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Single Rooms

(27 Posts)
Barrow Sat 21-Jul-12 11:23:57

I have just returned from a short trip to Bournemouth - my first away on my own since my husband died (apart from visiting relatives). This is the first time I have had to stay in a single room and although I was aware that single rooms are not the best I have to say I was shocked by the room I was given. It was basically a walk in cupboard with a bathroom attached. There was mold around the bath and black stains in the toilet bowl, thick dust or ingrained dirt in the folds of the curtain and a generally feeling of grubbiness. The ceiling light didn't work, it was not possible to lock the door from the inside (not even a chain) and although there was a TV in the room the reception was so bad as to make it unwatchable. I immediately went to reception and asked to be moved - they told me they had nothing else. Some attempt was made to clean the bathroom but mold and stains were still visible. It took two days for them to fix the ceiling light and nothing was done about my other complaints. Others on the same trip who were staying in twin rooms told me the rooms was spacious and clean, another lady I spoke to who was also in a single room said hers was the same as mine.

Now am I being unreasonable to expect the same level of cleanliness and facilities in a single room as those in a twin room - I don't think so.

Why do hotel owners (and tour operators) think it is OK to put single travellers in these types of rooms? I will be complaining to the tour operator and also sending a complaint to the head office of the hotel.

Perhaps we should start a campaign to end the prejudice against single travellers, after all there are a lot of us!

Anyway, for anyone travelling to Bournemouth - avoid Heathlands Hotel especially room 124!

absentgrana Sat 21-Jul-12 11:27:06

What a disgrace. Trenchant letters are certainly called for Barrow and make sure that you demand a refund. Good luck.

Grannylin Sat 21-Jul-12 11:43:56

What a disappointment for you.Letter, plus subtle warning that you will put a review on Tripadvisor!

Nonu Sat 21-Jul-12 11:45:30

We always stay in double rooms . However , I am led to believe that there seems to discrimination against single travellers and THAT is NOT right , also of course some travel companies charge singles a higher rate and again THAT is NOT right not in my book anyway . Good luck in your quest , we should not be taken for granted sad

AlisonMA Sat 21-Jul-12 11:56:56

Put it on Tripadviser, I always look there before booking anything and I always give an honest review.

Hunt Sat 21-Jul-12 12:29:45

And, for good measure, tell them you have already metioned this state of affairs on Gransnet. That should show 'em!

jeni Sat 21-Jul-12 12:43:48

On cruises as a single travellor I pay the same as a couple. The single supplement is 100%.

JO4 Sat 21-Jul-12 12:49:24

There are already pictures of it on Trip Adviser. Horrible! Heathlands Bournemouth

Barrow Sat 21-Jul-12 16:40:51

I have put it on Tripadvisor (although it takes 48 hours before it appears online). I have also emailed the tour operator and the head office of the hotel chain. I took some photos which I am sending to the tour operator with their complaints form and a further copy of my complaint.

Before I left the hotel I did complete one of their feedback forms but as I had to hand it to the receptionist no doubt it was filed in the nearest bin!

Barrow Sat 21-Jul-12 16:46:20

jeni I know cruise lines can charge up to 100% single supplement - I am booked to go on a cruise in September, but I at least know I am getting a twin outside cabin.

Hotels will charge a single supplement when the room they assign to the single traveller is so small it couldn't be sold as a double or twin - that to my mind is something of a rip off and should be stopped.

Greatnan Sat 21-Jul-12 16:48:49

I almost always travel alone and I have come to expect to pay a hefty supplement because the prices are based on two people sharing a room. If I stay alone, they have the same amount of laundry and cleaning to do.
I do agree also that very often single rooms are the poor relations in any hotel.
I am quite forceful if I am annoyed, and I have been lucky in getting upgraded to a better room, without extra charge, several times. Once, they had to find me a room in another hotel.
I consult Tripadvisor before every trip and so far the reviews have proved to be very accurate.
I once got an upgrade by a slight deception! I wandered round the public rooms of the hotel, apparently making notes in a little notebook. The proprietor assumed (I didn't tell him, honestly!) that I was from the local tourist board assessing the hotel. He insisted I had dinner and a bottle of wine on the house.

Barrow Sat 21-Jul-12 17:01:07

Greatnan If I was more experienced at travelling solo I perhaps would have kicked up more of a fuss - although as I was only there for 4 days I didn't want to spend all my time complaining!

No doubt as I do more solo travelling I will become more forceful. As for having the same amount of laundry and cleaning - thats not quite right. There is only one bed so half the laundry of a twin room, the room is much smaller so doesn't take as long to clean. The single traveller would still pay the same as each person in the twin room - if the rate was £80 per night per person the occupants of a twin would pay £160 while the single would pay £80.

My main complaint isn't about the single supplement, although I do think hotels go overboard with that, but the fact that my room was dirty, small and didn't have the same quality of facilities as those in a twin room.

moomin Sat 21-Jul-12 17:37:46

Nice one greatnan! I too always consult TripAdvisor before I book somewhere and leave comments on the places OH and I have stayed - most have never disappointed, but for a single traveller I can understand that it can be very expensive in hotels. If you can find a Premier Inn in the vicinity of where you want to be, they don't charge for single occupancy and their rooms are always clean and the staff helpful. Sometimes the attached "restaurants" are not up to much though.

