A man walked in with his teenage son. He had a laptop by his side, and he asked me if it was alright if they used the hotels WiFi before checking in. I was cool with that, and gave them the password. They sat at a lobby table, and started their online search. I was listening to the dad, make a “dad joke”… “Hey, what’s the address to, Hotels.com?” His son rolled his eyes.
“Dad, do you always have to say that same thing when you go to a hotel?”
“It’s funny, and you know it.”
The son looked at me and said… “Today, we were in a drive-through, and when the guy at the window asked if we needed any condiments, my dad looked at me and said… ‘If condoms were mint flavored, you might never have been born.’”
I started laughing immediately. His father, without looking away from the screen said… “What did the mountain climber name his son?… Cliff.”
“Can we please get separate rooms?” Said his son.
“No, but I can get us a room for $114.00…” He looked at me. “They pay you too much, I’m doing your job for you.” He laughed.
“Dad, why don’t you just get the room from the guy at the desk? We’re already here.”
“Because, no offense to the nice guy over there, we can get the best price by comparing multiple sites.”
“No offense taken.” I said. Have fun comparing all of those websites. Keep checking the competition for a better deal. I mean, they are all owned by the same company, and are just making it look like competing companies, but they aren’t. Enjoy their terrible customer service. I’m putting you in a standard room, next to the highway, located just next to the ice machine, because they can’t guarantee you what room-type you are getting.
“When you’re on a budget, you go for the best deals. If you guys offered coupons, I would be keeping a coupon book for traveling.” He said.
“We do take coupons. You can go to hotelcoupons.com and print a coupon for one room, with up to two people, for $94.00 a night.”
His son took control of the laptop. “You should do that, dad. You wanna know why? Because you’re booking a room for tomorrow night. We need a room for tonight.”
“I put in today’s date. It’s for right now.” He replied.
“I’m still doing business for the 8th. If you rent a room and make your check-in date for the 9th, you will have to wait another fifteen hours to check-in.” I said.
“Plus the coupon is $20.00 less, and we won’t be here for more than eight hours.” Said his son.
He agreed to the coupon. Clearly the son is the one wearing the smartypants, in that family. I pointed them towards the Business Center, so they could print the coupon. The printer wasn’t working. It took me five minutes to decide that screwing with the printer wasn’t worth the hassle at the moment. “Coupons are just dead trees. Forget about the coupon.” I said. I went back to the counter, and I started making them a reservation. “I can still help you.”
The father sat back in-front of the laptop. “I’m sure I can find a deal. I don’t mind checking.”
“I can do better than them.” I said.
“How so?” he asked.
“If you book through a third party, they are going to charge you the $114.00 for a standard room, and you will have to pay for a full night. Our suites are $114.00. I can charge you the $114.00 and put you in an executive suite instead of the standard that they will sell you for the same price.”
“Let’s do that, then.” He said.
“But let’s not forget that coupon. I can print it right here, and give you the deal for a two queen standard room.”
“Okay. Let’s do that!” He said, gleefully.
“But wait! There’s more!” I shouted. “Since you are only going to be here for about eight hours, I can offer you a much lower rate of $89.00. Are you a member of the rewards program?”
“No.” he said.
“Well, it sounds like you travel often. I can make you a member, and you will start earning points tonight that you can save up, and use for free hotel stays in the future, and I will only charge you $89.00 for your stay, tonight only.”
“That sounds great!”
I made the reservation, took his credit card, and chose their room for them. “I would like to thank you for choosing us. It looks like you are a member of our rewards program! I went ahead and upgraded you to our executive suite. No extra charge. I made sure to put you on the opposite side as the highway so you can sleep better. Like always, you can enjoy a hot breakfast in the morning. Can I offer you a late checkout?”
“See, dad? This is what happens when you talk to people.” Said his son.
“I’m a bit shocked by this. I thought I was good at getting deals.” Said the father.
“Dad, this is why mom doesn’t want you traveling by yourself.” Said his son.