Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Ramblin', Gamblin'

I feel like, in the words of local pop icon Bob Seger, a ramblin’, gamblin’ man.

The ramblin’ part comes in because wife Wendy and I are joining with her sister’s family in an overnight cross-state fun trip to Ludington, Michigan on the Lake Michigan shoreline.

The gamblin’ part is a bit more complicated and involves a motel reservation I made on the internet.

I made the reservation on-line at the Days Inn web-site at a rate that included an AARP (American Association of Retired Persons) discount. Punched in all my demographic and credit card information, hit confirm and printed out my receipt.

Only then did I discover that my discount had disappeared somewhere between “reserve this room” and “thank you for making your reservation with Days Inn.” What happened? I had been charged $15 more than what I was quoted.

So I called customer service and they transferred me through to customer care, where I was on hold for about 15 minutes, leading me to believe that they don’t really care all that much. After mis-pronouncing the name of the town where I was staying (LOO-dington instead of LUDD-ington) and saying she couldn’t find the motel where I was staying (she was looking for a Super 8 when I told her specifically I was staying at a Days Inn), she said she would have to refer it to research.

For a $15 difference? Why not just change my reservation to reflect the rate I was SUPPOSED to get. Oh, well. They said it would take up to three days but I figure I could always cancel.

I told them to contact me via e-mail with their finding. They contacted me by phone instead, leaving a message . . . “when calling back, please refer to case 213—NO, that should be 231.”

When I called back, they said that the original discounted rate I saw on the internet was incorrect. A computer glitch, they called it. I was charged the correct rate. BUT . . . to make it right, they would refund me the $15 after my stay if I called them back and referred to case number 213, er, 231.

Now, the gamblin’ part comes in. I decided to go ahead and do what they advised. Fifteen dollars may not seem like a lot of money, but considering that my 2011 “found on the ground” fund contains only a bit more than that, if I gamble on their sincerity and lose, there goes all those stray quarters, dimes and pennies I’ve been picking up for the last seven months.

I guess I’m gonna let it ride.


Blogger Lynilu said...

That sort of thing is irritating. It's basically false advertising, regardless of whether it is human- or computer-error. After all, it may have been in the computer, but you can betcher bottom dollar a human put it there!!

Glad they saw it OUR way!

8:44 PM  
Blogger LZ Blogger said...

Big Dave ~ I need some of that "Found on the ground money!" ~ j///b
PS We have now joined the Big 10.

9:05 PM  
Blogger TechnoBabe said...

If you had gotten someone on the who really had some experience and knowledge, you would have had a resolution right then.

I will be interested to see how it goes after your stay. I like that you want to see it through to the rightful conclusion. It is the principle of the thing.

4:43 AM  
Blogger Merle said...

Hello Dave ~~ I rarely complain when I am overcharged, as I always seem to have seen the wrong advertisement
or something. I have to be really sure before I query anything.
I hadn't seen the irony of my ticker and my cousin Ticky. I hear pace makers are simple and good, but see what the cardiologist says next Monday. So long as I don't hear that four letter word -- Oops if I have to have surgery.
Take care and enjoy the Fun Run.
Regards, Merle.

4:56 AM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

LYNILU--My sentiments exactly. They better make it right or somebody's going to hear about it. Tripadvisor for a start.

LZBLOGGER--So you're a Husker fan? I've heard about you guys. Michigan had a good recruiting class this season but I'm not anticipating any big wins just yet. I do think we beat Nebraska the last time we played, but that was a long time ago.

TECHNOBABE--You're right there. The lady I talked to sounded more like a high school intern than an experienced customer service representative.

MERLE--Reading the ad wrong--that happens to my wife quite a bit. The product she bought wasn't the right size (10 ounces instead of 12, for example). She will complain if overcharged though.

9:12 AM  
Blogger Carine said...

Dave, we did one of those websites for our Miami hotel in Apr. It was a beautiful hotel, wonderful service, great views from our room BUT-Steve asked for a hotel close to So. Beach so we could have fun in that area.
Where was this beautiful place? about 30 min. away per the concierge! Also, there was nothing around us but a little strip mall w/ a local market, a subway and a (thank goodness)salad place! The hotel's coffee place had starbucks-but no pastries that were fresh, the gift store-sad array and the only restaurant was charging $15 for a "continental breakfast"! Oh, and for $10 round trip ea-they thankfully had a shuttle bus to a local outlet mall.
So yes in some ways we were happy, but in other ways-not so much.
Buyer beware and good luck!

1:35 PM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

CARINE--That's one thing I don't like about making reservations on-line. Even hotels that are ranked high in reviews by Tripadvisor and places like that can be in the middle of nowheresville. I've had it happen to me too.

4:21 AM  

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