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100% Award Availability for Hilton Honors Diamonds? Apparently Not All The Time!

100% Award Availability for Hilton Honors Diamonds? Apparently Not All The Time!

Old Nov 11, 04, 3:26 pm
  #1  
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100% Award Availability for Hilton Honors Diamonds? Apparently Not All The Time!

This was new to me and I want to share this with FTers.

I always thought that one of the great perks of being Diamond is that I could get award availability 100% of the time (barring extraordinary events) if I called ahead of time.

Well, I was wrong.

I cannot seem to get the Hilton Singapore (for a stay next Friday) because there are no standard rooms left. I was told that award reservations has to be made on a standard room and if there are none = no award possible. There are Executive Floor rooms available for this hotel during those dates however, but still an award reservation cannot be made on those.
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Old Nov 11, 04, 4:42 pm
  #2  
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Originally Posted by tide
This was new to me and I want to share this with FTers.

I always thought that one of the great perks of being Diamond is that I could get award availability 100% of the time (barring extraordinary events) if I called ahead of time.

Well, I was wrong.

I cannot seem to get the Hilton Singapore (for a stay next Friday) because there are no standard rooms left. I was told that award reservations has to be made on a standard room and if there are none = no award possible. There are Executive Floor rooms available for this hotel during those dates however, but still an award reservation cannot be made on those.

If I am not mistaken, I believe that this is SPG's policy, as well, on Black-out free, awards. I was under the impression that if there was no award space, Hilton would "buy" the room for you, but, apparently, this may no longer be the case?

In any event, I much prefer Marriott's and Hyatt's point override policy -- much more egaliatarian, as well.
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Old Nov 11, 04, 5:05 pm
  #3  
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Originally Posted by tide
This was new to me and I want to share this with FTers.

I always thought that one of the great perks of being Diamond is that I could get award availability 100% of the time (barring extraordinary events) if I called ahead of time.

Well, I was wrong.

I cannot seem to get the Hilton Singapore (for a stay next Friday) because there are no standard rooms left. I was told that award reservations has to be made on a standard room and if there are none = no award possible. There are Executive Floor rooms available for this hotel during those dates however, but still an award reservation cannot be made on those.
I wasn't aware of the award thing, but I know one Diamond perk is ROOM availability 100% of the time, so even if the hotel is sold out you can buy a room (highest price anyway). That's the only 100% availability guarantee I knew of.
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Old Nov 11, 04, 5:21 pm
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Originally Posted by tide
This was new to me and I want to share this with FTers.

I always thought that one of the great perks of being Diamond is that I could get award availability 100% of the time (barring extraordinary events) if I called ahead of time.

Well, I was wrong.

I cannot seem to get the Hilton Singapore (for a stay next Friday) because there are no standard rooms left. I was told that award reservations has to be made on a standard room and if there are none = no award possible. There are Executive Floor rooms available for this hotel during those dates however, but still an award reservation cannot be made on those.
NEVER FEAR!!!!!!!!!!!!
Whenever I have been faced with this situation I ask the Diamond Desk to call the Hotel and speak to the manager and please confirm a room while I wait and if I have a few days I will wait and follow up with a call. If I am pressed for time I call the Diamond Desk directly at the property or the manager at such property. This has never failed me ever. Wish you luck but if you follow these rules you will not need much luck. Enjoy your stay.
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Old Nov 11, 04, 5:56 pm
  #5  
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I posted this as a sort of heads-up (not a complaint). My fault for waiting so late but I've been coddled by the fact I thought I could get rooms "anytime".

Interestingly, I sent out an email this morning right after the call to the Hilton Singapore to see if they were willing to "deal". To me, as long as they had availability in Exec Level rooms, it was the same thing really - those are the rooms that I would be placed in whether or not Standard rooms were available or not. For them, it would also fill up space that might not be taken. They would get some rev from HHonors. Win-win.

Maybe I will use the Diamond Desk to broker a call. But the timezone thing is tricky. The Diamond Desk at night seems to switch to an offshore location and those CSRs are not great at doing something like this. I can barely understand what they are saying myself.

...so even if the hotel is sold out you can buy a room
True. As this poster notes too, the guarantee applies to any room not the "fare-class" I want, so-to-speak. No standard rooms. Only exec rooms at S$340/night = yikes. The Conrad is available but I'd rather not stay there (the location) unless necessary.
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Old Nov 11, 04, 6:41 pm
  #6  
 
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Hilton Singapore Isn't Nearly As Nice As The Conrad

While I agree with your post (that HHonors Diamonds aren't afforded the latitude they were granted in the past), I think that you might have a better experience at the Conrad Singapore. While the location is not as good as the Hilton, the amenities make it a better choice in my opinion. PreMex, LarryU, CatMan and I all agreed on that when we met there last January for Chinese New Year.

Good Luck,

HOTLANCER
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Old Nov 11, 04, 10:04 pm
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Originally Posted by [email protected]
NEVER FEAR!!!!!!!!!!!!
Whenever I have been faced with this situation I ask the Diamond Desk to call the Hotel and speak to the manager and please confirm a room while I wait and if I have a few days I will wait and follow up with a call. If I am pressed for time I call the Diamond Desk directly at the property or the manager at such property. This has never failed me ever. Wish you luck but if you follow these rules you will not need much luck. Enjoy your stay.
I agree, Iíve had wonderful luck with the Diamond desk in the US and Europe. Iíve even walked into the Hilton at CDG with no reservation, on a day that showed no award availability and was able to get an award room by placing a quick call to the Diamond desk.

