Hotels: a general critique

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boomy

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The Hilton in Sydney has added them. We were in a Club room so maybe they thought we were riff raff. A bit of a 'to-do' when a charge for nuts which we hadn't eaten came up on the bill. On ringing, we were told that we must have taken them out of the cradle - ah, no, did not touch them. This insistence went on for some time before the charge was removed. The sign on the nibbles (the box sits on the desk) is hidden on one end (very sneaky) so I can see that it would be easy to pick up the chips or whatever to look and incur a charge. IMO installing auto-charging mini bars is just another tacky move from Hilton.

I totally agree. This automatic charge system is just another scam to make life easier for hotels by charging money first and refund later if people find any mistakes.
In this way they don't need to chase anyone for unpaid items from the mini-bar (which in many cases the items were not there in the first place), they simply automatically add them to the bill and make people chase them. It's the opposite of customer service!
 

anat0l

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After many complaints from guests they cancelled the automatic charging mini-bars at Hilton Brisbane.

I can see how they could cause a lot of rage.

I suppose they did that for "convenience" (theirs, not ours), as well as possibly to stop the odd person nicking the vodka and replacing it in the fridge filled with tap water.

The main thing that chafes my bottom about auto-charge minibars has already been said, which is simply that there is never enough room for your own items. I had to deal with this in Hilton Sydney a couple of times. One time the solution was, "Just move what you need in the fridge; we won't charge you" (and they didn't). The other time the solution was for housekeeping to send up a small portable fridge, which (due to places where you could put such an item near a power point) sat on the part of the long ledge next to my desk.
 

dajop

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On the minibar thing .... sometimes (most of the time?) prices can be outrageous. Whilst I understand that people have to be paid to check/re-stock and that their is "leakage" I don't mind it so much in a high wage environment like Australia where a can of coke costs $2.50 (or whatever) in the 7-11 next door, a $5 coke in a minibar is probably OK. But in much lower wage environment and they're charging $5 for a coke that cost 50c at the 7-11 next door, that's just ridiculous and I will not use the minibar.
 

Warks

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How about those rooms that have nowhere to sit and watch TV except on the bed or in the desk chair? What's wrong with a single comfy chair? There's usually room for it.
 

anat0l

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On the minibar thing .... sometimes (most of the time?) prices can be outrageous. Whilst I understand that people have to be paid to check/re-stock and that their is "leakage" I don't mind it so much in a high wage environment like Australia where a can of coke costs $2.50 (or whatever) in the 7-11 next door, a $5 coke in a minibar is probably OK. But in much lower wage environment and they're charging $5 for a coke that cost 50c at the 7-11 next door, that's just ridiculous and I will not use the minibar.

The minibar works mainly on laziness in a sense. Some people see themselves so time poor (for whatever reason, valid or not) that they cannot leave their room for a quickie to the local convenience store to get supplies, so just whip it straight out of the minibar.

I assume that the high charge takes advantage of this (in the same way that a plumber charges you for something which you can't be buggered to learn or obtain the skills to do yourself). Many people who will write off their bills on expense accounts (perhaps politicians) won't care much in this regard.

Whether or not you could, say, take hotels to the ACCC and accuse them of price gouging on minibar is debatable.
 

boomy

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I had to deal with this in Hilton Sydney a couple of times. One time the solution was, "Just move what you need in the fridge; we won't charge you" (and they didn't). The other time the solution was for housekeeping to send up a small portable fridge, which (due to places where you could put such an item near a power point) sat on the part of the long ledge next to my desk.

Adding another fridge in a Hilton Sydney room... It's already hard to stretch there without hitting something :p
 

dajop

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The minibar works mainly on laziness in a sense. Some people see themselves so time poor (for whatever reason, valid or not) that they cannot leave their room for a quickie to the local convenience store to get supplies, so just whip it straight out of the minibar.

I assume that the high charge takes advantage of this (in the same way that a plumber charges you for something which you can't be buggered to learn or obtain the skills to do yourself). Many people who will write off their bills on expense accounts (perhaps politicians) won't care much in this regard.

Whether or not you could, say, take hotels to the ACCC and accuse them of price gouging on minibar is debatable.

I understand all this, I tend to use minibars when expensing it to employer, particularly if I've been travelling since 6am and reached my hotel at 10pm. Anyway who would dream of taking a hotel to ACCC over something trivial like this? In any event it is not the Australian hotels that are the gougers on this, it's some hotels in developing countries that really take the proverbial, where even if my employer is paying, I just can't justify to myself spending 300 THB on coke that I could buy next door 14 THB .....

And the dearer the hotel, the more expensive the minibar. Wonder why airlines don't charge first class customer $20 for the convenience of having a soft drink on board! That's what happens in the hotel world.
 

