Go Back   FlyerTalk Forums > Travel&Dining > TravelBuzz
Sign in using an external account

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old Jan 15, 12, 10:49 am   #1
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: YEG from GLA
Posts: 24
Hotel room upgrades

From your experiences, what are your best recommendations on how to obtain an upgrade on hotel rooms at check-in?

Thanks in advance!
Alba is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 15, 12, 10:57 am   #2
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Jersey Shore
Programs: UA 1K, Marriott Plat, National Exec
Posts: 10,179
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alba View Post
From your experiences, what are your best recommendations on how to obtain an upgrade on hotel rooms at check-in?

Thanks in advance!
If Las Vegas, see the other Las Vegas hotel thread.

At other hotels, be an Elite.

Apart from that, be extremely nice at check-in, and don't expect much if a hotwire/priceline rate.
__________________
2014 CPUs: 18/31 Missed: EWR-SEA, PHL-IAH, SEA-EWR, PDX-SFO, SFO-PHL (x2), PHL-SFO (x2), SAN-EWR, IAD-SMF, PSP-IAH, EWR-MSY, MSY-EWR
aacharya is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 15, 12, 10:57 am   #3
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: MSP
Programs: DL Diamond, AMEX Business Platinum, AMEX Delta Reserve, DL SkyClub Member, Choice Diamond
Posts: 1,869
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alba View Post
From your experiences, what are your best recommendations on how to obtain an upgrade on hotel rooms at check-in?

Thanks in advance!
Besides having status in the hotel's frequent stayer programs, the $20 trick is the best!


Hold a $20 bill in your hand and request an upgrade ... once upgrade is done ... give the $20 tip to the check-in agent.
dd1612 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 15, 12, 11:09 am   #4
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: YEG from GLA
Posts: 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by aacharya View Post
If Las Vegas, see the other Las Vegas hotel thread.

At other hotels, be an Elite.

Apart from that, be extremely nice at check-in, and don't expect much if a hotwire/priceline rate.
Thank you. Excuse my ignorance, what is "Elite"?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dd1612 View Post
Besides having status in the hotel's frequent stayer programs, the $20 trick is the best!


Hold a $20 bill in your hand and request an upgrade ... once upgrade is done ... give the $20 tip to the check-in agent.
I like that, thanks.
Alba is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 15, 12, 7:10 pm   #5
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Gulf Coast/Ventura County/Somewhere in between
Programs: DL GM, Marriott PP, Avis Something or other
Posts: 4,420
Book the kind of room you want and pay for it.
__________________
"...if heartaches were commercials we'd all be on tv..."
dd992emo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 15, 12, 7:19 pm   #6
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Los Angeles
Programs: Ralphs Rewards, KCRW Angel, AA EXP
Posts: 3,613
Quote:
Originally Posted by dd992emo View Post
Book the kind of room you want and pay for it.
If that were the answer, FT wouldn't exist.
Science Goy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 15, 12, 7:35 pm   #7
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 275
Quote:
Originally Posted by Science Goy View Post
If that were the answer, FT wouldn't exist.
But at least you're "guaranteed" the room you want. Then, maybe an upgrade from there?
Sunny 1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 15, 12, 7:42 pm   #8
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Los Angeles
Programs: Ralphs Rewards, KCRW Angel, AA EXP
Posts: 3,613
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunny 1 View Post
But at least you're "guaranteed" the room you want. Then, maybe an upgrade from there?
Of course, don't book a room that you'd consider unacceptable. But I'd modify the strategy to: "book the room you can tolerate, and maybe an upgrade from there." If everyone simply coughed up the money for suites / paid F/J tickets / whatever, there'd be little reason for this site to exist.
Science Goy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 15, 12, 7:42 pm   #9
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Scenic Great Plains USA
Programs: AGR Starwood Whoever I can get points with :D
Posts: 677
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alba View Post
Thank you. Excuse my ignorance, what is "Elite"?

Here's a good overview of hotel elite status.
__________________
Help the developing world with our Kiva Team!
My computer does Alzheimer's and cancer research in its sleep
MJLouise is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 15, 12, 8:12 pm   #10
In Memoriam
 
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Easton, CT, USA
Programs: ua prem exec, Former hilton diamond
Posts: 31,819
Elite level at a hotel chain is people who stay enough in a year for the hotel to recognize them as frequent travelers and grant them status. Each hotel has their own requirement to obtain status.

