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Re: [HSSG] Shilla hotel charges

Title: Re: [HSSG] Shilla hotel charges


Can we please return to technical discussions on this reflector?

There are other means by which people can have their concerns addressed, but this is not the place to do it.

Brad Booth

-----Original Message-----
From: Trowbridge, Stephen J (Steve) <sjtrowbridge@ALCATEL-LUCENT.COM>
Sent: Tue Sep 25 11:14:43 2007
Subject: Re: [HSSG] Shilla hotel charges

We seem to have gotten WAY off the topic of my original complaint.

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.


        From: Jacky Chow [mailto:jchow@MARVELL.COM]
        Sent: Tuesday, September 25, 2007 10:36 AM
        Subject: Re: [HSSG] Shilla hotel charges



        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 institutions.






                From: Grow, Bob [mailto:bob.grow@INTEL.COM]
        Sent: Tuesday, September 25, 2007 8:28 AM
        Subject: Re: [HSSG] Shilla hotel charges




        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 again.


        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 parity).


        Frankly, I'm embarrassed by some of the comments in this thread and apologize to our hosts on behalf of 802.3.


        Bob Grow
        Chair, IEEE 802.3