Posted by Chuck on February 13, 2020
Gift Card Deals

Published on February 13th, 2020 | by Chuck

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Hotels.com Gift Card Merger Tool Working Again

Hotels.com has brought back their online tool which allows merging multiple gift cards into one. This matters because you can only use one gift card per booking.

Direct Link

It was removed for a while, then came back sometime over the past couple of months.

Update: More details in this comment.

Hat tip to reader Mark



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Audrey
Audrey

FYI once you merge a card it will not allow you to add to it again online. You’ll get a message saying “this card has already been merged”.

Also there seems to be a limit of merging 5 cards at a time. On the plus side it is now set up to do 5 at once, rather than one at a time as it used to be.

OyVey
OyVey

I haven’t used hotels.come gift cards. What do you mean by “add to it”? If I purchased two $10 gift cards on something like raise, I would just use this to merge them to a $20 credit on hotels.com. In what instance would I be adding to one of those $10 cards?

anonymous
anonymous

If you have several hotels.com gift cards, you can consolidate them all into one. The CS rep starts by asking to which GC number you want to consolidate them all, then one by one the rep takes your other GC numbers and “adds to” the total balance on the first one, while deactivating the other one. Apparently the web tool can’t be used for this process. The phone rep can, though.

Example: 6 x $50 GCs plus 1 x $250 GC can be consolidated into 1 GC of $550.

The disadvantage of leaving them separate is that you can only use 1 GC per hotel reservation. So $50 off a $600 reservation is not as convenient as $550 off a $600 reservation.

satellite
satellite

Can you merge 6 x $50 cards via the online tool?

Read the thread
Read the thread

….as said above…limit 5

Satellite
Satellite

Can you please explain what do you mean by “not allow to add it again online”? If you’ve merged a card to another card, the first card goes to $0 so you shouldn’t care about that one.

captainsave
captainsave

And the card with the balance can’t be merge again…

Michael Denner
Michael Denner

Yes… exactly, so one must be strategic… I screwed this up. But now I know.

satellite
satellite

Neither as a source nor as a destination? Can you add multiple cards to one card in one step?

captainsave
captainsave

Yup. I believe u can merge 5 cards at a time

Josh
Josh

I second the comment below. Once you have merged a card, it’s over once you hit the limit. I have to call in now if I want to merge with my old card. They are no longer using CardCash, so I guess there was something to it being down after all.

Mark
Mark

So once a card has been merged. You cannot merge with another card even if there is still some balance on it?

Rosco
Rosco

You have to call to merge a card that has already been merged. The online tool will not work for this purpose – so best off keeping cards separate until you need to merge/use them.

anonymous
anonymous

I tried to use the tool a couple of weeks ago, but it attempted to put me through that stupid reCaptcha sh!t, which I refuse to waste my time on. So I picked up the phone and wasted some CS rep’s time instead.

Cheapo McTightfist
Cheapo McTightfist

So P2 and I use hotels.com quite a bit. If you’re merging cards, like others have said, once you’ve merged it once, you will have to talk to CS to do so again.
2) CS will ask for:
-the business name where all cards to be merged were purchased.
-the original load amounts.
-your first/last name.

If you can’t supply the first two (or refuse to supply the third), CS will not merge the cards.

Flea
Flea

Item: the CS reps don’t actually know where the card was bought based upon the numbers on the card.

Source of this intel: I merged about 15 GCs a couple months ago over the phone, and said they all came from Sam’s Club. I had no idea where any of them came from anymore; so just randomly picked one of the vendors from which I had purchased them in the past. Nobody questioned this; or said “no you did not, Ms. Flea”.

Freedom
Freedom

Ummm. Dear CS agent, they are GIFT cards. I received it as a GIFT. That’s all you need to know. Stop asking so many questions.

Freddy
Freddy

Thank god. Last time, I had to call and merge 50 $100 gift cards over the phone. Took about an hour.

Oliver
Oliver

Now I need to find some deeply discounted hotels.com gift cards. I missed BJs

Michael Denner
Michael Denner

Y’all know the trick, right? Wash the cards by making and cancelling a reservation. Hotels.com issues a new gift card. Then you can merge already-merged cards and avoid the hitch… I just did this (made/cancelled two reservations) with already-merged cards, got two new cards, and then merged them successfully.

charlie
charlie

Thanks for that. easy easy.

OyVey
OyVey

What about trip insurance cancellation scenarios when gift cards are involved? For example I use my CSR to book a hotel in Europe 6 months down the road. If my child gets sick and I am not able to make the trip, the CSR will reimburse me up to $10,000 from what I remember. I obviously have to pay with the CSR to qualify for said insurance. So basically I would earn 3x UR points on the booking, and it’s insured. If I buy gift cards lets say at 10% discount and use them to pay for the hotel, I suppose there isn’t a way for me to get it covered anymore by my CSR?

anonymous
anonymous

If you avoid booking non-refundable hotel reservations, and cancel before the deadline for full refund, then hotels.com will simply issue you a new gift card for the amount you had applied to your reservation.

OyVey
OyVey

Right, but at that point you’re paying more per night. So basically you buy a discounted gift card just to pay more per night, ultimately it might just be a wash in terms of net gain. Am I wrong?

YoniPDX

It’s also offset by the rewards night after 10 stays – free night median value of cost of hotel nights.

Great for non-aspirational or in smaller cities, or lacking points or free nights with CC.

OyVey
OyVey

Yes I agree with you. It’s just not as lucrative as can be when paying with a CSR. When I pay with a CSR I know I am insured against some sort of unforeseen event like a sickness of a family member. I can’t count on that with gift cards and have to step up to a higher rate to get the cancellation. It just makes the entire thing a less lucrative.

anonymous
anonymous

If you’re not able to make the trip, for what are you paying more per night?

OyVey
OyVey

Nothing. But if you do end up making the trip, you payed extra for the insurance. The insurance that’s otherwise would have been free if you paid with the CSR.

BudFlorida
BudFlorida

You might consider waiting until needed before you merge cards.
I merged cards ahead of time, two years ago, for a total of $700
Somehow entire balance was drained from card. Hotels.com showed no interest in even learning how it happened.

Anne Marie
Anne Marie

Thanks! I did the pixel / google fi deal in 2018 and still havent used my cards. gotta get a vacation going soon.

Anita
Anita

I don’t see the option of adding more than one card to the first card (the 3rd card to the 1st card). Where is it?
After I did the first merge, there was no option to add another card.Thanks.

Flea
Flea

Well, I don’t think you can do it anymore, but there is a link on the page to add more cards, before you press whatever it is tto finalize the merge.

I grant that the choice wasn’t intuitive and didn’t say anything remotely as plainly as “add another card”; in fact, when I was looking at it, I thought it was one of those options that would wipe the number of the card I already gave them out of existence, and have me starting over.

So, whatever option looks worrisome on the page, take two new unmerged cards to start, and select that worrisome option. 😉

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