To make a very long story short, I organized an event involving 25 travelers, all of whom were staying for two nights and I was staying for 3 nights, at the Miami Airport Marriott. On the morning of the second day of the event, I went to look for my car key and discovered it was gone. After tearing apart my room, including stripping my bed, I knew it was not in my room. I then retraced my steps to my car and didn't find it. I spoke to the front desk, I spoke to lost prevention, I spoke to housekeeping, and I spoke to two people at the Valet stand, thinking if I dropped it near the front door, they may have turned it into the valet stand. Everyone said they didn't have it. I called Alamo to ask what would be the next step for a lost key. They said I would have to have the car towed and then pay hundreds of dollars for the tow and to have the key remade so they recommended waiting a while to see if the key would turn up. By this time I was late for the training so I went to the airport and rented another car. When I got back to the hotel, I looked at the space where the car was and the car was GONE. I went to the front desk and reported the situation. They called loss prevention and everyone said I needed to call the police to report the theft and then call the rental car company. I did. I was on the phone with the rental car company for an hour while they took the statement and I was in the process of filing a claim with the insurance company and my credit card company. The police then came and started to take my statement. We went outside and, while they were getting something from the squad car, I glanced over and saw what looked like the car and the officers and I walked over and sure enough, it was the car! We went to the valet stand and the guy there said that someone had turned in the key the night before after finding it on the ground by the front door of the hotel. And he handed me the key which had my name on it, as they evidently got my name from the rental contract in the glove compartment. Evidently they were very busy and had parked some valet cars in the Elite Parking area and assumed that my car was part of that so they moved it when things slowed down and they were moving all of the other valet parked cars back over to the valet section. Due to the complete breakdown in communication, cross-departmental coordination, documentation, following of protocols, and failure to just check the closet when I asked the valet stand about the key, there was, minimally six wasted hours, added expense of renting another car, extreme stress, risk of hundreds of dollars spent on towing and key replacement, compromised training and certification for the 30 participants because their master trainer was MIA for 3 hours, and the key was in the valet closet the entire time with my name on it! It was so bad on so very many levels. Management apologized profusely, said they would talk with staff, and then they credited my account with 35K points. My question to you is whether this is sufficient? Or should I escalate? I don't really have a frame of reference/point of comparison. Thank you, in advance, for your advice!! (SEE FULL INCIDENT REPORT ATTACHED FOR ALL OF THE NITTY GRITTY DETAILS. :-)
Wow, thanks for taking the time to share this experience, constantroadster. I'm so glad that everything was returned, but totally understand the frustration and stress this has caused! I'd like to pass this on to our team for review.
Thank you so much, in advance. And yes, I can't even the describe the depth of my relief when I found the car. The whole experience was quite an emotional rollercoaster on top of the amount of time and extreme inconvenience! But yes, it definitely could have been worse in terms of ultimate outcome! :-) Thanks, again for facilitating the review!
Well, I have to say 35K points is WAY above and beyond. If I understand correctly, the key was dropped-which was a mistake-but you want everyone else to a level of not making a mistake when trying to figure yours out. Yes, they screwed up when you asked the valet to look for your key. Heck, it may have been in a different place since it was in a different lot. Let it go. Ultimately, everything worked out. I think 10k or more would be enough.
It was EXTREMELY fortunate the key was found and turned in. You had some really stomach churning moments during time when you needed to focus. You got the 35k points. Use them someplace relaxing.
Honestly, in my opinion you made out like a bandit. You lost your keys through your own fault. Marriott looked after your car in valet. You don't have to go too far from the Miami Marriott airport hotel to have that rental car turned into high return spare parts exchange and iron ingot by morning. Count your blessings you got anything. The insurance company would have recourse to challenge you on not taking care.
Sorry that you experienced this. I'm sure we all have one or two good key stories.
I think the property gave you a generous amount of points. You are made whole, and I'm sure will be more closely monitoring your keys from now on. Doubtless you will also spell out 'did you look in the key cupboard too?' when next querying valets for your keys.
So, the curious want to know, what did your students do for three hours you weren't there? Did you have to refund them all?
You're unlikely to think much of my response here.
You see, you, through your own carelessness lose your carkey but then expect everyone else to not exhibit such rank carelessness. And actually they don't. Unlike you the person who picked up the key didn't drop it again, or walk on it, or drive over it, the valets then did none of the above, and safely kept it. Drop your key near MIA and the chances of a never-to-be-seen-again-car has gotta be way over 50%.
By the sounds of this you'd be happier if the key had unbeknown to you been passed on to a local ringer and the car never seen again. Then in the absence of any evidence you could have blamed the valet and received far more than 35k from that!
But why own your mistake when you can beat up on others?
Actually in today's topsy-turvy world world I'd escalate, sue for 10million, they'll settle on 1. And I'm a lawyer!