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Overcharged and Never Refunded
Posted by on
NORTH LITTLE ROCK, ARKANSAS -- To Whom It May Concern at Holiday Inn Express:

I have had a very unfortunate experience with the Holiday Inn Express North Little Rock on McCain Boulevard. I stayed there in September 2009 and I was traveling on business. My company had booked the hotel for me and paid for it via Expedia. When I checked into the hotel, the front desk associate asked me for my credit card for incidentals. I didn’t argue it because I travel all over the country and being asked for my credit card for incidentals at check in is a normal occurrence.

In October, I noticed the Holiday Inn Express North Little Rock had charged my credit card for $534.03. I called the hotel to ask them to remove the charge since my stay had already been paid for by my company. The woman I spoke to on the phone was very rude and told me that I shouldn’t have given my credit card to the person at check in because once the hotel is paid for, a card shouldn’t need to be swiped. How unfortunate. I called and asked them in a calm manner to find out how to get this charge reimbursed and I received a rude response to the problem at hand that had been caused by one of the hotel employees. She then told me she could not handle the problem and the person who could handle it was not there. She told me to call back in the morning to get a hold of the manager.

The next morning, I called to speak with the manager, but she was unavailable, so I left a voicemail. I didn’t hear back from her after I left a voicemail. I called back the next day and finally got ahold of the manager. She was very nice to me and told me she would go ahead and get the charge taken off my card and that I would see it come off very soon.

On October 25, 2009, there was another charge on my card of $534.03 and then immediately after there was a credit on my card for $534.03. So, instead of refunding my stay on my card, the card was charged again for the full amount and the charge that happened on October 25th, was refunded on October 25th. Unfortunately, this also meant the original charge from September 2009 was STILL on my card and had never been refunded.

In the weeks that followed between October 25th and December 15th, I have made over 14 calls to the hotel trying to get this matter resolved. Every single time I have called, I have been told that the person who deals with credit card matters is not there. I have been told that I need to call back on a Friday, I have been told to call back in the morning and was given specific times to call between and mysteriously, the woman was not there during this time either. I was also told on a few different occasions that the staff was not allowed to give out other staff members work schedule so they couldn’t tell me a best time to call back to get the matter resolved. Another time when I called they told me they couldn’t find my old reservation on file or see anywhere that I had stayed at their hotel at which point they cut me off, and told me to call another hotel in North Little Rock because I had called the wrong place. This was completely inaccurate since I had been in contact with same hotel the entire time. It was just another excuse for the hotel workers to not deal with me on the phone. I was also told on a separate occasion, that I shouldn’t have let them swipe my card at check in. This was the second or third time I was given that same rude response for something that in no way was my fault. On another occasion, I explained my situation and who I was (to the same rude woman who told me that I shouldn’t have let them swipe my card at check in) and when I was finished, she just said, “OK thanks,” and made every effort possible to not stay on the phone with me. After calling over 14 times and introducing myself and my situation every single time to the same employees, they knew who I was and why I was calling and yet they still never had a viable solution for me. One time I was told the manager would take care of the charge and I would receive a fax when it was refunded to my card. When the charge was still not refunded, I tried calling again and again to find out why the charge had not come off my card and why I still hadn’t received a fax. I was told by another male employee that the number they had on file for my fax was a bad number and the contact number I had left each time I called was not able to be reached. He told me the manager had left for the day and if she had time she would try to fax it to me again. Time and again, I was given excuses and was dismissed when I tried to get this matter resolved in a calm and reasonable fashion.

Once I became fed up with trying to reach unreachable managers, I called the corporate help line to see if anything could be done for me. While the woman on the phone was very nice to me, she let me know there was absolutely nothing that they could do to help me and the manager of the specific hotel in North Little Rock would have to refund this charge. I asked if there was any way whatsoever to ensure the manager get back in contact with me and she said they would send a message directly to the manager to resolve the situation and that the manager would be calling me within 24-48 hours.

Needless to say, the situation was never resolved, the manager never called me, and I am left with a charge of $534.03 on my credit card, accruing interest by the day. In the meantime, I was left with no choice, but to call Visa directly to dispute the charge. Currently, I have Visa working on a credit card dispute for me in order for me to get my money back that is rightfully mine. In addition to not being able to pay off my credit card due to this charge, my fiancé and I are currently unable to make reservations for our honeymoon because it needs to go on the same credit card that the Holiday Inn Express North Little Rock charge is on.

I have never in my entire life been given such an awful run around with a problem caused by a company. The worst part is that in no way is this my fault. I have spent countless amounts of time away from work attempting to get a hold of the manager at the Holiday Inn Express North Little Rock during business hours. This is costing me valuable time at work, stress, finance charges on my credit card, and costing me a higher price to pay for my honeymoon because I was not able to book in the time that my travel agent found a deal for me. This is, by far, the worst experience I have ever had with any company. I have been traveling the country for years on business and this is absolutely inexcusable. The employees at Holiday Inn North Little Rock have cost the Holiday Inn chain a considerable amount of business and have earned the chain a bad rapport.
     
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Anonymous on 01/20/2010:
WHY are you still fooling with the hotel? I would have called the card issuer and filed a charge back immediately when the refund was not given.

I too have traveled before with my stay paid for by my employer. I have never once handed over my card. I always say I am so and so with so and so company. My reservation and payment show up in the system.
skelly39 on 01/21/2010:
What Lady said.
bargod on 01/21/2010:
The room may have already been paid for but they need a credit card in case there is damage to the room. What an awful experience though.
Anonymous on 01/21/2010:
bar, they already have a card in case of damage: the employers.
bargod on 01/21/2010:
The OP says the company booked and paid via Expedia. So it's quite conceivable that they didn't have a credit card on file. In the end though it's the awful customer service that will insure that company doesn't deal with them again.
The Hurricane on 01/25/2010:
As someone who works at a hotel, let me just start by saying that even though the room was already paid for by your company through Expedia, a credit card is still required to be swiped for incidentals. Them telling you otherwise after the fact seems to me like they're just trying to duck taking the blame for what, ultimately, was their own fault. If their set up is anything like the one at my hotel, when your card was swiped for incidentals, it sounds like the front desk clerk at the time didn't switch the primary card back to the Expedia temp card like they were supposed to. Honestly this has happened at my hotel before (usually due to inexperience on the part of newer employees), but is easy enough to fix if your card was charged by mistake. This entire situation is the hotel's fault and you should not be stuck footing the outrageous amount that you were charged due to their oversight or negligence. Good luck in getting your money back. I hope this ends well for you.
The Hurricane on 01/25/2010:
LadyScot, if the room was booked through Expedia, the hotel would not have access to the card used to pay for it. That's why they had to ask for one at check in for incidentals. When a room is booked using Expedia, the customer pays Expedia who then issues a "virtual card" number to the hotel for payment.
Anonymous on 01/26/2010:
Hurricane, would this 'virtual card' not be the only needed one for incidentals?
The Hurricane on 01/26/2010:
LadyScot, the "virtual card" is a one-time-use number that is only authorized for the amount of the room itself.
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Charged For Fictional Pets!
Posted by on
HOT SPRINGS, ARKANSAS -- Company Name:
Holiday Inn Express
Company Contact: 1 800 Holiday
Front Desk Clerk / Corporate Customer Service

Company Address:
4253 Central Avenue
Hot Springs AR 38011
Country:
United States
Company Phone
501-520-6400

Incident
My wife, son and I stayed at the establishment on 1/16/2009 - 1/18/2009 as part of a Cub Scout outing to the Mid America Science Museum. We arrived around 9pm on 1/16/2009 checked into our room. On 1/17/2009 4 other families from our Cub Scout Pack arrived and we toured the museum and they then too checked into the hotel. On 1/18/2009 I woke up to find my bill under the door as expected. Upon reviewing the charges I noticed a $200.00 Pet Charge added to my bill and highlighted in yellow. Assuming this was a typo or bookkeeping error I went down to the front desk and asked the front desk clerk, Leah to please remove the charge from my bill as I have no pets in the room. Much to my surprise she immediately displayed a defensive attitude and indicated that the housekeeper, Ana, had seen evidence of dog hair on a blanket in our room and the charge would not be removed. I immediately registered what she was referring to.

My 7 year old son had brought his favorite blanket and pillow from home and both of those items do indeed have dog hair on them from our dogs at home. I explained the situation to her detailing that there was no dog in the room or dog hair on any of the hotel furnishings, and that the housekeeper must have been referring to my son\'s blanket. I asked that she please send someone up to the room to verify. Leah indicated that there was no one to send and that she could not leave the front desk and the charges would not be removed. I then asked to speak to the General Manager On Duty listed on the sign behind her: [snip]. She told me that there was no manager currently on duty and I would have to wait to speak to him/her on Monday.

I asked if she would call him and she refused. I returned to my room, took pictures of all the hotel furnishings, sheets, towels, floor etc as best I could as I could see where this argument was heading. I then contacted 1 800 HOLIDAY and was given case number: 2301228. They attempted to call the local Holiday Inn and have Leah reach the manager on duty but were also unsuccessful. They indicated that I would have to contact them via the case number on Monday. I again asked Leah to contact the General Manager, and she again refused and threatened to contact security if my wife and I did not leave the front desk area immediately. Having no other legal recourse at this point I followed those directions and checked out.

On Monday I contacted 1 800 Holiday again and was told that the manager could not be reached and to please allow 48 hours from the time of the incident for a resolution. On Tuesday (today) I called again and they indicated that the local manager had indicated there was evidence of dog hair according to the housekeeper, and the charge would not be removed. The Corporate office indicated they would stand by the local branch and would not remove the charge and suggested if I had issues that I contact my credit card company and dispute the charge. I have contacted Discover card and asked that the charge be disputed, and they have made a note on my account to this effect. I still have to wait for the official charges to hit my bill before it can be taken further. I have since registered a formal complaint with the Better Business Bureau and several other complaint sites to warn prospective customers.

I have pictures, and 4 other families who will vouch for the fact that there was no dog in that room along with the check that I have written to my dog sitter back home to watch the dogs while I was away for the weekend, and no one will take any action. I find these business practices very frustrating and will never stay at another establishment owned or operated by Holiday Inn.

Damage Resulting
$200.00 additional charge to my credit card. Being called a liar and accused of having fictional pets in front of my Cub Scout Pack of which I am one of the leaders.

1/28/2009 - Update
I received a survey from International Hotels Group (IHG) yesterday regarding my feelings on my stay at the Holiday Inn Hot Springs. I answered the survey and then noticed at the bottom a generic note that said something to the effect of "we thank you for your business" signed the Senior Vice President of Holiday Inn Brands. Being in I.T. myself, I figured their email formats were probably first.last@domain.com so I tried it and was able to mail him directly. I expressed my concerns, and he emailed me back almost immediately with a sincere apology and promise to get to the bottom of the issue. This morning, a lady from his office contacted me twice regarding the issue and promised to resolve the issue through the credit card company request and enrolled me in the Premier Club along with a complimentary 15,000 points equating to a free stay at one of their properties. It is unfortunate that I had to go all the way to the top of the food chain to get this resolved, however, the gentleman was very cordial and seemed to genuinely care that my issue was not treated with respect and prompt resolution. I will not mark this item as resolved until I can verify the charge has been removed from my account, but I can say that once I got to the right people the level of interest did improve.
     
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Anonymous on 01/20/2009:
Since you have proof your dogs were not with you, this should be a slam-dunk. I know there are easier measures, but the reality is, you were slandered in front of your young charges. This one is worth spending $100 on an attorney's demanding removal of the charge and reimbursement for legal expenses. Thus far, you did everything right. Now, follow through.
Anonymous on 01/20/2009:
I went though the booking procedure and there's no mention of an extra pet charge. Maybe their charge is also fictional if you know what I mean.
Anonymous on 01/20/2009:
Excellent point PassingBy!! The maid noticed 'dog hair' on the bed clothing. How did the maid know it was 'dog' hair? How did the desk person know it wasn't 'dog hair' from a preceding guest? Not wanting to discuss it and threatening the questioning consumer with the police (malicious prosecution) sure makes this look like an attempted shakedown of the poster. Kudos, PassingBy!
bargod on 01/20/2009:
The dog hair was on the kids blanket and pillow from home. So the hair(other than a few stays) wasn't even on the hotel bedding. Certianly doesn't warant a 200$ charge.
Fight the good fight on this one.
ChargedForFictionalPet on 01/20/2009:
Thank you for all the support. I have sent in the pictures to be posted with this article. Does anyone have any comment on the proper way to proceed from here? I really have no experience with lawyers other than the notion that it generally costs one more to fight something than it'd be worth in the long run, but I do not want to let this slip by as I feel they definitely did act in a irresponsible manner.
Anonymous on 01/20/2009:
I would also dispute the charge with your credit card company. They will probably go to bat for you.
Anonymous on 01/20/2009:
Poster - see if a local law school has a legal aid clinic if you want to pursue the civil law aspects. But, remember, there are law enforcement resources available at no cost to you. A lazy department may tell you this is a 'civil matter'. NOT entirely. There is reason to suspect that this hotel is shaking down guests for $200 with specious pet charges. Ask, politely, that the hotel be investigated for this possibility. All you need to do is fill out a police report. Good luck!!
Principissa on 01/20/2009:
This is a shake down plain and simple. The only evidence that they have of a pet is from a blanket and pillow brought from your home! The pet hairs were not on the hotel linens and there was no other evidence of an animal. I say you clearly deserve a refund. You did the right thing by disputing this with your credit card company and I hope that they refund that 200.00 bucks. And the desk clerk who threatened to call the police on you needs to be fired if that is how she treats customers who are questioning the policies.
Soaring Consumer on 01/20/2009:
Voted helpful. As stated before, dispute the charge with your credit card company. If they have the nerve to try suing you in small claims, file a counterclaim. Good luck.
ponderstibbons on 01/26/2009:
Try emailing Christopher Elliott, professional travel ombudsman. http://www.elliott.org/
Many times companies like this will back down rather than being publicly embarrassed on his website.
wallflower on 01/26/2009:
I agree with the above people to contact your credit card
company.They will go to bat for you.We had a similar case
with another chain where they charged our credit card $250
for smoking in a hotel room.Without any evidence(they
legally have to see you do it.In this case the dog in the room to charge you) except the word of the maid we ran into
the same problem only different thing(cigarettes not dogs)
The Credit card company took off the charge.I wrote our
assembly person about charging our credit card without first contacting the person being accused.There is legislation that will be hopefully put an an to these type
of practices.
wallflower on 01/26/2009:
Another part to my suggestion.You don't need an attorney.
Write your letter to the credit card company.They will stand behind you.
wallflower on 01/26/2009:
Another part to my suggestion.You don't need an attorney.
Write your letter to the credit card company.They will stand behind you.
aaronssucks on 01/26/2009:
I just read your complaint with great interest. You were treated unfairly,to say the least! Until last Thurs., when I was laid off from my job, I worked at a hotel that is part of another chain. At that hotel, guest satisfaction is priority one. If any front desk person treated a guest the way you were treated, they would be fired on the spot! Don't give up! Find out who the contact person at Holiday Inn's corporate headquarters is and contact him or her. If you contact the regional manager, he SHOULD help you out. Good Luck!
jktshff1 on 01/26/2009:
Good post. good luck
~~mike~~ on 01/27/2009:
You handled this incident better than I would have. I would have left the front desk, called the police, myself, and then had them come in and investigate that there were no pets in the room, in my car, or any of my friends' rooms. Then I'd explain to the cops what had happened and see if they'd take your side. I'd have told the cops that the front desk FORCED the charges on you and threatened to call the police if you complained about it.

