Man says Miami hotel ‘scammed him’ before travel

@marlon3lg/TikTok The Bold Bureau/ShutterStock (Licensed)

‘Which I paid for by the way on Hotels.com’: Man says Miami hotel ‘scammed him’ upon arrival. Here’s why

‘I never make these types of videos but… I don’t know what to do.’

 

Alexandra Samuels

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A man attempting to vacation in Miami hit a snag when the hotel he said he paid for in advance refused to let him stay until he paid an additional $700 in fees. It’s not what he signed up for, he says, and that was just the beginning.

“I cannot make this [expletive] up at all,” said Marlon Garcia (@marlon3lg), whose video has amassed more than 1.4 million views.

Garcia said he landed in Miami around 7pm before going to his hotel to check in. “I got to my hotel… which I paid for, by the way, on Hotels.com.” He said that he paid roughly $1,300 for a three-week stay, but didn’t disclose which hotel he booked.

When Garcia arrived at the hotel, however, he said that a receptionist asked him to pay a $100 deposit. That number, he said, later ticked up to $684.

“$684? For what? You just said [it was] a $100 deposit,” Garcia recalled asking the receptionist. He said the worker explained then that there was a $34 deposit per night which went toward “towels, the pool, [and] drinks.”

Garcia said he explained that he doesn’t drink. Even if he did, though, he said that none of these additional costs were disclosed beforehand. As a result, the receptionist encouraged him to call Hotels.com, a third-party online travel agency that supposedly helps customers save money on hotel stays. 

Is it safe to book with Hotels.com?

“I get on the phone with Hotels.com after a 40-minute wait,” Garcia said. He said he first spoke to a woman who “barely knows any English,” but was later transferred to her supervisor, who promised to reimburse him for the $684.

Returning to the hotel, Garcia said he offered to pay the receptionist with an understanding that Hotels.com would repay him. He said he was ultimately unable to pay, however, because the hotel didn’t accept contactless payment methods and Garcia forgot his physical credit card at home. 

“While this is going on, by the way, the time is just ticking and [the workers are] like, ‘Sorry, we can’t do nothing,’” Garcia said. He added that, by now, it was nearly midnight—five hours after his flight landed.

This left Garcia in a bind. He said he went to Wells Fargo and Chase for help, but that the contactless readers on both ATMs machines were down. 

“Everything is going against me right now,” Garcia said.

And to make this worse, the receptionist kept insisting that there was nothing the hotel could do to help. 

“So what can I do? I literally paid for the night already. You scammed me, bruh,” Garcia said. “I’m tired as [expletive]. I’m hungry. They’re scamming me.”

Did the traveler eventually get situated?

Garcia said the workers then encouraged him to go to a nearby Walgreens to get gift cards to pay for the deposit. “I started off with $100 because I didn’t want to just get $700… and it’s not working,” Garcia said. Turns out he was right to do so: “I go back to the reception and try it, and it does not work,” he said. “I just spent $100 on nothing.” 

Reception, again, insisted they couldn’t help and Garcia said he was irate. At this point, it was nearly 2am.

“Mind you, I’ve already paid for the hotel,” he said. “I’ve been here for about five to six hours now. They won’t help me with nothing… I’m about to sleep on the street.”

“I never make these types of videos but… I don’t know what to do,” he said, ending his first video. In two follow-up posts, Garcia said he ended up pulling an all-nighter. He also got rained on. “I’ve been sitting outside in the rain all night,” he lamented.

Eventually, Garcia said that someone loaned him cash so that he was able to secure his room. Still, his problems persisted. The biggest issue, Garcia said, was that water from the ceiling dripped onto his bed. “Even though I’m staying here, I have to get a refund,” he said.

How are viewers reacting? 

A number of viewers applauded Garcia’s patience throughout his predicament. 

“If nothing else, your energy throughout this whole ordeal is remarkable,” one viewer commented.

“Everyone needs to learn from you how to stay that calm,” another said. “I think in this situation I’d explode.”

@marlon3lg #fyp ♬ original sound – Marlon

Still, many said that his struggle with the hotel was a sign that he should go back home. 

“GO HOME MY GUY, GO HOME,” one person wrote. 

“Bro I’d never go back to Miami again frfr,” another added.

“This is a sign to leave,” a third person said. 

The Daily Dot has reached out to Garcia via TikTok comment.

 
The Daily Dot