For the most part, Las Vegas is a very accessible destination. They have a good supply of accessible taxis, wheelchairs and scooters for loan at many hotels, and good access to the casinos. And the hotel rooms there are some of the most accessible ones I’ve ever seen — some even have ceiling track lifts.
The employees seem to have a good attitude about access too, at least the ones I’ve encountered. Unfortunately that’s not the case for Kimberley Barreda; in fact, her recent interaction with the Circus Circus staff left a bad taste in her mouth. Not only were they ignorant of the law, but in some cases they were just downright rude.
According to Kimberley, she asked the employees at the Courtesy Desk if the hotel airport shuttle was accessible. They assured her it was, told her that it cost $7, and informed her that it departed every 30 minutes. Unfortunately, when the shuttle arrived, it wasn’t accessible. The driver informed her that they use an accessible taxi for wheelchair-users, and directed her to the doorman, who in turn called an accessible taxi for her. It showed up 10 minutes later.
When she arrived at the airport, things started to go south quickly.
The driver informed here that the fare was $18.30. She explained her situation to him, but to no avail. She assumed that Circus Circus had some kind of arrangement with the taxi company to accommodate their wheelchair guests, and that the doorman took care of those details when he ordered the taxi for her. He did not, so she reluctantly shelled out the fare, or at least as much of it as she had in her purse.
Subsequently she phoned the manager to try and recoup her loss. She explained her situation, and asked for a credit on her debit card, to cover the $11.30 difference between the hotel shuttle price and the taxi fare. After all, if they are unable to accommodate a disabled guest on their shuttle, they must provide them with an accessible alternative for the same price that they charge their able-bodied guests.
The hotel manager stood firm and informed Kimberley that they don’t pay taxi fares. Period. And then she hung up on her.
The same thing happened when she called back a second time and talked to Anthony.
Circus Circus missed the boat on this on so very many counts.
First, the folks at the Courtesy Desk should have given out the correct information about the accessibility of the shuttle. In a perfect world, they would tell the guest that the shuttle isn’t accessible, give them a taxi voucher and call an accessible taxi.
Second, the shuttle driver should be brought up to speed on how to handle disabled guests. Again, in a perfect world, he would tell them to go to the Courtesy Desk and pick up a taxi voucher.
But you know, I don’t really find fault with these employees, as apparently they are echoing the sentiments of the management. When management has a bad attitude about access, they tend to pass that along to their employees. The managers didn’t know the law, and they don’t understand good customer service.
Granted the hotel doesn’t have to own an accessible shuttle, but if they provide shuttle service, they have to provide an accessible option at the same price. This applies even if that accessible option costs them more than the inaccessible option, as it did in this case.
And there’s just no call for hanging up on anybody. It’s just rude, and quite frankly very low class.
Unfortunately, I don’t think this is the first time this has happened, as I’m quite sure Kimberley is not the first wheelchair-user to ever stay there. Plus the shuttle driver seemed to be familiar with the procedure. It’s all very sad.
So if you’re looking for a Las Vegas hotel that understands access and treats all of their customers fairly, you’d better pass on Circus Circus. Believe me, there are many more choices for wheelers and slow walkers in Sin City.