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Carpet Cleaning Clapham Ltd.

Contact: Isabele Todd
Address: 134 Cecil House Stonhouse St , London, Clapham, SW4 6BG
T: 020 3404 5604
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When you’re searching for reliability, excellent value and remarkable results for rug cleaning in Clapham SW4 contact us. Select a selection of cleaning…

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With the rise of hotel websites and booking online, the ‘miracle’ of the web knows no bounds right? Let me tell you an interesting story…

A few moons back I was asked to go out on a trip to another country to help our Contractor with getting new hotels on board for our programme. Quite excited, as it was going to be another string to my bow and with only office based business experience behind me, my expectations where quite high.

And the contractor, a very forth right northerner soon quashed any delusions I may have. “it’s going to be hard work” she said on the plane over, “We’ll be seeing around 5-10 hotels a day” And that was pretty much it for the trip, very few laughs and little time to even recollect which hotel I’d been round, save for our entry into the country, which resulted in her luggage case being turned out and her very seriously telling the immigration guy doing it, that he “Only wants to see my knickers”. This gave me a valuable insight into her approach and the confidence she had in herself. 

On our first night we met up with our chaperone and after a few drinks at the hotel bar, we all agreed to meet up for breakfast. At 8 am the next day, I found myself eating croissants and jam, with a pot of coffee to the side, surrounded by birds coming down to the table in the restaurant.

Now, this hotel had not been contracted for the UK market, despite appearing available to book on the hotel websites at the time and as it was, we were having a proper look round in the morning to see if it was one we wished to use for our holiday brochures and website. 

Being a bit green to it all at the time, but suited and booted, we met the director of the hotel and he was surprised that we hadn’t called ahead. However he politely sat us down, as we were the largest tour operator coming into this country at the time, and pound signs had appeared in his eyes! (We’d also agreed to put five flights a week into the local airport – unheard of!).

Over the usual orange juice and grenadine, a staple hospitality drink the world over, we discussed rates with him – me only being used as a foil to help her get the cheapest rates possible with her occasionally referring to me with questions like “Do you think this matches your customer profile”? And I giving the nods and shakes of the heads in all the right places.

After about 10 minutes, she asked the director if we could inspect the kitchens and we were politely told yes, however “please another drink” We agreed readily as it was hot however after the drinks arrived, she suddenly stood up and said, “Right, let’s see the kitchens” to which even I sat there slightly embarrassed by the energy with which she said it!

With directors and managers being cast asunder, the contractor powered off into the kitchens, with all of us following in her wake (me like a smartly dressed Oliver Twist). Bursting through the doors, she kept going, as all around us men in white hats and kitchen porters where furiously scrubbing every inch of the kitchen, the noise a cacophony of pots and pans clashing together and almost every one of them with a scouring pad, furiously scrubbing every inch. 

It became quite clear to me this was a tactic she had used before, and why we hadn’t been obvious in our arrival, as a white glove was produced and like a Navy Wren and she placed her hands in all the places that had not been cleaned, finding them immediately. The dirt obvious on the white glove that soon found its way into the bins.

It was truly an eye opener as this hotel, an extremely well known worldwide brand appeared all marble floors and wicker chairs. It gave an outward image of the calm colonialism style that many crave. But, it was anything but, behind the doors that said ‘staff only’ in several different languages.

It was pointed out that ‘if’ we were to use the hotel the birds be removed from the indoor restaurant, something I had taken to be some quaint local thing, however they were according to the contractor, “harbingers of doom, who only spread disease”…(Point taken by me!) and that standards had to improve in cleanliness and quality. 

About an hour later, after the friendly goodbyes and promises to catch up by email, the first stomach cramps started…knife-like shooting pains and the inevitable rush to the loo. I can truly say that visiting three major cities and two large holiday resorts and some 30 hotels later…I wanted to die. Even a polite glass of wine with local suppliers (after it being insisted that I should have one) dropped into my stomach like cold water hitting hot oil. I had been in this massive country for 5 days and can honestly say that I have never felt so ill.

Which kind of leads on to my title of this piece…

What I did learn was the following; Tour Operators take themselves very seriously when it comes to our safety, Balconies are measured, both for height and bar width (children squeezing through). Door handles must be made of non-heat conducting materials in case of fire…Imagine, you don’t want to touch an aluminium door handle in the event of a fire.  Health and hygiene are taken very seriously and are paramount when a tour operator decides to offer a hotel to the general public.

The list goes on and on, even the amount of steps around the hotel are counted. An unbelievable amount of work. And Me? Well, I learned the importance of making a proper assessment of where to send people on holiday, because I was still ill from a stomach complaint 3 months after I got back. 

My only thoughts now, when I hear about people booking on the web and that it was ‘so easy’ to purchase unsolicited hotels and excursions, it just makes me wonder further if they would purchase a car off the web or indeed something that should have an element of tried and tested.

As business people, we won’t spend our company’s money easily until we have absolute proof of a products reliability and that trust has been built, so why book our holidays so easily and in such a carefree manner?

To most of us these are the two most important weeks of the year, yet people book on the web at the toss of a coin.

And as if to read your mind, (Cause that’s another power us travel agents have!). “What about Trip Advisor?” I hear you all cry… That’s another blog for another story and soon I’ll definitely take you through some of the pitfalls of trusting other holiday maker’s opinions on this website.

After-all, just because you like wine and can type, it doesn’t make you a master wine maker.

The Secret Travel Agent….Only booking tried and trusted hotels… (With a safety check too!)

Anytime Anyplace Anywhere

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