What a bunch of thieves. Due to this particular incident, My family and I will NEVER stay at another Holiday Inn again as long as we live. What a crock this is.
3bells on 01/27/2009:
I'm like you, Mike. I'd be afraid now to stay at that chain. It's one thing that there might be a bad apple in the barrel, but the fact that the company itself won't investigate or do anything is a real turn off.

I also have disputed credit card charges twice, having saved proof of my claim, and both times the charges were removed without a problem.
Good Luck!
ChargedForFictionalPet on 01/28/2009:
1/28/2009 - Update
I received a survey from International Hotels Group (IHG) yesterday regarding my feelings on my stay at the Holiday Inn Hot Springs. I answered the survey and then noticed at the bottom a generic note that said something to the effect of "we thank you for your business" signed the Senior Vice President of Holiday Inn Brands. Being in I.T. myself, I figured their email formats were probably first.last@domain.com so I tried it and was able to mail him directly. I expressed my concerns, and he emailed me back almost immediately with a sincere apology and promise to get to the bottom of the issue. This morning, a lady from his office contacted me twice regarding the issue and promised to resolve the issue through the credit card company request and enrolled me in the Premier Club along with a complimentary 15,000 points equating to a free stay at one of their properties. It is unfortunate that I had to go all the way to the top of the food chain to get this resolved, however, the gentleman was very cordial and seemed to genuinely care that my issue was not treated with respect and prompt resolution. I will not mark this item as resolved until I can verify the charge has been removed from my account, but I can say that once I got to the right people the level of interest did improve.
BokiBean on 01/28/2009:
I'm so glad you heard back from them! At least you know SOMEONE cares, even if you had to go to the top.
Anonymous on 01/28/2009:
Outstanding! Looks like it was a 'local issue' after all. I would not want to be the property's manager when IHG's SVP calls.
jktshff1 on 01/28/2009:
Great! Keep us posted. Just keep your cool.
wood.smoke on 01/31/2009:
The Attorney General would like to hear about this: http://www.ag.arkansas.gov/contact_us.html
Another is the National/State Park liaison in Hot Springs: http://www.nps.gov/hosp/contacts.htm

This will put a damper on those terrible actions! I am sorry you had that bad experience. Arkansas has a lot to offer for those who love the beauty of Nature.
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StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty Star
Stranger Given My Room Key, Saw Me Nude - a Sexual Violation of My Body -Mgmt. and Staff Lied About Comping My Stay
Posted by on
Rating: 1/51
CONCORD, NEW HAMPSHIRE -- I checked in to the Holiday Inn in Concord, NH. Upon entering my room, I took a brief business call and undressed to shower. Suddenly the door to my room opened and a strange man entered (not a staff member). I screamed as he stared at my naked body. After a few moments he apologized and I was just screaming "Go! Get out!" while running around to cover my fully exposed, now visually sexually violated body. I quickly dressed and managed to get to the front desk while experiencing a full blown panic attack at this violation of me. The girl at the desk acted as though it was nothing, didn't apologize as I stood sobbing in the lobby, and just handed me a key card to a new room.

My best friend had arrived by that point and noted how horrible the girl treated me. My friend and I went to this new room and I scanned the card at the room door, and inside was a man standing close to the door. I could barely breathe at this point and my friend rushed me back down to the lobby to inform them that they gave me ANOTHER room/room card that was occupied by someone else.

Gross negligence of room cards and security TWICE within about 10 or 15 minutes by the same person!

I ran outside and sat on the bench next to the entrance, sobbing hysterically at the violation of my body and complete fear and horror I had just experienced. My panic was uncontrollable and customers entering the hotel were staring and wondering what happened. After about 10 minutes, the girl from earlier came out to basically try and shut me up because a hysterical young woman at the hotel entrance is not good for business. She never apologized but finally when seeing I couldn't calm down after being so violated, told me that if I stayed at the hotel every one of my meals and beverages would be brought to my (now THIRD room) by room service so I wouldn't have to leave the room during the stay, and would all be of no charge to me . She said all could be comped if I stayed and went up to the new room. She also told me on the way up to the room (as I was clearly still hysterical) that the hotel would like to also offer me another stay for 2 nights at my choosing and again, all room service would be comped by the hotel again.

The manager Tim FINALLY spoke with me, as I was still feeling so violated and scared and assured me that my current stay would also be fully comped by the hotel because of what happened.

I felt like they were really going out of their way to try and right a horrible, sexually violating situation that happened due to their negligence, so I accepted these generous offers.

A few days after my second, promised to be comped in all ways stay there, I checked my credit card and saw they had charged me well over $1200.00. I was furious and called the manager Tim, leaving a message on his voicemail. He did not return my call, so I called the corporate office. They assured me it would all be corrected in 24-48 hours. 4 days went by and still no credit for the over $1200.00 charge. I called corporate again and they said Tim told them my voicemail doesn't work, so that was that basically. I SPECIFICALLY told corporate the first time that I refused to speak to Tim, this manager who blatantly LIED TO MY FACE and then charged all of that money to my card. I informed them that Tim HAD left a voicemail for me, but I did not call him back because I already firmly told corporate I would not speak with such a person. They then told me they had to send the issue to their "executive level." I told them I had a witness to the entire horrible staff and management treatment of me and also she was there for all the comp promises made to me. I offered to give her phone number but they brushed me off. So STILL I am waiting for that $1200.00 + charge to be credited to my card and the violation of my body, something that I have to live with for the rest of my life!!!, to be taken care of by Holiday Inn, as was promised very clearly to me by the counter girl and this manager Tim.

I still have trouble sleeping. I close my eyes and see that man leering at my nude body. Nothing will make that go away, but it is so truly horrific that I was blatantly LIED to and charged over $1200.00 and corporate sees nothing wrong with this unacceptable horror - now refusing to refund these unauthorized charges and taking no responsibility for this trauma I have to live with always due to staff negligence.

What kind of company is this? Never EVER stay at their hotels. Especially if you are a single female.
     
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Management and staff were dishonest.
Posted by on
LAWRENCE, KANSAS -- Celebrating New Year’s Eve at the Lawrence Holidome has been our family tradition for 4 consecutive years now. In fact, this has been tradition year after year for several families. However, due to the way management handled some changes they’ve made we will never return.

This originally became our tradition for several reasons: wonderful customer service towards both adults and children and the extra amenities offered just for New Year’s Eve. The extra amenities have always included keeping all of the holidome activities (pool, arcade, billiards and mini golf) open until midnight when they usually close at 10pm, keeping the breakfast buffet open until noon the following morning when it usually closes at 11am, offering Banquet tables to be rented and placed in the holidome for use until midnight and a discount on the breakfast buffet.

This year, the only thing being offered was the discount on the breakfast buffet but no one was told upon making reservations or upon check in that the other amenities were not being offered this year. We were all led to believe that we were paying for these extra amenities just as we had in years past. At check in I said that I wanted to rent a Banquet table for the night; offering the hotel more of my money. I was told that I could not rent a Banquet table because all of the catering staff had gone home for the day. No one was available to set it up. I felt like this was an excuse since I had seen managers setting up Banquet tables in years past. But, if they didn’t want my money I was happy to keep it. So, just as we had the three years before we set up at a table in the pool area. We found out that the party at the table next to us had been denied a Banquet table as well. Then, at 9:50pm we were all informed by a maintenance man that the pool and the rest of the holidome amenities would be closing at 10pm. It was no problem that the rules had changed but I was upset that we were not notified until 10 minutes before the rule change went into effect! I asked the maintenance man why they had changed the rules. He said there was no rule change; that they’ve always closed everything at 10pm. I said, “Not on New Year’s Eve. For the past three years our family has enjoyed our midnight toast right here at this very table on New Year’s Eve.” He just shrugged his shoulders and said, “New management, new rules.” I really didn’t appreciate that he had lied by trying to claim that they had never kept the place open until midnight for New Year’s Eve.

