Today we will discuss how to get upgraded services at the hotel with your best friends and family.
First, if you're new here, I hope you understand. We're talking all about maximizing the value of your credit card. So how do you get the most cash back and travel for free?
If this sounds interesting, let's move on to today's topic.
Let's start as a disclaimer, please don't be the kind of person who goes to a hotel and asks for an upgrade. I know there are some.
Today, we will talk about how to do different things to increase your chances of getting upgrades. Most of these upgrades are free, and sometimes they're offered based on cash rates. So it really depends on whether or not it makes sense for you, but I focus almost exclusively on the free upgrades.
Qualify for the Ritz-Carlton Credit Card
The first tip, which is probably the most important, is to have hotel group status. If you have status, you are more likely to get upgrades.
Traditionally, people earn status by staying a large number of nights throughout the year at a specific hotel group, usually with a maximum status of between 30 and 60.
It depends on the program, so you need to check it out. But the really cool thing is that you can get status for free with certain credit cards. For example, we usually require 50 elite night stays to reach Gold status at the Ritz-Carlton.
For Gold status at the Carlton, we usually need 50 elite nights. So 50 nights is a lot, considering how expensive the Ritz-Carlton is. But if you get something like the Chase Ritz-Carlton card, you'll get Gold status.
With the Carlton card, you'll be able to qualify for Gold for free in the first year, and getting the right credit card may be the easiest way to be eligible for a hotel.
In the last month, I've talked about the Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel in Los Angeles and the Hilton in New York, and I've gotten three upgrades in all three days.
Assistance With Upgrades Depends On The Status Of The Hotel Room At The Time
The second piece of advice is not to become a scoundrel, which I mentioned at the beginning of the article.
But many people expect an escalation in these situations, and even if you have status, you probably won't escalate without human involvement if you act like a bummer.
If you don't have status, it depends on supply and demand, depending on what rooms are available. The hotel may still be able to get an upgrade, also depending on the hotel's policy, so it really just depends on the situation.
We don't upgrade rooms just because we're staying alone in a hotel, and most of the time, you're probably bringing your girlfriend or lover with you.
Talk to the hotel about the actual situation. You are with someone you like. See when the hotel side can give some discount. Maybe I don't have status, or I do, and we come here to celebrate our honeymoon or anniversary.
They may be more likely to facilitate me personally.
Late Check-in Hotel
This piece of advice is a bit counterintuitive. But in all of my stays, for the most part, I've checked in relatively late, so here's a significant reason why you'd get an upgrade.
Because if they expect people to come, if you check-in at 11 p.m., they'll have the opportunity if there's an opening.
There is no reason for them not to upgrade you if there is availability. It will not cost them anything else, as again at 11 p.m., no new people will be coming.
If you check-in at 2 p.m. Assuming they have many higher quality rooms, they may not be able to upgrade you. They don't know if they need to reserve these rooms for someone who might arrive, like the one I mentioned above who brought her girlfriend to check-in.
So for them, if they give you an upgrade, they might lose money. Because they might have some people that book those premium rooms separately.
Checking in later in the day is geared towards a less busy time, so it's a busy weekend. They may have much less inventory, so you may want to check in earlier to make sure you don't lose your room.
But for me, I'd recommend a late check-in unless you need to get there early to drop off your stuff and explore the city.
Through the three hotels I stayed at this month, we checked in super late at the Ritz Carlton in Laguna Niguel, so we checked in around 11 p.m.
We checked in around 11 p.m., and they had a lot of availability, so they did offer three different upgrades.
This would typically cost $300 for us since it didn't cost anything.
So it was a pretty good upgrade for the Ritz-Carlton Los Angeles, and we ended up checking in around 6 p.m. We were upgraded to a corner room in Los Angeles, which was complimentary because we were using a certificate night.
So any upgrade is excellent, and I think the fact that we have status really helps.
The Hilton stay in New York was a Hilton Gold for my Express Platinum card, but we booked through Hotel Calm. This means they technically shouldn't honor any upgrades or any status.
We booked at Hotel Calm, and we knew our status wouldn't count because we were looking at the base rate of about $180 to $200 per night.
And there was a sale on Hotel Calm for about $120, so that was enough of a deal for me.
Finally, another option is to move to a higher floor. No need to upgrade your room. Just upgrade us to a higher floor, so we don't have to hear the traffic on the street. So they ended up moving us to a higher floor.
If you book directly with the hotel, you're more likely to get an upgrade because you have all the information, the first one being to have status.