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Question about shortening tail end of reservation

Question about shortening tail end of reservation

 
Old Jan 26, 16, 11:52 am
  #1  
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Question about shortening tail end of reservation

I'm guessing the answer to this is fairly simple and straightforward, but having never done this myself, I want to make sure I do it right:

I have an upcoming 7-night reservation at one of the AZ resorts at a nice gov rate (for which I am eligible as a fed gov employee, if that matters, though I don't it matters for my question here). Because I couldn't find good priced airfare for the exact days of my trip, though I plan to still arrive on the originally scheduled date, I will actually be leaving AZ a couple of days after the 7 nights (for a 9-night trip in total). This got me thinking that maybe I'd break up the trip into a 5-night stay at the resort, and a 4-night stay elsewhere (maybe seeing some sights elsewhere in the southwest, for example).

Thus, I would probably like to actually now stay 5 nights (rather than 7). However, the gov rate is no longer available for just the first 5 nights. If this matters, the reservation's cancellation policy is the Marriott standard 1 night prior.

Should I:
-check in to the hotel and simply tell them that my plans have changed and I will be leaving 2 nights earlier than originally planned? (I assume this is okay, as I'm sure for many business stays, people's plans change all the time, and as long as you have enough nights' notice, it should be fine. Is that correct?) This is probably my preferred route as long as I won't be dinged for it in some way.
-call them now and have them shorten the reservation. (Will they do that, esp. since the gov rate isn't available otherwise for those dates? If there's any chance at all that it would mess up my reservation, I'd rather not do this since my airfare is all paid up and set.)
-other options?

Thanks. I realize this is probably a simple question for others, but like I said, I haven't dealt with this myself and would love some advice.

Thanks.
dcchi is offline  
Old Jan 26, 16, 12:05 pm
  #2  
 
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Originally Posted by dcchi View Post
Should I: - check in to the hotel and simply tell them that my plans have changed and I will be leaving 2 nights earlier than originally planned? (I assume this is okay, as I'm sure for many business stays, people's plans change all the time, and as long as you have enough nights' notice, it should be fine. Is that correct?) This is probably my preferred route as long as I won't be dinged for it in some way.
I do this all the time with a below market corporate rate, never have had a problem. Maybe in part because they know the can resell at a higher rate, the FD doesn't care or it's just good front line customer service. Over the phone, you'll get a song and dance how its going to be a problem, largely because the computer system is forcing their hand. IMO...
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Old Jan 27, 16, 8:13 am
  #3  
 
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Originally Posted by dcchi View Post
Should I: check in to the hotel and simply tell them that my plans have changed and I will be leaving 2 nights earlier than originally planned? (I assume this is okay, as I'm sure for many business stays, people's plans change all the time, and as long as you have enough nights' notice, it should be fine. Is that correct?) This is probably my preferred route as long as I won't be dinged for it in some way.
Check the terms of your reservation. Chances are, you'll see this:
"Modifying Your Reservation: Please note that a change in the length or dates of your reservation may result in a rate change."
Essentially, that clause says that the rate you have is only applicable to the dates on your original reservation. Hotels include that stipulation to stop people from doing exactly what you're proposing.

Don't get me wrong. It seems clear that when you made the reservation, you fully intended to stay at this hotel all seven nights. Chances are, the staff at the hotel will think the same thing. Unfortunately, there are people who will reserve a room for more nights than needed just to get around a minimum stay requirement imposed at a hotel.

Usually, hotels are pretty understanding, particularly ones that have many guests traveling for work. However, resorts and hotels at/near convention centers tend to be less accommodating. (I'm not trying to cause you unnecessary worry. I'm just trying to explain why you might run into a problem.)

I think the best course of action is to try to fix the reservation prior to arriving at the hotel. Do not call Marriott Rewards or Marriott Central Reservations. They can't help, as rates and room availability is handled at the hotel-level. I'd call the hotel during normal business hours and ask for the "on-site" reservations office. Hopefully, someone at the hotel will be able to authorize the change to your reservation without changing the rate.

