FHR flexible online bookings and rate changes?

Old Jul 5, 19, 12:08 pm
  #1  
Original Poster
Four Seasons Contributor Badge
 
Join Date: May 2014
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 131
FHR flexible online bookings and rate changes?

Hello,

I'm a travel optimizer and I like to book flexible rates far in advance and change the reservation if the rates drop to lock in the lower rates. With direct hotel bookings it's usually trivial to use the confirmation number and "modify reservation" (or call in). But with Amex FHR online bookings I've always found it difficult. You can't do it on the website online and they won't do it over chat either. Last time I canceled the reservation and made a new one to avoid having to call in.

Why not just call in? The reservation is for my mother and she is an authorized user on my account. I handle the travel bookings for her. But whenever I call Amex they always end up asking me for some PIN I don't have and then they want me to go through an arduous reset process and play fifty questions with SSNs, etc.

This time I noticed a price drop less than a week before the stay and I don't want to outright make a new reservation because I've already been in contact with the front desk and they have notes on the reservation, concierge stuff arranged, etc. This is a prepaid but flexible Amex FHR (want those 5x points).

Any other avenues I'm missing?
david22 is online now  
Old Jul 9, 19, 5:05 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: PHX, SEA
Programs: DL Silver, Avis President's Club, Hertz President's Circle, Global Entry (Former AA Plt/Gold)
Posts: 3,308
I have been unable to change reservations as well, I had to make the new booking and then cancel the old one. I dunno why Amex can't handle this either, and this isn't just FHR, it's any flexible room.

I do know that if you use the website the PTS folks can't help at all, they have a different system. The website is administered by the Expedia Group, so maybe it's a limitation of their system?
Gig103 is offline  
Old Jul 9, 19, 8:04 pm
  #3  
Original Poster
Four Seasons Contributor Badge
 
Join Date: May 2014
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 131
Thanks for your reply! Interesting to hear that the website is Expedia behind the scenes...
david22 is online now  
Old Jul 10, 19, 10:58 am
  #4  
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 61
I always just cancel and rebook.
geoffk is offline  
Old Jul 10, 19, 2:01 pm
  #5  
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: PHX, SEA
Programs: DL Silver, Avis President's Club, Hertz President's Circle, Global Entry (Former AA Plt/Gold)
Posts: 3,308
I wonder if it could be because the flexible rates are sometimes still prepaid with Amex Travel, and it's easier to refund than to try to modify a charge.

Also I did want to remind you and others reading this, that it's best to book the new room and then cancel the old one... Since inventory is dynamic, you releasing a room could cause rates to go back up in the interim. This was something told to me so I wanted to pass it along.
Gig103 is offline  
Old Jul 10, 19, 3:24 pm
  #6  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: NYC
Posts: 23,250
Originally Posted by Gig103 View Post
Since inventory is dynamic, you releasing a room could cause rates to go back up in the interim.
Well, that seems counter-intuitive, no?
ijgordon is offline  
Old Jul 10, 19, 3:46 pm
  #7  
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: PHX, SEA
Programs: DL Silver, Avis President's Club, Hertz President's Circle, Global Entry (Former AA Plt/Gold)
Posts: 3,308
Originally Posted by ijgordon View Post
Well, that seems counter-intuitive, no?
Not to me but maybe because i'm used to the cruise-line industry (as opposed to the airline industry), where occupancy is desired enough that at the last minute, getting any amount of money is better than a vacant room. Cancelling a room could change some ratio, or triggers some filter/rule. It won't always matter since inventory management systems are adept at anticipating demand, such as knowing if there's a convention in town, but it did make sense to me.
Gig103 is offline  
Old Jul 11, 19, 3:46 pm
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: TPE LAS LHR
Programs: BA Meltdown Gold, OZ♦+ (flying BR/UA), WoH♦, HH♦. Gaming: Mlife Noir, TR7*
Posts: 4,847
Originally Posted by david22 View Post
This time I noticed a price drop less than a week before the stay and I don't want to outright make a new reservation because I've already been in contact with the front desk and they have notes on the reservation, concierge stuff arranged, etc. This is a prepaid but flexible Amex FHR (want those 5x points).
It really should be no problem dropping the FD a line and getting all the notations transferred. Even less of an issue with the concierge.
gengar is online now  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread