Why I’m Looking for my Happy Place

On Thursday of this week I’m heading out-of-town to attend a work conference in Des Moines, IA. I know you’re all jealous.  I had booked my hotel room months ago, when I still worked for my previous company. So the reservation is being held on a corporate card I no longer have. But the expense had been submitted and paid so I assumed I was covered. Still, I thought I should be prudent and check with the hotel to verify they still have the reservation. I didn’t think it would turn in to the huge ordeal but it did. Here’s how the drama unfolded for me today.

My first call, to check on the reservation and that it’s been paid.

  • CSR Rep #1: Thank you for calling Sheraton West Des Moines, how can I help you?
  • Me: Hi! I was just calling to verify a reservation for this Thursday.
  • Rep #1: Ok, can you give me your last name?
  • Me: Sure (I spelled it out for him)
  • Rep: Yep, we have a reservation in here. You’re all set!
  • Me: Great! And it’s paid for right?
  • Rep: Um, no.
  • Me: What?
  • Rep: No, we  have a card holding it but no charges have been filed yet.

Crap. Now I suddenly have to come up with $170 I wasn’t planning on before. The other thing is that I’m sharing the room with 2 other gals and had told them it was covered already. So I felt bad to have to take that back and ask for money.

I broke the news and they were cool about it. One of them suggested I ask if there was a discount on rooms for those attending the conference. So I called back and got a different person.

  • CSR Rep #2: Thank you for calling Sheraton West Des Moines, how can I help you?
  • Me: I have a question about a reservation. Do you know if there is a room discount being offered to those attending the IIBA conference on Friday.
  • CSR Rep #2: Let me check…………..no it doesn’t look like there are any left.
  • Me: So there was a discount?
  • Rep #2: They had a block of rooms reserved and those are taken but I can get you a room without the discount.
  • Me: I already have a room reserved. Can you just apply the discount to my room?
  • Rep #2: There aren’t any rooms left.
  • Me: I know. I already have a room. Can you just give me the discount?
  • Rep #2: All the rooms are taken.

At that point I was ready to reach through the phone and strangle her. I stopped to take a deep breath and then told the gals that there was no conference discount.

What about a AAA discount? one of them asked. Ok, I can try that.

Before I called, I looked on AAA’s website and sure enough, that hotel has discounts for AAA members. Awesome! So I called back up.

  • CSR Rep #3: Thank you for calling Starwood Hotels, how can I help you?
  • Me: Hi! I was wondering if you could apply a AAA discount to a reservation I have.
  • Rep #3: Let me pull up your reservation. What’s your last name?
  • Me: [spelled it out for her]
  • Rep: We don’t have a reservation under that name.
  • Me: But I’ve called twice already today and they found it both times.
  • Rep: Hmm….can you give me the confirmation number that was emailed with your original reservation?
  • Me: No because I no longer have access to that email account.
  • Rep: Oh. Can you give me the credit card number it’s being held under?
  • Me: No, because I no longer have that card.

I’m sure by this point she had flagged me as suspicious and a problem customer.

  • Rep: Well I can’t find the reservation using your name
  • Me: How about my phone number?
  • Rep: Sure we can try that. [She enters it in]. Um, nope, nothing
  • Me: WELL WHAT THE HELL!!! [ok I didn’t say that but really wanted to]
  • Rep: This is for the Sheraton in Iowa City right?
  • Me: No, this is for the Sheraton in West Des Moines [and now I want to drop kick her]
  • Rep: Oh, ok let me check that…..nope, still nothing. I’m going to give you the phone number for the hotel directly. They should be able to help you. [she gives me the number]
  • Me: But this is the number I just called when I got you!
  • Rep: Oh, well you got transferred to reservation. Try Front Desk next time.

So I hang up and immediately go in search of something I can kick or punch. Finding nothing, I throw myself on the ground and have a tantrum. I learned that from Isabella. It’s not real effective for her but maybe it would be for me.

Once I calm down, I call the number THAT I HAD ALREADY DIALED 3 TIMES TODAY and asked for the front desk.

  • CSR Rep #4: Thank you for calling Sheraton West Des Moines, how can I help you?
  • Me: Hi! I was wondering if you could apply a AAA discount to a reservation I have.
  • Rep: Let me check…[he looks up the reservation, which he is able to find easily. Seriously, at this point they should have a hot key for me]. Um, it looks like there are no AAA discounts left for that night.
  • Me: So you can only give away a certain number a day?
  • Rep: Well it depends on how full we are and we’re booked up that night.
  • Me: But why should that matter? Shouldn’t I get it no matter how full you are?
  • Rep: Sorry, those are the rules.
  • Me: Well is there a conference discount for IIBA attendees? [pretending I didn’t already know the answer]
  • Rep: Let me look…um, no, no discount for that conference at all. But when you check in on Thursday ask again about AAA.

Oh sure, now he’s just teasing me. Whatevs. I’ve been beaten down by you people enough today.

At this point, I’ve about given up. My last attempt is to see if my new boss will pay for the hotel. $170 to this company is like pocket change for me. If I had pocket change, which I don’t because Isabella has it all in her piggy bank.

If she says no then I officially give up. But I tell you this, if I get to that conference on Friday and find out other people got a conference or AAA discount, HEADS ARE GOING TO ROLL!

And then I’m going to steal all the soaps, towels, paper, pens, toilet paper and shower caps I can find.

IN YOUR FACE STARWOOD HOTELS!

If you liked this, you might also like:

Epic Shopping Fail

Don’t Have it Your Way

The Island

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2 thoughts on “Why I’m Looking for my Happy Place

  1. Pingback: Not a Pleasure to Meet You « Team Trader Mom

  2. Pingback: The Customer Is Always Right! Right? « Team Trader Mom

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