumor about Roomer?

A few weeks ago, I almost went to Hartford, Connecticut. It’s a long story, but I was basically trying to make straw out of gold.

The short story is that I got trigger happy and booked a good deal on a flight before I had time to consider the actual (versus the imagined) distance between Hartford, Connecticut and Providence, Rhode Island. I was trying to visit my friend Ginger. I knew I could stay with her, so I didn’t have to worry about hotel costs. The only problem was that Hartford and Providence are farther away than I thought. Plus, she has a cat and I am emergency-room allergic to cats. I don’t know what I was thinking. I wasn’t thinking. Or maybe I was wishful thinking.

Anyway.

I booked a hotel room in Hartford. I was mad that I had been dumb about the flight, so I did something even dumber: I booked a non-refundable room. And then I got pneumonia. I was going to go anyway, but then I missed my flight. Things seriously just got worse and worse.

So I was stuck with two nights at a hotel in Hartford that I wasn’t going to use. Ginger couldn’t use them either, because she was in Providence. So they just went unused. It was maddening (and expensive). And dumb.

Roomer to the rescue! (How I wish I could have yelled that, triumphantly, but I didn’t know about them yet).

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Here’s how Roomer describes themselves (they do it better than I could):

Every day, tens of thousands of people cancel pre-paid hotel room reservations and get stuck draining their wallets to pay for an empty room somewhere across the world. For these people, what was sure to be an exciting and promising vacation suddenly becomes an expensive waste. And yet, on the flip side, there are always travelers looking to score a last-minute deal, whether for a weekend getaway or a spontaneous road trip.

We figure, why not bring these people together. That’s why we created Roomer: to connect the people who are stuck paying for an empty hotel room with the travelers looking for a sweet deal.

Sounds promising, right?

I tested it out by entering a few dates and seeing what happened. Mostly, they didn’t have anything available for where I was going and when I would be there. The one time that my dates and location synced up with their inventory, the prices for the available room were actually higher than the prices on the hotel website!

So I think they’ve got a few kinks to iron out.

Meanwhile, I really hope they make it! I think this is a great idea, and a service that I would clearly use.

Has anyone else tried Roomer yet? Would you?

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Comments

  1. Sounds like an interesting program. I wonder who gets the points, original booker or roomer booker.

  2. I thought hotels were run like airlines, only the person who is listed as the room renter could use it. Obviously, I’m wrong.

    Also, what if there is damage or extra charges? Will this be charged to the new room user? How do they get the hotel to change over the names of the people responsible?

    • I’ve made reservations in my name in the past, and been able to change the name on the reservation (most recently at a Marriott). The card that is presented at check in was the one that got all the charges (not the one the reservation was made with).

      • Points Pixie says:

        Rebecca – I’ve never changed the name on any reservations, but I have added names onto reservations before. That is great that you’ve been able to completely change the name!

        • Yes, have changed a few times. I’ve done at Hyatt also where I’ve needed to cancel my room at a sold out location and give to a co worker. I call hotel direct and they’ve handled.

    • Points Pixie says:

      Anne – They actually transfer the reservation from the seller’s name to the buyer’s name. In terms of damage protection, they’ve got a whole “Trust and Safety” page on their site: https://www.roomertravel.com/trust-and-safety so it looks like they take it seriously!

  3. Hope you are felling better!

  4. Oops, I hope your aren’t felling. That might hurt.

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