• Mon, Nov 1 2010

Three Ways to Know You Are Staying in a Crappy Hotel

Sometimes, you think you’ve booked a perfectly fine hotel room, only to find out one to two nights into your stay that in fact you are spending the night at the Bates Motel’s less-murderous-but-no-less-ominous hotel cousin. Here are a few telltale signs that you will want to guard your possessions and your life with the utmost of care during your stay, and perhaps forego booking the same location in the future.

No one who mans or womans the reception desk is able to provide you with basic information, like room rates, without checking with their manager and then calling you back. Front desk staff should be empowered to carry out certain simple tasks. These should include things that are as complicated as they are capable of handling, but not less complicated than searching for a room on their computer, and reading the rate for that room back to you. If the desk staff is unable to complete that function, you should question their general ability to perform their job.

You find a trail of ants leading from your bed to the nightstand, following the scent of an unidentifiable smear on the wall. I’m not saying that this just happened to me or anything, but I am saying that if it happens to you, you should immediately insist on switching rooms, and then get your room comp-ed, or at least get the price reduced when you check out. Especially if you wind up having to move rooms at, say, 1:00 a.m., just before you’re about to go to sleep in said ant-infested bed.

When the hotel staff hears about your ant problem, the first thing they offer you by way of a solution is Windex. It might be true that Windex “prevents the ants from breathing,” but that’s not really a permanent solution to an infestation, nor is it something you really want to think about while falling asleep six inches away from the resulting ant graveyard. A well-run hotel should either offer up the hard shit, like Raid, or cut their losses and provide a room upgrade.

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