Category: talesfromthefrontdesk

TalesFromTheFrontDesk: Your Shower Raped Me!

It started like any normal day shift…checking guests out…wishing them a good day…contorting my face into a semi-genuine smile…nice and calm.

Then she arrives…woman in her mid 40’s…disheveled hair…clothes with the slept-in look…and a wild look in her eye.

At first she says nothing. She looks at me as if she were watching my eyes for clues that I might be reptilian. Then she says…“I know they put you up to it.”

(Oh fuck me…there is no way this isn’t ending badly.)

Excuse me ma’am?

“How could you do this to me?” she asks.

I’m not sure what you mean ma’am. How can I help you?

“I WANT A REFUND RIGHT NOW OR I’M SUING YOU AND HAVING YOUR WHOLE STAFF THROWN IN JAIL!”

Me: … Ummm Well maybe if you tell me wha…

“LOOK AT THIS!” She holds out her finger.

On her fingernail there appear to be a wax shaving.

Me: What is it ma’am?

“THIS IS EVIDENCE OF THE CRIME.” “I was taking a shower and found this on the bottom of my soap dish. It is UNCLEAN. It has germs of some other guest! Probably another man! His skin cells are in this!!!

(She is fluctuating between fury and crying at this time)

She goes on… Part of his body is in this! Don’t you understand? What’s wrong with you?! I was in there naked!! His skin cells were TOUCHING my naked flesh!!! It is like I was raped!

(So at this point I’ve concluded that clearly she is mentally unstable and I’m working on what response is best…)

Then she proclaims in a near scream…"I’M CALLING THE POLICE FOR THIS RAPE!”

All the other guests who have just come down to check out are looking on at me in horror.

(I’m thinking…this job doesn’t pay enough.)

“Well ma’am…I can certainly understand that the shower cleanliness issue would be upsetting…I’d feel the same way. I’d be happy to have our manager speak with you personally if you wouldn’t mind having a seat briefly in the lobby.”

“NO! I DON’T WANT TO SIT ANYWHERE IN THIS FILTHY PLACE…I’M CALLING THE POLICE!!”

(So…at this point…evil me whispers in my ear…wouldn’t it be hilarious to see the guys in white jackets drag her out of the lobby in a straight jacket?…I tried not to listen, but after 3 seconds of my maximum resistance…I thought…fuck it…let’s push her over the edge.)

Me: “That sounds like an excellent idea ma’am. Call them.”

She was visibly taken aback by my response…paused…then said in a lower tone…“No…your trying to trick me. They are in on it, aren’t they? Just give me the refund!”

(At this point I’m thinking…I know I’m fired so why not just say whatever the hell I want…right?“)

Evil Me: "Oh ma’am…how could I? No…I must insist we call the police if you feel that our shower raped you. We have to consider the safety of our other guests. We can’t let the shower get away with that! I must insist on calling the police.”

Her face turns slightly pale then she says…Nevermind…I’m leaving!!

Evil Me: “Oh but ma’am…are you sure? I’d be happy to call them for you….”

She vanishes around the corner…silence.

I then turn my best customer smiling face to the next guest and ask…as if none of that just happened…“How was your stay?”

Guest: “Ummm…ok.”

Wonderful sir…you are all set. Have a great morning!“

The rest of the guests checked out with a shocked semi-silent look of WTF just happened.

And then the lobby was back to blissful calmness again. Just me and the mind-numbing elevator music in the lobby.

POST SCRIPT: The managers and owner watched the security video over and over laughing hysterically at the lengths I’d go to in order to avoid giving a refund. Not only did I not get fired, they gave me employee of the year. It was a shitty little 6 inch trophy and a meaningless certificate, but it came with a $50 Walmart gift certificate…so not too bad, I guess 😀

By: GrinninGremlin

TalesFromTheFrontDesk: I’m not working today because I’m eating

Is there a daily post limit?? because I’ve just discovered this and I have SO MANY stories.

Anyways… Backstory: My hotel recently (as in 2 weeks ago) hired a new BB host. Some young 18 year old. This is his first job so we aren’t expecting much out of him but we were in desperate need of a host. So of course he was struggling a bit but it just takes time to learn and we understand that.

