LUXURY HOTEL shops, how much do you get paid and how much free time do you actually have? Why bother?

Not going to happen. There is no shortage of hotel shoppers.

______________________________________________________________________
Seriously, nobody cares that you're offended.

Create an Account or Log In

Membership is free. Simply choose your username, type in your email address, and choose a password. You immediately get full access to the forum.

Already a member? Log In.

One company I work for requires a full report in by midnight on day of check out. That is for a full two day stay with 2 room services, 2 meals, a bar and full amenity check. Pays great, but reporting time sucks.
I have never done a hotel evaluation, including two back-to-back international 3-nights, where I didn't get the report submitted within 2 hours of checkout. You have to complete it as you go.

______________________________________________________________________
Seriously, nobody cares that you're offended.
From the luxury hotel shops that I've done, I've either had 50% of the hotel costs credited back to me, or the entire hotel stay's credit card charges reversed.
I take it that across the hotel shops available through various MSCs, the reports are not consistent in length and level of detail - some reasonable, some not so much.? so the ability to finish in a reasonable timeframe, likely depends on who you're working for?

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/12/2018 12:55AM by BarefootBliss.
In my experience, it's not about the level of detail. It's about how much you're willing to write while you're on-site. There's no reason you can't get the entire check-in process complete and submitted within a couple hours of checking in.
Some companies require a lot of narrative (like Coyle). Some companies have really stupid and unintuitive questions (like TrueGuest) that require a lot more creative thinking (that really doesn't do anything more than fluff up a response with worthless words). But no matter what, you should be able to complete nearly the entire report on site other than the check-out process, which includes valet and bell service.

That is, unless you're using it as a vacation rather than a working vacation. Then you've got your work cut out for you afterwards. But it's really easy to screw up a report when you leave the entire thing for the day after you leave.

______________________________________________________________________
Seriously, nobody cares that you're offended.
"...worthless words..." I like that.

The internet doesn't make you smart. It makes you good at regurgitation.
@Hoju wrote:

it's really easy to screw up a report when you leave the entire thing for the day after you leave.

I respectfully disagree. My office space at home is set up ergonomically with a better keyboard, larger (multiple) monitors, a variety of input devices, and offers me the ability to dictate my reports using speech-to-text in a quiet setting.

I can accomplish more in 4 hours at my home office that I can in 6-8 hours from a laptop in a hotel, sneaking time where I can to work on the report. My best use of reporting time is done from a comfortable desk chair with the best technology available. It's also easy to screw up a report when you are distracted by events going on around you in a setting that you are not familiar with.

I would rather use my time at the hotel to be in the pool, at the fitness center, catching up with friends, and then put in a serious one-shot effort to complete the reporting at home....or at least on a flight back if I'm going to be working from the laptop.
@Eric in Tampa wrote:

From the luxury hotel shops that I've done, I've either had 50% of the hotel costs credited back to me, or the entire hotel stay's credit card charges reversed.

Wait - what?

You've paid for 50% of a luxury hotel stay AND submitted a report to the MSC? I don't understand.
Well obviously there are exceptions, Steve. smiling smiley

______________________________________________________________________
Seriously, nobody cares that you're offended.
Steve, what are you using for note taking while you are on the property, entering bits in your phone? (or maybe you just keep the notes in your head?)
@BarefootBliss wrote:

Steve, what are you using for note taking while you are on the property, entering bits in your phone? (or maybe you just keep the notes in your head?)

Hahaha...I have a terrible memory. No way I can keep an employee name in my head for more than 5 minutes!

I've written about this before but I use an app called Notemaster on my phone, which in turn publishes to Google docs. I also have a voice recorder that I use to take quick notes here and there...and of course, pics whenever I need to remember something visually.

Oh, and my guest when I can! My current hotel travel partner has a photographic memory. I can always just ask her if I miss something. She literally gave me a list of ALL staff names after we recently checked out of a 2 night stay. It's freakish...but she's terrible at narratives, so we all have our strong points.

