It may well be a skill set that I don’t possess but I have to praise the desk staff at the hotel this morning for maintaining their patience. The lady checking out in front of me commented that she was ‘doing well to be up given I was in the bar until 22:30’. She was passed her check to review and seemed taken aback by the charges. For those in the UK let me explain that the rack rate for a bottle of corona lager is £4.55 and you may have some sympathy.
‘This doesn’t look like my bill’ she tried, a difficult position to take when you have admitted consuming more alcohol than you planned. She pointed out some drinks that she didn’t recall ordering and apparently wouldn’t usually drink. The desk staff remained adamant but her next shot was inspired, ‘that looks similar to my bill last month, could the date be wrong?’ At this point she was passed the signed checks. Now at this point most people give up, after all the evidence is irrefutable, but no this was a fighter. To amused smiles exchanged between me and the receptionist she continued to protest the illegitimacy of the charges.
It was now that I found the real cause of the smirks from behind the counter, they revealed the secret weapon in their armoury. After the signatory evidence they had one more killer shot to deploy, one that I have not seen in some 6 years of using this hotel. The manager strode back to the desk, spun a monitor and showed exhibit 2 to the complainant. The evidence? CCTV of the purchase and shaky signature being exchanged in payment.
A nervous ‘oh apparently it was me’ was rapidly followed by a charge card with which to settle the charges. All of this was graciously received by a receptionist displaying the most polite and professional smile. That, my freinds, is what they call the consummate professional, not a hint of smug victory and I take my hat off to them for that.