I saw the light, and not in a good way.
A few months ago, I had a business trip with my dad to California. We flew a transcontinental from Miami to San Francisco, arriving at night. A GroundLink took us to our hotel (a Marriott property), and we checked in at like 9:00. Given that we’re father and son, we shared a room, with two beds. I claimed the one on the right.
At about 11:30, we turned off the lights to sleep and be well-rested for the following morning’s meeting. That’s when I saw it: the smoke detector, with its blinking green light, directly above my head. Oh no. I’m an insomniac, and this thing was right above my face, blinking me into sleep deprivation.
How I tossed and turned that night. The dang light compounded my usual sleeping issues, making me half-sleep the entire time. The next day’s meeting went fine, but I was certainly not very refreshed. In fact, when we went to check out, I complained about the light, and the clerk said it was not their first complaint! What a way to serve your customers! (In hindsight, I regret not having requested compensation).
What did I learn from this experience? To check for smoke detector lights immediately upon first entering the room, especially if it’s a two-bed room. That way, if there’s a light right above a bed, you can turn right around and ask for a room change, or, if that’s not possible, for the hotel to send someone to try and move the beds around or find another solution (maybe put black electrical tape over the light, if it’s safe).
The worst you can do is do nothing, since it’s much harder to fix the situation when you’re all up in your pajamas and snuggled in bed. After all, who wants to turn the lights back on and call the front desk at that time? And then get dressed and out of bed? No way, Jose!
In any case, and even if you get the issue resolved, I would suggest requesting compensation (like hotel points or free breakfast or something) just for the inconvenience. You’re paying for good, hassle-free sleep, not for sleep deprivation.
Sometimes it’s the smallest things that cause the biggest headaches.
GIF from Giphy