Skip to comments.Hotels and Hassles
Posted on 11/19/2012 1:11:27 PM PST by jazusamo
Few things can make you appreciate home like staying in a hotel. This includes not only low-budget, bare bones hotels but also sweepingly large and ornate luxury hotels. What many hotels seem to have in common are needless hassles.
Since most people who stay in hotels do so while traveling, and stay only a few days in a given hotel, you might think that those who run hotels would want to make it easy for someone who arrives a little tired (or a lot tired) from traveling to use the various devices they find in their hotel room. But you would be wrong. That thought never seems to have crossed their minds.
Recently, at a well-known luxury hotel in Los Angeles, I found that something as simple as turning on a television set can require a phone call to the front desk, and then waiting for the arrival of a technician. Then it took another phone call to get a list of which of the dozens of channels were for which networks.
Why the turning on of a television set should be anything other than obvious to a newly arrived hotel guest is apparently a question that never occurred to the people who ran this hotel. Nor did it apparently ever occur to them that someone just arriving from a journey might want to be able to relax, instead of having to cope with complications that the hotel could easily have avoided.
The next morning, in the shower, I found myself confronted with a dazzling array of knobs and levers, none of which provided any clue as to what they did. The lever rotated and four of the surrounding knobs both rotated and tilted forward and backward.
(Excerpt) Read more at creators.com ...
“Why should I travel? I’m already here!”
i agree with the part about internet access... a hassle!
All the sinks and showers in our house have those big X-shaped porcelain knobs with "Hot" and "Cold" written on them, just like I remember from the 1909-vintage bathrooms in my elementary school days.......
I made the mistake of travelling once. It was 1974 and I was on a "honeymoon" with my first ex-wife.
Never should have done it.
Thank you, Dr. Sowell, for making me appreciate being at home! Now if I could only get 9 other people to go stay in a hotel for a while ...
“Sowell does Andy Rooney, and beats Rooney on first try”
Ever wonder why we despised Rooney ?
Wow. As a 20 year “road warrior” I can really relate to this article. Sadly, the purgatory of navigating airports now surpasses the hassles of hotels. I once stayed in a NYC hotel that had a rental car operation based in their garage. It was $29/day to rent a car, $45/day to park it in the same garage where it was parked before my rental. (tip - just turn it in and rent it again, even if you need it twice in the same day)
Benefits of home: Actual WATER PRESSURE in the shower, enough to rinse shampoo out and soap off; knowledge of whether there is more kleenex; access to more towels and toilet paper without asking. Not that we stay at luxury places, but it seems that there is much less interest in the comfort of customers and much greater interest in austerity by management.
If it’s more complicated than “ON” and “OFF”, it’s too difficult for me to operate. - Our microwave is about 25 yrs. old; doesn’t have those plastic covered buttons that eventually crack and split, rather has a minute knob that turns. It’s small, and about all we use it for is maybe reheating a few things and sterilizing the dishcloth and scrubber. I dread when or if it retires itself on us. So far, it’s still humming along; and we have checked it for microwave leakages periodically. - Everything is simple here.
I thought of Rooney also:)
I had a flight home cancelled because of weather one time back in the days before I had a cell phone. My wife had one, so I called and got no answer four or five times, probably 10 seconds per call. Then I finally got her and spent a minute or so telling her what was up. My tab for six calls totaling probably 2 minutes of clock time and six minutes of charged phone time? $60!!! When I came to the following morning at checkout and accused them essentially of fraud for having such ludicrous non-standard rates without giving the guest ANY prior notice (at the time, most hotels were charging something like $2/minute or so, AND they had a card in the room stating the rate besides), they seemed less than impressed and refused to do anything about it. I should have filed a claim with the credit card company. AND they wanted $10 for internet access. The Grand Sierra in Reno, if anyone’s interested in avoiding the place.
On my first stay at L'Auberge du Lac Casino in Lake Charles I had on one those moments.
I won a very nice jackpot on a slot and they comp'ed me a big nice suite since it was Thursday and not very crowded.
The bathroom had HDTV, his/her vanities on each side, big shower on one side, toilet room on the other and a big, beautiful, big bear claw tub right in the middle, no knobs on it whatsoever.
There were two knobs on the wall next to the tub but the tub had no faucet?
I had to know, so I gently turned one knob and to my surprise, the water poured straight down from the ceiling above the tub. ...it actually startled me, then I thought how cool is that.
For me, “serene” digs is being in the hospital for two days after having a baby.
We get a rental house when we go on vacation, and I’m always finding that I like my own house better - even its non-seaside location ;-). Sometimes I encourage the rest of the family to go without me, so I could “staycation” with the baby and the pets ... but who would do their laundry?
I arrived at a Holiday Inn very late one night after a hassle of a trip. I was tired, not hungry, but very much in want of a beer. Alas, the night manager informed me that the bar had closed about an hour earlier. One I noted that this was the only to be expected considering how this trip had gone, the night manager asked me to wait just a minute. He disappeared and returned with two budweiser’s and told me they were ‘comp’. I’ve returned there everytime I’m in the area.
