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Horrible guests? Time to have your say!

WIN: Send in your "worst guest" story for chance at a weekend on the Sunshine coast!

“Made you feel as welcome as an STD.”

This is how one “terrible” guest review on TripAdvisor began and you can probably guess the tirade that followed.

The online reviewer called the front desk staff in this very well-rated and popular Brisbane motel “passive aggressive” and described the guest rooms as “sterile and overpriced”.

However, the full story only becomes clear once you read on. The management response calmly explained that although they do not like to make guests feel unwelcome, they had to put their foot down and ask the reviewer to abandon his party in the motel room during the early hours of the morning due to noise complaints from other guests.

In other words, this was a “TERRIBLE” guest who had the bare-faced cheek to write a bad review!

Disagreements over noise trigger lots of complaints. Another “Poor” TripAdvisor review of a different Brisbane motel declared: “Manager of the place did not make my stay an enjoyable one with her constant complaining of noise”.

Now, any reasonable person reading this review would clearly see it is the noisy guest who is at fault here and not the “complaining” manager. Yet this “poor” review is still included on the global review site – in black and white – for all to see months after the incident.

Managing unfair poor reviews by awful guests must be infuriating for managers but dealing with horrible guests in person must be even worse.

At best, some guests can be annoying but in extreme cases they can be scary and unnerving.

Almost all managers report the usual headaches such as noisy, drunken guests or entitled guests who wildly overstay the check-out time and even return to use the pool and barbeque facilities after checkout.

Some managers share amusing stories like the guest who attempted to boil milk in the guest room kettle or the family who put glitter in the guest spa bath so that their kids could have a fun splash in the bath but the spa ended up producing glitter baths for weeks after.

We want to hear your stories, so it’s competition time!

Accom News wants you to send in your “worst guest story” for a chance to win a weekend on the Sunshine coast!

The prize is 3 nights in a 2-bedroom unit at Pumicestone Blue Resort, Caloundra.

Readers, please submit your story via the comments section below or via email (property names can be kept anonymous).

We will pick the winner by 31/5/2021.

To view the competition terms and conditions please click here.

Mandy Clarke

Mandy has over 15 years of accommodation and tourism industry writing experience. She is the editor of Accom News & Resort News & director of Multimedia Pty Ltd. She is a retired registered nurse with a 25 year NHS career that followed a few years in hotel housekeeping.

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6 Comments

  1. Our worst guests shoplifted from a local shop. The shop owner saw them steal and had them on security camera, then he followed them to our place. He called me, gave a description of the people and their car, and asked if they were guests here, when I confirmed they were, he told me what happened and let me know he was calling the police. The police viewed the shop’s camera footage, then when the police arrived here, I greeted them and went with them to the accommodation, only to discover there were more people in the room than they’d booked for. So we evicted them on the spot. The police stayed while they packed up their belongings and left the property, then the police escorted them to the shop where they paid for what they stole. They’d stolen about $12 worth, which they ended up paying for, and lost the remaining nights of their holiday as well. I hope they learnt their lesson…

  2. The review from the guest stated – “‘Staff don’t care about their guests” “room was crap” etc etc
    I was suss on him from the moment he arrived. He booked the cheapest possible room in the area less than 24hrs before his arrival but then turned up in a $350k Mercedes. If you have that kind of money you wouldn’t be staying with us. They were booked for 2 nights but the amount of things that were being taken in to the room was unusual.
    We have a contact at QPS that checks on things that we are overly unsure about so I sent through the drivers license to the team and next thing I know is I am getting a phone call from them that they are coming straight over.
    Full police raid where they found drugs and several hand guns, sawn off shotgun under the bed.
    All 4 guests were arrested for the guns and drugs along with outstanding warrants.
    The apartment wash trashed from QPS turning it upside down during their search so had to be put back together.
    The next day one of them turns up and says “not sure if you remember me but I was here yesterday and got arrested, I need somewhere to stay tonight, can I have our room back”
    My receptionist was petrified that if she said no he would lose it, he did, but not in the way we were expecting, he started crying.
    We had to give him $10 so he could get to the airport to get rid of him.
    The ring leader was overly aggressive, we got a few not so nice emails from him wanting a refund for the 2nd night they didn’t get to stay, but the fact that he had the hide to go on to booking.com and leave a negative review absolutely floored me.
    Obviously we replied that the care and safety of our guests is an utmost priority and not allowing guests back in that had caused a police raid and been arrested is the best interest for all of our other guests.

