Hotel Concierge: Overcoming Language Barriers
In non-English speaking countries, its quite common that non-tourist related employees speak very little, if any, English. The hotel concierge can help you order a taxi and explain to the driver exactly where to take you. Remember, Uber is not yet available worldwide.
If you need help with certain tasks outside the hotel, a hotel concierge can assist you as well. Whether it’s connecting you with a courier service, mailing packages, finding a local photocopy shop or booking a co-working meeting room, make sure to consult them for advice.
We all want to look our best, regardless of whether our trip is for business or pleasure. Imagine explaining to the hairdresser, who, by the way, does not understand English, that you would like a Sleek Long Bob with Curves and Side-Swept Bang haircut. Ask your friendly hotel concierge to recommend and book a hair salon for you. Explain to him in English the type of haircut you want and they will take care of the rest.
Purchasing tickets and making reservations
Visiting a city and want to book a table at a 2 star Michelin restaurant? Are you dying to hear a live Bosa Nova concert in Brazil? Your hotel concierge will most likely know the best places in town and will gladly help you with the reservation, easily saving you the stress of communicating in a foreign language.
Your hotel concierge will also help you book tours and activities which will include hotel pickup.
Hotel concierges can save you money
There are many ways a hotel concierge can help you save money on your trip. For example, they might know about a free 4 hour walking tour that otherwise might have cost you $50 per person! Looking for the best happy hour in town? Your concierge will surely know where to send you!
Miscellaneous: From health to event planning
In general, a hotel concierge really is a Jack or Jill of all trades. If you are in need of an English speaking doctor, want to plan your wedding anniversary, or need advice about venues that are wheelchair-accessible, there is no one better than your hotel concierge to give the quickest, best answer.
DO NOT ask your hotel concierge to do the following
A concierge is there to assist you. That said, they should not be viewed as your employee. Refrain from asking your concierge to run errands for you outside the hotel and purchase things on your behalf. Even when prostitution and marijuana are legal in the city you are in, do not ask the concierge to “hook you up” nor for any recommendations of such practices.
Traveling alone can get lonely sometimes, and since concierges are kind and polite, they are great for conversations. That said, remember that their income depends heavily on tips, and any time dedicated to schmoozing with you might prevent them from earning a tip from another guest.
Conclusion about concierges
When abroad a hotel concierge can make your life easier, especially when you lack time or have little knowledge of the local language.
Concierges get requests of all types, from sourcing chemotherapy drugs for pets, to arranging pranks on guests´ bosses. Just make sure to apply tact and common sense with your requests.
Please remember that a hotel concierge’s salary relies heavily on tips, so if you received a great service from one, show them your appreciation.