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Does this vacation rental have air conditioning? A must-ask question!

In August we had the great opportunity to visit a few countries in Europe. We started our trip with three nights in Rome. I did what I thought was quality research discerning which vacation rental was going to be the best for me and my family. Well, sometimes doing a bunch of research can be completely wrong when a “check mark” is placed erroneously.

Here’s what happened.

I looked at several dozen vacation rentals in Rome and the surrounding area. I kept, what I thought, was a pretty good spreadsheet on all the units and kept winnowing down until the decision was made. A beautiful two bedroom apartment on a quiet street, with kitchenette a block away from Piazza del Popolo and three away from the Spanish Steps. Perfect location.

Our hosts were super gracious and helped us with a number of transportation and dining issues before we arrived. I communicated with them 100% via email, which is usually great because I had all of my notes in the palm of my hand on my phone when we arrived.

As we began unpacking in the apartment I asked our host where the controller was for the air conditioning. He said “the what? This apartment doesn’t have air conditioning.”

Did I mention that it was nearly 95 degrees at 10 in the morning?

So I checked my notes on the conversation and sure enough, there it was plain as the nose on your face: “This vacation rental unit does NOT have air conditioning.” However, I put a check mark notating that it DID. Big mistake.

My lovely wife was very understandable on the matter; as long as I found a hotel room that had air conditioning ASAP that she and the kids could stay in while I sweated it out in the vacation rental everything would be fine.

In the end we just opened up the windows and were lucky enough that during the evening it did cool down just enough to be comfortable – almost!

Bottom line: Asking questions is important but writing down the answer correctly is just as, if not more, important.

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