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Cancelling reservations

abc

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Do you routinely make reservations at restaurants as well and not show up? This really isn't rocket science. You make a reservation when you legitimately plan to ski.

I still really don't know what you think they've changed. They said how many priority days you would have. They said you could then additionally make "week of" reservations every week. They said abuse wouldn't be tolerated. What exactly is different now then back when this was all announced?
You totally missed the point!

When you make a restaurant reservation and decided you don't want to go through with it, you cancel it. There's always people standing at the door waiting for a table. The cancellation allows the restaurant to sit those who are ready to eat.

But now, the restaurant is saying they don't want to bother sitting those at the door, but dock YOU for cancelling!

Read the first post of this thread!!!
 

Smellytele

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Golfing doesn't have this problem. Most courses have an online booking system that you need to give them your credit card. If the group is a no show, golf courses would charge either full pop or $25 per golfers for no shows. Very, very few no shows in golf.
What about season pass holders at a course. Is there a penalty for them for no shows?
 

kingslug

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But...Friday was a sold out day. No way were there 5000 people there. So how many did not show up. 2000...in a single day?
For the hell of it I can see if someone there will tell me at the end of the day how many showed up. But compared to the lines I waited on last season, so far its been pretty mild. So..one has to ask..what does sold out equate to in numbers. And this is very relevant if you simply want to ski but its sold out..and half the people who booked are actually there. That is going to suck..
This is the only thing I really give a damn about.
 

cdskier

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You totally missed the point!

When you make a restaurant reservation and decided you don't want to go through with it, you cancel it. There's always people standing at the door waiting for a table. The cancellation allows the restaurant to sit those who are ready to eat.

But now, the restaurant is saying they don't want to bother sitting those at the door, but dock YOU for cancelling!

Read the first post of this thread!!!

I missed nothing. And no there isn't always people standing at the door waiting for a table at a restaurant (particularly for restaurants where it is known that they "sell out" and you have virtually no chance of getting seated as a walk in). Last minute cancellations drive restaurant owners nuts. (There's also a big difference between cancelling 30 minutes before your reservation vs cancelling days in advance).
 

cdskier

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But...Friday was a sold out day. No way were there 5000 people there. So how many did not show up. 2000...in a single day?
For the hell of it I can see if someone there will tell me at the end of the day how many showed up. But compared to the lines I waited on last season, so far its been pretty mild. So..one has to ask..what does sold out equate to in numbers. And this is very relevant if you simply want to ski but its sold out..and half the people who booked are actually there. That is going to suck..
This is the only thing I really give a damn about.

First of all, don't just take a lifty's word for it. Do you know for a fact that their capacity on Friday was set at 5000? Even if the lifty heard that number mentioned, it could be for a typical mid-winter day when they have all terrain/lifts open. Early season they could (and should) be operating with a very different capacity number.

Also keep in mind that not everyone always shows up at the same time. Some people ski the morning, others ski the afternoon, and others ski all day. Resorts using reservations system will need to gauge that over time to see if they want to increase their capacity limits if they see a lot of people spreading out time-wise like that. I fully expect resorts to adjust these numbers dynamically as they go along and learn (and fwiw, Vail already said they're doing exactly that at some of their resorts as they see how things go).

If you expect to see resorts give you public information on capacity numbers...don't count on it. Those numbers will be changing a lot as the resorts learn and they don't want to be held to some number that they realize later on is wrong.
 

abc

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Last minute cancellations drive restaurant owners nuts.
Restaurants also don't sell pre-paid, reserve any time "pass" at a fixed price!

The point you missed the most is Vail did NOT specifies WHAT constitutes "abuse". They also very doggedly refuse to put out any specifics.

It's very convenient for them if they can use it to strongly discourage pass holders to make more reservation than their 7 day allotment, so they can sell more day tickets instead.
 

cdskier

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Restaurants also don't sell pre-paid, reserve any time "pass" at a fixed price!

The point you missed the most is Vail did NOT specifies WHAT constitutes "abuse". They also very doggedly refuse to put out any specifics.

It's very convenient for them if they can use it to strongly discourage pass holders to make more reservation than their 7 day allotment, so they can sell more day tickets instead.

Yes, if you don't show up at a restaurant, they could get absolutely no revenue from you. Ski resorts did at least get something. But on the other hand, someone that abuses the system and doesn't show up or cancel potentially hurts their fellow skiers that DID want to ski on a "sold out" day (it isn't necessarily giving the resort any additional money as another pre-paid pass-holder could grab the spot so I still disagree with your argument that the "abuse" threat is geared towards driving day ticket sales somehow).