Aright two weeks into this job he has NCNS 3 times. We are all kind of baffled and just like wtf. Let me just walk you through how each ncns went down… keep in mind he wouldn’t answer any phone calls he would only text. M- Manger DA- dumbass boy

M: “Hey DA, it’s 7:45 you were due in at 7:00. Where are you?”

DA: “oh I’m not coming in today, I half to watch my dog” ( yes he said “half”)

M: “that’s not a reasonable excuse not to show up. You could have at least called off a few hours ago so we had someone to replace you.”

DA: “my bad”

(Wrote up) …..

M: “Hey DA, you were due in at 7:00, where are you?”

DA: “ I’m off today”

M: “Perhaps you looked at the wrong schedule because looking at it now and you are definitely scheduled for today.”

DA:“ no I’m not”

(Just stopped responding after that.. wrote up) …. (Our manager hasn’t made it in yet so our FDA got a hold of him although this time he answers the call)

FDA: “Hey DA, its FDA. Where are you you’re supposed to be here!”

DA: “oh I’m eatin”

FDA: “ARE YOU SERI-”

(DA hangs up the phone) …. I didn’t think people could really be so ignorant!

By: lucyhorror

TalesFromTheFrontDesk: That’s YOUR Job

Hello, TalesFromTheFrontDesk! For background, I work overnights at a boutique hotel in a major metropolitan city in the midwest. The hotel is on the 40th floor of our city’s old stock exchange building. There are, however, lots of other companies in the building. Mostly trading companies. As such, security is pretty tight for our building with building passes and round-the-clock security guards. Due to our location and proximity to both the city’s financial district as well as its popular tourist locations, we tend to get quite a few affluent guests. Last night, I witnessed what had to be the most egregious display of ignorance and overestimated sense of importance.

There’s a temporary building pass we give to hotel guests to get them through the turnstiles and into the building, so they can go up to the hotel/gym (a full-service athletic club on the third floor) without having to be let in by a front desk agent every time. After hours (11pm-4am), you have to swipe your building pass when you get in the elevator to get it to go anywhere at all.

Around 11:30 last night, I saw couple standing by the bank of elevators. They had been standing there for a while, and I typically know that means they couldn’t figure out the elevator. They turned to me and began to yell across the lobby to ask me why the elevator wouldn’t work. The lobby is quite large with high ceilings, so it’s very echoey. Especially when there’s no one in it. They obviously couldn’t hear me, but they kept trying to yell over me. So I leave the front desk and step up to the glass partition. I have not yet gone through the turnstiles. I tried explaining the situation to them from behind the glass partition.

At first, they didn’t step any closer to me. But then they realized they still couldn’t hear me at all, so they finally meandered up to me. Conversation was short, but was as follows

Me: There’s a red sensor on the left side of the elevator. When you step in, you have to swipe your building pass on that sensor for the elevator to go anywhere. You’ll hear it beep. That’s how you know it worked. Guest (in a tone that was so conceited, I didn’t know it was possible): Oh no WE don’t have to do that. That’s YOUR job.

I honestly skipped a breath. I know he thinks he’s at a fancy ass hotel (and I guess, yeah, it’s pretty nice), but he got a cheap rate online and he’s only paying $150 for the room. We give people the building pass so that they don’t HAVE to wait around for the front desk agent. Was he bothered that I didn’t carry him on a Roman litter through the lobby and up to the hotel myself? Is that the problem? Cause I’d do it, but only if he paid me a couple thousand bucks. I had to swipe in through the turnstiles and badge him into the elevator myself.

TL;DR: Guy thinks he’s too cool to use an elevator properly.

By: pineappleseashells

TalesFromTheFrontDesk: My Craziest Encounter(so far…)