Here's the basic breakdown of my current workflow:
-Notmaster has subcategories, so I make one for each section of the report and put timings and quotes there. I have a shorthand that allows me to do this pretty quickly (TYSM = "Thank you so much"winking smiley
-When I set and receive wake up calls, or order room service, or interact with housekeeping, I immediately dictate the event into my recorder
-I take pics of any defects, all food served, and obviously the required photos.

Once I arrive home:
-I set aside an entire day for the report.
-I make a folder for the evaluation and put my word doc and instructions there.
-Photos are named and sorted into folders for the submission requirements, data photos (Food, full trash cans, etc.), and personal photos.
-The required submission photos are batch resized and put into another folder.
-All receipts are scanned and put into yet another folder.
-All audio is dropped into a final folder.
-While I'm doing photos, my guest usually opens up the evaluation from my iPad and enters all staff names and/or descriptions.
-For each section of the report, I either speak the narrative while reading from Google docs, or play the narration from my voice recorder into the speech-to-text converter.
-I then do an editing pass in Word to clean up punctuation, formatting and spelling errors from the speech-to-text process.
-I score each section and add comments online after editing it, with the form on a neighboring screen to Word.
-I add my subjective commentary last after proofing and scoring the objective parts, when I then have a good memory for how the interaction felt.

If I'm on point, I can do a 2-night stay with 4 or 5 restaurant visits, a few bars and a spa and about 6-7 hours. I take a gym and lunch break in the middle to break up the monotony.
I love reading through threads like this. It’s really interesting to see how different people approach various shops.

I haven’t yet done a hotel shop, but will probably try at least one in the future once I feel ready.

I’ve come to imagine them as being similar to any other business travel. People travel for work to attend a conference, or training, etc. The trip isn’t a total vacation per se, there’s work involved... but wouldn’t you rather attend your work conference in Vegas?
I think the reason I get them done on site is because the majority of my stays are purely utilitarian. For the few I do that are vacation oriented, I still get it all done on site, but Maybe I should try to save it until after it’s over just to see if I can handle it.

______________________________________________________________________
Seriously, nobody cares that you're offended.
@Megs7521 wrote:

I’ve come to imagine them as being similar to any other business travel.

I find the work a bit different from other business travel for a few (good) reasons:
-Your drinking is limited.
-You need to go to the fitness center.
-The reimbursement is quicker.

Last time I travelled for business that was not MSIng, I was actually surprised how relaxing it was. MSing is pretty intense, whereas I can lock the housekeeper out of the room for a full week if I want on a business visit.
@Hoju wrote:

Maybe I should try to save it until after it’s over just to see if I can handle it.

I think you owe it to yourself to try both ways. I certainly have done the 100% on site version, stepping into a coffee shop after check-out to finish the report (Mainly when I have back-to-back hotels).

I don't think I could keep up the pace of travel that I do if was still doing the work on-site. I do a lot of sightseeing and getting-out-there when I travel.
@Professional Guest wrote:

Wait - what?
You've paid for 50% of a luxury hotel stay AND submitted a report to the MSC? I don't understand.
Probably SQM. They are better hotels, but I can't see paying to do a hotel shop, especially when their loyalty program isn't the best.

Seriously, nobody cares that you're offended.

(Yes, I stole Hoju's tagline.)
@iShop123 wrote:

@Professional Guest wrote:

Wait - what?
You've paid for 50% of a luxury hotel stay AND submitted a report to the MSC? I don't understand.
Probably SQM. They are better hotels, but I can't see paying to do a hotel shop, especially when their loyalty program isn't the best.

I still don't understand. Why? Same thing for those 50% reimbursed airline assignments.

Yeah, no.
For the airline, it's 50% of the ticket *you* choose and book for an hour's worth of a report. If you're flying anyway, it's a great deal. You make your best deal and then get half back. Saved over $200 on my last ticket and the report was <1 hour. That's a good return. It was the least expensive ticket to my destination and so I would have paid the money anyway. The required observations are almost all ones that people would naturally make, so the effort is minimal.

For the hotel, I can pay $175 or more (after the 50%) and spend far more than an hour on a report for a very nice room. Or I can use discounts, points, etc and pay <$100 for a reasonably nice room. I'm in the hole even before the report. It would have to be something spectacular for the difference to be worth paying $75+ and doing a report. I *might* do it for an all-inclusive resort, but not simply for a hotel - even the Langham or the Peninsula wouldn't be worth it to me.

