Thursday, February 08, 2007

$36 shrimp wrap and other ways hotels screw travellers

While on the road, I decided to spend my pre-dinner time working on e-mails. Before I knew it, it was 10:08 PM. The hotel restuarant - normally over priced - was closed.

What to do? Nothing else was nearby and Chicago winters don't accomodate loan businessmen walking on highways!

Room service to the rescue?

I ordered a shrimp wrap - it seemed the healthiest of the late night food available. My order featured a diet soda, the wrap and a bag of chips. After $3.50 for room delivery and a 20% forced gratuity - who pays 20% for late service - I felt very disappointed. What was odd, was the accumulation of additional fees, etc....

Big company doesn't give the most generous per diems - as most companies seem to be doing these days. To see so much of my per diem evaporate left a bitter taste in my mouth.

Lesson learned - find a reasonably priced restaurant that delivers - anything would have been cheaper.

Bigger lesson learned - if you have time and the company will pay for it, why not rent a car? It gives you more expense control.


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