So in October, I’ll have been working as a FDA for a year. I started as NA and moved to days around January this year. I’ve had some wackjobs, but none have topped the psycho couple I encountered last month. It was a Sunday and I was stuck working by myself. My FDM and GM, for some god awful reason, are both off on Sundays. Which leaves me to deal with complaints and shoveling out the “my GM will be in tomorrow’s” all by my lonesome. We have a contract with a nearby casino and Sundays are THE busiest day for check outs. About 8am, an older woman walks up to the desk and before I could even finish saying “good morning” she cut me off with a “IT IS NOT A GOOD MORNING!!!” …Okay, here we go…at 8am. She starts in about how I refused to give her a receipt the day before and she DEMANDS to get her receipt. I had been training a new hire on 3-11 the day before and had indeed told her I could provide a receipt. I explained to her, again, that because her reservation was prepaid online I could not provide a receipt and that the booking website should be emailing it if they haven’t already. She argues that she’s never heard that before, yada yada. By this point she’s slamming her hands on the counter and screaming. Her husband walks in the front doors and asks what’s going on. “She will NOT give me my receipt!” I swear to shit, that old man HOVERED ten feet to the desk where he then picked up our bell and raised it above his head to throw it at me. My immediate response was throw my hands up in defense, which prompted him to put the bell right back where-the-fuck he got it. The two of them continue yelling and cursing and demanding for another few minutes before tweedle-dee declares “Well if you won’t give me my receipt, I’ll just have to call the police!” Uh…okay. I tell her that although it don’t thinks it’s quite necessary, she’s free to give them a call, but the policy still stands. The kicker was when she asked me what the non-emergency number was. Yes, let me give you this phone number so that you may send me to jail over a piece of paper! I give her the number and they storm outside while the guests having breakfast stare with mouths agape. I shrug it off thinking they’d be on their pissy way. Nope, up show the cops. I hear her yelling outside and see the husband flailing his arms before the cop steps in to talk to me. He asks what’s going on and I tell him the same thing I told the guests. He asks if we can make an exception, I tell him “No. That gentleman nearly assaulted me with a brass bell. I want them off the property.” Out he goes and more screaming ensues. After about ten minutes, the old hag loads it to her car and they drive away. The best part? This nutjob called customer care and told them I took her CC and license and made copies of them. Just…what? Thankfully I’m clear of any accusations because, yknow, there are cameras everywhere that are always recording. I hope and pray that this is the worst thing I’ll deal with as a FDA, but know that it probably isn’t.

By: babybluebukowski

TalesFromTheFrontDesk: I have a twofer for ya: part 2

2. Guy makes an online res and within the hour shows up to check in. I ask for ID and CC and he presents them. But the card declines. I tell him that it might be that the bank froze the card because he was traveling and they thought it was fraudulent. Happens ALL THE TIME. If he’d like to call the bank I’ll wait.

He walks off and apparently makes the call. He wants to know the total I am trying to charge so I give that number.

Few min later he walks back up and tells me his card is over drafted and that he needs help. I say that we can do a cash transaction but I need $100 for the deposit on top of the room charges. He’ll get it back as long as he doesn’t party to hard in the room.

This guy is very soft spoken.

He tells me he’s been here a few times and he’s not been a problem in the past. I don’t bother looking him up because I don’t really care. It won’t change anything based on that info. He doesn’t have extra for a deposit. His res came in through Booking dot Com and I have a copy of his ID. (Copy came out sharp and clean too. Nice.) I call up Miss Moneypenny cause she knows a lot of things and she’s the FDM. I ask if there is anything she would be willing to do for the guy. We agree to let him check in. It’s a 1 nighter. He can’t extend unless he pays the deposit. And we’ll just take a chance. We WILL be inspecting the room before he leaves, but really, he can just leave and there’s nothing we are holding for collateral. But anyhow. We’ll take the chance.

I explain to him, in short, easy terms, but no sugar coating, that we are taking a chance. If there is any damage to the room then he will be blacklisted for the whole brand. (Our brand doesn’t do this but he doesn’t know that.) And he gets hesitant. He says “Well I’m not sure I want to stay here now.” and I take this to mean that he doesn’t like the distrust I am expressing. But seriously, he wouldn’t let anyone else into his space without trust, right? Whatever. “If you are wanting to cancel your booking, I completely understand. Call up Booking Dot Com and have them call me. Otherwise they will double charge your room as a no show. I will tell them to cancel without penalty and you will be free to make any other arrangements you would like.”

He decided to just stay with us anyhow. ugh

But now he is, so far, quite the gentleman. He has asked for a charger and we have a few that have been sitting in lost and found for months. I loan him that one. He has asked for a bottle of water. I have given him one (for free). And otherwise, he’s been extremely nice to me, courteous, and not irate. I hope he turns out to be a good guest by tomorrow.