Keep in mind that not all the reps are helpful 100% of the time. If you find a less then helpful one just call back.
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Old Nov 12, 04, 11:42 am
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of all the stays i've ever made in the last few years, i can only think of one where they had availability on the dates i wanted. however as diamond, they can always put in a special request and it will happen the way you want it. the regular diamond desk folks might tell you "it might not go through" but in my experience, the diamond special services (who processes the special requests) work miracles all the time.

just this year, i had to change my GLONP2 stay at the cavalieri 2-3 times (dates kept slipping) and each time they (diamond special services) were able to accomodate me. if the hilton SIN has no regular rooms, ask them to give you the upgraded ones. afterall, as diamond you will given an upgraded room at check in, why not just book you the upgraded room?

call the diamond desk and if they cant do it, ask them to put a special request in via diamond special services.

Last edited by saimike; Nov 12, 04 at 1:03 pm
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Old Nov 12, 04, 9:13 pm
  #9  
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Last year we wanted to extend a reward stay and my wife asked at the front desk. They told her they were totally sold out and they would not accomodate us under any circumstances. Back on the beach, a cell call to the Diamond Desk and 10 mins later we were extended. I really enjoyed walking back with her and confirming with the front desk. The front desk manager was not pleased at all that we "went around her".
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Old Nov 12, 04, 11:41 pm
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I have called the Diamond Desk. 3 times in fact. Spoke to a supervisor even. No luck. I emailed the Hilton Singapore. No reply after 2 days which I think it totally irresponsible for a 5* hotel - at least dignify my email with a response. I will try one more time for the "Diamond Special Services" as helpfully suggested - thanks.

I tell ya I'm beginning to think something must've changed with the Diamond Desk - at no point did I feel, unlike in the past, that they were batting for me. All I get is the same polite "sorry, no standard rooms, there's not much we can do" reply, and then a pregnant pause. I had to prompt them to call the hotel (twice). I expected that they would do the creative thinking for me on a solution - and not be merely reservation automatons.

I hope this is a blip and that this isn't a harbinger of more "unavailability" for Diamonds ahead.

Originally Posted by hotlancer
I think that you might have a better experience at the Conrad Singapore. While the location is not as good as the Hilton, the amenities make it a better choice in my opinion
I have stayed at both the Hilton and the Conrad in the past and I totally agree with you. However, this time it has to be the Hilton because I am travelling in a group and the rest are staying at the Marriott - the Conrad would be too far away.

Last edited by tide; Nov 12, 04 at 11:45 pm
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Old Nov 16, 04, 12:19 pm
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Have You Been Denied Award Room as Diamond?

I thought I was batting 1000 on getting award rooms at heavily booked properties, but just got tripped up at the new Kuala Lumpur Hilton. They are apparently sold out of standard rooms, and the award privilege doesn't extend to "Executive" rooms, even though I'd probably be upgraded there anyway. Have other Diamonds failed to get award rooms in this situation or others?
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Old Nov 16, 04, 2:33 pm
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Originally Posted by tide
I tell ya I'm beginning to think something must've changed with the Diamond Desk - at no point did I feel, unlike in the past, that they were batting for me. All I get is the same polite "sorry, no standard rooms, there's not much we can do" reply, and then a pregnant pause. I had to prompt them to call the hotel (twice). I expected that they would do the creative thinking for me on a solution - and not be merely reservation automatons.

I hope this is a blip and that this isn't a harbinger of more "unavailability" for Diamonds ahead.
I would not be surprised if HHonors has reduced the amount it has budgeted to pay the market rate when lower-cost "award" room/price is not available. I have received two declines this year as an HHonors Diamond and the second time I got declined the response was a bit unusual; it went along the lines of the price the hotel is demanding was too high.
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Old Nov 16, 04, 3:04 pm
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Originally Posted by GUWonder
I would not be surprised if HHonors has reduced the amount it has budgeted to pay the market rate when lower-cost "award" room/price is not available. I have received two declines this year as an HHonors Diamond and the second time I got declined the response was a bit unusual; it went along the lines of the price the hotel is demanding was too high.
Interesting. Makes Marriott and Hyatt's egalitarian point override system even more palatable!
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Old Nov 16, 04, 3:18 pm
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Hilton Diamond is giving me the runaround. There are rooms available at the BCN Hilton for paid reservations, but nothing for award stays. I called up the Diamond desk, but they said they can't guarantee anything and I will have to wait 3-5 days to find out. Meanwhile, the points have already been removed from my account...
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Old Nov 16, 04, 3:33 pm
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Originally Posted by thirdcoAAst
Hilton Diamond is giving me the runaround. There are rooms available at the BCN Hilton for paid reservations, but nothing for award stays. I called up the Diamond desk, but they said they can't guarantee anything and I will have to wait 3-5 days to find out. Meanwhile, the points have already been removed from my account...
When that happened to me, it meant that "I am good to go".

I got letters in the mail and/or email that said that arrangements were finalized. At that point, I was curious if everything really was good to go and if I still needed certificates. In my experience, "the letter" was as good as gold (actually diamond) and no certificate was needed. However, I just took the letters for good measure.

Last edited by GUWonder; Nov 16, 04 at 3:35 pm
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