Hotel Operators: Free Wi-Fi Is No Longer An Option
I didn't have a choice of hotels given I simply needed a place to stay for a couple of days. But if I did have a chance to shop around as many business travellers do, the hotel's web site noting that "high-speed internet" is available in every room might have pulled me in.
Of course, the lack of the word "free" in that blurb tells the whole story. While the hotel does offer a free level of internet service, it's not very good. It hardly works at all.
That's why the hotel offers not one paid level of internet service but two. That's right, there's a two-tier internet service available at increasing cost. The most expensive is $20 per day, an exorbitant fee designed to grab the business traveller who can't be disconnected no matter the cost. It's probably going to be expensed to the company anyway.
The problem is, and frequent travellers have surely seen this too many times, paying the exorbitant fee doesn't guarantee fast connectivity. It sometimes doesn't guarantee consistent connectivity at all. That's the case here according to two guests in this hotel complaining about how bad the wi-fi is. They each paid the big bucks and then couldn't do much of anything.
That leaves each of them in the nasty limbo of having little or no service and no one to complain to. The employees at the front desk can't help, the internet service is contracted by a third party. There's a phone number for that but don't expect remote assistance to get the service to actually work. These guys were told to lump it in a nice way. Too many guests, blah, blah, blah.
Sadly, this is a common situation that frequent business travellers have to deal with. It can be a big problem as being connected is no longer an option in business, it's now expected. That's why savvy travellers use good, free connectivity as the main criteria for choosing a hotel.