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Any tips for best method of getting 'upgrade' to Priceline reserved room??

Any tips for best method of getting 'upgrade' to Priceline reserved room??

Sep 18th, 2004, 10:27 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 85
Any tips for best method of getting 'upgrade' to Priceline reserved room??

We'll be in Maui for our honeymoon in a few weeks and booked a room at the Wailea Marriott via Priceline. I've heard various strategies on the best method of getting an upgrade and would love to hear how others have been successful.

One recommendation was to send an email to the hotel manager mentioning our honeymoon and how excited we are to stay there... and respectfully requesting a king bed and possibly an upgrade. Does anyone think this is too forward... I wouldn't want it to backfire on us.

carabro is offline  
Sep 19th, 2004, 04:32 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 16,715
I would definitely let the hotel know you're on your honeymoon (but remember so are a lot of other people at that hotel ). If you want a king bed, you could request one. I wouldn't personally request an upgrade. I would join their frequent customer program online immediately and show the card when you check in.
mclaurie is offline  
Sep 19th, 2004, 05:01 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,630
I agree with mclaurie 100%. Don't specifically ask for the upgrade but do tell them it's a special occasion. Definitely join Marriott Rewards, too.
Dan is offline  
Sep 19th, 2004, 10:21 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,559
Do not outright ask for an upgrade but tell the manager how excited you are for your first trip ever to Hawaii and that you will be a honeymooner. Then request a king sized bed. I have done this many times, I usually send a hand written note instead of an e-mail and address to to the "front desk manager."
vivi is offline  
Sep 19th, 2004, 10:26 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,559
Wait, LOL, I made it sound like I have told the manager many times that I am on my honeymoon. I have never made up honeymoon stories, but if I am visiting a place for the first time or the trip is for a special occasion, I do write the manager and I have gotten some fantastic free upgrades in NYC, Waikiki, and Chicago.

A few years ago we were in Waikiki to scatter my mom's ashes, I wrote the manager ahead of time. We had reserved a cheap room and upon arrival we were upgraded to a fabulous oceanfront suite and as soon as we checked into the room there was a knock at the door---room service to deliver a huge complimetary basket of goodies.

PS If you do get a marvelous upgrade it is always good karma to write the manager a "thank you" and also tell your friends how well you were treated.
vivi is offline  
Sep 19th, 2004, 11:34 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,749
I've mentioned before that when I used Priceline my one and only time for the New York Times Square Hilton for one night only, that I got a "bad room" which was justified by the front desk as the best they could do since they were full, I had booked on Priceline, and it was only for one night. I did present my Hilton Honors card at checkin and I received a bewildered look and was quickly told that there were no points given since it was a Priceline room. So I wouldn't count on flashing a member card thinking it's going to get you an upgrade after you've booked on Priceline.
Patrick is offline  
Sep 19th, 2004, 11:40 AM
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 20,113
Patrick: Not to distract from the subject, but there aren't any good rooms at that particular Hilton - even for HH members!
seetheworld is offline  
Sep 19th, 2004, 12:05 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,559
In the October issue of Frommer's Budget Travel magazine the editorial by the editor-in-chief is about this exact Priceline/bad rooms subject. He had recently attended a travel conferenece and some big wig from a hotel chain he would not identify (as he knew she wasn't speaking "on the record") told him point blank that Priceline guests get the worst rooms! Her reasoning was that budget Priceline guests aren't likely to spring for extras like spa treatments, room service, hotel dining and that the hotels were losing money on them. Of course the editor of Budget Travel was aghast at her comments, LOL.

After 5 Priceline bids for 3-stars in Waikiki I have been resigned to the fact that I am going to get a crummy room at the Princess K. 4-stars usually have a better chance of a decent room in my experience.
vivi is offline  
Sep 19th, 2004, 12:05 PM
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 3,399
It's fairly well known that Hiltons discriminate against Priceline travelers. Marriott is fine. Never given a "bad room". I avoid zones where a Hilton is a possibility.

I would not expect an upgrade, however. It would be nice, but I don't think there's anything you can do to increase your chances other than mentioning it's your honeymoon. Have you read the past customer reviews on Biddingfortravel.com? That should give you a pretty good idea what to expect. Congrats!
travelinwifey is offline  
Sep 19th, 2004, 12:07 PM
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Ask politely?
Sep 19th, 2004, 12:11 PM
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 3,399
Vivi, I just read that commentary too. In more than 40 stays I have only been given a "bad" room 2 occasions. I have been upgraded to suites 4 times. It is disappointing the receptionist made such idiotic comments. We usually enjoy many of the restaurant/room service options and even the spa! I seriously doubt the check in agent making those foolish comments is very well traveled.
travelinwifey is offline  
Sep 19th, 2004, 12:11 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,657
Our Priceline suite in Murray Hill (NYC) was upgraded upon checkin. I assume it was simply because it was available (weekends in NYC you are likliest to get upgrades, deals). I've also found that when I've booked a special deal through the hotel's website, I've been upgraded (affinia.com -- they are really great for that.)
uhoh_busted is offline  
Sep 19th, 2004, 12:14 PM
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 3,399
Also I agree, my only 2 bad experiences were when I booked 3* accomodations. One hotel clearly was not worthy of the rating and has since been downgraded. The second was at a NY airport hotel again clearly not worth it's rating.
travelinwifey is offline  
Sep 19th, 2004, 12:33 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 20,272
I've had awesome rooms with Priceline on numerous occasions with a 3-star rating. Some of my 3-star rooms have just been OK but not bad. 3-star is kind of iffy however - some of the hotels are just average and dated, others are very nice (so the average room is going to be nicer).

Whenever people swear that hotels give Priceline customers "crummy" rooms, I beg to ask: assuming the hotel was operating before Priceline came along, who got the crummy rooms then? If the hotel is busy for one week and doesn't use Priceline, who gets the less desirable rooms that week? Someone has to. Shouldn't it be the people who paid the least? As long as the room is acceptable, I don't mind getting one of the hotel's less attractive rooms. A room that is too noisy or not clean is not acceptable at any price, Priceline or not. Otherwise, I'm happy to be saving a bundle with Priceline at a nice hotel.

Andrew is online now  
Sep 19th, 2004, 01:33 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,559
I have used Priceline for hotels at least 25 times, almost always when I will be alone (or with one of my kids) so my husband doesn't mutiny if we get a real clunker, LOL.

Usually I book these rooms for a quick 1-3 night stay, I am leery about using Priceline for a bonafide family vacation.

Most recently I used Priceline in NYC for a 3 night stay, got the Sheraton on 7th Ave, fantastic location and the room even had 2 beds which is rare in NYC. On the day we were to check out we wanted to stay one more night so I asked the desk clerk "how much?" When she said $180 a night I went over to Kinkos and submitted another Priceline bid for that night for $90, knowing it was probable we would have to change hotels. But the Sheraton popped up again, I went back to the hotel to tell the clerk and we stayed an extra night in the same room for half the quoted price. Yes, I love Priceline.
vivi is offline  
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