Ask Ms. Behaving



Ms. Behaving at Royal Ascot

MS. BEHAVING WELCOMES YOU! And who is she, you may ask? A seasoned traveller -- 125 countries to date. Her experiences on land, all seven seas, and in the air have given her a unique window on behavior both bad and brilliant. She knows that knowing the right thing to do can make the difference between making a travel memory happy … or wince-inducing. Her kidskin-gloved hand is extended to help you navigate treacherous travel times with confidence and elan.

A READER WRITES: I’m no stranger to elegant hotels, but even this savvy traveller is confused about when/how much to tip the Concierge. Help!

MS. BEHAVING REPLIES: The Concierge at the front desk is your friend, whose job is to make the impossible possible, from scoring a hot restaurant table to chartering a private jet when whim strikes. Tipping rule of thumb: no tip is necessary for mailing a letter or a couple of dinner dates. But if you ask more of them – all restaurants and theater tickets, arranging a private guide, finding a doctor in an emergency, etc. – some cash and a small note of thanks at the end of your stay is recommended. Say $20 to $40, depending (of course, chartering a jet is worth at least a C-note, ne c’est pas?). Having once worked behind the Concierge desk at a major Paris hotel, Ms. Behaving knows your token of esteem will be remembered by their worldwide professional network.


A READER WRITES: I’m all for inflight technology, but what to do when the gentleman in the next seat is playing – ahem – graphic adult entertainment on his laptop?

MS. BEHAVING REPLIES: A sticky situation indeed. While Ms. Behaving would like to unsheathe a ruler and whack the lout on the knuckles, this calls for diplomacy on your part. In a firm tone neither indignant or patronizing, ask him to adjust the screen so that those next to him (not to mention the kiddies behind him) can’t see. If that doesn’t do the trick, find the flight’s cabin manager privately to register your complaint. It is Ms. Behaving’s experience that louts respond well to authority figures.


WHAT’S YOUR QUANDARY? Have questions about etiquette, local or global travel customs or awkward moments on the road? Fear not! Ms. Behaving is ready to answer. Send your queries (putting "Ms. Behaving" in the subject line here.


Photo above: Ms. Behaving at Royal Ascot.



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