I don't think the threat of penalizing abusers should be discouraging any pass-holders that legitimately plan to ski from making reservations. I don't blame Vail 1 bit for not releasing exact specifics on how they define abuse nor do I think they need to (I didn't miss this point the most...I simply don't think it is a valid argument at all). There's several reasons I feel this way:
  • Most people should have nothing to worry about
  • Publicizing details just gives people that do want to "game" the system details they can use to try to find ways around it
  • Vail themselves may not yet even know what the threshold should be (they've never had a reservation system before...so they need some time to analyze behavior and data)
  • The threshold could very well vary from resort to resort and even from day to day and could even be a rather complex formula (i.e. they may more heavily weight a no-show/cancellation for a sold out day but may be more lenient on days that weren't sold out to begin with. Or they may also factor in how close to the date someone cancels. Or they may factor in as well how many overall cancellations there are for a particular day - such as if you get a sudden ice storm and 90% of your reservations cancel, then it doesn't count against anyone).
  • Vail can make this as simple or as complex as they want...and should be able to make changes as needed based on how things go

Without this system, you would absolutely have some selfish people that would simply reserve every single day they possibly could just "in case" they decide they want to ski. THAT is what the "abuse" rule is intended to stop.
 

x10003q

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Golfing doesn't have this problem. Most courses have an online booking system that you need to give them your credit card. If the group is a no show, golf courses would charge either full pop or $25 per golfers for no shows. Very, very few no shows in golf.
You cannot compare golf to skiing. A golf course can only send out a foursome every 10-15 minutes. There are only 72 slots on a full 18 hole golf course.
 

abc

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someone that abuses the system and doesn't show up or cancel potentially hurts their fellow skiers that DID want to ski on a "sold out" day
You're still missing it!

Cancellation is considered "abuse"!

"Week of" cancellation, not 30 minutes before opening.

Read the freaking Vail communication!!!!!

  • Most people should have nothing to worry about
You don't actually know. You're only ASSUMING that YOUR reservation pattern won't be considered "abusive". Until it is, that is.
 
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kingslug

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Only thing i know for sure is that at full capacity..all lifts running they have almost 20K skiers per hour capacity. So if you bring that down to 1/2 hour wait time you get to 10K. At this time the North is not running as well as the west side..so yes its lower..I do not know what they are calculating.
All I care about is people screwing up the system with no shows. After this week I'll be back to weekends..so have to see how that goes. Plus I'll be bouncing around NY areas that arent on Epic.
 

cdskier

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You're still missing it!

Cancellation is considered "abuse"!

"Week of" cancellation, not 30 minutes before opening.

Read the freaking Vail communication!!!!!


You don't actually know. You're only ASSUMING that YOUR reservation pattern won't be considered "abusive". Until it is, that is.

No...you're the one that still isn't getting it. If you seriously think that a few random cancellations here and there (as your typical, average skier could certainly have) are going to get you flagged for abuse and cause those people to lose their reservation privileges...well...you're delusional. I really don't know what else to say here.

You are right that I don't actually know. But it would be a pretty damn good bet that they're not looking to go after every single person that cancels a reservation here or there. It just makes absolutely no business sense to chase away your own pass-holders. Vail wants to expand their market-share of the season pass-holder business...not shrink it and allow competitors to grow their market-share instead. Getting people to become Epic passholders has been a rather significant part of Vail's strategy for a while now. Why you think they would suddenly want to abandon that strategy in favor of switching to day ticket purchases is beyond me...

Bottom line is that you seem to be looking at this and automatically assuming the worst. I have absolutely no idea why.
 

cdskier

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Only thing i know for sure is that at full capacity..all lifts running they have almost 20K skiers per hour capacity. So if you bring that down to 1/2 hour wait time you get to 10K. At this time the North is not running as well as the west side..so yes its lower..I do not know what they are calculating.
All I care about is people screwing up the system with no shows. After this week I'll be back to weekends..so have to see how that goes. Plus I'll be bouncing around NY areas that arent on Epic.

Have you personally had any problems getting a reservation? If not, don't worry about it so much. As of right now the entire next 7 days at Hunter are wide open to book. This includes both weekend days upcoming with snow in the forecast for mid-week and good snow-making temps with no major weather issues for the weekend. A pretty good scenario and yet you still have plenty of availability within the 7 day "week of" period. (Actually...I'm not seeing a single unavailable day in the 7 day window at any of their New England properties either at the moment.)

Also, just remember that hourly lift capacity should be a larger number than the number of people you want at your resort at one time since most people would want to take more than 1 run per hour...
 

abc

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Bottom line is that you seem to be looking at this and automatically assuming the worst. I have absolutely no idea why.
Because without the clarity, or WITH deliberately vague "terms and conditions", it could go either way.

It's fine for you to assume the best. Someone has to spell out the worst.

