This is Part Three from one world traveler exemplifying how the convenience of a day booking hotel can help save the day!
Flexibility brings the love: in people and in travel.
Nine years after my Côte d’Azur sojourn, I met and fell for an Aussie through the current technological obsession, online dating. I flew to Sydney to meet him and spend a Mardi Gras week exploring the city.
Telstra had a monopoly on the internet connections, and, mobile phone service at that time was, shall I say, frustratingly less than optimal.
It was 2014, and we’re dealing with dodgy tech still?! I arrived armed with an unlocked iPhone 5, which I understood to be usable with an Australian mobile chip. Telstra disavowed me of this happily anticipated situation. Essentially I traveled with a $1000 USD camera made of plastic and silicon. Fantastic.
Hotel flexibility? Not yet reached Down Under. The need for flexible booking would become achingly obvious once again.
A day use hotel could have come in handy just about now…
Being Mardi Gras, rooms were solidly booked and inflexible to shift. My ex-boyfriend had reservations at a hotel in King’s Cross for three of our eight days. We’d then move…..somewhere???? The room was ceremoniously disclosed to us whilst dropping our gear at check in. You could barely open the door and climb over the bed. Our moldy window was firmly juxtaposed against the bed which took up every cm of the room. Next morning l climbed over the bed to investigate the bathroom: I suppose I should have been happy we had one en suite, but after a cockroach the size of a koala handed me a sliver of soap in the hole in the floor that was the shower, I rather lost my cookies.
Call me a spoiled-westerner with first-world problems, I didn’t really care after that experience.
I grabbed the reins that morning: screw inflexible check in and check out: I forfeited our deposit, denied the Château Roach any more of our money, and diligently pounded the pavement to find a clean, entomologically-empty hotel with rooms available. The availability of day booking hotels would have ensured us at least a shower and the opportunity to revamp our plans quickly.
After much accommodation ado, I can unequivocally recommend The Mercure in Sydney, which served up a deluxe experience, at a price: worth it after the rigidity of the previous hotel based on the style of the Bastille.
At last, touchdown in Beantown
After a studying stint in Florence, Italy, a holiday in the South of France, and a Mardi Gras celebration in Sydney, Australia, at long last, a family excursion was on the docket. In 2015, I was excited for a holiday in Boston, Massachusetts. I had confidence that I had technology on lockdown. Armed with my iPhone 6s Plus, I didn’t anticipate any wrinkles in transit. I could fix virtually anything via my smartphone. A little-known fact: The first smartphone was designed in the mid-1970s. Primarily, Samsung and Blackberry were marketed during the intervening years to corporations. Patently, “everyday people” benefited from Apple’s rollout of the iPhone in 2007 which forever changed the tech landscape.
To alight in a mysterious place called Logan Airport and associated labyrinthine train station, I took a red-eye from San Francisco, changed planes in Los Angeles, Charlotte and Detroit. No problems. I even received an unsolicited upgrade with TSA.
Unbelievably, feeling safe was a short-lived enthusiastic state.
Technology, like flexible booking, works best when charged.
The trip was all going so smoothly, until…No! Not nowadays!! One of the issues inherent in all devices bit me in an inconvenient bodily region: a dead battery. It was imperative to ring my contact to let him know my train so he knew where to collect me. Oddly no anachronistic public pay phones existed.
Ok, I was able to deal, here’s how in seven easy steps:
- A simple thing: charge up in the outlets provided by the train station.
2. I was told there were none.
3. I sprinted upstairs to a convenience shop to buy a power pack promised for use with my phone.
4. The USB cords didn’t fit my device.
5. I breathed deeply, problem-solved and thought what I’d want my children to do: ask a safe person to borrow their phone for 3 minutes to place the critical call.
6. Providentially, Boston is full of genial people more than willing to help a stranded traveler. A lovely woman generously allowed me to use her phone and I took her to a jovial lunch to thank her.
7. Connection made. Post-modern-dead-tech-battery will NOT shut down this adventurer.
Had there not been a Good Samaritan to help out, there is one option I know would work: booking a half day stay at a local airport hotel; luckily, Hotels By Day, has multiple hotel partners in many travel hubs around the world. Learn more about travel trends.
Latest posts by Victoria Sangiovese (see all)
- Here We Go: Travel Tips Made Simple (Part 1) - August 8, 2017
- Airport woes? A day hotel room could make giving up your seat worthwhile - April 18, 2017
- The New Wave: Booking Hotels with Technological Instantaneity (Part 3) - February 14, 2017