By: BillieJackson

TalesFromTheFrontDesk: I have a twofer for ya.

1.

Guest has a reservation made through Central Res and it is NOT a prepaid. We do offer those but this one is NOT one. I need to take the payment at the desk. He doesn’t have the company card because it was suppose to be handled with someone else. (Accounts payable or whatever). I ask for ID and CC and he starts humphin and harumphin and everything out of his mouth is now passive aggressive one liners. He starts to make a call to the daughter of the company owner (apparently its a small company or something so, no offices or whatever) and this dude “has stayed with [us] SOOO many times before and this has never been an issue.” You know the drill.

I say this: “There are two types of reservations. Prepaid and Postpaid. This is not a prepaid reservation. Therefore I need a form of payment at checkin. Or I need proof that I have permission to take a stranger’s money.” I mean, I don’t know how hard this is to comply with. It’s not my fucking fault the reservation was made this way. It came from Central Res. Just fucking work with me here. I promise, I am not out to destroy your life.

The daughter isn’t in a position to help and he just would HATE to call the mother and bother her with something so trivial. (I mean… you COULD sleep in your rental car but… That’s your choice dude. This is only as trivial as YOU want to make it.)

But he calls her anyhow. And he won’t even tell her the solution I have already offered. He’s just gossiping right in front of my face about how much this sux and what’s happening. Screw you buddy. I have more people to deal with. I promptly ignore the dude and log in on the other computer and start helping other people. I can play the passive game ALL FUCKING DAY LONG asshole. And I will win. I am the evolved creature here. So there.

He finally tells the woman that she needs to talk to me once he realizes that he is getting NOTHING accomplished his way. I take the phone and I am the POSTER CHILD for happiness and I exude excellent customer service. “Hello there! My name is Billie. I work the front desk here at the hotel.” And she asks me what we can do. “Yes, Ma’am. It’s really easy, actually. This reservation was not a prepaid. I don’t have any physical or digital proof that you are allowing me to take your money. I just need a form signed by you. That’s all.” She is the sweetest lady, I swear.

But she’s computer illiterate. She has a fax machine but I can’t get the fax to go through. She has to hang up, wait for the call, type a code in and she has an answering machine. Then when I try to tell her that the answering machine is picking up instead of something else I have to use the same number and she’s ignoring it thinking its the fax.

I tell the dude that I need him to reach out to her because my method isn’t working. He hands me his cell and she goes, “I need to turn that off. Try again.” So I do. I hear her actually answer the phone now and she just goes “hello? Hello” without doing the code!!! omGOSH. so I tell the dude to reach out one more time.

Woman tells me to just email. sigh. I wished I could have done that to begin with. but when she replies to the email she goes “I couldn’t get the form to work. So… I [card holder’s name] do hereby give permission to use card [number and expiration date] for the guest [gust name]. blah blah blah.” Holy crap woman. It was a word document. seriously?

Now. during all of this crap the dude is all like, “I need to talk to a manager, right now.” And Papo has just done a night audit shift (and will be doing another that night) and I don’t know if he is sleeping or not. Papo will be in in about an hour and a half. But this dude is insisting. So I make the call. I tell him that I have a guest who thought his reservation was prepaid but it’s not. He doesn’t have a card to put on the reservation and we are attempting to get the form but it’s taking time. I tell Papo that the guest would like to speak with him and hand the phone over. But the guest goes, “No. I will talk to him when he gets here.”

OMFG seriously??? So I get back on there with Papo and tell him what’s up. Papo gives me some instruction concerning this matter and we hang up. After the email thing I go ahead and let the dude into the room because I have SOMETHING in writing and we can pursue the official form in the daylight hours. This guy has told me repeatedly that we will be getting a neg review so I silently delete his email from the res. sneaky desk agent is sneaky

When I tell Papo later that night about the neg review he goes, “If he mentions it to me I will tell him to PLEASE send one, because that will let Central Res know that we were following the proper policy.” This was last night and I haven’t seen Papo yet, today. I hope he calls at some point to check up with the hotel so I can find out how the rest of that went down.

The day shift obtained the proper form and it even has an open ended date so we can use it in the future. The daughter took care of it, I think.