Before you had to guess exactly how hot the room would get when the knob was turned to 'Lo' or 'Med' or 'Hi'.
That particular profit-enhancing scam has bit the dust.
Nobody even uses the hotel’s phones anymore.
Also I’ve noticed that the “on-line movies” (really porn access) that used to be ubiquitous is getting rare. Apparently people can now access their porn (or for that matter other movies via Netflix) online, so they don’t need to pay the hotel $10 or $15.
You also reminded me of my pre-cell and pre-wireless internet road warrior days.
Used to carry a “phone card” on which 2000 minutes cost something like $10. Went through astonishing contortions to make a phone call on the hotel phone without incurring their charges, and even worse trying to connect to the web without doing so. Sometimes took me half an hour to connect and download my email in 5 minutes.
I guest I’m just really cheap.
I was also always amazed that the more expensive the hotel room charge the higher their other charges were. Seems like a place that charges $200/night could afford to comp local calls, but no. OTOH, Motel 6 and similar places often didn’t charge for local calls.
Agreed. Four of the last five hotels I’ve stayed in had TV issues. Two TVs had to be swapped out, one had a hopeless remote and I forget what happened with the fourth.
What gets me mad is trying to read the small print on the little shampoo bottles in order to determine which one is actually the damn shampoo! I don’t normally shower with my glasses on. Grrr...
Business travelers stay at expensive hotels. Business travelers are not as cost conscious. Pleasure travelers stay at cheap hotels. They are very cost conscious.
OMG I love Sowell.
He often makes me think and he always makes me cheer. Today he made me laugh my heart out. Other than the robe, I have experienced each of those issues more often than I care to remember.
However, I found a cure for all of that motel nonsense — I retired and bought an Airstream trailer. ;>)
Now when we travel, I stay in luxury 5 star accommodations every night, whether parked on the coast listening to the ocean or parked at a Walmart.... it’s all good.
Good, I don’t blame you for returning, it was a considerate and smart thing for him to do.
Right, when somebody else is paying you don’t care what it costs.
I’ve noticed lately that some of the chains now allow you to pay an extra $10 or $20 for a room per night, and they give you twice the number of frequent stayer points. IOW, you just ding the employer for your own personal benefit.
Don’t blame you a bit, we always preferred an RV over staying in hotels/motels.
Good (though not infallible) rule of thumb is: Clear = shampoo; milky = conditioner.
I wouldn't say I don't CARE, exactly, but I do think that if I'm there away from my home working for them, I'm entitled to a reasonable level of accommodation. having said that, I still won't incur unreasonable expenses just because I can pass them along.
“Also Ive noticed that the on-line movies (really porn access) that used to be ubiquitous is getting rare. Apparently people can now access their porn (or for that matter other movies via Netflix) online, so they dont need to pay the hotel $10 or $15.”
A priest finishes checking into a hotel and says to the clerk, “I hope all the porn in my room is disabled.”
To which the clerk replies, “NO! It’s regular porn, you sicko!”
Having traveled pretty extensively —I think I can say, travel is usually best in anticipation and memory with just a few near perfect moments in between that make it all worth it.
Hubby and I drove to Texas and back last month, and it does take a scientific mind to figure out the workings of things that should be simple and obvious in hotel rooms. Dr. Sowell is right again!
Thank you for the ping(s).
I’ve never had a problem with the TV at motels. Of course I also like my Mexican Soap Operas with the volume turned up as far as it will go.
And I haven’t had a room next to you for ages!
He’s right. A hotel room is just a running gag in figuring out the “fancy way” to turn simple appliances on and off.
Once I was disappointed in a hotel’s entrance—you kinda entered through a parking lot. I made some remark about not being sure how long I was gonna stay. Whisk. I was moved to a river-view room, at the non-river-view rate.
Another time an elevator door kept me awake throughout the night. They comped me on the room when I complained.
I don’t complain to get freebies or better deals, but sometimes that’s what happens. The staff doesn’t want unhappy campers on their watch.
Yeah, but that only works if the containers are see-thru. :)
This is typical of businesses that define value FOR the customer instead of listening to the customers idea of value.
They were doing this bit where some clown was trying to wash his hands but kept washing his feet or his elbows and Elmo would go, no mister noodle, your HANDS! and all the tv kids would laugh.
Around the fourth or fifth time he couldnt find his hands, I heard a grown man yell from somewhere else in the motel, G**DAMMIT, MR. NOODLE.
Well, the rule sometimes applies to the containers as well. Plus, if you’re like me, you don’t use conditioner anyway, so if they’re both milky and you put one in and it doesn’t lather, rinse it out and use the other one.
You wouldn’t want that TC.
They would come back with bedbugs. ;-)
Any phone number given to Hilton hotels will result in that phone being called forever with more and more telemarketing sales. Never give out a real phone number to hotels. I usually find the corporate phone number of the hotel and give them that one. Never has an employee caught that the number was their own.
An excellent idea.
The following letters are taken from an actual incident between a London hotel and one of its guests last year. The hotel ended up submitting the letters to the Sunday Times.
