People say I’m cynical, jaded. However, I remain naïve when it comes to aspects of the hotel industry. Such as my expectation that I’d get the room I paid for – two double beds – for my family of four at the very expensive Kahala Hotel and Resort in Honolulu over New Year. Not the case.
Checking in, after being kept waiting for quite some time, we were given a room with single king bed.
Back at reception I complain but discover there is no guarantee at the Kahala you will get the room you have booked, even if you have paid a King’s ransom.
The receptionist says it’s not a firm booking we have made but a “request” for two double beds in the same room.
I check the fine print and she is right.
Two double beds is classified as a “service request” in the paperwork we have received after paying in August.
They have our money but no-one from the property has contacted during this time to advise that the room we had booked, requested or whatever would not be available.
So, our expectation was that it would be.
But the hotel’s overbooked during their busiest period and is now bumping guests from room to room.
Things go from bad to worse and getting an adequate room turns out to be a really bad experience from everyone’s perspective.
In fact, the “double beds” we eventually get at the Kahala are just 1.4m wide, 500mm less than the official US double bed measurement of 1.9m (according to Wikipedia).
Anyway, serenity now, live and learn.
And the lesson?
Take nothing for granted and read the fine print.
Sometimes the hospitality industry isn’t so hospitable.