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By What Stretch is a Request Guaranteed?

Ever have that one caller who just doesn’t get it?

When you make a hotel reservation, we will try our best to accommodate requests like being near another family, having a mountain view, etc. That being said, we can never actually guarantee anything for a variety of reasons, like appliances breaking, people wanting to extend, and any other reason you can find on r/TalesFromTheFrontDesk.

This evening, gentle readers, we shall speak of just such a caller. I’ll be Me, as usual. He will be Entitled Douchebag (ED).

And one last thing: dialogue is edited for clarity.

Now for the call.

(Ring ring)

Me: Good afternoon, (my office), this is MazdaValiant, how may I assist you?

ED: Hey there. I have a reservation for (time frame). I just want to confirm some details.

Me: Okay! What’s the reservation number?

ED: (gives me his reservation number)

Me: (Verifies information on the reservation) I do see that we have a mountain view request, but please understand that it is a request and cannot be guaranteed.

ED: I guess my question is why can’t it be guaranteed?

Me: I can only guarantee the room type. We will certainly try our best to fulfill the request for a view, but sometimes it’s not possible for whatever reason. We don’t actually assign anything until the day of check-in.

ED: So you’re saying you hold one or two back?

Me internally: No, that is not even close to what I said.

Me to ED: No, what I’m saying is that I’m holding that particular room type for you because that’s what you booked. I can’t promise a particular view. Suppose, for a second, I did make that a guarantee, and that room has to be put out of order for whatever reason. At that point, we can no longer make good on a promise, which puts us in a pretty awkward position. That’s also why we don’t assign a unit until the day of your arrival. Does that make sense?

And we go back and forth like this for another few minutes.

ED: Is this a change?

Me: It’s been that way as long as I’ve worked here.

ED: How long have you worked there?

Me: About two years.

ED: We’ve been coming to (my resort) for a decade and things have gone downhill since I don’t know when. We used to be guaranteed a mountain view, and it’s always been a cool experience. I know it’s not your call, but this is leaving a sour taste in my mouth.

(I can’t wait to get this “gentleman” off my phone now)

Me: Anything else I can assist you with?

ED: What’s your name?

Me: My name is MazdaValiant.

ED: The resort is heading in the wrong direction in terms of customer service and you are clearly complacent. (Click)

So I talk to my supervisor about it afterwards.

Supervisor: What’s up?

Me: (gives her the reservation number) I just got off the phone with this dude. I explained to him that I could certainly request a mountain view, but that was only a request and couldn’t be guaranteed. That wasn’t good enough for him and he started belittling me about it.

Supervisor: Some people are just bullies. Don’t let it get to you.

Me: It’s not personal, I’m just getting it off my chest. I’m going to note this on his reservation, just to give the front desk a heads-up.

Supervisor: Okay.

And I note this interaction on his reservation, in case he tries to throw me under the bus by saying I was rude or something like that. I had seen a manager do that when someone was denied a late check-out and the interaction went sideways.

Moral of the story: Entitlement gets ED nowhere. Not with me, anyway.

What do you think?

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