My friends and I were planning a weekend vacation in a lesser known hill station near Pune. The last two days were spent on attempts to contact the only hotel operating in that area. This lone hotel does not have its number listed either on the local search directories or with the travel agencies (Private or State). Despite being the only player in the region it depends on another website for its internet promotion.
The only way to contact them was via e-mail. A couple of mails (from different mail accounts) were send seeking details on room reservation and possible ways of getting there. The response was delayed and disappointing. None of the queries were answered; instead a road map for reaching the hotel was send as an attachment. After a few more hours of online hunting we managed to get in touch with the person in-charge for room reservation. He choose to respond to our queries with statements like “As we are new to this and far from the city, that would not be possible”, “Travel agencies numbers are difficult to find, so I am not sure if we can arrange car hiring”.
You would think that small hotels would be more proactive and aggressive in their approach. Startups are known to provide better service, in their quest to gain word of mouth and a loyal customer. In this case however, being small was used as an excuse for the lack of service and poor quality of experience provided.
Small should not be an excuse for mediocrity or lack of preparedness, it should be more reason to use possible opportunities to gain more ground.