Response from the owner - a month ago
We were sorry to read that Chantina Demons felt we did not treat her fairly given her circumstances. We are a small family owned inn with only 13 rooms and cancellations affect us significantly. When you reserve a room at our inn, you are reserving a very specific one-of-a-kind room and as such your room is removed from inventory for your dates of travel. No one else can book your room. We have a 14-day cancellation policy. Ms. Demons waited until arrival to notify us of a change in her plans.
Ms. Demons made her reservation in December yet she did not request leave. As a former US Army soldier, I am aware of military protocols and procedures; if you want to ensure you have certain days off you submit a leave form. She chose to take a chance that she would not have to work at all that weekend. She stated in her review that she did not know until a week prior to her trip that she had to work yet the schedule she (much) later presented us commences on the First day of February and is for an entire month. She could have cancelled when the Roster came out which gave her plenty of time to entirely cancel her reservation incurring only a cancellation fee of $40.
We are not unkind people and despite not having any evidence to uphold her statement, we offered her a compromise: Simply supply us with the duty roster and we would issue a voucher for a future stay (she only lives 90 minutes from Savannah). After several phone calls, she accepted our offer.
Ten days later we still had not received the roster, but we did receive notice from her Credit Card Company that she had filed a claim for refund. When a claim is made the monies are immediately removed from the Merchant’s account and the burden is on the Merchant to explain why the refund is not valid. We provided all the documentation required in the Visa Guidelines for Authorized Merchants including her electronically signed acceptance of our cancellation policy. We also shared our offer to Ms. Glover which was given in good faith at that time. We filed our return response on February 25, 2016. Her credit card company determined that there was no basis for refunding her the money and they deposited the money in dispute back into our account.
We made every effort, even though we were not required to do so, to mitigate Ms. Glover’s situation. She did not send us a copy of the duty roster until March 4, (Via email). I do not understand why Ms. Glover chose to invoke the "Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA)" which is not in fact applicable under these circumstances. I think she meant to shame us as if we were taking advantage of a servicemember. Our family owned business donates more than 30 room nights every year to local military personnel and work with restaurants to also provide an exceptional evening complete with dinner because of our commitment to giving back. The walls around our reception desk are covered with awards and letters of thanks. Our highest honor was being admitted into the Rock Star Hall of Fame by Major General John “Mike” Murray formerly of the 3rd ID who also flew a flag over Bagram Airfield in honor of our commitment to his soldiers.