I’m not generally given to rants but occasionally things occur so frequently I have no option but to make my irritation public. And, if it helps vacation rental owners to look at what they are offering in the way of amenities and facilities and be more accurate about them, I will have achieved my goal. The topic of the day is amenity accuracy, and more specifically WiFi.
Each year, I do an extended road trip in an RV and we stay in RV sites across the US. Mostly these are full service commercial places as well as a number of state parks, and we do the research thoroughly. We read reviews. We choose places based on a number of criteria, much the same as our vacation rental guests use when they pick out their holiday home. Our key must-haves are:
Privacy – I don’t want to be jam packed in so I can lean out of my window and shake hands with my neighbor doing the same, so I want to see photos showing what it looks like when the site is full, not empty.
Cleanliness of facilities – we have pretty much everything on board our fifth wheel but still use laundry and dump trash so I expect these areas to be kept clean, neat and tidy.
WiFi – I should have put this first! I work on the road – writing blog posts; posting audio and video etc, and the quality and speed of the site internet is my primary concern. And, when a site advertises hi-speed internet and we arrive and it’s non-existent or at best, patchy, my husband knows that is the time to hide.
The term “internet access” can be interpreted in a number of ways and if you are a rental guests for whom having a connection is vital, I urge you to contact the owner prior to the rental and establish how robust it is and if there are any restrictions.
If you are an owner and offer an internet service, be very careful how you advertise it. If there are restrictions on usage, please make them clear before your guests arrive. If they come expecting to be able to stream Netflix, and have the kids access YouTube 24 hours a day, and then find there’s a measly gig or so allotment, there will be some unhappy campers. You may not find out how unhappy until a review or two gets posted, by which time it’s too late.
This is not the place for a diatribe on the personal impact this has, but I want to share my frustration in general at seeing amenities and facilities described in glowing terms, when the reality is way below the expectations. Amenity accuracy is the right thing to do. I know that occasionally things occur beyond an owners’ control – something gets broken and cannot be fixed in time, or there’s a breakdown in a system, but when an owner is perfectly aware of an issue that may occur and does nothing to prepare their guests for the possibility of losing access to it, they should expect the consequences.
OK….that’s off my chest and I can go back to enjoying the Florida sunshine before trekking up to the nearest Starbucks to post this online!