Save yourself a trip, call ahead. Let me give you a couple of examples:
- On Monday, I went downtown to get a permit needed for some renovations we are doing on my dad’s place. After driving around downtown to find the proper building (my tendency is to drive around until I find where I’m going, luckily my friend Honor was on the phone giving me directions on that day), I parked in a pay lot. I walked a few blocks, went through the detectors and found the proper room. At this point we are looking at about 20 minutes of my time sucked up. I had the lady speak with my dad about the proper permit only to find out that I couldn’t get the permit. There is a little clause in the city ordinance that won’t allow me to be the one to purchase it. OK, so be it, I get that a city has to make some money. I get that there are little quirky rules in there, but I was most frustrated about having wasted a chunk of my day. I paid the parking attendant $1, which could have been a lot worse. By the time I arrived home, I had spent an hour on a fruitless project. Lesson learned, call ahead.
- Target ran a deal on Glucerna cereal a while back. There was a great coupon that made each box under 50cts each, which is a wonderful price for this cereal. I had some rain checks that since they didn’t have all that I wanted in stock at the time of the sale. I went into 3 Target stores at different times during the next few weeks looking for the cereal. Two of the trips were made specifically for the cereal. One would think that I would have learned my lesson and called ahead to see if they had any in stock after the first futile attempt, but no. Wasted time—lesson learned, call ahead.
In both situations, I wasted time and energy. I wasted money on parking and gasoline. Had I made a simple call and waited for the answer to my question, I might have only spent 5-10 minutes of phone time. Next time, I’ll try and remember to call ahead!