Wednesday, January 22, 2014

The Breakfast Rip Off - Check Your Information

For a good many years, it has been tradition that breakfast is included in your motel stay.  Frankly, I budget for this.  I will pay a tad more (a tad) for a motel/hotel that provides breakfast.  I've gotten so fastidious about this that "continental breakfast" doesn't even hold up the bar.  It needs to include eggs, bacon, waffles, the whole gamut.  Again, I have it factored in that I'm paying for this.

After all, if a hotel costs me $20 more a night than it's neighbor, but involves a full buffet, that's $20 I don't have to spend in a restaurant.  Actually, it's more that I don't have to spend the challenge/time/fight to locate said restaurant.

For years this has been the norm.  Until our last road trip.  I got side-blinded by the Best Western in Bandon, Oregon.  I have stayed at my share of Best Westerns across the United States from Pullman, Washington to Miami, Florida.  They have always included breakfast.  I didn't think twice when I stepped out of my box and picked a chain over a quaint motel that was local to the area (which I usually prefer to do, only going with the big chain out of necessity) because the quaint motel didn't serve breakfast.

We checked in, vegged out, slept, in the morning went swimming and, on the way back from the pool enquired where the breakfast buffet was.

"Next door at Bandon Bill's Grill.  It's $6 per person."

WHAT?!!  My swimming-pool-dripping-self said.  I stood there, towel wrapped around my bikini swathed body, and had this conversation:

Me:  "What do you mean $6?  It's always included."
Her:  "Did you purchase the breakfast package when you booked?"
Me:  "Yes, I booked with you."
Her:  "There is a breakfast package you can option.  Let me check if you did that."  tap, tap, tap "No, it says you only booked the room."
Me:  "Yes, I booked a room.  That includes breakfast."
Her:  "Best Western has been trying something new since May.  The room rate has been lowered and doesn't include breakfast.  If you want breakfast, then click on that option and the rate increases.  Would you like breakfast?"

I walked off, thoroughly pissed.  Not pissed because I thought I was getting ripped off.  Pissed because the standard had changed and I was about to get charged for it.

Had I known to purchase this option at the time of booking, I don't know that I would have paid it then, either.  Adding on to what I thought was already the total?  It didn't make sense.  Yes, I got a lower rate.  In June.  It was now August and I had no idea what I paid back then, but now they were asking for more.

That was the part that ticked me off.

Note:  I just checked the website.  They are now back to the "full breakfast" added in the total for your room.  Guess I wasn't the only one with an attitude problem.

What nickle and dime things drive you nuts?

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