  3. With over thirty years in the hospitality and accommodation sector as a General Manger for various venues and building up the success to achieve highly regarded and awarded properties with outstanding online reviews, I currently manage a motel and recently had a guest, upon check-out, convey his disappointment to having heard other cars coming into the carpark, unable to sleep due some other external noise, not being able to work the Foxtel remote although we also provide free Netflix, and the super King beds we provide was just to big for him and his wife. Our property does have a “we sell sleep” policy which is very much appreciated as we encourage all guests to contact myself, the onsite manger, from their room phone in confidence at any time should they be disrupted by other guests or are not comfortable for any reason. If I don’t know about it, I can’t help.
    The guest did make his booking through Qantas using his accumulated points and of course when he got home made further complaints to his Qantas agent. Following their phone and email contact with me along with their conversing with their client we came to the mutual agreement of supplying the guest with a gift voucher for 1 free night which he then became most happy enough to return and stay with us sometime soon.
    I love this industry and I love my guests but on rare occasions that love is worn on my sleeve.
    Geez, I need a holiday ;0)

  4. We received two bad reviews from the same guest, who rebooked after his first night’s stay a second one night booking through booking.com. He used a virtual credit card for both bookings and would not disclose his credit card details to us.

    One hour after the official check-out time he ran past our reception and out the front door with a 3rd undisclosed guest and shouted that he’d left the key in the apartment. On investigation we discovered he’d been using his small unit kitchen as a commercial kitchen.. There was no key to be found and he’d left the apartment a bomb site, with strong stench of cooked meat and charred remains on our saucepans. We found a roll of stickers with food orders on them and later when we reviewed our security cameras discovered he’d been delivering food through a fire exit door at all times of day and night. We eventually got our key back, after calling and exchanging some stern words, but were never able to charge for the extra clean or third person. To top things off he left two bad review scores, without comment, which booking.com refused to remove or allow us post a follow up comment. Unfortunately his two bad scores were enough to push our overall rating from 9.0 to 8.9 and it took sometime to reclaim our 9.0 average booking.com review score.

  5. This review was published by Google 6 weeks ago against our 4 star Best Western Motor Inn of excellent standing, and was reported to Google but it’s still there. The name is the same as the guy who’s in jail in USA for killing John Lennon. Shame on you Google, not watching, not listening, and obviously publish anything however random.

    IamMarkDavidChapmanAndIKilledJohnLennon
     6 weeks ago
    i woke up in the kitchen naked in a barrel of salt and i was refused to leave the building let alone the barrel until my embassy had opened

    (owner)
    4 weeks ago
    We have requested Google remove this post for obvious reasons. Owners.

  6. Our bad review – not surprisingly that they put anonymous review – I believe they did want a free stay. I did get a good laugh after they left the reception area. As I was informed that ‘sound rises; didn’t I know that?’ I thought it was hot air that rises and sounds traveled by waves.
    Not so relaxing
    Behind the main strip of shops and very close to the beach. Cleanliness in rooms and hand sanitizer near common touch surfaces. Keyless entry to car park and rooms.
    It is two doors from a nightclub with very loud music and intoxicated people till 2am. You cannot fall sleep it’s so loud. Unsympathetic staff who told us ‘no one had complained about the club’ yet knew the club was operational since December! No attempt to empathise or remedy the situation with a voucher for a coffee or discount on the accommodation. Feeling exhausted after a supposedly relaxing weekend!

    Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a review of Carmel at Sorrento and your personal experience. We are delighted that you loved the location, our cleanliness standard extra touches. We are sorry that you did not take advantage to use the complimentary coffee cards that we give to all our guests with their welcome letters. We were sorry to hear that you did not have a restful sleep and it was the least that I could do to offer the relaxed midday check out due to your family’s tiredness. We would have loved the opportunity to rectify the situation on the night of your discomfort. Unfortunately, our After-hours service that we recommend to call when reception is unattended was not alerted to any noise disruption on that evening when we would have been able to ascertain the source. We became aware the following day when you brought it to our attention. We have had a follow-up with the establishment that is located 2 doors; they closed early at 11:30 pm due to lack of patrons. We truly hope you visit Sorrento again in the future.

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