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★☆☆☆☆

“Worst reception ever”

Written on: 30/07/2018 by Stafford120 (1 review written)

I booked and paid for my wife and I to stay 2 months in advance. On arrival I discovered that I had travelled without my credit card but did have a 3 page confirmation of booking which I presented at reception. We were greeted by a round faced middle aged man who spoke with a french/belgian accent. He was not wearing a name badge. He began the booking in process, initially unable to find our reference, but then presented me with a registration form. He then said "do you want to book breakfasts and dinner" I replied that we would pay as we go. Then in quite a demanding fashion he held out his hand and simply said "credit card". I explained that I did not have a credit card with me but that the room had been paid in advance. He replied "you must have a credit card". Again, I explained that I had not and he replied "then you must find someone to present a card on your behalf". As a stanger to Cardiff I pointed out how obsurd his demand was, to which he replied " you must have a card for security". "Security of what ?" I asked as the room had been paid in full. He replied "In case you use any of the Hotel's services", even though I had already stated that I would pay cash if I chose to dine or drink at the bar. Undeterred, he kept insisting that I produce a card because " it is hotel policy", and becoming more and more hostile and dismissive in his tone and body language. Eventually I asked him to show me an indication of this policy anywhere in the three pages of confirmation. With his pen he pointed at a tiny orange 'cross' and said "if you had clicked this you would have seen all of our T&Cs. I protested that if such an important condition of check-in existed then it should be clear in the confirmation documents and not hidden away in the obscurity of small print, however, none of this would resolve the issue that I simply did not have a credit card to produce. The receptionist then said "if you don't have a credit card then you cannot stay here". I replied "Okay, fine. Refund my money and I will go to the Premier Inn, opposite". His retort to this was "we cannot give refunds".

By now, and after a long journey I was quite frustrated by the intransigence and robotic adherence to rules in an untenable situation that I requested to speak with the Manager. "I am the Manager" he replied with a smirk.
I simply said "I don't have a credit card and you won't refund the money which I have paid in good faith. Where do we go from here?"
At this point he suggested a substantial cash deposit which I paid and he stapled to the registration form before placing it in a filing tray. I demanded that he provide a written receipt for the cah stating that it is a refundable deposit. His response was to very indignantly write in my confirmation document 'Depsit £***, and scrall an unreadable signature. Again, I asked him to state that the deposit was refundable. He leant forward shaking his pen at the word 'deposit' and through gritted teeth said " I have written deposit, deposit means refundable" in a pedantic fashion, as though he knew my mother-tongue better than I.

This whole unpleasant situation and unwelcoming reception could have been avoided if a cash deposit had been politely requested as soon has I had made it known that I had no credit card. However, we got our room which we occupied between 11pm and 9am each night to sleep only. we very purposely went to Premier Inn each morning for breakfast, dined out, and drank in local pubs solely to make sure that we did not spend one single penny more at Campanile as a direct result of the reception we received.

I will never stay at this hotel again and will discourage anyone who invites my opinion. Having stayed in dozens of budget hotels/motels all around UK and Europe, I can state my honest opinion that I have never met such an ARROGANT, OFFICIOUS, UNCOMPROMISING, SELF-IMPORTANT, TWIRP proporting to be a receptionist/manager ever before.

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