Originally Posted by joshua362 View Post
I do this all the time with a below market corporate rate, never have had a problem. Maybe in part because they know the can resell at a higher rate, the FD doesn't care or it's just good front line customer service. Over the phone, you'll get a song and dance how its going to be a problem, largely because the computer system is forcing their hand. IMO...
I hear people comment a lot that canceling a low-rate room benefits the hotel because they can then resell it at a higher rate. As a former Revenue Manager, I'd say that's true a lot of the time. But, it's not universal.

One of the most important factors in whether the room gets sold is the average time-to-book for the hotel. Some properties, particularly luxury destination resorts, sell the majority of their rooms weeks in advance. In those situations, it's likely that an open room due to changes made at check-in (or due to an early departure) will remain empty. More simply put, there aren't many people that make spontaneous last-minute trips to "aspirational" resorts.
writerguyfl is offline  
Old Jan 27, 16, 11:14 am
  #4  
 
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depends… i've done it multiple times without any rate change. I will say that you might get an up charge if the rate is tied to a special promotion (weekend rate)… just tell them that your flight changed last minute and you need to leave X days earlier. Are you traveling for leisure or work? If not work, they could raise your fed govt rate to the walk up rate if you cannot produce official orders… it states in the actual terms that govt rates are for business only...be warned.
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Old Jan 27, 16, 1:58 pm
  #5  
 
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Originally Posted by writerguyfl View Post
I hear people comment a lot that canceling a low-rate room benefits the hotel because they can then resell it at a higher rate. As a former Revenue Manager, I'd say that's true a lot of the time. But, it's not universal.

One of the most important factors in whether the room gets sold is the average time-to-book for the hotel. Some properties, particularly luxury destination resorts, sell the majority of their rooms weeks in advance. In those situations, it's likely that an open room due to changes made at check-in (or due to an early departure) will remain empty. More simply put, there aren't many people that make spontaneous last-minute trips to "aspirational" resorts.
This makes a ton of sense, I confess I've never request this at a resort, only mundane business hotels. Thanks
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Old Jan 28, 16, 3:34 am
  #6  
 
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I have never had a problem just calling customer service or the hotel and getting the same rate for fewer days. Though that won't work for some things such as a rate that requires Saturday night stay and you wish to delete the Saturday night.
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Old Jan 28, 16, 9:20 am
  #7  
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You might want to check whether the hotel has an early departure fee, which usually means that you pay $25-50 for telling them after check in that you will be departing early. Sometimes this is a workaround if they insist that changing the dates ahead of time means rebooking at the currently available rates.
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Old Jan 28, 16, 1:58 pm
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With the Fed Gov rate you should have no problem shortening the trip on arrival. Just let the front desk know - you can actually even wait until the day of departure as long as you tell them by check out time. I've never had an issue doing so, even when the rate was drastically below the current advertised rate.

If you really want to be get ahead of it you can call the hotel direct and have them shorten the trip.
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Old Jan 29, 16, 3:35 pm
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I do this all the time at govt rate. We often book and then something happens with our business meetings being altered. If I try and update through the website, it says not available; so I then do it when I get to the hotel check-in and tell them my intended check out date. There is NEVER a problem.
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Old Jan 29, 16, 8:30 pm
  #10  
 
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Originally Posted by trekker954 View Post
I do this all the time at govt rate. We often book and then something happens with our business meetings being altered. If I try and update through the website, it says not available; so I then do it when I get to the hotel check-in and tell them my intended check out date. There is NEVER a problem.
Same here on the Government rate. I often know at check in of my new departure date but I always check in, drop bags and get settled then go back to the desk and tell them my new departure. Never a problem and it is always reflected online as soon as I make the change. That said, I never do it within 24 hours of the departure date - I try to give the hotel as much notice as possible so that they can resell the room.
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