Northcoast Travelogue: 8/17-8/18
Headed to San Francisco again Sunday. Didn't think I noticed much tourist traffic until we got to Richardson Grove. Then it seemed there was a fair amount of people stopped at all the tourist traps. I guess not everybody stayed home this summer.
We could have stayed there for $110 a night, I think it was, and be given the same deal we usually got: Free breakfast and parking. That's not really that bad a deal for San Francisco and at first I thought we'd just stay there as a real guest for a change. In the end I decided to stay at the Novato Day's Inn. We've stayed there a number of times before and enjoy it. It's not only cheaper, but not in San Francisco.
So I made a reservation weeks earlier specifying we wanted a room with a fridge and microwave. Some rooms don't have them but they can often bring one to you. Last time we stayed there they said there weren't any available and we did without. This time the whole arrival was a bit goofy, though I don't really fault the management. Well, it wasn't too big a deal to me, anyway.
I go to check in and reiterated that we wanted a fridge in the room. The manager says they had a room on ground level and one above. The upper one had a fridge in it already. I prefer ground level but wanted the fridge so chose the upstairs room. She makes a phone call to confirm the room is ready and gives us the key.
We drive around the corner to the room. I go upstairs to open the door and find the door already open, someone having left the door lock open to block the door. The cleaning gal was cleaning the room next door so I figured she had just finished our room. I go in and notice the room hasn't been touched- trash is full, bed all messed up. I use the phone to call the office and advise them of the situation.
I go back down to get another room. They give me the room next door to the first one. We go in there but there's no fridge. I call down again and they say they'll have the one next door brought to our room. Nobody comes, although I didn't wait very long.
I finally decided the fridge/ microwave combo was light enough I could probably drag it the eight feet through both room's sliding glass doors myself. I went next door- the cleaning gal was in that room now- and used my worst spanish to explain to her that her boss said I could take the fridge. I don't think she understood me or really cared either way.
Moved the fridge fairly easily and called down to tell them they didn't need to send someone to move it. Gal in the office seemed really appreciative that I'd moved it. End of story but strange how hard it was for them to get it together.
I had been using my Travel Rewards card for a while but gave up on it for a couple reasons: First, I had a hard time figuring out how the rewards worked. Their web page was difficult to find information on. Not only that, but I had problems when I first logged in and ended up with two accounts. I could only log in to one account and that one wasn't the one the Day's Inn points were being accrued in.
Secondly, from what info I could glean, it would take something like 20 nights at the Day's Inn for one free stay. Hardly seemed worth it. Eventually, I stopped presenting my card upon checking in and pretty much gave up on the program.
But I'd figured the points accrual wrong and, luckily, Saturday was the first time I'd closely read anything they'd sent me. Right off the bat it mentioned I had over 6000 points and was entitled to one free night at one of their Tier 1 hotels or some "travel miles", or some such.
I also hadn't realized that once Day's Inn had my Rewards number in their system, the Rewards program adds up my stay points without me having to present my card to the front desk. They had our last two stays there listed correctly. Cool!
That gave me the incentive to go back to their web site and try to log in to the right account. Took just a few minutes to get the right username and password. Why I gave up before I have no idea.
The only problem is, they have Tier 1 through Tier 4 hotels. I'm sure the Tier 1 ones must be the lower class hotels, but is Days Inn low class enough for Tier 1? I tried but couldn't find the Tier criteria on their web page. I'll just have to find out when I make our next reservation. To get the free stay you have to make the free stay's reservation thru the Rewards program. I'll find out then.
Last time I believe I got a little over 19 miles per gallon driving from Willits to San Francisco and back to Willits. This time, with the tailgate up, we figured around 18.5. That shows slightly worse gas mileage but that could be due simply to different driving conditions.
I'll call it as there being no significant difference between leaving the tailgate up vs. having it down.