We seem to have gotten WAY off the topic of my
I was not complaining about how the meeting fee was
charged. I was not complaining about our host (Samsung or ETRI). I was not
complaining about the AMEX international service fee.
What I was complaining about was the fact that the hotel
did not charge my total bill (mostly lodging, but also containing the meeting
fee) to AMEX in the amount of Korean Won shown on my hotel folio (where, as you
say, AMEX would have tacked on their fee where I couldn't see it). The hotel
converted my bill to US dollars at THE HOTEL's exchange rate, and billed that
DOLLAR amount to AMEX, and this was a significantly worse rate than AMEX would
have given me.
From others who have posted, the Novotel did not do this.
The hotel I stayed at ~3 years ago in Seoul for IETF did not do this. The hotel
I stayed at in Seoul in 1997 in transit to another destination did not do this.
No other hotel I have stayed at in 22 countries on 5 continents for business
travel has done this. They have all submitted the hotel charges to AMEX in local
currency in the EXACT amount shown on my hotel folio. Assuming that I am not the
only one who was charged in this manner, this hotel's unique charging method
seems to net them an extra ~$70-90 per guest depending on whether they were
there for four or five nights.
I agreed with you
100%. For those of you not familiar with using your credit cards
overseas, AMEX always “built-in” their international service fees (per
transaction) directly on the charge amount – (The following is printed on your
AMEX statement: “Foreign Currency conversion rate is base rate plus 2%.
See legal disclosures for details”).
You should have
voiced your complain to financial institutions like AMEX, Visa, or Mastercard.
Our host in Korea has absolutely nothing to do
with the exchange rate/fee policies charged by these financial
From: Grow, Bob
Sent: Tuesday, September 25, 2007 8:28
Subject: Re: [HSSG] Shilla hotel
If there is really
serious concern about the ~$11 difference between the "advertised"
registration fee and what showed up on your credit card bill, please
direct your comments to me. Under the LMSC P&P, I as WG Chair am
ultimately responsible for approving the meeting budget and meeting fee.
I apologize to the WG for not making sure the meeting fee was announced in
Won, how it was budgeted, with US $ clearly marked as an estimate on the web
page. Hopefully this will not occur
It has been suggested
that the meeting fee be fixed in US $. It is my opinion that it is
inappropriate to ask our hosts to take on the additional risks of currency
fluctuation in addition to the other liabilities we ask them to incur.
In this case, our hosts went far beyond what we ask of hosts. I thank
our hosts for their very substantial financial contribution to the
meeting. While on the dinner cruise provided to us at no charge, I
received favorable comments from a number of you about the meeting. More
than one person joked that they expected the same when meeting in Portland in January (dream on, you won't see that
kind of activity sponsored in Portland).
Those of you who
think that the hotel set the exchange rate for the meeting fee are, I
believe, in error. If you were charged in Won, it is the bank
behind your credit card that sets the exchange rate. For those obvious
to financial markets, the dollar has been almost continuously moving down
against most currencies in recent months. A few years ago, the dollar
was strong and our non-US participants saw similar things to what you have
seen this month, while we got the benefit of meeting in Ottawa with the Canadian
dollar at $0.65 US (now they are basically at
embarrassed by some of the comments in this thread and apologize to our hosts
on behalf of 802.3.
Chair, IEEE 802.3