This Is A Hotel, Not A Travel Agency


A woman called the hotel asking me for rates. I asked when she was planning on arriving.
“Oh, I don’t have definite dates, I am just shopping around.”
“Our rates fluctuate depending on the days, and time of year. I need to know when you will be arriving in order to give you our rates.”
“I mean, I was thinking about sometime during autumn. I want to see the leaves change colors.”
Instead of trying to get her to offer me specifics, I just opened the reservation screen to the month of September, and started giving her the currently set rates, along with a description of the room types. She said the rates seemed a bit high, and asked if any of them comes with any deals. We don’t normally have specials, or package deals, with the exception of the State Fair. I told her our Fair starts at the end of August, and ends the first week of September, and I told her about the room package that includes 2 Fair tickets per day.
“I’m looking for something with more relaxation in mind. Something like a spa package, and maybe a wine tour.”
“Unfortunately, we don’t have any deals like that here, but I can try to find you our best rates for the time that you would like to stay.”
“Well, how about other hotels, or spa resorts? Look up anything like that in the area for me.”
“I don’t have information for other hotels and resorts. I can only offer you rates for this hotel.”
“I don’t know that area at all. I would appreciate it if you would look for something with relaxation and wine tasting.”
“I can’t do that. It seems like you’re looking to talk to a travel agent. I’m not a travel agent.”
“Well, isn’t it your job to find me the best deals?”
“If you plan on staying at this hotel, then the answer it yes, but I can’t help you find rates, and deals for other hotels.”
She wasn’t fond of that answer, and started scolding me.
“You know, this is disappointing. I don’t know how your company does business if you can’t do something as simple as help me find the best hotel and packages in your area.”
“Ma’am. We are not a travel agency. We are a hotel. We only make reservations for this location. We don’t have a system in place that tells us what deals and events other hotels, and resorts have to offer.”
“Well, you should. I would like to speak to someone else. I’ll wait while you get him or her.”
Instead of telling her I am the only person for her to talk to here, I agreed to do what she asked, and I put her on hold. She stayed on that line for 20 minutes before I saw the hold light turn off. She called back. When I answered the call, she complained that the gentleman she was speaking to earlier was rude. Clearly she didn’t recognize my voice, and demanded to speak to a manager. So I pretended to be someone else.
“Yes, I can help you with this issue. I’m the hotel manager. I am aware of the conversation you had with my desk attendant. I want to apologize for his lack of professionalism. How can I help you?”
“Well, this is more like it. I would like to know what you are doing about his rudeness.”
“I am so very sorry for that. I assure you he will be properly reprimanded. Starting tomorrow, he is being demoted to custodial duties. From now on he cleans toilets, takes out garbage, and mops floors.”
“Well, that does not sound fun, but it seems appropriate. Some people aren’t made for customer service.”
“When can we expect your arrival?”
“I’m not really sure what the exact dates will be. What can you tell me about the area?”
“Well, we are only ten minutes from the city, and local entertainment venues, and we offer rooms with a wonderful view of Gander Mountain.” (Gander Mountain is a retail outdoors store.)
“That sounds appealing. Tell me about that.”
“Certainly, Gander Mountain is very popular with people who enjoy being outdoors, especially people who enjoy camping, fishing, hiking, and hunting.”
“I like the sound of this place. Do you have any room deals?”
“At the end of August we are offering a room deal that included two free tickets to the State fair, and we lowered the rate on all rooms facing Gander mountain.”
“Oh, and is gander Mountain close to the hotel?”
“Yes, Ma’am. You can walk there from here.”
“Wow, that sounds convenient.”
I convinced her to arrive the first week of September. She gave me a credit card, and I confirmed the reservation. She thanked me for helping her, and hung up.

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