Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Francois Ghanem: Chobe we've got a problem!

So we arrived at our lodge in the Kasane area on a Sunday shortly before noon.  The front desk staff quizzically looked at us and told us we do not have a reservation.  When we produce a reservation number the story changes to this: the lodge is fully booked and the river view accommodations reserved for us are occupied by a sick guest who extended their stay.  So the solution is to move us to a comparable lodge a few minutes down the road.
At this point I called an emergency number that Elizabeth has provided.  On a Sunday getting an answering machine would not be surprising.  To my delight I spoke with one of Elizabeth's colleagues and explained the situation.  He followed up with the hotel reservations staff.
As for us - we waited in the front desk area with a lodge employee that seemed to be taking the lead in dealing with us.  Several hours of frustration ensued - the details of our arrangements were debated and discussed and ultimately, we were shifted to a nearby lodge with our activities to be done by the one that "walked" us.

On Monday Elizabeth and I exchanged several emails in which she kept me appraised of what was happening and her investigation.

During conversations with the lodge's deputy general manager, she acknowledged that the lodge mishandled our reservation and the situation.  She offered us a formal opology and a bottle of wine as a gesture of good will.


Anyhow the accommodations  in the other lodge we ended up with were very nice.  Only a little knock on their food.  A la carte lunches were very good.  Buffet dinners - not so hot literally and otherwise.
Enough already about this travel mishap.  As independent travellers we should expect something to go wrong. (When was a tour group bumped due to an overbooking or some other problem in error?) (Actually  Francois, it does happen too! EE)
Bottom line is the situation was resolved and we got to see Chobe National Park.  That was our objective- right?

More on our park experience in the next blog post.

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