Please do not leave any more of those little bars of soap in my bathroom since I have brought my own bath-sized Imperial Leather. Please remove the six unopened little bars from the shelf under the medicine chest and another three in the shower soap dish. They are in my way.
Dear Room 635,
I am not your regular maid. She will be back tomorrow, Thursday, from her day off. I took the 3 hotel soaps out of the shower soap dish as you requested. The 6 bars on your shelf I took out of your way and put on top of your Kleenex dispenser in case you should change your mind. This leaves only the 3 bars I left today which my instructions from the management are to leave 3 soaps daily. I hope this is satisfactory.
Kathy, Relief Maid
I hope you are my regular maid. Apparently Kathy did not tell you about my note to her concerning the little bars of soap. When I got back to my room this evening, I found you had added 3 little Camays to the shelf under my medicine cabinet. I am going to be here in the hotel for two weeks and have brought my own bath-size Imperial Leather, so I won’t need those 6 little Camays, which are on the shelf. They are in the way when shaving, brushing teeth etc. Please remove them.
Dear Mr Berman,
The assistant manager, Mr Kensedder, informed me this morning that you called him last evening and said you were unhappy with your maid service. I have assigned a new girl to your room. I hope you will accept my apologies for any past inconvenience. If you have any future complaints, please contact me so I can give it my personal attention. Call extension 1108 between 8AM and 5PM.
Elaine Carmen > Housekeeper
Dear Miss Carmen,
It is impossible to contact you by phone since I leave the hotel for business at 7:45 AM and don’t get back before 5:30 or 6.00 PM. That’s the reason I called Mr Kensedder last night. You were already off duty. I only asked Mr Kensedder if he could do anything about those little bars of soap. The new maid you assigned me must have thought I was a new check in today, since she left another 3 bars of hotel soap in my medicine cabinet, along with her regular delivery of 3 bars on the bathroom shelf. In just 5 days here I have accumulated 24 little bars of soap.
Why are you doing this to me?
Dear Mr Berman,
Your maid, Kathy, has been instructed to stop delivering soap to your room and to remove the extra soaps. If I can be of further assistance, please call extension 1108 between 8 AM and 5 PM.
Elaine Carmen, > Housekeeper
Dear Mr Kensedder,
My bath-size Imperial Leather is missing. Every bar of soap was taken from my room, including my own bath-size Imperial Leather. I came in late last night and had to call the bellhop to bring me 4 little Cashmere Bouquets.
Dear Mr Berman,
I have informed our housekeeper, Elaine Carmen, of your soap problem. I cannot understand why there was no soap in your room since our maids are instructed to leave 3 bars of soap each time they service a room. The situation will be rectified immediately. Please accept my apologies for the inconvenience.
Martin L. Kensedder Assistant Manager > > >
Dear Mrs Carmen,
Who the hell left 54 little bars of Camay in my room? I came in last night and found 54 little bars of soap. I don’t want 54 little bars of Camay. I want my one damn bar of bath-size Imperial Leather. Do you realise I have 54 bars of soap in here? All I want is my bath-size Imperial Leather. Please give me back my bath-size Imperial Leather.
Dear Mr Berman,
You complained of too much soap in your room, so I had them removed. Then you complained to Mr Kensedder that all your soap was missing, so I personally returned them. The 24 Camays which had been taken and the 3 Camays you are supposed to receive daily. I don’t know anything about the 4 Cashmere Bouquets. Obviously your maid, Kathy, did not know I had returned your soaps, so she also brought 24 Camays plus the 3 daily Camays. I don’t know where you got the idea this hotel issues bath-size Imperial Leather. I was able to locate some bath-size Ivory which I left in your room.
Elaine Carmen > Housekeeper > > >
Dear Mrs Carmen,
Just a short note to bring you up-to-date on my latest soap inventory. As of today I possess:
* On the shelf under the medicine cabinet -18 Camay in 4 stacks of 4 and 1 stack of 2.
* On the Kleenex dispenser - 11 Camay in 2 stacks of 4 and 1stack of 3.
* On the bedroom dresser - 1 stack of 3 Cashmere Bouquet, 1 stack of 4 hotel-size Ivory, and 8 Camay in 2 stacks of 4.
* Inside the medicine cabinet - 14 Camay in 3 stacks of 4 and 1 stack of 2.
* In the shower soap dish - 6 Camay, very moist.
* On the northeast corner of the tub - 1 Cashmere Bouquet, slightly used.
* On the northwest corner of the tub - 6 Camays in 2 stacks of 3. Please ask Kathy when she services my room to make sure the stacks are neatly piled and dusted. Also, please advise her that stacks of more than 4 have a tendency to tip. May I suggest that my bedroom window sill is not in use and will make an excellent spot for future soap deliveries. One more item, I have purchased another bar of bath-size Imperial Leather, which I am keeping in the hotel vault in order to avoid further misunderstandings.
I even pack my own "adult beverages" as the mini-bars in these hotels tend to make everything smaller and more expensive.