September 13th, 2006

FN: Bubbles

More of a question than a story

I know we have several waiters on this list, so I wanted to ask if you'd consider the following bad service, or just it being a quiet night at the restaurent.

My two sisters and I have just been on a long weekend to London. Monday we went to a Chinese restaurent. The service was quite quick... actually sometimes too much so:
1) My sister finished her drink before the rest of us, she was asked if she wanted a refill, she said no, so the waiter removed her glass.
2) My other sister finished her meal before the rest of us did, so the waiter removed her plate, despite the fact that the rest of us were still eating.
3) We'd finished eating and asked for the check. While waiting a runner came up to wipe our table.
4) Once our waiter handed us the check, he hovered over us while my sister filled out the amount for tip and new total.

1)-3) might just be because it was quiet and the waiters had nothing better to do, but we did end up feeling a bit rushed, despite the fact that the restaurent was only 1/3 full.
4) I just feel is plain rude! Of course we were going to tip, but don't look over our shoulders to see how much! Had I been the one paying I might have been mean enough to write a big fat zero to give him a scare, and then tip in cash instead (because other than points 1-4 we did get good service, so I wasn't going to stiff him completely).

How would you interpret these things? I don't think I'd call it bad service as such, but definitely not good service either.

Oh, and as an aside, thanks to this community I tipped far too much the first night (at TGIFridays). I come from Denmark where service is included in the price. From reading comments here I knew that tipping in the US is 15% for 'regular' service (for want of better word) and 20% for good service. We got really good service, so I tipped 20%. The waiter obviously didn't look at the check until he made it out to the kitchen, because as we were leaving he rushed back, and thanked us for our generosity! :-O I asked one of my friends, and it turns out that in UK you til 10%-15%, so he benefitted from me reading a mostly US community ;)

Ah well, he deserved it, and we had a pleasant evening, so it was worth paying a bit extra for.
glitter

That was confusing...

This isn't so much bad_service, as it was a helluva confusing experience.

So, a little background info: I just moved to a new city (T-Dot, what!) and live in a house on the outskirts of said city (starts with an S, ends with a 'carborough'). I share the house with one other girl who's barely home (this is important.) I also ordered a book through Chapters (Canadians will know what I'm talkin' about), and the website tracking thingy said it was due to arrive today. It actually said it was en-route to my place! YAY! Now, back home I was never used to having mail delivered to my house, as my parents had a PO Box for the family and we always picked up the mail at the Post Office, which was located only a 5 minute drive away (our town was so small, we only had 2 anyway.) And since my housemate was almost never home before I arrived, the mailman (I know he's a man, I've seen him already) must have assumed that there would be nobody home at the time he came around with the mail (at around 11:00AM.)

Soo.. here I am, sitting on the couch watching TV 'cause it's pouring rain outside and I don't have an umbrella or raincoat, which means I can't do the walk to the bus station, therefore have to miss class this morning. Ugh, pain in the ass, but w/e I move on. SO, I'm sitting there and see the mailman drop by with the mail (he crossed the lawn from the neighbours house, which was weird in itself) and proceded to stuff some mail in the mailbox. After he left, I opened the box and took out a few things, disappointed that I haven't received what I was expecting. I head back inside, riffle through the various flyers and notice that scrawled on one of the flyers (unrelated to Canada Post whatsoever) was: 34 -  Parcel

.... That's it? I was confused. I knew 34 was the number of my house, but there was no information as to where to pick up the parcel or anything. I searched the mailbox again for a "real" notice, but to no avail.

I called the Canada Post hotline, and told them the situation. The guy on the other end said that the mailman probably ran out of parcel notices and had to write on my flyer. Ooook. I asked where the parcel was, and he told me it would be at the nearest post office (which he gave me the location, phone number and route, which was actually good_service.) Now, keep in mind he assured me that my package WAS AT THAT POST OFFICE.

So I call the post office, and the girl on the other end is a little confused that I have no package number or anything, and puts me on hold for a bit. Since I'm on my cellphone, I open the door to see if I can find any notices that have fallen on the ground or anything at all to help the girl out. Well guess what! I opened the door and there it was! My book was jammed into my tiny mailbox. O_o Once I got ahold of the girl on the phone, I told her to nevermind about the call, that I was sorry to bother her and we hung up. Remember, this was at about 12:30-12:45. Over an hour and a half later..  I don't get it.

So yeah, not really bad service, but to the mailman, what the heck. Atleast now I know where the post office is...
cubs hat

misleading service...

In the summer of 2005 I started a year long master's program. Since I have student loans, they went into deferment - but rather than for just a year, I got a letter stating that they were in deferement until 2008. Wierd, but whatever.

I get a letter this past week from my lender asking which repayment schedule I want, meaning of course that a bill would soon be on it's way. Now, I have no problem paying the bill, but I called customer service to ask why there were conflicting repayment dates. The woman on the phone didn't believe me that I had a letter (two, actually. One for each 'group' loan) stating that the loans were in deferement until 2008 when the program ended in 2006 - which the lender was aware of from the start. Nowhere on either original letters did it state that 2008 was a 'tentative' date, that repayment would begin 30 days after graduation, or anything of the sort. I had assumed as much to begin with, but was glad that we could use this money towards my husband's student loans while mine were in deferment.

The woman on the phone with me was very short the whole time I was talking to her - maybe she was thinking that I was trying to scam them or something, I'm not sure. When I asked her for my account numer to put on the forms when I fax them in (I usually have them look it up by SS number), she said the numbers so fast that I only caught the first three. When I asked her to repeat them, I got a huge sigh from her as well as her repeating them as if she were talking to a child.

She ended up putting me on hold while she talked to her supervisor and then gave me a fax number to fax the original letters to. I'm not really sure what's going to happen with it, though. I am sure they will just blow me off, but it would have been nice if customer service had just said, "Opps, we made a mistake. Sorry about that!" and I'd be ok with it.