What a rude jolt it is, when you walk into your hotel after yet another tiring flight and are told by the beaming receptionist that ‘due to a system error, you booking was not made’, and that you’d kindly have to look elsewhere. Or what about when the receptionist looks down upon you as though she was the queen, and makes condescending remarks like, ‘Are sure you can afford it?’. While all of us have enjoyed great hotel stays with the most courteous staff at our beckoning, there also have been some bad experiences with hotel front desk staff. Travellers across the globe tell Executive Traveller what they’d rather never hear again from the hotel staff.
Wallace Jackson, Multimedia Producer
Sir, the elevators have stopped functioning due to the recent earthquakes!
Alan Morgan-Jones Acting Managing Director at Comms Management Limited
I arrived on holiday in Spain, carried in my suitcases and was told by the receptionists that I did not have accommodation, although they could see my booking. They sent me by taxi to their sister hotel which was full of Russians, and had entertainment that wasn’t geared to us Brits at all.
Claire Wesley, Business Travel Account Manager at Corporate Traveller
Having worked in a hotel, I have seen many disturbing things go on in the reception area. The best one was when a customer said ‘This room’s not good enough’ and the manager said, ‘You don’t like it? Then f*** off.’ This was on a match day when every other hotel in the whole city was full as well.
Andrew Baker, Experienced FC / FM
“The only room I have available is between two honeymooning couples.”
“No sir, this isn’t the *hotel name*. People always get us mixed up. That’s on the other side of town.”
The one that bugs me most is when the receptionist remarks about the fact that I have found the hotel without difficulty, as so many other people don’t understand the signage or website. It makes me cross because it’s in their power to adjust both.
Lisa Stark, Business Development Professional
I was told at a hotel in Romania, “You’ll need to turn over your passport to us during your stay.” The same hotel, when I asked for my hotel receipts to be stapled together handed them back to me with a straight pin. Apparently staplers didn’t exist in Romania at that time!
Viswanathan Sarbbasenan, Sr Business Executive, Regenix Drugs Ltd
Once, when I came down for the hotel’s complementary breakfast just before what was going to be a long meeting, I was rudely told, ‘There is no complementary breakfast today, as maintenance work is happening in the kitchen.’ I found it most bizarre- what kind of a kitchen shuts down for maintenance? Another one: ‘Sir, we’ve changed to a new lock system. So in case you get locked in, please don’t hesitate to call us.’
Carrie Marcus, Research Administration
The most frustrating thing one can hear is “No, we don’t have that reservation in our system.” Front desk staff must be trained to replace a “No” with a “My apologies for the mix up. There is a complimentary happy-hour for guests going on at the bar now, if you’d like help yourself to some refreshments. I’ll have your key ready in just a moment.”