By: BillieJackson

TalesFromTheFrontDesk: “don’t you provide extra elite members priority over the rooms they want?”

i hate the entitled high-tiered members. (i’m sure everyone does)

but i wanted to reach through the phone and slap this lady.

she calls the hotel because she is trying to book a room for next week. but we don’t have any king rooms available, only double queens. this is almost always the case during the week, and we oversell on the kings.

so she wants to know if we make the super elite member a priority and give them the kings. i have to explain to her that, no, we do not do that because every elite member coming in wants a king and we just cannot accommodate everyone because we don’t have enough rooms.

but i will be coming here every week.

i get that, but so are our other elite members, and they’ve been coming here for months/years longer than her. i will not bump someone so she can have a king because they have booked their rooms weeks in advance. i also tell her she is more than welcome to speak with our GM since he is the only person who can decide to force in her room type. normally he does not do that – you get the room you book. so i hope he stuck to it if she called him.

it was also the fact that she pushed her status thinking it was going to make me change my mind and give her the room she wants. but i am very stubborn, and once i make a decision i don’t like to change it.

a lot of my regulars are understanding when they don’t get the exact room they want. and when one opens up i will take care of them.

By: bunnyrut

TalesFromTheFrontDesk: A courtesy call turns into a sexual harassment claim

I’m working a 3-11 shift for the first time in months. Like many hotels, we call all our guests about 30 minutes after they check in to make sure their room is to their standards. This is usually a very brief call. Today was an exception on so many levels.

We had a muslim family check in. Husband, wife, 3 kids. About 20 minutes later I call their room and a little girl answers. I ask if mom or dad are available and after what sounds like the kid smacking the phone several times in to a wall, I’m now talking to mom.

These people aren’t a muslim family from the US. They’re from the UAE on vacation (I’m assuming). The mom does not have a very good grasp on English (the husband knows enough English to get by) and I try my best to ask her if everything is all right in her room. She says yes. I tell her if there’s anything she needs I’m here all night, give me a call anytime. At this point she freaks out in Arabic and eventually hangs up. I wish it ended there.

10 minutes later a cop pulls up and walks to the elevator. He comes back down with the husband and wife. Wife is in tears. Husband is furious. The cop asks me what I said to the wife because she claims I’ve sexually harassed her. I’m totally at a loss for words and tell the cop I only spoke to her on the phone. Eventually another cop arrives and she speaks Arabic luckily. I don’t know what she said exactly, but their attitudes changed immediately. The husband apologized and said his wife misunderstood what I meant by: “If you need anything, I’m here all night. Give me a call anytime”

I really miss Audit.

By: Jewpracabra

TalesFromTheFrontDesk: That time I was accidently racist towards a guest

Had a very awkward encounter with a guest. For context, we had several large corporate groups staying with us for weeks at a time. These groups were not related. One of these groups consisted of businessmen from India. Like many of our business groups, they tended to stop by the desk every day when they returned and all ask for a complimentary bottle of water.

Now the unique thing about our Indian groups is that they all request their water room temperature. It took a while to get used to, but eventually you just got in the habit of handing the Indians room temperature water.

Cue non Indian group returning from work one day. They all stop by for water, and I start handing bottles to them one by one, freezing cold right from the fridge. I get to the end of the line, to an Indian-American guest. I start to hand him the cold bottle, see him and say “Oh”, snatch it back and walk over and get him a room temperature bottle.

Not realizing what I’ve done, I close the fridge and then look up at the group, who are all looking at me with puzzled expressions. the Indian-American gentleman speaks up to ask if he could please have a cold water bottle like everyone else, and I realize the shitty thing I’ve just done. I consider trying to explain myself, decide against it, and just apologize and hand him a cold bottle. Definitely not my smartest Front Desk moment.

By: arrogantsword

TalesFromTheFrontDesk: Group blocks do not work that way

Ok so someone called saying “your website says no rooms available, but I have a wedding block.” I don’t really blame the person for not knowing this, but group blocks mean you have a certain number of rooms that we can offer a specific rate for, and you have to book within a certain period of time to get that rate. We aren’t just going to sit on the room and not sell it just in case special little you decides to make a reservation a week before the wedding when BAR is hundreds of dollars higher. Follow the instructions you’re given. This person did NOT get that sold out means sold out.

By: Neetz512