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Check-in Time (Expectations)

Question asked by ssindc on Aug 17, 2015
Latest reply on Aug 18, 2015 by jm1991

Curious to hear from folks - what are your expectations with regard to check-in times?

 

I realize that early check-in is something different and, depending upon your perspective, that's a perk, great when you get it, a nice touch, or a potential for disappointment - but what about the posted check-in time? 

 

Do you treat your check-in time as a guarantee (or is merely a guideline or something for the hotel to aspire to)?  And, if your room isn't ready, what are your expectations? (Suck it up?  Wait patiently?  A free drink?)

 

Anyway, I hate to sound like a grumpy old man, but ... after an FAA caused flight cancellation/rerouting, my sense of humor was shot...  So, I'm on a quick trip to DFW for a cameo at a conference at a full service Marriott property. Folks coming from all over the country - I think all 50 states were represented... The hotel corresponded with me (and, apparently, other conferees) to arrange airport transportation/pick-up - which is great....  So I show up at the van, and there's a total of ten (10) of us riding the van - the hotel had airline arrival information for all of us, and the driver has a color coded list, so he's checking us off as we board the van.

 

    • Van pulls up at the hotel - I'm first out since I didn't need to wait for luggage - everyone else is staying longer than me.  There are two guests already at the desk in front of me, and only one clerk at the desk....  And ... she ... doesn't ... call ... for ... help .... so ... two minutes later, there are 12 guests in line (in the small lobby, which blocks the elevators) ... and one clerk at the desk...  Didn't they know we were coming?  (Again, the hotel had airline arrival information for all of us, and the van driver called someone before we left the airport....)  But, hey, I'm close to the front of the line, which is great, but I'm feeling for the poor folks a the back of the line....
    • But they're not checking people in...  They're merely asking for guests' mobile phone numbers - because the rooms aren't ready - and they'll call when the rooms are ready, and it's not gonna be in a few minutes....  (Granted, when I get in line, it's not quite 3:00 (the posted check-in time), but it's getting close....)
    • So, I ask if I can go hang out in Concierge Lounge - alas, gee, that doesn't open until 5:00 - so, no...  With the line behind me, I don't bother to mention that I've been admitted to Concierge Lounges all over the world in this situation - it's not uncommon for flights to arrive at inconvenient times - so this didn't seem like uncharted territory to me....)
    • So, I ask if I can have a key to the gym, so I can at least change.... I do get a key to the gym, and I change in the restroom.  (Restroom, but no shower, which is fine....  And there's no trash can in the rest room - and the toilet tank is broken/needs repair - but those are just quibbles.)
    • Conference (in the hotel) starts at 3:40.... No room yet...  By 4:00, a significant number of folks don't have their rooms yet...
    • Fortunately, when I went back to the desk after 7:30 pm, my room was ready...  But I never did get that phone call (or a text)....

 

Anyway, it all seemed a little weird to me, particularly for a large, conference property....  And it was all the more strange because the conference was in the hotel, and the hotel had such specific arrival information for all of us....

 

One more tidbit: it was a surprisingly harrowing ride from the airport to the hotel.  I don't expect a van to ride like a limousine, but no one was surprised when the poor woman sitting in the front row moved to the back of the van because she was getting uncomfortable and ill.  Not something you see every day (in a domestic, urban setting).  But I digress...

 

On a positive note, my room was fine, the view was impressive, the concierge lounge (once it opened) was modest but competent/well stocked (particularly since it was empty), and the (admittedly inexperienced) concierge lounge staffer was extremely nice.... 

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