Everything was shut down at 10pm and they turned the lights off. So, those guests who were able to pay extra for the Banquet tables had to eat, socialize and toast the coming of the New Year in the dark! Upon seeing that I was glad they didn’t allow me to rent one.

A few minutes later my husband ran into one of the managers in the hallway. He asked why the rules had changed. We didn’t understand because the party had never gotten out of control. It was just families swimming, playing mini golf, eating and hanging out until midnight. No one have ever gotten hurt or drunk; at least not that we knew of. So when he asked why the rule change the manager said the same thing that the maintenance man said – there was no rule change, they had always shut everything down at 10pm on New Year’s Eve. My husband told him that this had been a tradition for us so we knew this was untrue. The manager still insisted that they had never offered the extra amenities on New Year’s Eve. My husband said, “For the past three years we’ve enjoyed our midnight toast at that table (pointing). We have it on video.” The manager just shrugged and said, “Sorry.” My husband went on to tell him that we felt deceived since none of this was mentioned at the time we made our reservation or at check in. And now, he and his employees were trying to lie to everyone about the whole thing. He also let the manager know that other families had already been to the front desk to complain. After all of this we will not be returning.

We understand that in this economy cut backs need to be made. But customers should be informed of these cut backs rather than being surprised with them. Be honest and up front with customers BEFORE you take their money and you will retain loyalty.
     
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trmn8r on 01/03/2011:
You say you were led to believe the amenities would be available when you checked in. How so? What made you think you were getting anything more than a room?
Venice09 on 01/04/2011:
I don't think it was unreasonable of you to expect the same experience that you had in the last three years. I suppose you could have confirmed it at the time you made the reservation, but I understand why you didn't. It sounds like the place is under new management, which probably explains the changes, but I also think you were lied to. I would love to see the manager's reaction to your video.

I hope you find a new place to continue your family tradition on New Years.
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Terrible! Fraudulent charges because I complained!
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LEADERHEIGHTS, YORK, PENNSYLVANIA -- Upon arrival, my husband checked in, never going to the room, we left & went out to dinner arriving back about an hour or so later. The hotel staff was socializing with their friends in the lobby, including 2 women displaying affections to one another. We book the hotel on Priceline & the area was being hit with a snowstorm, so we where stuck in the hotel throughout the duration. My children & I went out to our Jeep to get out a board game & on our way back through the lobby we witnessed including my children inappropriate affections / behavior. I was not comfortable to allow my 11 or 12 year old to even go to the ice machine alone. Then the room we got smelled of smoke, so combined with the behavior, I felt I would inform the manager. So I reported the situation to the front desk & asked for the manager & to my surprise she was one of the ladies involved in the display of affections. I was very rudely told that the hotel is a 100% smoke free, I told her that was not the case, as I witnessed at least 2 of her staff smoking. Her disposition & demeanor was very aggressive & I quickly realized it would do no good to complain. I did inform her my son has A-typical asthma & cannot be in direct contact with smoke. Had there not been 2 ft of snow, with heavy snow still coming down & the fact all roads including interstate 83 were closed I would have left right away! Since I had no viable option & my son's asthma is not bothered once actual smoke dissipates, I did not make a bigger issue & we did stay in the room. My husband also mention there was the possibility the smoke smell might have been from my husband's 4 wheel drive Jeep / clothes, because he carpools with co workers & some of them including my husband will smoke in it. The rest of the stay was uneventful until the day of checkout! We had paid for the hotel through Priceline but the hotel required our credit card upon arriving anyway. After receiving the checkout receipt, my husband noticed a charge for a movie to our room made within 5 minutes of the time we checked in. I told him it was unacceptable we did not rent a movie & asked him to address it as I did not feel comfortable to address it with the manager& felt certain she would simple dismiss it with me. So while my husband went to handle the charge, I went to our Jeep & decided to pick it up before packing it. There were a few coffee cups my husband left in there from the hotel ( he kept going out & cleaning the snow off our Jeep for the 2 days & would sit in our Jeep & have a cigarette ) so I emptied the ashtray into one of the cups & picked up a magazine that got wet from the snow & carried them back to throw them out in the garbage can outside the hotel but the can was covered & filled with snow, so I took them to our room & slipped them into one of their little garbage bags & left it there. Well my husband comes back to the room & said the manager was a real piece of work! But she did admit she saw we did not go to the room right away & she would refund the charge. But instead of refunding the charge she charged our credit card 240.00. Thank god it was at its credit limit! or I am sure she would have charged more! Well when I went to use that card to charge our gas it would not go through. So I contact our credit card comp. & that is when I found out that we were charged 243.77 by the hotel. So I contact the hotel & the manage states that they charged that because we smoked in the room because the cup I dumped the ashtray into! She was very clear that she would not refund the money & she said she is now certain, since I had so many problems with the hotel I would not be back! So I report this to my credit card comp & they are trying to get my money back. I also reported to Holiday Inn customer /guest relations & filed a complaint & was told they would inform the hotel not to dispute the charge or recharge the card. But guess what, received a call from my credit card comp. saying the hotel is arguing & won't give the money back. So when I called guest relations they are now saying they cannot do anything for us or make the hotel give it back because they can't prove whether or not we smoked in the room! I would highly recommend anyone considering staying in the area to stay at the Comfort Inn, it is less than 5 miles up the road, & a top hotel compared to the low standards of this holiday Inn express. Also I suggest to search reviews of the Holiday inn express in all areas as you will see the hundreds of neg. reviews usually involving being overcharged or ripped off!
I would like to note.. my son is a-typical (not the average typical asthmatic) & any type of direct smoke(actual visible smoke that can be inhaled) usually will cause an asthma attack, not the stale smell of smoke. My son did not have an asthmas attack while at the hotel. I only mentioned the room smelling of smoke because it smelled of smoke. When the manager said they were 100% smoke free I pointed out that the staff was seen smoking in the lobby & outside. My main concern & complaint was that the hotel staff was displaying what I feel was not appropriate behavior for any type of business that children are present at. After writing this review I did read someone else review from nov 2008 that stated a similar experience with the staff socializing with non guest members.So this appears to be the type of atmosphere one can expect from this hotel. For some that is not a problem but I for one, it was because I had my children along. For the hotel, that type of behavior should not be excused or expected. The manager became defensive & aggressive & created the trumped up fraudulent charge... I am 100% certain it was because I complained.
As a follow up as I am uncertain how to post that.. I would like to say, my husband never has nor would smoke around our son. Nor does our son ride in my husband Jeep often. We had no option but to take the Jeep because of the amount of snow & my spyder eclipse does not get around in the snow. Affections was a term I felt was better suited than to say groping & kissing by a member of the hotel staff. As for me bringing the cigarette smoke smell to the managers attention, it was a secondary issue because the real issue involved the manager & she was very aggressive & rude. I am certain many who read this will understand it is often easy to be upset about a secondary issue (the smell of smoke) because I was bothered about the main issue. Plus I am not the one advertising my husband's Jeep as being 100% smoke free but the hotel is advertising their hotel is 100% smoke free. As for the kissing, & the staff & non guest socializing in what should be for paying guest area, yes that was the real issue. By the staff doing so the atmosphere was not family friendly, which is the reason for my review. It would not have been made an issue if my children were not along. Though I still would not have felt comfortable going to the lobby / lounge area. & though I most likely would not have made an issue to the manager of the behavior of the hotel staff including herself, I still would not have felt it was or is OK for someone working at the hotel to act as if it is their own personal playground. Some types of work environments this is acceptable & expected but the Holiday Inn Express should not be one of them.
Please note.. the manager for the york pa. hotel will only follow up to customers with decent or good reviews but not to the ones with complaints. Also though the Holiday Inn guest relations will take your complaint, in the end they don't do anything about it & just refers you back to the hotel that you had the problem with!
     
