Getting hotel upgrades involves research, requests, upgraded reservations and risk. In my last post I wrote about researching hotel upgrades. Here are a few photos from the room I referred to in my last post from the Park Hyatt in Buenos Aires.
Next onto requesting upgrades and hotel reservations.
Requests and Reservations
Once you have an idea about what type of hotel upgrade suits your needs, there are many ways to request an upgrade. I suggest you include upgrade requests when making a reservation. This may be done on the phone or online by using the special request box available for many online bookings. If you have a reservation already booked, the same methods work to add an upgrade request to your reservation.
Being a member of the hotel loyalty program may make it easier to request an upgrade. Contact your loyalty program and ask that an upgrade request be added to your reservation. You may want to inquire by phone or email about the perks of being a member of the hotel guest program at the particular hotel where you plan to saty.
Call hotel or write to hotel manager to request upgrade. Mention any special occasions such as a birthday or anniversary in your reservation either online or when make your reservation by phone.
Consider using points for an upgrade. Some hotel loyalty programs let you use your points for room upgrades. For as little as 1,000 Starwood points you may be able to get an upgrade at Starwood hotels. Here is a link to their chart Point Upgrades. Starwood even gives 1,000 bonus points for booking a club level room and paying with an AMEX. Here is the link Bonus Points.
Another suggestion for being upgraded is to pay the premium rate for an upgrade for the first night and ask to stay in the same room for the other nights of your stay at the hotel.
Also consider giving a tip or gift such as chocolates, cookies or a gift card to a local restaurant to the front desk agent checking you into your room to get upgraded when you arrive.
For my husband’s 60th birthday we went to London and we were staying for free at a Marriott property with a fabulous club lounge. Meals were served three times a day and there was a special concierge to help us plan our days. The problem was I only had their lowest silver status which did not automatically give us club access. I had requested an upgrade through Marriott Rewards when I booked the reservation and had included the fact that this trip was in celebration of my husband’s special birthday. When we arrived at the hotel we were told that we received a wonderful room upgrade, but we could not be upgraded to the club level. I asked if we could have club access without a room on the club floor and again we were denied. Then my husband offered $50 pounds about $100 US dollars and after the money being handed back twice it was finally kept and we got our upgrade to the club level for the week.
Be willing to change rooms to get an upgrade for part of your stay. If an upgrade is not available when you arrive at the hotel, ask if you may be upgraded the next day. Or you may wait for a later check in to get the upgraded room you desire.
Be ready to accept less than your most desired upgrade. You may not get the presidential suite like we did in Buenos Aires, but other upgrades may be available to help make your hotel stay more enjoyable. If the lack of an upgrade will ruin your trip, you may want to select a different hotel or pay for your upgrade in advance.
Wishing all of you many wonderful hotel upgrades this year!