It’s been a tough time searching – and Lord knows I’ve done enough of it – but I think I have actually found the world’s most expensive hotel wi-fi.
Anyone who knows me will be aware of the fact that paying for wi-fi access when you are already receiving a service from someone is one of my pet bug bears, whether that be a coffee shop (yes, I’m talking you, Starbucks with your ridiculously steep BT Openzone prices) or a hotel.
It’s almost 2010 and most of us are permanently attached to some electronic gizmo or other and need to have easy, fast and, preferably, free access to the internet when we are out and about.
I know some hotels are finally waking up to the fact and absorbing internet charges into their room rates, but there are still hundreds out there that think charging more for 24 hours of snail’s pace internet than I pay a month for super speedy broadband at home is acceptable.
Well it’s not, it’s rubbish and my discovery last night is a whole skip’s worth.
Anyone who read yesterday’s post knows it was my intention to blog, phlog and Tweet from the TTG Awards. (For those who are not in the travel industry, TTG is a trade magazine and their awards are kind of like an Oscars for tour operators and travel agents)
And, given I’d been very kindly invited to the bash by BMI (up for a gong for best airline), I thought it would have been nice to break the winners on Twitter and fill you in on some of the goss like the fact co-host Austin Healey took great joy in teasing the normally immaculate TTG editor Lucy Huxley for having her outfits sponsored by Bicester Village Outlets.
I might also have told you that the former rugby and Strictly star was close to dying on stage before slagging off Ryanair to huge cheers or posted some phone blog interviews with the winners.
But I couldn’t get online to do so.
The awards were held in the subterranean depths of the Grosvenor House’s not-so-Great Room and phone signals tend to not be very good when you are two floors underground. Doing the leg work was an option, although it felt rather rude to leave my hosts every couple of minutes for the sake of a Tweet. And so my last option was the dreaded hotel wi-fi, which on enquiry at the front desk would have cost me £50. That’s right £50 – and no, young man on reception, the fact it’s for ’24 hour access’ does not make it any better.
So step forward Grosvenor House and pick up your very own award from last night: the most expensive hotel net access I’ve ever come across.
Does paying for wi-fi in hotels bug you or do you know of hotels that provide it free? Leave a comment.