How To Score A Hotel Room Upgrade

12 September 2013
Read Time: 2.0 mins

Sometimes a hotel room upgrade is simply there for the asking. Whether you're checking in after a gruelling long-haul flight or simply celebrating a special occasion, a coveted room upgrade can help make or break your trip. Increase your chances of securing one with these handy Flight Centre tips, to ensure a superior suite does not remain an eternally elusive dream.

 Score a Hotel Room Upgrade

Don't skimp

Are you aiming to stay in the penthouse suite? Then booking the cheapest room on offer and demanding an upgrade isn't going to get you there.

If you're desperate to stay in a superior class of room, it pays to ensure you've forked out for a least a mid-range room in the first place. Many cheap hotel rooms have already been discounted and staff are bound to overlook guests in the bottom price bracket for those who've paid more to begin with.

Make it brief

Checking in for a three-week stay with the family in tow is unlikely to yield too many positive results when it comes to scoring a hotel room upgrade.

The best way to get on the upgrade bandwagon is to ensure you're only checking in for a brief stay. An overnight stay means a hotel can re-sell a premium room for the rack rate the following morning, so plan for a short trip if you're desperate for an upgrade.

Join the club

Think you're the only weary traveller angling for that coveted upgrade? Not very likely! If you're a frequent visitor, then joining a hotel's loyalty program is a sure-fire way to demonstrate that you're likely to provide repeat business.

Even if the hotel does not have a loyalty program, casually mentioning that you've stayed there in the past – or better yet, plan to do so again in future – can make the difference between sleeping in the room you've paid for or settling in for a night of luxury in upgraded accommodation.

Highlight problems

An indignant Basil Fawlty once turned to his fellow Brits for moral support when confronted by a complaining American, but the days of suffering hotel problems in silence are long gone.

You are, after all, paying for the room – so if it's not up to the advertised standard, don't hesitate to complain. Whether it's construction noise keeping you awake at night, advertised extras noticeably missing in action, or you simply feel that the room before you in no way resembles those in the glossy brochure, don't be afraid to complain.

By letting the hotel know, you're not only doing your fellow travellers a favour but also increasing your chances of scoring an upgrade.

Be polite

"Manners cost nothing," goes the old saying – however they can come in handy when you're aiming to progress from stock-standard accommodation to a room on the upper floors.

Hotel staff serve hundreds of guests each day, so flashing a smile and offering some common courtesy can help you stand out from the crowd. And while you're in the process of winning friends and influencing people, don't be afraid to simply ask for an upgrade. It may sound like an obvious point, but it's often the most effective when it comes to moving on up in the hotel world.

At the end of the day…

There's no exact science to securing a hotel upgrade. Instead, a combination of good timing, a pleasant demeanour and a willingness to ask can be all that it takes to move transform your room from standard accommodation into something more salubrious.

Mike Tuckerman

From Europe to Asia and many places in between, there's rarely a town or city I've not enjoyed exploring. When I'm not wandering the streets and discovering new destinations, you can usually find me hanging out with the locals at major sporting events.