I would suggest staying at hotels that have a upgrade system in place, like the Nor1 System at many Hiltons. They sometimes offer you the ability to upgrade for a fee on a standby basis.

You can also call the hotel and ask if they have a upgrade policy, and if they can tell you how it works and about what it costs to see if it's worth it for you.
__________________
Mike Cordelli mike@cordelli.com
cordelli is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 15, 12, 9:57 pm   #11
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Gulf Coast/Ventura County/Somewhere in between
Programs: DL GM, Marriott PP, Avis Something or other
Posts: 4,420
Quote:
Originally Posted by Science Goy View Post
Of course, don't book a room that you'd consider unacceptable. But I'd modify the strategy to: "book the room you can tolerate, and maybe an upgrade from there." If everyone simply coughed up the money for suites / paid F/J tickets / whatever, there'd be little reason for this site to exist.
"Goy"??? Are you sure?
__________________
"...if heartaches were commercials we'd all be on tv..."
dd992emo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 15, 12, 10:06 pm   #12
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Los Angeles
Programs: Ralphs Rewards, KCRW Angel, AA EXP
Posts: 3,613
Quote:
Originally Posted by dd992emo View Post
"Goy"??? Are you sure?
The other part of my username explains the need for frugality
Science Goy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 15, 12, 11:51 pm   #13
Suspended
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Calgary, Alberta
Programs: Hyatt Diamond, Fairmont Platinum, Aeroplan Diamond, HHonors Gold, SPG Gold
Posts: 18,690
www.perfectescapes.com offer upgrades on availability at check in.. Kiwi Collection.. Visa Signature..

You can use a Virtuoso, Preferred Partner travel agent.. usually they represent higher end hotels, and negotiate rates quite well.. I've been successful at securing an upgrade when booking as opposed to check-in.. as well as additional inclusions such as amenities, free breakfast, etc..
Ancien Maestro is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 16, 12, 12:20 pm   #14
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 110
You can write the hotel an e-mail in advance. For getting an idea you can read this blog post: http://boardingarea.com/blogs/viewfr...room-upgrades/

It doesn't work always, but it's a good way when you don't have any status.
MTHTravel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 16, 12, 12:32 pm   #15
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Washington, DC
Programs: US-CP, UA, Marriott Rewards, HHonors, Avis,
Posts: 4,549
OP do keep in mind that hotels are in business to make money and if it were common to get great room upgrades just by asking, they'd never sell any "fancy" rooms, which would reduce the amount of money they'd make.

Having elite/frequent guest status increases your chances of getting a treat in the form of a free upgrade but in the industry that's seen as a way to thank the guest for their business in hopes of generating more loyalty and revenue. If you've not demonstrated that you spend money at the hotel (or at least the brand), it's not really likely that they'll give you something better than what you paid for, just because you asked. After all, you'd not expect a restaurant to give you the $40 bottle of wine when you order the $20 bottle and ask nicely for the better vintage, unless you were a very frequent customer (and even then I wouldn't expect it.)

Which does not mean don't ask, but set your expectations accordingly. If it's a special occasion (honeymoon, anniversary, etc) and having a nicer room is key to your enjoyment, then book the nicer room and don't be disappointed. While the advice to email the hotel before your arrival is well-meaning, I find it sometimes more harmful than good, as it sets the general public's expectation that they can have that honeymoon suite just by asking, leading to some very disappointed guests when they are told No.

The advice about Virtuoso and Nor1 is good; read up on those. Amex Platinum can often give an upgrade benefit when booking your hotel through their travel site, as can some other credit card companies. But the $20 trick really only works in certain locations, Vegas being one, where it seems to be culturally acceptable; in many other cities, handing the desk agent a $20 at check-in will get you two fives and a ten in return, which you can count once you get to your booked standard room.
__________________
Some folks STILL haven't gotten their prizes from the Top Flyer contest, and that makes me really sad. What's the holdup, IB?
dcpatti is offline   Reply With Quote
 
 
Reply

Bookmarks


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 6:19 am.