I have read this Wall for a long time but I cannot remember how you pay for a reservation for a hotel. Is the internet safe or if you are calling (because they won't answer my e-mail, but I did get someone on the phone). Can you safely give your credit card over the phone as long as you are not using a hand held set? Please answer as soon as possible as I am trying to book a hotel in Venice (off season at least) and am having no luck at the small hotel of my choice. But they did answer the phone and told me when to call back to get someone that speaks English. Thanks so much.
giving your credit card number over the phone to a number you called is safe. Whether you give it over the phone or hand it to a clerk in person, there is really no difference. Another common way is to send it in a fax.
You might want to check with your credit card company and see if they offer a way to create one-time numbers. With Citibank, for example, you can download a piece of software to your computer that generates numbers when you use it. You start the software & log in, then can specify a dollar amount and an expiration date for the number it generates. You can use this number over the phone or on the internet, knowing that the most that could be charged in fraudulent use is what you approved and not your entire credit limit.