Pretty much anyone *except* the hotel screwed up your MD’s booking. Sorry.
I received a call a few days ago, from a lady demanding to speak to a manager regarding a “screw up” for her company’s booking.
Sure, yep, that’d be me, what exactly is the problem?
Now, we have two primary types of rooms – a Standard Room and a Premier Room. There isn’t much difference between the two, except for the outlook, and the Premier room is slightly more expensive. Otherwise, they have exactly the same type of facilities.
This lady – and I am still yet to work out exactly who she is – starts going on about how they have paid $239 for their MD to stay in a room, and he got a Standard Room. Why did he get a Standard Room? Who screwed up the booking? Whose fault was this?
And on it went for a couple of minutes before I could get a word in and find out who the damn guest was.
I pull up the booking. “Yes, I can see that Mr Smith stayed with us for one night, in a Standard Room.”
“Why? Why was he given this room? Were all the guests that travelled with him in this room type?”
“He was given this room because that’s what was booked for him. If you could let me know who else stayed I’ll be happy to look further at this.”
The lady provides me with a couple of other names, still ranting on about how this was “completely unacceptable” and she “wanted answers”.
Finally, after pulling up the other two bookings, I advise her that yes, the two other rooms booked under Mr Smith were Standard Rooms. Because they were booked into damn Standard Rooms, lady.
“But I can see that Mr Jones stayed as well. Mr Jones got a Premier Room. How the hell did Mr Jones get a Premier Room, and Mr Smith got a Standard Room? Mr Smith is the MD of the company! Mr Jones is about four levels below him. Who the hell allowed this to happen?”
I pull up the booking for Mr Jones. Ah yes, this is why Mr Jones got a Premier Room. Because the company, or the travel agent, or whoever, booked him into a Premier Room.
The lady continues to rant at me about how Mr Smith has stayed with us every time he is in Melbourne, and shouldn’t we see this, and why didn’t we give him a Premier Room, and how could we give someone a better room than the company MD?
Eventually I have to cut her off, because this is approaching five minutes, and the hotel didn’t even mess anything up. “I’m sorry, but did Mr Smith advise us at any point that he felt he had been given the wrong room?”
“No, he shouldn’t have have to! You screwed up!”
“Again, I’m sorry, but with all due respect – the hotel did not mess up a booking. Mr Smith booked a Standard Room. That room was allocated to him. Mr Jones booked a Premier Room. Again, this is what was allocated to him. There were no indicative notes on the booking, neither of the guests advised anything upon arrival, and we don’t exactly ask guests upon arrival of their hierarchy in their company.”
“So, we paid the same amount for the rooms?”
“Actually, I can see that the Premier Room was $239 whilst the Standard room was $199. I imagine tax invoices were provided upon check out, however should you require these I am happy to forward them along.”
“Yes, send them to email@example.com, please. So, you’re telling me that someone booked the MD of the company into your basic room?”
“Yes, I’m not sure whether the details were incorrectly advised to the travel agent or whether the travel agent booked the best available room, but please understand that we allocate room types based on what has been booked.”
Lady finally hangs up and goes away. To this date I am still unsure whether she was from the travel agent, worked in the travel division of the company, or she worked for Mr Smith, but sadly she was unable to pin the blame on the hotel for the “screw up”.
And, for the record, on arrival we do not tend to ask guests their position at the company, nor whether we should be giving the ‘better’ job to them or their travelling partner. Contrary to popular belief we are also not mind readers.
Company politics for the company I do not work for? I do not participate in them.