"Hotel cancellation policies have been getting more strict than they used to be," says Bjorn Hanson, a professor of hospitality and tourism management at New York University. The changes vary by market and hotel. At some properties, you can still cancel your room by 6 p.m. on the date of your arrival without getting charged, but in some parts of the country, the cancellation window is being pushed back to within 48 or 72 hours of your arrival, Hanson says. Historically, hotels have balanced their need to protect their revenue with guests' circumstances, allowing them to cancel or postpone their stays when needed. The latest policies, which are being applied more uniformly, make some travelers wonder whether these hotels still think they're in the hospitality business. As of now, no one's actively tracking hotel cancellation policies or estimating how much the rule changes potentially cost guests. Rather, hotels are silently deleting their old policies from their websites and reloading new ones both online and into their reservations systems. And until guest challenge these rules, there's no way to tell how strictly they'll be enforced. Get the full story at the Chicago Tribune