Colin Charles Agenda

Hyatt Internet woes… and how to fix it

Coming to the Hyatt Santa Clara, for the MySQL Conference & Expo 2009? Beware, that this year, the in-room Internet just isn’t so peachy.

When you check in, there’s this option of a “Business Plan” that Hyatt sells you – USD$30, for free wired in-room Internet (a $12.95/day value), free breakfast (this includes 15% gratuity, so a $20+ value), a free bottle of water (yes, otherwise its $3.95), and all the local and long distance calls in the US that you’ll need (depending on what you do, YMMV). It seemed like a good deal.

Now, for the benefit of others, which has taken about four days for me to fix. When you’re on this plan, the Hyatt rebates your Internet within an hour or so of you signing up for the deal. This tells their ISP that you’re now not able to get access to anything else, but Port 80 and Port 443 access — yes, SMTP, IMAP, SSH, IRC and all other ports, are blocked.

You need to call 877-22-HYATT (toll free), and tell them your predicament. Their system will not see anything in the bill cycle, and suddenly realise that they can’t even recognise your IP address. The system has no recollection of the MAC address either! So what the nice support guy on the phone can do for you is to enable this for about three days, and then you’ll have to call back again, to ensure things just work.

My case number is: 267 014. Needless to say, all this is about the most unintuitive thing that can happen to someone. Lets hope it all just starts working well… Of course, next week, when the conference starts, there will be Internet at all the lobby/common areas, as well as the conference centre itself, as well as breakfast provided from 7am onwards.

So unless you like breakfast at 6am, or need in-room Internet access, give the Hyatt Business Plan a skip. And now, I can finally go back to reading and replying to the deluge of email that has hit me.