The Hotel Scam
September 28, 2009 by admncc
I’ve always had a hard time justifying the cost of a hotel room. I mean, other than a bed to sleep in, a wireless connection for my lap top and a descent TV for when I’m going to sleep, I don’t need anything else. So why are they so expensive?
OK, I realize that other people have their own needs… But hopefully after reading about my experience at a Holiday Inn Express this past weekend, you’ll see where I’m coming from.
Now, given an option, I will typically stay at a Marriot, because of the Marriot Rewards program. Unfortunately, when I was in Pittsburgh for a funeral this past weekend, the first two Marriot’s we called were sold out. In fact the next three hotels we called after that were also sold out. The reason – the G-20 was in Pittsburgh at the same time that we were.
So after searching Google for a hotel close to the funeral home, I booked a room at a Holiday Inn Express for $179 (for one night). I explained that I was in town for a funeral and asked about rate discounts – none. After applying some pressure, however, I was able to get their employee to admit to me that the rate is normally $135 (or lower) per night, but that it was “jacked up” (her words) due to the G-20. That’s my first problem – inconsistent price changing.
Jump ahead to my arrival… This was quite possibly the smallest hotel room I’d ever seen, there were no trash cans in the room and our non-smoking room smelled like smoke and/or dirty laundry. Oh, and the TV had no pay per view movies (a hotel must, in my mind, these days). So what was I paying the $179 for? Apparently nothing other than a G-20 rate increase I guess.
All in all, I spent $204.50 and was physically at the hotel for less than 11 hours. By the way, it’s funny how the hotel fees and taxes bumped my rate from the $179 they quoted me to the $204.50 we ultimately paid…
To top things off, I had forgotten my toothbrush and they wouldn’t even bring one up to me. I was told that I could come down to the lobby if I wanted to pick one up. What a joke!
This ends my hotel rant, which should have been an open letter to the Holiday Inn Express. But something tells me they aren’t listening anyway…