Seriously, nobody cares that you're offended.

(Yes, I stole Hoju's tagline.)
@SteveSoCal wrote:

@Hoju wrote:

it's really easy to screw up a report when you leave the entire thing for the day after you leave.

I respectfully disagree. My office space at home is set up ergonomically with a better keyboard, larger (multiple) monitors, a variety of input devices, and offers me the ability to dictate my reports using speech-to-text in a quiet setting.

I can accomplish more in 4 hours at my home office that I can in 6-8 hours from a laptop in a hotel, sneaking time where I can to work on the report. My best use of reporting time is done from a comfortable desk chair with the best technology available. It's also easy to screw up a report when you are distracted by events going on around you in a setting that you are not familiar with.

I would rather use my time at the hotel to be in the pool, at the fitness center, catching up with friends, and then put in a serious one-shot effort to complete the reporting at home....or at least on a flight back if I'm going to be working from the laptop.

Same. I am much more efficient typing it up at home.
@iShop123 wrote:

I *might* do it for an all-inclusive resort, but not simply for a hotel - even the Langham or the Peninsula wouldn't be worth it to me.

I think you're giving all-inclusive resorts far too much credit. I don't know any that are in the same category as The Peninsula...and I have stayed at some of the nicest ones in the world (Both Peninsula and all-inclusives).

That said, I won't fly the airline that participates in the MS program. There's a reason it was the cheapest ticket to your destination. If you take the shop for the high-end hotel, they should fully cover your flight on the airline of your choice and allow you to get al the milage credit for it....
I had a unique hotel shop last month. It was a resort, not one of the major chains, I think it belongs to the Destination chain of resorts, golf, spa, etc.....would probably be considered a 4-star hotel. Speaking of stars...who decides those? LOL
Anyway, one overnight with two bar observations. I did the first observation, it went smoothly. I walked over to the second bar....closed for renovations.

That was it...did the report on the one bar observation, no other questions on the report about the hotel, just the cash handling. $400 folio, 30 minute report at most. I guess those don't come along very long.
@abclaudia wrote:

Which companies did you use for the airline ticket?

Why not ask the MSC for any hotel shops or any shops in general if they have some budget to cover the airline, rental car/Uber and/or parking expenses?

Shopping the Greater Denver Area, Colorado Springs and in-between in Colorado. 28 year old male and willing to travel! Badged for Denver International Airport.
Yes, the MSC refunded me 50% of the total costs on a hotel expense that I normally would've spent $225-250 on easily at the time. What is so difficult to understand about that?
@Eric in Tampa wrote:

Yes, the MSC refunded me 50% of the total costs on a hotel expense that I normally would've spent $225-250 on easily at the time. What is so difficult to understand about that?

So, essentially the MSC paid $125.00 of your $250.00 luxury stay?

I'm trying to understand why you would complete a report for 50% off of your stay, when there are plenty of MSCs/clients that are willing to reverse charges for 100% of your stay.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/13/2018 04:10AM by Professional Guest.
@abclaudia wrote:

Which companies did you use for the airline ticket?
SQM.ca has airline shops.

Seriously, nobody cares that you're offended.

(Yes, I stole Hoju's tagline.)
No, they paid $250+ of my $500 stay. Please re-read my prior reply. I can't clarify any clearer than that.
For your 2nd question, read my original reply. I said that my experience encompassed both types of MSC luxury hotel shops.

For someone that has supposively done shops that require A LOT of detail, you seem to be lacking a certain attention to detail within this thread. All of the answers to your questions were in my prior posts. Please read more carefully, and slower.
@Eric in Tampa wrote:

No, they paid $250+ of my $500 stay. Please re-read my prior reply. I can't clarify any clearer than that.

Actually, you can.

Sybil! Is that you?!!!!

Are you back? Can't say that I've missed you. How's the weather in Florida? They have lots of crazy people in Florida don't they?
Sorry, only registered users may post in this forum.

Click here to login