JohnK

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On the minibar thing .... sometimes (most of the time?) prices can be outrageous. Whilst I understand that people have to be paid to check/re-stock and that their is "leakage" I don't mind it so much in a high wage environment like Australia where a can of coke costs $2.50 (or whatever) in the 7-11 next door, a $5 coke in a minibar is probably OK. But in much lower wage environment and they're charging $5 for a coke that cost 50c at the 7-11 next door, that's just ridiculous and I will not use the minibar.

Holiday Inns and Hiltons in Bangkok are charging ~200-250 baht for a can of Chang of beer. Until recently I was able to buy a 4 pack for ~104 baht and recently that price for a 4 pack has gone up to ~130 baht.
 

Warks

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Holiday Inns and Hiltons in Bangkok are charging ~200-250 baht for a can of Chang of beer. Until recently I was able to buy a 4 pack for ~104 baht and recently that price for a 4 pack has gone up to ~130 baht.

So now we know why martial law has been declared!
 

codash1099

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On the minibar thing .... sometimes (most of the time?) prices can be outrageous. Whilst I understand that people have to be paid to check/re-stock and that their is "leakage" I don't mind it so much in a high wage environment like Australia where a can of coke costs $2.50 (or whatever) in the 7-11 next door, a $5 coke in a minibar is probably OK. But in much lower wage environment and they're charging $5 for a coke that cost 50c at the 7-11 next door, that's just ridiculous and I will not use the minibar.

50 ml of JW Red in the Parkroyal at Melbourne airport was $11 yesterday. That's overcharging!

And then there was the hotel in Europe (I forget where) that had a sign on the minibar saying it was provided for their stuff only and they would dump anything else that they found in it.
 

Hafgan

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4. Providing 2 UHT milk single serve capsules (a la airline) only ! Please in a 4 or 5 * can we have fresh milk or at least a bigger pack of UHT[/QUOTE]

....even country 3* hotels have the small 300ml milk for you. Hate going to many airport hotels to find those UHT capsules there. Not happy Jan!
 

boomy

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4. Providing 2 UHT milk single serve capsules (a la airline) only ! Please in a 4 or 5 * can we have fresh milk or at least a bigger pack of UHT

If you stay in a decent hotel there is no need to use the UHT milk. My advise is to call room service and ask for fresh milk. They will deliver to your room free of charge.
 

markis10

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4. Providing 2 UHT milk single serve capsules (a la airline) only ! Please in a 4 or 5 * can we have fresh milk or at least a bigger pack of UHT

Or having a 5 year old son that likes to drink them, with dad discovering none left when he gets out of bed for a coffee in the morning :evil:
 

Simo

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The power thing does my head in...

Yep, ruins your next day if you can not charge your devices for the next day for a day of work.
 
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If you stay in a decent hotel there is no need to use the UHT milk. My advise is to call room service and ask for fresh milk. They will deliver to your room free of charge.
But sometimes I don't want to wait on the end of the phone and then if I somehow miraculously get through, wait for another period of time for it to finally be delivered. That reminds me that when we were in Zurich once I rang and ordered some "fresh milk to put in my coffee". A large jug of hot milk duly arrived.
 

Warks

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I had a fridge with about a dozen of those little capsules once and I was having a bowl of cereal and had run out of milk. Thought I'd use them up and see if I could get by. All of them barely got the cereal moist!

I was a regular at a country motel over the summer. On arrival they gave me a 300mL milk, two packs of biscuits and in the fridge they had free bottled water! This place was $85 a night! Only bad thing was some rooms had those noisy fridges that I had to remember to turn off or down low overnight.
 
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gaz0303

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I was a regular at a country motel over the summer. On arrival they gave me a 300mL milk, two packs of biscuits and in the fridge they had free bottled water! This place was $85 a night! Only bad thing was some rooms had those noisy fridges that I had to remember to turn off or down low overnight.

This is generally my experience of country motels too. But is with the quilts that wrap round the pillows with ugly prints? It seems to be the essential fitting for cheap motels. I'd pay extra money just not to see the depressing quilts and often is a criteria I use for selecting which country motel to stay in. Does leave slim pickings in some towns ie western nsw, qld 20km inland or 200km north of the border.
 

Warks

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This is generally my experience of country motels too. But is with the quilts that wrap round the pillows with ugly prints? It seems to be the essential fitting for cheap motels. I'd pay extra money just not to see the depressing quilts and often is a criteria I use for selecting which country motel to stay in. Does leave slim pickings in some towns ie western nsw, qld 20km inland or 200km north of the border.

Ah yes it ticked all those boxes! Also the cane furniture...
 
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