On Saturday night we were slammed with trapped travelers who were stuck in Baker City due to blizzard conditions on the freeway. Our dining room became full, and our phone would not stop ringing with delivery orders… truckers, stranded near the freeway, and others in nearby hotel/motel rooms who were exhausted from the treacherous drive from Boise or Pendleton. They were now trapped in Baker City, Oregon.
Whitey took all of the deliveries, leaving me in a frenzied panic on the make-line tossing pies as fast as I could.
He came back from one particular delivery a bit upset, and we all stood with our mouths open in amazement at what had transpired.
He had delivered a pizza and breadsticks to a motel room, and the young man said, “I hope your pizza is good. It’s all we could afford after getting ripped off on this hotel room.”
Whitey assured him that he’d be satisfied with his pie, and then questioned why he felt he was ripped off.
This young couple, in their 20’s, with their infant son, had been charged ONE-HUNDRED and SIXTY DOLLARS for a room at my favorite motel (read:sarcasm) near the freeway. A simple room, with one bed.
Gee. I wonder how much they normally charge for that room? Hmmm…. let’s take a look:
Seriously. Their most expensive room is normally $89 a night. What kind of business would charge double knowing full well that this young family had no where else to go?
Here’s the thing…. this was probably not the only case of price gouging that night, and I’m sure that these families will always remember their holiday where they were RIPPED OFF in Baker City, Oregon.
Whitey told the young dad that he wished that they had just driven into town and found our place, told their story, and that we would have pointed them towards the Budget Inn at $130 less, or if the Budget were full we would’ve invited them into our home for the night. Whitey told him that yes, they had been taken advantage of, but to please not judge our town on the fact that this one particular motel had taken advantage of the situation.
How awful to be that young father, driving hours upon hours in the snow, scared to death that he’s endangering his family, only to have the freeway become closed in the middle of Eastern Oregon and not know where your wife and son are going to sleep….
then to get charged DOUBLE on a motel room just because they can.
What a rip.