I am on my way to Cancun for a week to celebrate my wife's birthday. I purposely selected a cheaper room at the hotel with the expectation that when we arrive, I will slip the guy at the front desk a $20 bill and ask for a "free" upgrade. A friend of mine told me she and her husband go to this same hotel every year and they do this every time. They tip everyone like crazy (in dollars not pesos) and they get all kinds of "free" things like upgraded rooms, the best table out on the restaurant balcony overlooking the ocean, etc. My friend and her husband do not speak spanish. I actually want to use my Spanish as much as possible while I am there. So, I want to try this in Spanish and I want to get the wording just right. I would appreciate any suggestions you could offer me. I just can't quite figure out what to say and if I have to resort to my 3rd grade Spanish, we could end up in a "broom closet" somewhere in the basement :lol: Thanks in advance !!
Want to get this right....
August 29, 2007
September 17, 2007
Hi, That sounds about right... but not something I've done... so I hope your friend is right as it could land you in a bit of trouble if you get the wrong person... (like the owner who does not know this goes on). Anyway, what you could say as you are tipping the guy is: "my friends tell me sometimes you give them free room upgrades" "Mis amigos me han dicho que aveces ellos obtienen gratuitamente la siguiente categoría de habitación" I hope that helps... in this way it sounds quite casual and it doesn't sound like you are bribing them. Kind regards, Mauricio.
September 26, 2007
Muchas gracias Mauricio ! Yes, I understand what you mean. The word "bribe" comes to mind for me as well. Even though my friend is American, she originally got this suggestion from her Mexican friends. She didn't feel comfortable at first either. My Mexican friends tell me that Americans in particular have trouble embracing their cultural norm of "everything is negotiable". They tell me I have to get past it and just accept it. I hope they are referring to the hotel management too - not just the workers!! They pay the cop (in cash) when they get pulled over. They negotiate the price on almost everything to the point where prices are set high so there is room to come back down. They ask for upgrades and free stuff as if it is almost expected. I don't know what to think but I do appreciate your help. Thanks again.
October 19, 2007
Well, I tried it and it didn't work. No only did I not get a free room upgrade, I didn't even get the room I had reserved through the travel agent. I was told at the front desk they consider it more of a "request" rather than a "reservation" and they assign the rooms once you arrive. :o Anyway, I used my "rocket" spanish for 8 days. It was a struggle but I have to say I really enjoyed it. I was able to engage in and stay in the conversations much longer than before. They got a big kick out of my willingness to try (and a bigger kick out of my mistakes). Gracias Mauricio!!