Need A Hotel To Get Some Arrest

, , , , , | Legal | October 1, 2018

I work night audit at a hotel. Most of the time it’s a fairly mundane, quiet job. On this particular night, we are at something like 10% occupancy, which means paperwork will be light and I’ll likely have several hours to just chill. I’m setting up my papers for the night when I get a call from the bar staff, who are still going through their closing procedures. We have glass elevators, and the bar is directly across from them; the bartender says she just saw a man and a woman get into a physical altercation in one of the elevators.

I radio for security; meanwhile, the woman has come back down to the main floor, but states that the man in question has stolen her purse. Apparently, he tried to convince her to come back to his room with him, and when she declined he tried to force her from the elevator, but only managed to get her purse out with him. He then set the purse on the ground outside the elevator and told her to “come and get it.” She smartly refused and returned to the main floor.

We all look at each other incredulously; it’s so slow, and the man was at the bar for several hours, so we know exactly which room he’s in. Our security guard goes up to the room. The man is right there, and at first denies having the woman’s purse until the guard points out that it is literally sitting in plain sight on the table. The man lets the guard take the bag, and the woman insists she doesn’t want to get anyone in trouble, but given that several people who witnessed the altercation state they don’t feel comfortable with the man still being in the hotel — including myself — the police are called.

I can’t say for sure what happened up at the room, as I can’t leave the desk per policy, but a bit later the man is escorted through the lobby in cuffs, and with a freshly torn shirt. The police urge the woman to press charges, as apparently, from what they saw in the room, “he had no intention of ever letting [her] leave,” but to my knowledge she never does.

So, the police are cleaning up that mess, my guard is taking statements to write up a report, and the excitement is over, right?

Wrong.

Suddenly, two women come barreling through the front doors, and upon seeing the officers, go straight to them. At first I think they are here to plead the case of the man who was arrested, but nope. They are actually in no way related to the earlier events. They had received some distressing texts from a friend and had been driving around all night trying to find her car somewhere. And wouldn’t you know it, it was in our parking lot.

Now, technically speaking, I am not allowed to give out room numbers without the guest’s express permission. But, having overheard the gist of the texts they are showing the police, and with the assurance that it will be the officers going to make the welfare check and not the women themselves, I make the decision to break with policy and give them the woman’s room number. And a good thing, too, because apparently she has pill bottles everywhere and is barely conscious on the bed.

She is wheeled out on a stretcher, but does make a full recovery.

And that’s the story of how I didn’t get to even touch my paperwork until three hours into what should have been a nice, quiet shift. To this day, if anyone starts to say, “This will be a nice slow night,” I tell them off for jinxing it.

They Have No Reservations About Not Touching Their Reservations

, , , | Working | October 1, 2018

(My hotel chain does system-wide maintenance every Saturday night into Sunday morning. It can take anywhere from two to eight hours each time. The official word from IT is not to use our reservation system AT ALL during this time, but that is, of course, an untenable solution that I generally ignore. This particular Saturday, I get a call at around midnight.)

Guest: “Hi, so, I have a bit of a problem. I’m a team member, and I made a reservation for my wife under the family rate at [Related Brand Hotel]. But, uh… they’re telling her they can’t check anyone in until three am because of system maintenance. Is your system under maintenance, too?”

Me: “Er, well… Technically, yes, but I’ll tell you right now that I don’t follow that silly rule. And even if I did, there are ways to get around the maintenance. They could make her keys and note her information, and just check her in once the maintenance is finished. They won’t let her check in at all?

Guest: “They won’t! It’s ridiculous! They want her to wait until three with two toddlers, or go to another hotel that isn’t [Brand]! I’m a coworker, for God’s sake!”

Me: “I am so sorry you’re having such problems with them.”

Guest: “It’s not your fault. Oh, but it’s after midnight… I’m not going to be able to book for tonight anymore. Agh, and it’s not showing me prices for tomorrow!”

Me: “Don’t worry about it. I’ve got another team member in house. I’ll reference their price and force in a reservation for her. Just give me your member number so there’s proof she’s here on a family plan.”

Guest: “Oh, God, thank you so much! My number is [number]. She’ll be there in about twenty minutes!”

(His wife arrived and I checked her in with no problem. They were super sweet and grateful, and I agreed with them that the other hotel was being ridiculous. A hotel can’t just refuse to touch their reservations for hours on end on a Saturday night; I don’t care what IT says!)

