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Man Banned from Hotel for Comment, Would Do it Again


The manager of the Hilton Basingstoke banned Jason Payne for a comment he made in an online booking. (Photo: (c) 2014 Hilton Hotels & Resorts.)

When Jason Payne returned home after his one-night stay at the Hilton in Basingstoke, England, he received an email from the hotel informing him that he was banned from the property for writing an inappropriate comment in the online booking form.

Under the additional comments and requests section, Payne, 35, wrote, “There’s a large snake in my trousers. Hope that’s OK.”

In her email to Payne, the hotel’s front office manager informed him that “we are not willing to accept that our team members are ever put into an uncomfortable situation, due to the abusive language a guest uses talking to them, writing to them or even on the booking form they fill in online.”

But Payne, who was staying at the hotel to attend a friend’s nearby birthday party, insists that the receptionist did not feel uncomfortable. “The reception girl just suddenly burst out laughing hysterically and appeared very amused. I had no idea why and then she read the comment to let me and her colleague know what she was laughing at. Her colleague then also laughed.”

When asked if there were any other incidents at the hotel that could have provoked the banning, Payne told us, “No. I was barely there. Even the snake was well-behaved.”


Though the Hilton Basingstoke has taken a negative view of the comment, some hotels have managed to capitalize on the often absurd comments left in online bookings to generate social media buzz.

Last July, the Woodlands Resort in Houston, Texas, fulfilled the unusual request of one of its customers who asked for three red M&Ms and a photo of bacon. “Not packages, just three single M&Ms,” the customer requested. “One for me, one for my girlfriend, and one to split if we get hungry late at night. And a picture of bacon set on the bed. I love pictures of bacon.”


A guest at the Woodlands Resort posted the above photos of three red M&Ms and a picture of bacon. (Photo: imgur)

“The viral sensation that occurred as a result of [the] post was phenomenal,” said Tory Enriquez, Director of Sales & Marketing at the Woodlands Resort. “The increase in awareness was astonishing.”

Enriquez admits that the viral stunt has produced copycats, including one request for a sponge in the shape of a llama. “The guest noted they wanted the llama sponge so that they could bathe like Peruvian royalty. As requested, a llama-shaped sponge was waiting for them in their room upon arrival.”

Le Meurice hotel in Paris once famously accommodated the unusual requests of Salvador Dalí, even going so far as delivering a horse and a herd of sheep to his room. The surrealist master is said to have fired blanks at the herd upon seeing them.

The trouser-snake incident is admittedly less tame than the M&M request, but has produced an online flurry. The story was originally reported to the Basingstoke Gazette by Payne and then picked up by the Telegraph, followed by HotelChatter, AOL and Metro.co.uk. FlyerTalk reached out to the Hilton Basingstoke for comment, but as of deadline has not received a response.

As for Payne, he remains unapologetic. “I find there is a universal sense of humor when the context is just a bit of a laugh, whether clean and witty or puckish innuendo… Unilaterally declaring the comment not funny is a bit imperious and gratuitous. The comment was a bit of Austin Powers-style sophomoric banter which regularly draws laughs.”

And when asked if he would do it over again, Payne is defiant. “Of course [I would do it again], probably the next time I book again at a Hilton hotel, and I bet I don’t get the same reaction.”

Comments are Closed.
satman40 February 27, 2014

Not very smart, and yes the Manager needed to CYA, the Lady may have grinned, but I bet she thought another stupid idiot. Who thinks with his little head, Hope his company gives him the Boot, he is representing them. Many who laugh with you are laughing at you, when you turn your back.

TravellingITGuy February 27, 2014

It was maybe an inappropriate comment.

Robbo26041975 February 26, 2014

Here is another one for the strange files! http://instagram.com/p/c9A0Y-x6Kl/#

SoCal February 26, 2014

The time to be this proud of such comments is when you're 14. Do it once, fine. Proudly saying you'd do it again, you look like a jerk.