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spiderman2 on 03/29/2010:
I couldn't figure out if they took the movie charge off or not, but I find it really odd that you complained about the room smelling like cigarettes when your husband smokes in the car that your asthmatic child rides in. Also, as a safety measure, I wouldn't let my kids go anywhere in a hotel by themselves. While the displays of affection you saw may bother you, these things happen in the world and you are just going to have to deal with it.
Anonymous on 03/29/2010:
The hotel itself may be smoke free, but the guests and staff are certainly allowed to do so outside.
momsey on 03/29/2010:
Your story has some holes. Why would you complain about the room smelling like smoke when you allow your son to ride in your own car that is regularly smoked in by your husband?

I don't know what you mean by "affections," but that just sounds odd. Are you saying the manager was one of the women involved in the affection displaying?
Anonymous on 03/29/2010:
Wow this is a tough one. Since they found cigarette butts in your room which you claim to be yours it will be very tough to get these charges reversed.

Lesson learned here is NEVER EVER take any smoking related items into your non-smoking hotel room. If you enter a non-smoking room that smells of smoke you need to immediately make that complaint to the front desk in writing and have an employee sign that you made them aware of the smoke smell. A lot of these hotels don't fool around when it comes to smoking. We as customers got to protect ourselves or we will, as the OP did, get hit with an undeserved charge for smoke cleanup.

I know people don't think this can happen to them until of course it does. Good review!
floridakeys0038 on 03/29/2010:
let me 1st say, my husband never has nor would smoke around our son. Nor does our son ride in my husband Jeep often. We had no option but to take the Jeep because of the amount of snow & my spyder eclipse does not get around in the snow. Affections was a term I felt was better suited than to say groping & kissing by a member of the hotel staff. As for me bringing the cigarette smoke smell to the managers attention, it was a secondary issue because the real issue involved the manager & she was very aggressive & rude. I am certain many who read this will understand it is often easy to be upset about a secondary issue (the smell of smoke) because I was bothered about the main issue. Plus I am not the one advertising my husband's Jeep as being 100% smoke free but the hotel is advertising their hotel is 100% smoke free. As for the kissing, & the staff & non guest socializing in what should be for paying guest area, yes that was the real issue. By the staff doing so the atmosphere was not family friendly, which is the reason for my review. It would not have been made an issue if my children were not along. Though I still would not have felt comfortable going to the lobby / lounge area. & though I most likely would not have made an issue to the manager of the behavior of the hotel staff including herself, I still would not have felt it was or is OK for someone working at the hotel to act as if it is their own personal playground. Some types of work environments this is acceptable & expected but the Holiday Inn Express should not be one of them.
Nohandle on 03/29/2010:
My issue Florida would have been being charged an additional $243.77 for smoking in a non-smoking room if no one in your room was. We've had other complaints here, I don't recall the hotel chain, when someone was charged for smoking when a cigarette butt was found floating in the toilet bowl after their checkout. Neither of the individuals smoked. I honestly don't know how that one was finally settled. What proof could anyone have that there was no smoking in the room?

Soaring Consumer on 03/30/2010:
The fact that they can't prove whether or not you smoked in the room would be grounds for not having the right to take your money, not as a legitimate argument to keep your money that was wrongfully taken. What twisted logic! It is appalling that they would take such a stance. Obviously proof of your son's condition should prove your side right there and then. Keep fighting that charge, I also suggest recording the calls and playing them to the credit card company, if they hear they can't prove it, then your side of the dispute would be verified and the charge would be reversed.

I suggest contacting Christopher Elliott, a well known travel ombudsman and volunteer consumer advocate. He would likely be able to help you with this, his website is http://www.elliott.org/
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Happy Holidays?
Posted on
I was trying to plan a trip for my girlfriend and I to New York. We normally love to stay at the Holiday Inn Express wherever we go. I am currently a member of their rewards program. I emailed the reward redemption section of their website and explained that I will be staying 7 consecutive nights on the road. Not necessarily in the same town. My only question to them was that if we stay all 7 nights in their hotel chain, would we receive a free night of stay. This is a copy/paste of the response from them:

"Thank you for taking the time to contact the Priority Club Rewards Service Center.

Unfortunately we will not be able to honor your reservation request at this time due to time constraints of communication via e-mail".

Time constraints of communication via e-mail? What the heck is that? I wasn't planning the trip until Summer. Where is the time constraint in that?
     
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Anonymous on 12/14/2010:
I would email them back. Did you let them know that this trip isn't until next year?
Anonymous on 12/14/2010:
I told them the dates I intended on traveling. Maybe I will just call them.
Anonymous on 12/14/2010:
I called and spoke with them in person. They were extremely vague and wouldn't committ to an answer of whether or not I would receive a free night. They just kept repeating that you can earn 10,000 or 15,000 or 20,000 reward points depending upon which hotel you stay at. I asked how many points was required to stay and get a free night. All she would say is that it depends upon the individual place that you stay. I finally said to her, miss-x, do I get a free night or not for staying so many consecutive nights at your company's chain. Her response was, I'm not really sure sir?

Okay. I'll spend my money somewhere else.
SteveWiginowski on 12/14/2010:
It seems like there is a lack of understanding. You want to know if you'll get a free night. They told you that it would depend on which hotel you stayed at as well as which hotel you want to use the free night for. You didn't provide them that information, so they couldn't help you.

Think of it this way, if I tell you that I have 8 coins in my pocket and ask you if I can buy an item that costs a dollar, you would want to know which coins exactly I have. If I don't tell you that information, you won't really be sure if I can buy the item or not.
Anonymous on 12/14/2010:
SteveWiginowski: I gave them my complete itinerary. I was dealing with a call center that didn't seem to care to look into it for me. I hate those outsourced call centers. I get this feeling talking to them. Almost as though they know nothing about the company for which they work.
SteveWiginowski on 12/14/2010:
Ah, I gotcha. Since you did give them where you were staying and where you wanted to stay, I don't know what more you could have done. Seems pretty helpless of a call center.
Anonymous on 12/14/2010:
hothead13 and SteveWiginowski: Thanks for your comments. Since I could not get any help from them, it was nice to have someone listen to my troubles.

