When you book a hotel, most websites will make it clear whether or not the room is a room is non-refundable, or pay at the hotel, however, the non-refundable rates are usually much more visible and highlighted on most sites.
The “Pay in Advance” rates (as they are sometimes called) can sometimes be a better deal than the standard refundable rates, but not being able to cancel non refundable hotel reservations is a major downside.
The best advice I can offer is to be very aware of what kind of room you are booking. In many cases, the regular refundable room rates are just as low as the non-refundable ones, but if you travel and stay in hotels often, then at some point, you have probably been stuck with a non-refundable hotel room that you ended up having to pay for and not use.
Well, now if you do happen to get stuck with a non-refundable reservation …. There is a new service called Roomer that allows you to post your room reservations for sale and potentially get your money back. Just go to the Roomer website and post the details of your booking: Check-in/ Check-out and hotel information.
The great part about it is that you can set your own price. Roomer recommends selling at a 50-75% discount, but if the reservation dates and location happen to be in demand, you can easily recoup all of your money.
While it requires some effort on your end, it is a great workaround to cancel non refundable hotel.
Read more about how the service works here.