Friday, 9 October 2009

National Customer Service Week - Lousy Hotels: when will I Iearn?

I have just come across a blog that suggests that it might be NATIONAL CUSTOMER SERVICE WEEK right now.

As an obsessive (of brilliant and dreadful) customer service I was surprised not to know about it. I googled and found National Customer Service Week (good old google) but can't quite tell when it is from the home page!!!

AND NOW A QUICK CUSTOMER SERVICE MOAN FROM A RECENT TRIP TO IRELAND (Sept 09)

One Irish town. All the B&Bs looked a bit dodgy.

I wished
“If only there were a named/branded cheap and cheerful travel hotel/lodge/inn nearby”. As I uttered the words the place came into sight. Too much synchronicity to deny. Against my better judgement we booked in.

The receptionist was economic with her use of the English language: “100 Euros for bed only”, “Don’t do breakfast. Go to restaurant next door!”, “Paying cash, we’ll need credit card as deposit.” [in case I trash the room?]. I suggest we leave then and there.

Hen night in the first corridor. Pics of the hen on all the doors. Humourously I suggest we leave.

Our corridor had the familiar odour of human urine; you could see the stain on the floor. Again I suggest we leave.

Our bedroom had lost a bedside table; it had been ripped off the wall. The plumbing creaked; the whole system rattled every time anyone in the corridor went to the loo. It is too late; I am too tired and give up trying to leave.
The website doesn’t have a FAQ covering complaints [seriously]. We complained three times at reception, wrote a note, sent a letter and still no reply.

Cheap? No.

Cheerful? No.


They have got away with it again. Or have they?

Long live Trip Advisor... The URL for I-Hate-XXX- hotel.com is available.
I now have a reason to get up in the morning. Or will complacency get the better of me?


RELEVANT LINKS
Customer Is King - the book

14 comments:

Terry Walsh said...

National Customer Service Week is a spoof I presume.

I visited the site.

Can't see the dates too easily.(At all actually)

It does say "National Customer Service Week is underway" so I guess it is happening right now, finishing today(?) or on Sunday(?) or maybe the site is getting ready for next week or is left over from last week. Or is it left over from 08 cos that's what the videos are from.

Robert, they need help and fast.

The irony.

National Customer Service Week scores an own goal by giving such a useless customer experience.

If the Customer Is King (yawn! yawn!) then the NCSW wins first prize for shooting itself in the foot. You couldn't have made it up!

Terry
Cambridge (Thanks for yesterday's event!)

PS I know a good book they should read.

Jo Partington said...

Trip Advisor is an excellent example of how good and bad PR is easily spread across the Internet. Hotel’s should be wary – Many people forget to post good comments, but will be more motivated to get information into the public domain when they have a bad customer experience.

I look at Trip Advisor whenever I book a hotel. My parents didn’t and recently stayed in a good quality, well appointed and clean guest house with a landlady likened to a female version of Basil faulty. I couldn’t quite believe their stories, so I checked out the reviews…

http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Hotel_Review-g674076-d674649-Reviews-Ilex_House-Highbridge_Somerset_England.html

When will these people learn that, in the Internet age, news of bad customer service can travel like wildfire and easily damage their reputation? My guess is they don’t care about their customers and they don’t really care about their business.

Anonymous said...

Bad news may well travel, but people simply don't like to take notice of the negative reviews. People also don't take note of their own intuition, even when it screams at them to make their escape.

Customers like Robert Craven, will willingly still pay for cheaper options, instead of planing ahead, so ensuring that such piss-pots stay in business. I bet he even flew Ryanair!

I'm sorry, but there are good hotels everywhere who compete on quality. Anyone who get's caught in the way Robert did, gets what they planned for, and what they paid for.

Shame you didn't go for one of those 'nasty corporates' you so loathe, Robert. You would have had better level of accountability...

SW

Unknown said...

I 100% agree that I was my own worst enemy and make no bones about it. Like Brad and Janet in the Rocky Horror Show we knew we should leave but then there would have been no story to tell!


Until this particular evening we had stayed in wonderful, if idiosyncratic, B&Bs all over Ireland. No such places seemed to exist in this town.

No, we didn't fly with Ryanair!
No, I don't loathe all nasty corporates!
Yes, I/we screwed up!

Cheers

Robert

Terry Walsh said...

Robert, Jo has found the perfect place for your next conference at Ilex House.

We have to go there.

The reviews are on a par with the dreadful NCSW which is still 'underway' according to the website (and it still doesn't say when it is or was!)

http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Hotel_Review-g674076-d674649-Reviews-Ilex_House-Highbridge_Somerset_England.html

Please, let's go. SW can come too. I'll see if Ryanair fly to Taunton.

Terry

Anonymous said...

I am a great fan of privately owned and privately run hotels. The costs of such an exercise are, however beyond comprehension and funds of most people. They are not quite the money machine that people imagine. You do however need deep pockets and a long game to be able to finance them.

p v e

Anonymous said...

RC is human. He makes mistakes. Idiot!
Madge

Mark D (London) said...

Well-spotted, Madge. And that is why he is so refreshing.

Mark

Anonymous said...

Not a great Ad for visiting the UK!

Unknown said...

Mary Portas: My 10 worst customer service crimes - Telegraph http://t.co/zWIHcrY via @Telegraph

Anonymous said...

Not a great Ad for visiting the UK!

Anonymous said...

RC is human. He makes mistakes. Idiot!
Madge

Jo Partington said...

Trip Advisor is an excellent example of how good and bad PR is easily spread across the Internet. Hotel’s should be wary – Many people forget to post good comments, but will be more motivated to get information into the public domain when they have a bad customer experience.

I look at Trip Advisor whenever I book a hotel. My parents didn’t and recently stayed in a good quality, well appointed and clean guest house with a landlady likened to a female version of Basil faulty. I couldn’t quite believe their stories, so I checked out the reviews…

http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Hotel_Review-g674076-d674649-Reviews-Ilex_House-Highbridge_Somerset_England.html

When will these people learn that, in the Internet age, news of bad customer service can travel like wildfire and easily damage their reputation? My guess is they don’t care about their customers and they don’t really care about their business.

Kev said...

Don't ever use them again.