It’s one of the most common questions I get as a consumer advocate: How did you get that job?
The answer: It started with coffee.
Seriously. My odyssey into advocacy began in 1984 with my first gig at a small business in Mountain View, Calif., that specialized in roasting gourmet coffee. It happened to be owned by my late uncle, who offered my younger brother and me a job and a place to stay in his spare bedroom.
You’re probably picturing me delivering lattes to the pilots at Moffett Air Field. Cushy job, right? Continue reading…
Leslie Kelley’s room rate at InterContinental’s Barclay New York was an astonishingly low $129 a night. Astonishing, because the published room rate is $329 a night. And astonishing, because of the extras the hotel allegedly tried to add to her bill to make up for some of the lost revenue.
At least that’s her story.
Here’s the rate she booked through Hotwire. As a reminder, Hotwire is an “opaque” site that doesn’t tell you which property you’re staying at until you’ve made a nonrefundable reservation by credit card.
Wow, that’s some deal.
But then things got interesting.
I guess they were not making any money off of us, since they tried to charge us more than $80 for a breakfast the day we were checking out — and that we did not have in their dining room. Got that taking off the bill as the signature on the receipt was nothing like my husbands and we were just heading out for breakfast. Don’t think we’d be eating again right after eating $80 worth of food there.
OK, that’s unfortunate, but it sounds like an honest billing error. Happens all the time, and the Barclay fixed it quickly. But then …
When we got home and got our credit card bill they had added another $3.25, not on the original check-out bill, for the coffee bags placed in the room.
Have you ever heard of a hotel charging for the coffee or tea that I previously thought was an amenity in the room? They certainly were not in the locked mini bar. What a bunch of cheapos! Is this a new practice of all hotels?
This is the first I’ve heard of a hotel charging for the in-room coffeemaker. Some unethical hotels add a “resort” fee that they say includes the use of an in-room coffeemaker, but I’ve never ever seen a fee for drinking coffee in your room.
Have you come across a surcharge for drinking coffee in your room?