Thursday, January 7, 2010

Thrifty Thursday - A Lesson Learned

Last week, I took my 18-year old son to a gaming convention in Alexandria, VA. I knew it was being held in the Hilton hotel where they would overcharge for lunch, but I figured I could walk to a nearby store for lunch. I was wrong. The hotel was in a busy section with no gas-marts in the vicinity. Parking spots were at a premium, so we ate lunch in the hotel restaurant.

Mistake #1 - I should have packed a lunch for the two of us. The prices were out of this world. The amount I spent on lunch could have paid for three days of groceries at home.

Mistake #2 - When I paid the bill and offered a tip in cash, I didn't fill in the total on the receipt. Always provide a bottom-line total, or the hotel staff may fill it in after you leave. Therefore, you should go with cash in hand for meals. This way there is no chance of being overcharged after you leave.

Mistake #3 - I had no idea that some restaurants will charge you a tip. They feel that since they provide meals for the privileged, they are privileged enough to enjoy a hefty tip on you - without your permission. Some restaurants will let you know up front, but others won't.

Even though I felt rooked and very much like a country bumpkin, I had a nice time with my son. Gamers are a strange lot.

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