This was to be Black Friday on our trip. We had 10 shows planned and a move from one set of accommodation to another.
On 29th August 2012 we had booked 10 days at Euro Lodge Hostel this was done at a bargain rate of £40 per night. The place was fairly central at far end of Princes Street and so within easy walking distance of the other shows we had planned for these 10 days.
On 3rd August this year just before the trip we had the following email asking us to confirm we still wanted the room
We immediately replied yes, and that we had made a deposit to secure this a year ago. We heard nothing else so on the morning of the 16th we left our B&B. Lynour landlady there had been fantastic and was letting us leave our car there for the next ten nights. We paid for a taxi to transport our baggage to the new place, which the taxi driver had trouble finding. This was it, still available to book now http://www.hostelbookers.com/hostels/scotland/edinburgh/76240/reviews/
We thought we would not be able to check in early but thought we might be able to leave our bags there until later. On arrival we could get no reply from the property and so tried ringing the contact number we had on our booking. This number went to answerphone several times. We did not know what to do so thought our best option might be to walk down to Waverley Station and leave our baggage there. This proved a fruitless task as there was a queue of 200+ people.
We walked back up to Princes Street and tried phoning again and got some guy who told us he had no booking for us. His story was that he had taken over the Euro Lodge earlier in the year and previous bookings had not been passed to him. This made no sense as we had a confirmation 12 days previous. His stance seemed to be tough nothing to do with me, though he said he would try and sort something for us. We had already missed our first paid show of the day by then. And when we then rang Hostel Bookers, they did not want to know. We were stranded with over £1500 of tickets for paid shows over the next ten days and very little option but to go back home to Cornwall at that point. The guy who owned the Euro Hostel did not get back to us so we kept ringing him and kept being fobbed off with promises he would find us something for the night BUT only the one night. And that we would have to pay more for the privilege. We did not have the budget for this. We had carefully planned the trip and on arrival home we only had £80 left! We went back to our B&B and left cases back in the car and Lyn then got on the case to try and help out contacting other B&Bs for us. Unfortunately to no avail but she was brilliant. Carole then put an appeal on Facebook. We keep rescue chickens and Carole is a member of a rescue chicken keepers forum and was due to meet up with them the day after her birthday as she had done the previous year. Within 2 hours we had a room at our £40 a night rate. This was slightly outside the centre so we went back to the B&B got our car and drove to our new abode. Which was absolutely lovely and we will always be indebted to Jackie who sorted us out as well as our hosts, who were lovely.
However this had taken 7 extremely stressful hours.
We had missed 3 paid shows which cost £60, Hostelbookers.com still had my deposit £40, we were also having to catch a bus in and night bus home at £9 per day for the next ten days. We reckon these scum have cost us a minimum of £190. And they do not even have the decency to apologise. If we had come home we would have been suing them for a huge amount more losses. The other downside of the new digs was that we automatically had 1 1/2 less sleep per night because of the extra travelling involved, which did not help with the schedule we had.
At time of writing I have sent two separate emails to hostelbookers who have not given me any reply whatsoever. It is outrageous how they have treated us.
I had spent most of the day in tears and Carole had to drag me through it, as all I wanted was to go home.
This also had the effect that we could no longer reach our target of 150 shows in 15 days which would have eclipsed the record number of shows at the Fringe (over the whole run) of 149.
We completely missed ‘And Now For Something Completely Improvised’ which was sold out.
Our first two shows this day were Helen O’Brien – OK but our hearts were not in it, Don’t Drop The Egg – atrocious but may be tinged by stress as well.
We were due to see Jigsaw & Birthday Girls but had to abandon these – fortunately the Pleasance were as good as gold and let us swap our tickets over for the following Monday when they replaced free shows we had planned.
We saw Joe Lycett after getting back from our new digs, very good indeed. Then Paul McCaffrey did a good job of raising our spirits, he is always a class act. Peacock and Gamble were also great fun again. And we rounded off the evening with ‘The Joy of Sketch’ featuring The Pin, Birthday girls, Geins Family Giftshop, Sad faces, Bev and Late Night Gimp Fight.
We abandoned our final free show of the night because we were so drained from the events of the day and this hung over the next 3-4 days as well.
Show of the day was Paul McCaffrey.
Show count – 6
Running total – 59
Acts Seen – 11
Running Total – 124