Does this mean that I have to pay it forward?
Anonymous on 12/14/2010:
Howard_the_Duck, just go find that next great adventure in your life :)
jktshff1 on 12/14/2010:
If you sign in to your account, you can check the various hotel locations to see how many points are required for a stay, any specials that are offered. HI, Comfort, Hilton etc all send me updates for specials on my points via e-mail.
Good Luck
Anonymous on 12/14/2010:
Thanks! I hope to on our way to New York! We've never been to the East Coast and we are so excited!
Anonymous on 12/14/2010:
Thanks jktshff1: I clicked on the helpful button as my way of saying thank you!
momsey on 12/14/2010:
East Coast rules!
Anonymous on 12/14/2010:
momsey: I cannot click helpful on your comment until her and I find out for ourselves. (laughing)
MRM on 12/14/2010:
Oh lawd, I hope Howard the Duck is not another nic.
Anonymous on 12/14/2010:
Keep hope alive MRM!
MRM on 12/14/2010:
I have lost hope on the 3rd nic.
Anonymous on 12/14/2010:
East coast is the *RIGHT* coast. Just look at a map of the US.
Anonymous on 12/14/2010:
MRM: Not following you?
Anonymous on 12/14/2010:
*ding, ding, ding* We have a winner! Nicely done, MRM.
MRM on 12/14/2010:
I know everybodys personality like on the back of my hand.
Anonymous on 12/14/2010:
The early posts were very helpful, and I marked the buttons for it. But the last couple of you are just wierding me out.
jktshff1 on 12/14/2010:
That's going to happen here.
Anonymous on 12/14/2010:
Still weird. But thanks.
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Holiday Inn Express & Suites Montrose CO
Posted by on
MONTROSE, COLORADO -- We stayed at this Holiday Inn August 31/September 1, 2011 in one of their mini-suites and found the whole experience to be excellent. When I first called them they didn't have a regular room with a queen or king bed so they gave us an upgrade to a mini-suite for the same price since I was a member of their Priority Club (they probably would have done it without the Club membership, I suspect). The price was $135, not including taxes and this was a bit less than I had expected. The hotel was clean; the staff was very friendly and helpful; they had ample parking and the room was well equipped with a large desk, couch and comfortable bed. We arrived early, but they had no problem checking us in without a wait. They also gave us a voucher for a free drink at the bar for that evening and let us know that there would be a barbeque for the guests that night. The barbeque had hamburgers, bratwurst, chicken breasts, potato salad, cup cakes, a chocolate devilsfood cake, chips, sauerkraut, a variety of sodas (pop), and a few other things I can't remember because I was sort of busy pigging out (the food was fresh and quite delicious). The staff waited on the guests and continually kept the area clean. All the guests were extremely pleased (particularly since the bartender was not only very sociable, but she also made really strong drinks!) The whole atmosphere of this hotel was one of cheerfulness, contentment and general good feelings. The hotel is covenient to Gunnison National Park (about 25 minutes away--well worth seeing, by the way!) and Telluride Ski Area (around an hour depending on conditions and whether you pay attention to the speed limit or not). A very fun experience! We really enjoyed our stay and will most probably visit again!
     
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madconsumer on 09/10/2011:
I have stayed at many Holiday Inn expresses in many states. and I each one, I had the same grade A experience as you describe.

very helpful review!
Alain on 09/10/2011:
They've always done right by me, Madconsumer!
Anonymous on 09/10/2011:
Good review. I've always liked the Holiday Inn.
Anonymous on 09/10/2011:
But of course!
Anonymous on 09/10/2011:
I'm not a doctor, but I did stay at Holiday Inn Express last night...lol! Love those commercials.

In line with those commenting above me...I have always had great service with Holiday Inn Express.
Anonymous on 09/10/2011:
Ahh, J4A, if you were only a lady! HeHe!
Old Timer on 09/10/2011:

When I was traveling 24/7 I used Holiday Inn a lot. I could count on them to be clean and seldom overpriced. I had a loyalty card with them but decided to drop it when I realized they used your SSN as the account ID. They probably don't do that anymore but I seldom travel for biz anymore. I let the young bucks fight the airports and rental car agencies now.

Nice review!

Alain on 09/11/2011:
Your right, OT, they no longer use a Social Security number for an ID anymore. I try not to fight airport & other crowds anymore. We just arrive very early and read in the cattle pen until the flight is boarded!
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Guest Services
Posted by on
MIDLAND, MICHIGAN -- December 23rd, 2006



Inter Continental Hotels Group
Holiday Inn
3 Ravina Dr
Suite 100
Atlanta, GA 30346-2149

Re: Terrible customer service at the Holiday Inn in Midland, MI

Dear Sir or Madam,

On December 15th, 2006 our hockey team checked into the Holiday Inn located at 1500 W Wackerly St. in Midland, Michigan. We were to stay 2 nights and had reserved the Black and White room for a Christmas dinner for the team. On Friday night December 15th, 2006 our coach had informed us that the children needed to be in bed at 9:00 pm for an early game Saturday morning. After putting the kids to bed a few of us parents wanted to kick back and relax and play some Texas Hold’em we had never been to this hotel before and we were not sure where to go and play, so I suggested the Black/white room where we would be holding our dinner the following night. This particular room is also used for the continental breakfast in the morning. We all gathered in this room and began to sort out poker chips to begin playing and an employee of the Holiday Inn came into the area and stated that we could not play there because she had to get the room ready for the continental breakfast the next day, I explained to her that we would not be there long maybe only an hour would that be OK, I thought she said yes and then she left the room.

Here is where it gets ugly, about 10 minutes later to men approached us in this room acting like a couple of bouncers ones name was Rodney the other Jeremy. Rodney proceeded to point at us and accuse us of gambling and told us it was illegal in this hotel and we had to leave this area. At that point, I told him we were not gambling and who does he think he is accusing us. There was not even a card dealt yet. Rodney then decided that this excuse was not going to work so he told us that we could not have alcohol in the bar area, that was against the Law and we had to leave this area. One of the other parents then stood up and said no this is the black and white room we are not in the bar. At this point frustration is building on both parties and a parent had asked Rodney where we could go and play and his response was anywhere but here and again we asked him where can we go? And Rodney responded anywhere but here! He said that several times well this made one of the parents angry why couldn’t this person just suggest somewhere for us to go and play cards. So this parent took out of his pocket $2,500.00 and told Rodney if he just let us sit and play he would put that money on the bar and we would buy our drinks from the bar and put ours away. Rodney refused the money and the parent called him a stupid, stupid man for letting his hotel lose $2500.00. Rodney did not like that and threatened to call the police and he exited the room. Jeremy then told us we could go over to the pool area and play cards; you could imagine the look on our face when he said that, why in the world couldn’t Rodney had just said that instead of acting like some tough guy.

So all of us parents picked up our stuff and proceeded to the pool area and began playing cards. I realized a few moments later that I had forgotten something in the black and white room and I went back to get it. When I came around the corner there were 2 police officers at the counter, I asked if they were here for us and the police stated yes I explained my version of what took place and how Rodney was the worst manager ever and that his customer service was terrible. After hearing my side the police asked me what they should do and I told them nothing, we know where to play and that’s where we are in the pool area. I thought the situation had resolved it’s self and I went back to the table and began playing cards. We played for about 15 minutes when the police officers approached our table and had told the parent who called Rodney a stupid man he had to leave the premises immediately. We just couldn’t believe it; he was in his pajamas and bare feet and had 4 small children sleeping. We were asking the police on what grounds they have for removing this person from this hotel at 11:00 at night. They said it was upon the request of the manager Rodney.

Never at any point was Rodney ever threatened or touched, it simply was a disagreement. After the parent was escorted out of the hotel, I approached the front counter and stated that this was absurd and our hockey team, all 16 rooms would be checking out in the morning and we would be canceling our party, we were not going to give this hotel another penny, in fact I told them I work for a Lawyer and I was going to do my best to find a way for us to get reimbursed tonight’s stay. I asked Jeremy for a copy of the hotels policies and procedures and he told me he didn’t have one available he would have to bring it me. I wanted to know on what grounds Rodney had for removing this parent from this hotel. Needless to say, Jeremy never brought me a copy of the policy/procedures. The next morning I went to the front desk again and asked for a copy of the policy and procedures and Jeremy refused to give them to me.

Through this ordeal several times we had asked from the very beginning in the black/white room to get us someone in charge or above Rodney and every time we were told we had to wait until Monday. This all could have been avoided had Rodney not entered that room with a chip on his shoulder. If he would have kindly said “hey folks I’m sorry you can’t play in here, but you could go over to the pool area and play” None of this would have ever happened. Your Hotel would not have lost $1,440 for the rooms and $500.00 for the dinner party and another $2500.00 for the bar.

