Compensation Clinic: Holiday Inn London – Bloomsbury


A LoyaltyLobby reader had a sleepless night at London area Holiday Inn hotel due to car alarm that went off and didn’t shut down.

Compensation Clinic Holiday Inn London - Bloomsbury U

Remember that you can always email me about issues that you have had with airlines, hotels, car rentals, agencies etc. and I will feature one case every week.

You can access Holiday Inn London – Bloomsbury’s website here.

Here’s copy of the email that the reader sent to the manager of the hotel:

I contact you today about an issue I had during my last stay in your hotel, 2 nights from June 30th to July 2nd, Confirmation Number (removed).

As you must be aware, a car parked near the hotel had its alarm on permanently, including the whole night from Monday to Tuesday. I was booked in room 463, just above this car.

While of course I cannot blame you or your staff about the issue with the car itself, I consider that my requests related to this issue were not handled in a way I would expect for an IHG Rewards Club Elite member, and resulted in great inconveniences for me.

  • I could not fall asleep because of the car alarm. I finally decided to call the front desk around 3AM, and ask to change my room to be on another side of the building. I was very disappointed to hear that no other room is available, while the hotel did not seem to be fully booked. I did not sleep for the rest of the night, and was very tired the next day.
  • In the morning, I went to the front desk and asked to change rooms for the second night. Your staff member took note of my request and told me that a room on the other side of the building would be put aside for me.
  • When I came back in the evening, another staff member took care of my check-in. She was not aware of any special request for me. She gave me a room on the 6th floor, telling me it is on the quieter internal side.
  • When I went to the 6th floor, I realized she made a mistake, as the room was actually on the street side, just above the car that was still making noise.
  • I had to return to the front desk, explain again my case to a third different staff member, and finally I was booked into room 406, which proved to be all right, and I could sleep normally.

Again, my complaint is not about the car itself, but about the way the issue was handled by your staff at several occasions. As a result, I feel less than satisfied by my stay at your property. As a compensation measure, I would like you to consider refunding the first (sleepless) night. As I am an IHG Rewards Club member, I can accept this refund as the equivalent in Rewards Night points.

Please get back to me about this request. I also hope that the faulty car has been removed (or else detonated by a bomb squad…), for the tranquility of your guests.

Here’s the reply from the manager:

Dear Mr LoyaltyLobby reader,

First of all thank you for your email, I do apologise for the sleepless night due to a car alarm. Even though we reported it with the council and police, action was not taken by the authorities until the day after. I have briefed my reception team on the communication errors, so they can improve the internal procedures. Your complaint was noted but the follow up can be done more actively and thoroughly.

As you are part of the IHG rewards club it gives me the opportunity to resolve the issue and will credit you with 35.000 points to compensate you for your first night. I am glad the remaining night was more to your liking. The points has been credited to you this morning. Again my apologies and have a great day.


The email that the reader sent to the manager of the hotel was just about perfect. It wasn’t about the compensation for the car alarm, but how the employees failed to act promptly by reassigning a room for the guest on the quieter side.

Does anybody pay any attention to these car alarms anyway? They just seem to go off if a truck passes nearby and don’t always shut for hours.