As it stands in the language used in the Vail communication, there's ABSOLUTELY NO INCENTIVE to cancel! Even if one is likely be changing plans 5 days out, it's no difference than no showing up.
 

kingslug

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So far I'm good..No probs reserving. If I want to hit a weekend I'll be reserving as soon as its available and I'm usually good to go..no work on weekends.
And should I get shut out..I have Bell ,Gore and Platt to pick from. Even Wyndham as a last resort.
 

da-bum

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I think weather uncertainty would cause people book as late as possible, but then this comes into the anxiety of running out of reservation slots, especially when nobody knows how many are allocated. Some people would just reserve early and worry about the weather as the dates comes closer. I had that concern on their opening day because all the delay and chatters, but realized the dozen or so chattering were the number of people who showed up on opening day. I had the same issue on the upcoming few days on which are the best 2 or 3 days. I don't worry so much on running out of reservation slots, especially on weekdays, but more on availability of preferred rooms in the place I stay. I've had my room snatched up while I wait to get a better ideal of the weather on days I planned to ski.
 

abc

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I don't worry so much on running out of reservation slots, especially on weekdays, but more on availability of preferred rooms in the place I stay.
If in the past you had trouble finding places to stay on high demand days, whether it's weekend or powder days, it's only natural to suspect you MAY have trouble getting mountain reservation, until proven otherwise.
 

SLyardsale

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I've been playing the reservations game. I'm living in W Dover for the winter, so essentially I want to ski every day. Early on, I had no idea what to expect, so I did indeed reserve every day. There were some days real early on I would cancel the night before, because the weather looked like shit. Then around noon that next day, it would clear up, I'd go onto the site and rebook the reservation and head out for an afternoon of nice skiing...

This past Friday at Mt. Snow, Friday 12/11 was sold out pretty much Fri 12/4 until Wed 12/9 - and then it opened up. People were clearly following the weather forecast and I'm sure some bailed for the weekend, including Friday once the forecast was locked in.

And FYI, when the reservation system was first announced, Vail clearly said canceling was cool as long is it was done by midnight the night before. Then, a month or so later their FAQ's page changed to the vagueness we have now where somehow cancelling a reservation in their own system COULD lose privileges.

I will always cancel my res if I need to, I will never be a no show. But F them if they try to pull my res privileges because I cancelled on time in their system multiple times. I would likely just go to the pass office in person and plead my case.
 

da-bum

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If in the past you had trouble finding places to stay on high demand days, whether it's weekend or powder days, it's only natural to suspect you MAY have trouble getting mountain reservation, until proven otherwise.
Not helped by my recent search for rapid PCR covid test within 64hrs before flying. The only one in my vicinity only allows booking 2 days prior, starting at midnight and it gets filled up pretty fast. I scheduled a test 60 hrs before the flight, then another 42 hr, and a third 16 hrs, just so in case the next day's booking gets filled up or I couldn't make it that day. I made it to the 42 hr test and cancelled the other. I did the same for opening day at Hunter, was waiting for the reservation window to open, but realized it was 5 minutes passed and quickl jumped onto their reservation site worried it might be full.....always the first time.
 

abc

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And FYI, when the reservation system was first announced, Vail clearly said canceling was cool as long is it was done by midnight the night before. Then, a month or so later their FAQ's page changed to the vagueness we have now where somehow cancelling a reservation in their own system COULD lose privileges.
Exactly!

I've actually sent off an email asking them to clarify the change. And the confirm or refute whether "repeated no-show AND cancellation" implies cancellation are being treated the same as no-show, in which case I wouldn't bother to cancel,

So far, of my several e-mail inquiry to Vail, NONE had received any response. Zilch!
 

cdskier

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Exactly!

I've actually sent off an email asking them to clarify the change. And the confirm or refute whether "repeated no-show AND cancellation" implies cancellation are being treated the same as no-show, in which case I wouldn't bother to cancel,

So far, of my several e-mail inquiry to Vail, NONE had received any response. Zilch!

I guess it is people like you that are the reason that they had to explicitly clarify this point further to begin with.

To be clear, here is what the FAQ said in early September when it was announced:
Q: What if I do not ski or ride on the day of my reservation?
A: If you no longer plan to use your reservation, you may cancel the reservation by 12:00 am of your planned ski date. The earlier you cancel your reservation, the more likely that a fellow skier or rider will be able to use your spot to enjoy the mountain. You will be able to cancel your reservation by going online at epicpass.com or on our resort sites in your "My Account" profile.

We reserve the right to restrict the ability of the pass holder to make future reservations if the reservation system is being abused or manipulated in any way

Right from the start I interpreted that to included repeated cancellations that represented a pattern of abuse and not simply no-shows.

As for not bothering to cancel, I'm sure your fellow skiers that would be unable to get a sold out date at the last minute when they try would appreciate your attitude. But good for you that you'll be able to "stick it to Vail" by not cancelling should they tell you they're treated exactly the same as no-shows.
 
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