I can assure you we will never use that hotel again and if this is an example of how Holiday Inns run their establishments, then we as a team will not use them for our travels.

I have never in my life been treated so badly by a hotel staff as we were treated here, those employees should be ashamed of themselves and their behavior. They owe that parent they threw out an apology.


Disgusted Consumer,






CC: Holiday Inn
Better Business Bureau

     
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Skye on 12/23/2006:
You shouldn't have taken it upon yourself to use the room without permission. You should have just left when the poor girl who needed to set up the room for the continental breakfast the next day. Just because you were guests, had the room booked for another event later, does not give card blanche to do whatever you wanted. I am siding with the hotel on this one. And Rodney, had a lot of restraint for not physically throwing all of you out. You wanted to play cards, well then do it in one of the rooms you are staying in. You wanted so much for nothing.
Anonymous on 12/23/2006:
I also must take the hotels side one this and I agree wit Skye 100%.
Skye on 12/23/2006:
Thanks Lid :) What I wanted to add, but was distracted by a long distance very welcomed phone call, was that I understand the op's frustrations, but you really should have reserved a room to play cards in. Just because you were staying there, did not give you the right to roam around the hotel, looking for an empty room to play cards in. I worked in a hotel when I was in college, and it takes time to set up rooms for events. You put that girl in a position to have to get someone to get you to leave the room. I feel sorry for the employees having to deal with people like you, guests, who think they are entitled to everything just because they are paying a lot of money to stay there. That $2500.00 bucks you are bragging about, could have been used to reserve the room for your card playing needs. You infringed upon them, so just my opinion, but the hotel did nothing wrong.
Anonymous on 12/23/2006:
Who was watching your '4 small children sleeping'?

Skye on 12/23/2006:
Rodney was, until the poor hotel female employee who they interferred with, by not leaving room so she could set up for next days breakfast. She went and got Rodney, and then she stayed to watch the children!!
Anonymous on 12/23/2006:
And why was the parent in his "pajamas and bare feet" at the pool? That is weird enough to get tossed out of most places. And leaving kids alone in the hotel rooms doesn't seem a good idea either, maybe you all could have combined some kids into a room, hired a babysitter and then played cards.
beanbagbritches on 12/24/2006:
I'm with the others. You acted like jack*sses and got what you deserved. You should never offer to BRIBE a hotel employee and then call him names. That's just rude and crude.
Anonymous on 12/25/2006:
You may be parents but you were all acting like children. As for that "parent" that called the Rodney a stupid man. Does he show this poor example in front of his chidren. When he gets angry does he call his kids stupid. Also what "parent" leaves their children alone in a hotel room to go and play poker. Especially as his case they are four small kids. If they were older than I see no problem, but you claimed he had four young children. You claimed to make the Hotel look bad for kicking a parent with four young children out of a Hotel at 11pm, but you failed to see the big picture, where he looks like a bad parent that abandoned his kids in a Hotel room late at night. You are lucky the police did not call charge you all with neglect. I am pertty sure that there is a law against leaving your children alone in a hotel room. Than again from your letter you all act like children yourself and probably are not mature enough to have children. Also learn to follow rules. You expect your children to so set a good example and follow them yourself
Show some consideration for other's, the lady needed to set up the room for the next day. Just because you spent tons of money does not give you a right to act like babboons. You all deserve to have been thrown out. You also all should be punished for leaving your children unattended in the night so you could have fun. What if something went wrong.
Anonymous on 12/25/2006:
emt c - I don't think anyone was watching the children. These parents were more concerned about fighting with the staff and having fun than the safety of their children.
DreyNikHaze on 01/02/2007:
I agree with everyone else. I'm with the Hotel on this one. Someone should have been with those children, and you adults should've conducted yourselves as adults, not children. You all should've been thrown out.
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Horrible experience
Posted by on
SOUTHFIELD, MICHIGAN -- My family stayed at the Holiday Inn, Southfield, Michigan in February during the Super Bowl. We had some horrible experiences. Our last evening we came back to the hotel after being out for the day. We had reported that we had lost one of our passkeys and asked that they be changed. The front desk personnel explained to us that they would have to change the passkeys for both our rooms even though the rooms weren't connected. They told us that it would take two hours to do this. When we came back, they told us that we only had one room. Whoever on Holiday Inn's end had messed up when they put the reservation information in at the local hotel and closed us out of one of the rooms on our last full day. They finally fixed that and gave us the keys to our rooms. We went up to the rooms and neither one had been cleaned. One even had trash on the floor that someone else had left. We discovered that a laptop had been stolen from our room. We immediately reported it to the front desk and dealt with a very unhelpful employee. We also filed a report with the hotel security representative who tried his best to help us out. We contacted the local police department and two detectives came out and filed a report. They explained to the representative at the front desk that the hotel was responsible for the laptop since we had reported a lost key and we were locked out of our rooms for the afternoon. We spend our last evening dealing with the police, security and dirty rooms, with no help from the front desk except for her to hand us a few towels. The girl at the front desk stated that the front desk manager would be in the next morning. The police also removed the food wrapper left in our room to dust for fingerprints.

The next morning when we checked out we asked to speak with the front desk manager who happened not to be there. Later that day we received a message on our phone that our laptop had been "recovered".

I spend the next several days making long distance phone calls dealing with people from representatives from the front desk to the hotel's manager. I was fortunate to deal with a few very helpful individuals, however, the majority of them were people that had either no authority or did not know anything about our case,and I had trouble getting anyone who was in authority or who knew the details of our case to call me back. After a week and a half we finally received our laptop back. I suspect that we finally started getting a response after I contacted the Corporate Office and filed a complaint.

I was told first that a maid had removed the laptop from our room to secure it and "forgot" to tell her boss that she had done this. When I refused to believe this story, the manager investigated the case more, and found out that a helper to the maid who is not allowed in the room and who was supposed to be in another part of the hotel somehow got into our room and took the laptop. We also discovered that for at least two hours after we reported a lost passkey card that our room was accessible using that card even though we were told that the code had to be changed on both our rooms. (Supposedly they were auditing the rooms that afternoon.) We were told that the maid lied and said she cleaned our rooms because she wanted to leave early that day. We were told that the people at the front desk had not updated our information earlier in the day when they were discovered that both rooms were supposed to be occupied that night. It seems like this hotel has a LOT of problems. (Like the fire alarm going off during the Super Bowl because they had torches going inside near the indoor pool.)

The hotel paid to have our laptop checked out and the battery replaced since somehow our new battery was ruined. The corporate office tried to tell me that they were sending us $50 in complimentary coupons even though they had done nothing wrong. I believe the police are still proceeding with the case. The last time I talked to the police however, the manager at Holiday Inn hadn't even updated the police on the information she had told me like they knew who had stole our laptop, what his name was and the fact that he had been fired for this. The front desk manager told me that they are charged $175 with each complaint that corporate gets on them and that week they had received four. It seems funny to me that we can have an experience like this and that all we get is our laptop repaired and $50 in coupons and the corporate office gets $175. They ruined at least our last day. We also did not get the services we paid for - clean rooms, service, etc. plus knowing that someone who was not supposed to be in your room had been in there and stolen stuff and left trash behind. Rooms are a lot more expensive than $50 in coupons a night and we had two rooms! I was VERY disappointed with the corporate office.

