Ten Things I Hate about Hotels
- The unhygienic practices : This is my major grouse. Right from a 7 or a 5 Star hotel to a regular hotel, a guest house or a camp site to a home stay, the unhygienic conditions that prevail everywhere is abominably revolting. A report revealed that fecal bacteria was found on an astonishing 81% of the 18 surfaces analysed!! I remember seeing a cart full of towels and bed-sheets, and accidentally the towels fell on the ground (of course, they didn’t fell in a neat pile, so that one could discard the one touching the ground!). The housekeeping guy, simply put them back in his cart and unsuspecting customers like us would use them lovingly to wipe our faces… In yet another super luxury hotel, while the lunch of a large group was in progress, a housekeeping boy with his small fancy broom and dust pan was cleaning the food etc that fell on the ground. I had this ‘wow’ feeling and thought to myself that the hotel does not want to have its property dirty even for a few minutes. While, I was still enjoying this feeling, the very next moment, the cleaner, started cleaning the food that fell on the buffet table with the same broom and dust pan. His broom touched the plates where the serving spoons were kept and he also brushed the lids of the buffet chafing dishes! I had difficulty in swallowing my food after that!
- Cleanliness in the wash rooms : I was in this 5-star property and admiring myself in the mirror and just then a housekeeping lady enters with a small white napkin. She entered the stall no. 1 and wiped the toilet seat with that napkin. Then she moved to stall no. 2 and wiped the seat with the same napkin. I was shocked and disgusted. After her repeat performance in the next 2 stalls, I told her that she is not cleaning but spreading the germs from one place to another. She responded with a blank look!
- The hard and the soft : The pillows and mattresses in the hotels come in only too varieties… as hard as a rock or as soft as a pudding. There is no in-between or the just right variety. You either get up in the morning with a sore back or with a sore back!
- No resemblance between real and virtual : Last time we decided to stay in a home stay at Shoghi, near Shimla during Aaryan’s school exeat. After scanning more than dozen homestays on the net, we finalized one. On reaching the property we were speechless. The pictures on the internet were so very different from the reality. The food was great and that was a saving grace! At another place, the pictures were that of a large luxurious pool, while in reality it was a swimming pool for kids. When an advertised product or a service is far from reality, it is truly annoying.
- WiFi with sky high prices : We are living in the tech age and connectivity is the buzz word. But the hotel’s rates for WiFi compete with the gold prices. And a few which do provide free WiFi have such poor connectivity that it is better to shut the laptop down than work on it!
- Electrical sockets so rare and precious! : Sometimes, I wonder, if it is a rule that the electrical switches in hotels should be at unreachable places. In one hotel, the charging point was near the entrance of the room. So, when the alarm rang in the morning, I had to drag myself out of the bed to stop its incessant ringing. What a wonderful way to start a day!
- Exorbitant room service charges: Even a regular bottle of mineral water costs ten times its actual cost. A club sandwich with taxes was presented with a bill of Rs 850 only! My friend had a mini heart attack. She said with Rs 850, she could have made sandwiches to feed an army!
- Bathroom fixtures to test your intelligence : Each hotel has its unique and complicated set of bathroom faucets. They are never the simple ones. You are in a hurry to get ready and you have to struggle to get the tap to function!
- Tipping woes : I always believed that a tip is a reward for good service rendered and should be at our discretion and is in no way a mandatory custom. But at some hotels, right from the concierge, to the house keeping guy to the guard at the entrance, or the driver of the cab, all expect you to pay a tip even if you are far from satisfied with their services.
- The ‘friendly’ staff : Smaller the hotel, bigger are the chances of meeting the most unprofessional, casual, uncaring and even rude staff. Expecting a friendly and a professional staff from a service industry is a tall order.
Do you have any hotel woes?
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