One of the most valuable resources while traveling is standing in plain view in the lobby of your hotel. The concierge is a master of answers and your guide to the good life when experiencing a new destination. Whether he is meeting mundane needs or unusual requests, this ultimate insider has spun a web of contacts that reach restaurant managers, boutique owners, airline agents, maitre d’s, other businesses and personal friends. Her expertise, personal attention and magic fingers are not just for VIP’s; they are for you and all you have to do is ask.
Do’s and Dont’s
- Call before you arrive. Inquire about particular hotel family services or special family events occurring during your stay. Consider booking a dinner reservation or theatre tickets, arrange for a babysitter or a car seat, or simply introduce yourself prior to arrival.
- Introduce yourself and family when you check-in.
- Note who is serving you and refer to them by name.
- Say thank you and smile. Be polite.
- Give feedback of your family’s experience at recommended venues. This exchange can help another guest or simply reiterate your appreciation for the suggestion.
- Show your appreciation. Give a tip or a simple thank you note handwritten by yourself or your child.
- Pride yourself on being a low-maintenance hotel guest by organizing your own cultural outings, stubbornly arranging your own dinner plans, or never asking for advice or directions. You are squandering an incredible resource, whose duties and capabilities far surpass mere dinner reservations.
- Be embarrassed or too shy to ask.
- Throw tantrums or cop an attitude when your needs cannot be met. Concierges are notorious miracle workers, but not everything is possible.
Enhance your family’s traveling possibilities by involving an insider. It never hurts to ask. In fact, I have been known to waltz into random hotels and ask the concierge for directions, advice or a restaurant recommendation. Oftentimes, they are unaware that I am not a guest in their hotel, and are always eager to help a damsel in distress, especially with a tot in tow.