So far it seems to have been the summer of weekly computer glitches in the points and miles world. First we had the 4-mile Hong Kong tickets, then we had the Travelocity NFB2012 fiasco, and now most recently, the Priority Club toolbar glitch resulting in many people left with closed accounts (see Gary’s post).
For those who were unaware, Priority Club had an offer to receive 300 points for downloading a shopping toolbar onto your browser; however, you didn’t actually have to install the toolbar to get the points, and it was quickly discovered that one could potentially earn thousands, hundreds of thousands, and in some cases, millions of points with abuse of this faulty system.
So far I’ve heard some outrageous stories about how people willingly [and in some cases, enthusiastically] took advantage of this error and cashed out at the expense of Priority Club – literally. Several have racked up hundreds of thousands of points using an automated script, and then redeemed the points for thousands of dollars in giftcards… which they actually used to purchase items.
Some readers have even gone as far as emailing me asking me if having their account closed actually meant that they are banned from staying at Priority Club hotel. While I can not speak for Priority Club about the way they are handling this situation, my most educated answer would be NO. If anything, it just means that your account is no longer eligible to participate in the Priority Club loyalty program. I’m sure they’ll gladly take your money for paid bookings that aren’t linked to your suspended account.
To poke fun at the banned Priority Club accounts that exploited this weekend’s toolbar glitch and the new-found fear of being banned from staying at a Priority Club property because of it, let’s dive right in for a laugh.
Here’s a list of some celebrities who have actually been given an official ban notice from a hotel(s).
- John Travolta: banned from Peninsula Hotels for 3 years for allegedly behaving “inappropriately” to a number of male spa employees back in 2000.
- Charlie Sheen: banned for life from the Plaza Hotel in Manhattan for his infamous melt-d0wn, reportely costing the hotel over $20,000 in property damages.
- Amanda Bynes & Lindsay Lohan: both are supposedly banned from Hollywood’s Standard Hotel for failing to abide by the hotel’s policy “to create a comfortable and inviting experience for their guests” due to inappropriate behavior at the hotel immediately following a DUI arrest (Bynes) and starting a fight at the hotel’s nightclub while intoxicated (Lohan).
- Lil Wayne: The Wynn in Las Vegas wants to avoid trouble and refuses to welcome the rapper on their premises by issuing a preemptive ban against him because his numerous possession of a weapon criminal charges and 3-year alcohol ban.
- Vince Neil: banned from the Palms in Las Vegas for tweeting “OMG RUDEST STAFF EVER!! Don’t go!” after an unsatisfactory stay recently in the Spring of 2012.
- Paris Hilton: Just trying to check into the Wynn in Las Vegas back in 2012 got Ms. Hilton banned from the property and criminal charges. As Hilton and her boyfriend were pulling up to the hotel, Hilton innocently reached into her bag for lip balm and guess what fell out? Yup, you guessed it – cocaine. What a surprise! As a result, The Wynn banned Hilton from staying and fired her boyfriend, who was, at that time, manager at two of the resort’s nightclubs.
- Britney Spears: banned from a total of 3 Los Angeles hot-spot hotels – Chateau Marmont, the Beverly Hills hotel, and the Beverly Hills Four Seasons. The reason? Bad manners inspiring several complaints from other hotel guests.
So the question I have for all readers is – have you ever been banned from a hotel? If so, definitely feel free to share your stories.
Now it wouldn’t be fair for me to pose a question and not answer it myself, so to answer my own question in the title of my post, the answer is yes. Well sorta. I’ll explain…
Last summer a large group of my actor friends and I spent an awesome 3 weeks up on Cape Cod working on a film. Naturally, we all tend to herd together with accommodations to help reduce the cost, so a total of 15 of us were split between 4 rooms at a privately-owned small
beach resort motel. Everything was running smoothly for first week, and we took great pride in finding a great and welcoming place for the cost of $12 a person per night.
After our first week there without a problem, some people in our group took it upon themselves and thought it was appropriate to throw a large party on the hotel’s main balcony. I could hear the blaring techno music and my drunk friends from my room several doors down. I can only imagine the suffering of the other guests, and I knew it was a bad idea that would not end well.
As expected, the owner furiously came by, and not only broke up the party, but demanded that all of us leave the property immediately. Yup, even though my friends and I were in our rooms away from the party, there was still that dreaded knock on the door at 1 am telling us to leave. That was the end of that one.
Though I was pissed at the handful of people that got us all kicked out, I do not disagree with the owner’s decision at all. If I were in his shoes I would have done exactly the same. Good thing this story has a happy ending though – the remainder of our time spent on Cape Cod was split between two Marriott properties nearby. Yes, I got the points.