We have stayed in many different hotels over the years in many different states and countries and this is the first experience like this that we have had. As far as I am concerned, I will try to stay clear of Holiday Inn and Holiday Inn Express. Even though all of these hotels have different managers, I was very unimpressed by their Corporate Office. They gave me the impression that what happened was somehow our fault. We were told that we shouldn't leave anything of value in our rooms. Well we didn't leave money or jewelry, but we figured a laptop would be safe. Should we not even leave our clothes there either? If you are providing a service, people have to be assured that they and their property are at least safe. Maybe the coporate office acted like this because they were afraid of a lawsuit or maybe they just don't care. Either way, my advise is to stay away from Holiday Inn and Holiday Inn Express. Nobody wants to be staying in a hotel that doesn't stand behind their product!
     
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Anonymous on 04/22/2006:
I had a similar experience at another Holiday Inn but I never got anything back and your right they don’t care. I’m glad you at least got your laptop back. I never got even an apology. Please have a look at my story and see if it sounds the same.


Letter about Holiday Inn: Burglary

On Friday, February 10, 2006, while staying at Holiday Inn/Mesa/Chandler, Arizona my laptop computer was stolen from my room while I was out.

The police were called and it was determined that an employee with a passkey was in my room at that time. Of course, no one knew who did it. Next I find out that whoever had the passkey was an employee of Jana King, a cleaning service contracted by Holiday Inn. Then I find out that this particular Holiday Inn is owned by a franchisee, Michael Uduyan. Mr. Udiyan was not helpful at all and in fact said he WAS NOT responsible and his insurance would not cover my loss. I was also told by Jana King there was three other thefts that same day. I expected at least a little empathy and maybe to comp at least one day’s stay or free breakfast, something. I had been there for ten days…..but he offered nothing.

In frustration, I contacted Holiday Inn Corporate Guest Relations. I ended up talking to Jana King in Arizona, Jana King corporate office in Salt Lake City, Utah. The final answer was for us to turn it into our own insurance company, and too bad. Since Holiday Inn is not responsible for their franchises and their franchises are not responsible when a contract employee steals from a guest, I will never stay at a Holiday Inn again and have advised all my employees they are to do the same.


For a copy of the police report contact:
Mesa Police Department
(480) 644-2211
Report Number 20060410427 2/10/06
Note:
The Mesa Police were very helpful in this matter.
Much thanks to officer Ingersou Badge number 16177
CobraCat77 on 04/22/2006:
That sounds like an absolute horror story. I'm sorry you had to go through that.
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Beware of the service and charges in Otsego, MN
Posted by on
OTSEGO, MINNESOTA -- Here is an e-mail chain summarizing what we experienced:

Dissatisfaction does not even begin to cover what I experienced at your hotel during my last visit and although I appreciate 4000 courtesy points, they mean absolutely nothing to me and this honestly demonstrates a severe lack of concern for my family and I considering what happened to us if this is actually your idea of compensating me for my losses. I have been to your facility several times with no incident, but what happened during my last stay was inexcusable and I expect to be reimbursement for my loss….

We were treated with disrespect by your staff. The desk clerk used profanity while addressing my wife in front of our children. The kids were unable to use the water park most of the evening due to the cleaning of vomit and feces from the water on two separate occasions that evening and would not go back in when it was cleaned because they were scared.

My entire family was startled out of bed 3 times late that evening due to loud parties above us and we received no support from your team despite multiple pleas for help, he just argued with me and made no attempt to remove the disturbance or to move us to another room.

My wife and I eventually had to pack up 3 little kids in the middle of the night and check in to the Super 8 down the road where we were able to sleep peacefully for the remainder of the night and decided to handle this situation with upper management at a more convenient time.

To summarize, my wife and I were humiliated, my children were traumatized and I had to spend $400.00 between 2 hotels and dining in one evening to get a nights sleep, I don’t expect to be compensated for my stay at the second hotel as that was my decision, but I thoroughly expect to be compensated for my short disturbing stay with you. I expect a response from your team with your plan to correct this situation or I will push this to whatever levels I need to until I feel I have been treated fairly

Hotel Response:
Dear Mr. Huey, Thank you for contacting Guest Relations again regarding the Holiday Inn Minneapolis Northwest - Elk River, MN. We appreciate your additional comments and regret any further inconvenience you may have experienced. Your additional comments have been forwarded to the hotel and the details of this experience will remain on file in Guest Relations for future review. In addition, in an effort to retain your patronage, I have requested a check be sent to you in the amount of $100.00, on the hotel's behalf. This check represents a refund of the parts of your stay that you were dissatisfied with. You will receive it under separate cover within the next 10-14 business days.

ME:

Carl,

You really need to re-evaluate how you treat people in certain situations, these e-mails are very insensitive and indicate to me that you have very little concern for what my family and I experienced on your property. The assistant GM called me and I felt as if I was being interrogated asking the same questions I had already answered days before, she then told me she would call me back and instead I receive an e-mail from you basically stating “take these 4000 points or $100.00 and forget it happened”, I understand that you are probably just following protocol, but I do not feel satisfied. I would like to see my entire stay for that evening refunded to my card and a letter of apology from the clerk that was on duty and nothing more or less, I do not feel that this is too much to ask considering what my family experienced that evening.

Hotel Response:

While we certainly regret the experience you had, the compensation that has already been issued is appropriate and supports our Hospitality Promise. In addition, your comments will remain on file at a corporate level, for use in periodic evaluations of the hotel.

ME:

I disagree as I do not feel compensation for one room and a simple apology is too much to ask for what happened and I am very disappointed with how you treat your guests, not only will we never be a “guest” in your hotel again, I will make certain that this incident is made public to everyone I know and everyone I meet from this day forward. My family and friends have been pressuring me to bring this to the attention of the media and I have kept them at bay telling them that you will do the right thing and that is no longer the situation after reading your most recent response so I am now very much looking forward to making this as public as I possibly can. After this happened it is really amazing how many people I have talked to that have also experienced unpleasant situations with your hotel and/or your staff and are willing to also come forward to discuss the rude behavior, poor conditions, the recklessness form intoxicated people in the water park on the weekends and the consumption of alcohol by minors so let me make this promise to you.

“I promise to devote all my free time to bringing this matter into the public eye by any means possible, I will be in contact with all local news channels, InterContinental, post comments and our e-mail communications on blogs all over the web, the BBB and recruit as many people on board to help me spread the word as I possibly can.”



     
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GlitteringFirefly on 04/08/2010:
I would also be angry about everything, except the situation with the water park. The hotel cannot help if a person gets sick or has an accident. They can only clean up the mess.
FlShopper on 04/08/2010:
I agree with Firefly. The time spent cleaning the water park may have been inconvenient, but it was definitely necessary. And if your kids didn't want to go in after the cleaning, that isn't the fault of the hotel.
How much was your total bill at the Holiday Inn? Is the $100 a significant amount when compared to what you spent there?
The desk clerk should definitely have apologized to you and your wife.
Slimjim on 04/08/2010:
By your account, it appears all this went down in one evening so I guess I'm trying to figure out how much difference from the $100 credit was the room bill. I can understand wanting it all back though based on the noise level and their inaction to rectify it. The water park thing really needs to be filed under stuff happens though and they did reopen the facilities, hence doing all they could. Apologies don't come from individual staff members, but management. The hotel offered their regret over the situation and that should close up that end of the complaint.
Inat on 04/08/2010:
I think the others have already asked but I don't think you made it clear to the hotel exactly WHAT you wanted. A lot of people want money so that is why they offered it to you; what would make you satisfied?
Disgusted 2010 on 04/09/2010:
I completely understand that the waterpark incident was out of their control, I was just pointing it out as an inconvenience. My main focus was the noise, profanity in front of my children directed at my wife and lack of action taken to correct the situation which is completely unexcuseable in my mind, especially now that my little boy is now terrified of hotels, the total bill minus the cost of the other hotel was over $200.00.
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