Turning An Ugly Shade Of Red Over An Ugly Opinion Of Color

, , , | Right | September 28, 2018

(I work in a hotel. The delivery man, who dresses in a t-shirt and jeans shorts, comes by early in the morning to deliver some brochures.)

Delivery Man: “Can I use your bathroom?”

Me: “Sure, it’s over there.”

(He disappears, and a customer comes up to the desk a minute later. Note: the customer is an older, white gentleman dressed in an expensive suit. The delivery man is African.)

Customer: “I saw a man in the bathrooms, and he didn’t look like a guest!”

Me: “Who?”

Customer: “He was— That’s him!”

(He points to the delivery man, who is darting out the front doors, waving.)

Me: “Oh, that’s the delivery man. He just needed to use the bathroom, so I let him.”

Customer: “So, he’s not staying here?”

Me: “Well, no—”

Customer: *withering stare*

Me: *flustered* “But, uh, he needed to use the bathroom; you know how it is?”

(The customer turned on his heel, back rigid. Later, he complained to the manager that I was letting in people who obviously weren’t customers, and that they could be burglars! I explained to the manager my side, and he laughed.)

Adopting A Deadpan Face

, , , , | Right | September 26, 2018

(I am working front desk at a hotel on a relatively busy Sunday night. I have already had a couple of walk-ins, and this older gentleman comes in asking about room availability for the night. I give him rates, and he decides to stay, so I am inputting his information and making small talk. Note that I am in my twenties, but some people mistake me for a teenager.)

Guest: “Are you from here?”

Me: “Yeah, I grew up here.”

Guest: “It’s a nice place. Do you get a lot of tourism?”

Me: “We get some, depending on the season. When [Big Festival] was still in town the whole town got very full for about a week, but since they moved the festival, it’s been a little quieter in the summers.”

(I’m finishing the check-in process at this point, handing the guest his keys, etc.)

Guest: “And are you happy here?”

Me: *a little confused* “Yes, it’s a good place to be.”

Guest: “Aw, too bad. We were thinking of adopting you! But if you’re happy here—”

(I laughed politely — and awkwardly — as the guest went to get his wife and head to their room. I still don’t quite know what that was about, or how old he thought I was! I’m used to guests saying funny things, but this was the strangest one I’ve heard in a while.)

Doesn’t Exempt You From Being An A**hole

, , , | Legal | September 23, 2018

(I work in a hotel. In any business, tax exemption in the US is a huge pain in the ass. The rules are Fizzbin-esque, and when someone turns out to not be exempt for whatever reason, they always pitch a fit, even though it’s the freaking LAW. This guest is another matter, though. While I’m working the front desk, a guest comes up to hand me a piece of paper.)

Guest: “I need you to deliver this to the general manager, and you need to sign this copy for me stating that you received it.”

Me: *immediately wary* “I’m sorry, what is this regarding?”

Guest: “Just read it. And sign my copy. What you’re doing is illegal!”

(I do read the letter. It is apparently a notice threatening legal action if the guest does not receive his taxes back from us, as well as some more colorful demands regarding penalties levied when a tax-exempt entity is denied their exemption status. Note that he was charged taxes due to refusing to produce an ID when presenting his disabled veteran card. While there isn’t TECHNICALLY a law stating that you have to show an ID, most people would appreciate that we are trying to prevent someone from mooching off of their benefits by using a stolen benefit card. After some conferencing between the Manager On Duty and me, and a call to the GM, we decide to acquiesce and sign his copy, adding a note that the signature ONLY acknowledges our receipt of the letter and not any promise of action.)

Guest: “Fine! Add your note! I don’t care. I’m a lawyer, and I know my rights!”

(He takes his letter and leaves, and I just shake my head. The MOD gets a chance to read the letter in full.)

MOD: “Oh, my God! He wants [Front Desk Worker] and [Supervisor] charged $500 each for refusing his card! That’s more than they make in a week!”

Me: “I know. I feel bad for his clients if he really is a lawyer.”

MOD: “Why?”

Me: “Well, according to the passage he helpfully quoted in this letter, any institution denying tax exempt status will be fined $500 per infraction. So, he could plausibly have the hotel fined…. but [Front Desk Worker] and [Supervisor] are just employees. They can’t be personally fined. What an a**hole.”

(By the way, the amount he wanted two workers to lose more than a week’s pay over? Less than $6.)

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