When we went to other cities in Myanmar, we got great customer service. So it’s terrible what happened with our hotel in Inle Lake.
As you well know, customer service can make or break your experience. Especially when it comes to accommodations. I have stayed in hostels that was not be aesthetically pleasing. But, because of amazing customer service, I have become a raving fan who keeps coming back, and will tell everyone about it.
I’ve also stayed at a five star hotel in Egypt. Even though it looked nice, the lack of customer service definitely soured my entire experience.
I was already having bad luck in Myanmar:
A burmese teenager threw a banana peel at me while touring Bagan.
I suffered from horrible food poisoning that left me incapacitated for three days.
We got stuck on an 8 hour mini bus ride from hell.
However, our boat tour of Inle Lake was awesome! I felt like I was finally getting the experience I was looking for in Myanmar.
All I was looking forward to is exiting the country with fond memories. Unfortunately, that is just not what happened.
Lady Princess Motel 2
I booked a three night stay at Lady Princess Motel 2, ratings were decent online and the only bad thing noted was the lack of WIFI, which I can survive.
Upon arrival, we noticed the motel also had a ton of bugs and mosquitoes. Okay, I am in South East Asia, this is quite normal. We also noticed we didn’t have any AC. Fine, it’s not that hot at night and we have a ceiling fan. I can handle it.
But the one thing I cannot forgive easily is bad customer service!
So far so good
The staff themselves were fantastic!
The manager, also one of the owner’s of the Lady Princess Motel chain, seems to be an efficient individual. Her English was good. She also booked our Inle Lake boat trip and our 10 hour return trip to Yangon.
We initially wanted to take the day bus on November 18th. That way, we would arrive in Yangon on the same day. Our accommodations on the 18th have been booked, and our flight out of Myanmar would be in the evening the next day.
Unfortunately, all the day buses were fully booked, leaving us with the only option of taking a night bus.
We decided that leaving Inle Lake on the 17th would be the best choice, and made sure to communicate this to the manager.
Leaving on the 17th would mean we would arrive on the morning of the 18th in Yangon. Sure, we would be losing a nights stay at the motel, but at least we know for sure we will arrive in Yangon on time, and won’t miss our flight out of the country.
The nightmare begins
However, the manager mistakenly booked the night bus scheduled to leave on the 18th instead. As you can see, this posed a huge problem for us. On November 17th, we had packed up and was ready to leave for Yangon, when the manager told us half an hour before the bus was scheduled to leave that we actually weren’t due to leave until the following day.
Visibly upset, I tried communicating to the manager that we do not have another day to wait because we have already booked our accommodation in Yangon two days ago, and that she had made a mistake. I would have been OK if she had at least apologized for the error, but that’s when things went from bad to worse.
As I tried explaining my situation to her, she became upset and began to yell at me that it was my fault, and that I needed to look at the dates she had written on our tickets. I tried to explain that we needed to take the bus that evening, but she refused to listen. She is one of those individuals who, if you tried to explain your side, she would immediately dismiss it as wrong, without even giving you a chance to finish talking.
What kind of manager would not take the time to find a solution to the problem, and resort to blame? She never offered any apology, or even an ounce of empathy. Apparently, being “right” is more important than providing good customer service.
No apologies, rude behaviour, and plain cold.
This was hands down, the WORST customer service I have ever had of all the accommodations I have ever stayed at. And that’s saying a lot because the Starwood Hotel: Le Meridien Pyramids was quite awful!
Finally leaving Lady Princess Motel 2
It gets worst
We made a terrible discovery upon arriving at the bus depot. Turns out the hotel manager from Lady Princess Motel 2 has scammed us! We paid 20,000 Kyat each for the VIP bus, one that offers more comfortable seats and a shorter travel time (10 hours instead of 15). However, what she actually got us were tickets to the normal bus, which only cost 15,000 Kyat per ticket. She pocketed a grand total of 10,000 Kyat from the transaction.
We tried resolving the issue with the agents at the bus depot, who tried to contact the manager, but her staff who cannot speak English picked up the phone. Thankfully, the agents refunded us 5,000 Kyat each and we were very grateful for their customer service.
Despite the refund, we still ended up in one of the worst bus rides of our life. We were constantly dizzy and felt like vomiting. Our bus ride also took 15 hours instead of 10 because we took the “normal” bus as oppose to the VIP bus. It was definitely the bus ride from hell.
Needless to say, this whole experience had left a bad taste in my mouth, and I would NOT recommend the Lady Princess Motel chain to be your first choice for accommodations should you travel to Inle Lake, Myanmar.
Hotel recommendation in Inle Lake, Myanmar
When Karen and myself went to Inle Lake, we frequently visited Ma Naw Thukha Hotel. They had an onsite restaurant with amazing and CLEAN food for a very affordable price. More importantly, the owner has one of the best customer service I have ever seen. She is very attentive and takes the time to really get to know you. It also helps that her English is great. Turns out she studied abroad and can speak English and French fluently. If I can turn back time, I would have stayed in her hotel (which doubles as a hostel if you are looking for something more budget friendly) for sure. I’m sure I would have avoided all the frustration that the owner/manager of Lady Princess Motel 2 inflicted on us.