Greatnan Sat 21-Jul-12 17:44:57

Yes, I have used Premiere Class here in France at various airports. I have found in England that it is often better to stay in a pub with rooms - I will be staying in one in Yorkshire when I am in England next week for my grandson's wedding. It is only £35 for b and b.

Ariadne Sat 21-Jul-12 17:57:22

I use Tripadvisor a lot when we are travelling, and always post a comment. We have stayed in 4 and 5 star hotels sometimes, abroad usually at conferences, but I actually prefer simplicity, so long as it is comfortable. Don't like being faffed over.

Pubs with rooms are great; we stay in an old coaching inn in Devon as we house hunt - four rooms, and one is huge, with a bathroom twice the size of mine. Full breakfast cooked to order, all for £75.00 for us both. And the bar just downstairs!

shysal Sat 21-Jul-12 19:51:10

Where possible I always request a double room for single use. It costs more, but my experience of single rooms is that the facilities are often inferior and, particularly, the view is almost always of the bins or rear kitchen door where staff stand and smoke.

glammanana Sat 21-Jul-12 20:21:25

Most unfair the single room supplement,these hotels would be more proofitable to the owners if they had realistic rates therefore bringing themselves in more bookings in the long run,do some of these hoteliers think just because we book single rooms and are ladies of a certain age we are not going to complain ? (I can hear the reply from you greatnan lol )

glammanana Sat 21-Jul-12 20:22:46

one o in profitable ^ sorry !

granjura Sat 21-Jul-12 20:53:34

What a shame your first brave venture on your own was spoilt by this issue.

Just wondering- did you request to be moved to a different room, or 'just' complained about the room. We once had a terrible room in London and requested a move. They said 'but you booked a standard room Madam!' my reply 'Yes indeed I did, NOT a SUB standard room'. They couldn't move us the first night, but we did have a very nice room for the rest of our stay. That was a double - but I do agree about single rooms being the same standard as doubles, albeit a bit smaller of course.

Hope you won't let it stop you travelling again. Perhaps talk to the hotel before you go to explain your disappointment on your last visit, and a re-assurance about the room, view, etc.

goldengirl Sat 21-Jul-12 21:07:59

It could also be Bournemouth. I had an unpleasant hotel experience in Bournemouth too but I can't remember the name of the hotel unfortunately. I travel on my own off and on for various reasons and apart from Bournemouth appear to have been extremely lucky and well looked after. One of my nicest experiences was in Newbury, an old coaching inn which was very quirky with paint peeling and mould which would have been offputting had it not been for the super staff who made me very welcome and looked after me very well. That made all the difference and I'd certainly be happy to stay there again.

Also when I book I just ask for a room and don't stipulate a single. In all the years I've only had a single room twice - once in Bournemouth and I can't remember the other but it was OK, just cramped. I also ask if there are special deals during my stay too. Mind you I rarely stay at weekends so perhaps that makes a difference. I've just come back from Cardiff and had a sumptuous room all to my self and once again it was the staff who made it enjoyable - nothing too much trouble.

Barrow Sun 22-Jul-12 13:49:01

granjura Yes I did ask to be moved to another room (twice) because I was very unhappy with the one I had been given but was told there were none available. I went with a tour operator and with hindsight should have asked their representative to deal with it for me but my husband and I travelled extensively and always sorted out any problems ourselves so didn't think to involve the rep.

HildaW Sun 22-Jul-12 14:14:04

When we have needed a hotel room, other than for full blown holidays, we have always gone for superior B&Bs. They always give much better value for money and far better breakfasts!

Greatnan Sun 22-Jul-12 14:24:23

Many of my friends on ex-pat forums run b & b businesses and one asked me why I didn't use them instead of hotels. I had to say that I find it embarrassing to go into a small B & B and ask the price - they don't always display them outside, or if they do you have to walk up the path to read them. I often go 'drive about' without making any plans and just look for a small hotel around 6 pm.Hotels are more impersonal and most of the staff don't mind telling you the rates - they are probably not owners. Similarly, I don't like to have to make polite conversation at breakfast - I prefer the anonymity of hotel dining rooms.
There is a large chain in France called, oddly, B & B, but they are hotels where you can book in with your credit card 24 hours a day. Otherwise, I look for one of the cheap chains, such as Campanile, but not any where you have to share a bathroom.

dorsetpennt Sun 22-Jul-12 19:02:44

Barrow I'm glad to see that you are putting put your comments about the HeathLands Hotel on to Trip Advisor. I live in Bournemouth and to be honest several of our previously well known and good hotels have gone down the pan somewhat. I have a friend who worked at what used to be an excellent hotel but by the time she retired it had become very old fashioned and rather run down - tired as she used to call it. I think that if I was going to go away on a hotel trip I'd check out Trip Advisor first - mind you what seems to suit some people doesn't suit others. Also we are a nation of non-complainers. Although you did ask reception to move you they seemed very uncaring about your plight. They should have moved you to a double room as your room appeared to be unhabitable. Mould is dangerous and it sounded like the whole room was filthy. - next time make more noise, not shouting but really insistant that you have paid for a decent room and service and you are not getting it.
Last July as a family we went to a wedding, we stayed at a hotel in Guildford. I had a single room and although it was small, it was very clean and comfortable with excellent shower room. I was delighted and said so on Trip Advisor.
Just read all the comments about the Heathlands on Trip Advisor - and its not good

Micheal Tue 24-Jul-12 07:38:38

Message deleted by Gransnet.