9 Secrets to Scoring a Hotel Upgrade

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Scoring a hotel upgrade can be fairly easy. Upgrades do not necessarily have to mean larger rooms; they can also include things like better views, bigger beds, or quieter areas in the hotel. The first step is asking hotel staff if any upgrades are available—many travelers forget to do so. You'll never know what kind of upgrade you can score until you ask! Here are nine more tips to scoring hotel upgrades:

1. Join a hotel loyalty program. Most programs are free and members get upgrades and other cool perks. Hotels often give special treatment to repeat customers, so let staff know at the time of reservation that you're a loyal customer.

2. Travel off-season. Guests have a better chance of scoring an upgrade when hotels aren't at full capacity.

3. Mention your special occasion. If staff members are aware that you're traveling for a special occasion, they might upgrade you. It can't hurt to give them a heads-up by calling to confirm your reservation or sending management a quick email.

4. Check in as late in the evening as possible. Later in the day, hotels have a better idea of which rooms will not be filled for the night, so your chances of getting a better room are higher.

5. Check out the hotel website ahead of time. Ask specifically for rooms with more space, better views, etc. If you've stayed in a great room before, don't be afraid to ask for it.

6. Book a mid-range room to start. You have a better chance of being upgraded from a mid-range room than you do from the hotel's cheapest room.

7. Look nice and be nice. If a better room is available, the front-desk staff still has the final say about whether to upgrade you. If you look professional, they'll appreciate that. If you're polite to them, they might be nice in return.

8. Say thank you. In hopes of getting a room upgrade, mention that you'd be happy to reference the clerk's name in a hotel review on TripAdvisor. Everyone loves compliments!

9. Always book on Tingo. If a better room becomes available for the same price that you originally paid you'll be notified and able to upgrade easily through the site.

Don't forget to show the staff your appreciation when you leave. Tip the doorman, write a thank-you note to the manager, and say thanks to the concierge staff.

About the Author: To learn more about George Hobica, visit him on Google+.

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