14:00 It’s time to move my ass and start preparing for work.

15:00 Back in the reception mode. Update of the morning events, complaints and the things that still wait for the solution.

In general, as my colleagues said ‘the morning was calm’. Not much work and no big scandals. I’m a little bit disappointed as the past days were waaaay to calm.

15:15 Work is important but…coffee first!

Mission failed: First check in just have arrived.

17:00 Still calm. I walk around the common spaces. Some people cook in the kitchen, the other chill on the sofas. In other words it looks like the afternoon is going to be boring.

Since not too many people stay around it’s safe to leave the reception and go to the bathroom.

Wait…no…the check in has arrived.

Around 18 I click around from one page to another, checking some reservations, assignations and possible upsells. The internet is working so sloooow now.

Hmmm…it stoped to work completely. What the….the wi-fi is dead.

I check on my phone – just to confirm by biggest fear….and yes it is really not working.

Well if it is not working than I should restart routers (all 10 of them). Hopefully it will help.

As I stand up in order to make a move to the routers spot, one of the guests approach me:

Guest: Hey, the wi-fi is not working

Me:  Yeah, I know

Guest: Are you going to do something about that?

Me: Yes I was just going to restart routers, I hope it will help

Guest: Oh, ok.

On my way, in the corridor another guest stopped me:

Guest: Hi, do you know that wi-fi is not working?

Me: Yes, sorry for that I just go to check if restarting routers will help

Guest: Ok, great

I start to walk again and a girl run to me:

Girl: Heeeey! The wi-fi on my phone is not working can you help me?

Me: It’s not your fault, it looks like it doesn’t work in the hostel I will check if I can do something about that

Girl: Oh okay! Do you know how long it will take?

Me: If it’s the routers than it should work in few minutes if not than we will see

Girl: Ok, thanks

Seriously…it’s just 5 minutes since it stopped working and already so many people noticed it? Can you all survive few minutes without it? It looks like no.

I’m right in front of the routers. A guy approach me:

Guy: Oh, good I was looking for you.

Me: Let me guess – the wi-fi doesn’t work

Guy: Yes! I’m uploading movies and the internet is so slow…actually it doesn’t work anymore.

Me: Yes I know (thanks to you, and other 100 people who told me that)- And I stare at him

Guy: And…you are going to do something about it?

Me: Yes. That’s why I’m here: restarting routers

Guy: Oh

After restarting, I check on my phone if it works. No. Ok, once again!

After few tries I just give up. Obviously this are not routers. I come back to the reception and look for the phone number to our internet provider.

The guy who wanted to upload movie approach the reception:

Guy: The wi-fi is still not working.

Me: Yes, I know

Guy: Are you going to fix it?

Breath in, breath out…I really should get used to the fact that people imagine that as a receptionist I can fix everything…

Me: Well, I’m trying to call to the internet provider (but if you continue talking to me than it’s kind of complicated – I think)

Guy: I really need the wi-fi. I need to upload the movies. I paid for the good wi-fi in here!

Me: Ok, I understand however let me call the company first and ask what happened ok?

Guy: Ok.

Finally I manage to contact the company. It looks like it’s some breakdown in the whole area and they are working on it. The lady explains me that it might last from 15 minutes up to 3 hours however she can’t tell me the exact time.

Uhh…this is gonna be hard now.

Few guest approach me asking about the wi-fi. I explain the situation and that it’s the whole area and not only in the hostel.

Guests: Can you do something about it?- I hear…Yeah sure I will turn on the extra supply of wi-fi that we always keep for the situations like that (that’s what I think).

Me: Sorry guys unfortunately I can’t do anything. We need to wait until they fix it. But if you really need the wi-fi you can go somewhere else: here are some cafeterias you can check out (and I point them on the map).

Guests: So what we gonna do now?- someone asked me

Me: Well, I think there are many things you can do…like go outside and see some things, or go for a beer or you know…talk to each other.

It seems like no wi-fi for some means an Armagedon. A true tragedy. I swear if I will hear one more ‘excuse me the wi-fi is not working’ I will need a shot of vodka.

Sometimes I wish I could just say: ‘Sorry but the department of complaints is closed now’. But until 23 (which is the end of my shift) I can’t. Actually I never can say that (even tho I imagine people faces if I would say that).

Around 21 the wi-fi is back again.


It seems like everything is ok now. Also guests around seem to be in the good mood.

22:00 A guy who was uploading the movies approach the reception again. With a tablet in his hand:

Guy: Look the wi-fi is really slow in here – and he put in front of my eyes a tablet with some numbers in it. – You see?

Me: Eee…- it doesn’t say much to me…you know just numbers – well I’m not really good at it so I don’t know what mean those things

Guy: I have a special application, and you can see that obviously the internet is very slow in my room. I did not pay for that. You guys say that you have a good wi-fi

Me: Because in general we do (and it works for me good if I must say – I think). But if you wish I can change your room to another floor where you will be closer to the router. Let me check if I have a free bed there.

Guy: Yes great.

Me: Ok I do have a bed there, here you have a new key and you can change the room.

After 20 minutes he comes back. With a tablet again.

Guy: You see?- and showing me the numbers again

Me: Hmm see what exactly?- goshh what’s your problem (me thinking)

Guest: It is better but still not fast enough for me. I will write about that in a review

Me: Oh, sorry for that unfortunately our informatic is not here right now but for sure I will pass him the information to check the speed of our wi-fi

Aaaaand…big smile.

Uff..he goes away.

It’s almost the end of my shift. I write down all the complaints and events that happened – for my manager to know.

23:00 My colleague from the night shift arrived. I tell him all the story from today about the ‘wi-fi Armagedon’. He laughs about it a lot.

And me…well I just don’t want to hear the word ‘wi-fi’ for now.

Check out my other hostel adventures in ‘The Receptionist Diary’:

The Receptionist Diary: A day from the hostel life

The Receptionist Diary: The night shift

The Receptionist Diary: The no show story

It might not look like that but I really enjoy working in hostels so treat my diary with a grain of salt! And if you enjoy it too, just tweet it!

Posted by Ewa Gabara

Posted by Ewa Gabara

Founder of Don’t Mess With The Receptionist. I geek out on hostels and I’m a long-time receptionist turned into a copywriter. I help the hospitality and travel brands conquer the world with words.

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