8 ideas that will help you improve your lodge room totally free

Whether or not you are touring for work or pleasure, scoring a free improve can go a good distance towards guaranteeing a cushty keep. This is likely one of the finest perks of lodge elite standing, however you do not should be a street warrior to get pleasure from a shot at a greater room.

Sadly, these upgrades are topic to availability, and lodges might not need to give them away if there’s nonetheless an opportunity they will promote the room to a paying buyer.

Right this moment, we’ll talk about some methods that will help you land that coveted suite or improved room. We are going to focus solely on the upgrades you are eligible for, based mostly in your elite standing or by which journey packages (like American Specific Advantageous Resorts & Resorts or the Luxurious Lodge & Resort Assortment) will help or hinder your probabilities of scoring that improve.

The following pointers will not enable you to sweet-talk a entrance desk agent into an improve that is not rightfully yours. As an alternative, we’ll present you the significance of understanding the foundations for getting one of the best improve you are eligible for.

With that out of the best way, how must you maximize your probabilities of getting that improve you deserve?

Know what an improve is

An upgraded room on the Andaz Prague. ANDREW KUNESH/THE POINTS GUY

Crucial place to start out is understanding what an improve is and isn’t.

Nevertheless, that’s usually within the eyes of the beholder. Does your improve seem like a room farther away from the elevator? Possibly you need to transfer from a decrease flooring room to the next flooring room. Maybe the decrease flooring rooms have a coveted fireplace pit just like the Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island, so that you’d want a first-level flooring room.

For those who wished a higher-floor room at this property, you’d truly be receiving a downgrade if you happen to had booked a first-floor room at this property. The purpose is that there’s fairly a variety of what an “improve” can imply. Strolling into check-in, it’s finest to know what sort of improve you’re searching for.

To see what could also be accessible, search by the app as if you happen to have been making one other reservation (also called a dummy reserving) on the lodge. It is top-of-the-line methods to verify what room sorts could also be accessible.

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That mentioned, it needs to be famous that simply because a room is accessible on the app, it will not be truthful play for an improve attributable to lodge insurance policies and elite standing restrictions. Nonetheless, if you happen to’re focused on what different rooms the lodge has accessible earlier than check-in, this can be a excellent spot to start out.

Associated: Find out how to spend 1,000,000 Marriott factors for an epic post-pandemic journey

Have lodge elite standing


Standing might be one of the simplest ways to make sure an improve is ready for you at check-in.

Whereas there isn’t a method to assure a complimentary improve with standing alone, it is one of the dependable methods. Nevertheless, earlier than you arrive at a lodge, it’s finest to know the ins and outs of your standing tier if you happen to’re anticipating an improve.

Typically it’s exhausting to listen to, however regardless of what number of fingers you cross, you probably will not get an improve on the St. Regis Maldives with solely Marriott Silver Elite standing.

Right here’s a fast rundown of a number of the main lodge loyalty packages. It’s good to notice that each one upgrades are topic to availability until particularly famous.

Hilton Honors

Associated: What’s Hilton Honors elite standing price?

IHG Rewards

  • Silver Elite: None.
  • Gold Elite: None.
  • Platinum Elite: Complimentary room upgrades, excluding suites.
  • Diamond Elite: Identical revealed profit as Platinum members.

Associated: What’s IHG One Rewards elite standing price?

Marriott Bonvoy

  • Silver Elite: None
  • Gold Elite: Area-available upgrades to enhanced rooms when checking in, excluding suites.
  • Platinum Elite: Area-available upgrades to enhanced rooms when checking in, together with suites (although not at Ritz-Carlton properties).
  • Titanium Elite: Identical revealed profit as Platinum Elite members, however together with Ritz-Carlton properties.

Associated: What’s Marriott Bonvoy elite standing price?

World of Hyatt

  • Discoverist: Most popular room throughout the kind booked.
  • Explorist: Improve to one of the best accessible room at check-in, excluding suites and rooms with lounge entry (excluding Hyatt Place, Hyatt Home, Hyatt Residence Membership and MGM resorts).
  • Globalist: Improve to one of the best accessible room at check-in, together with commonplace suites (excluding Hyatt Place, Hyatt Home, Hyatt Residence Membership and MGM resorts).

Associated: What’s World of Hyatt elite standing price?

Use your improve certificates

Suite on the Sheraton Grand Rio Lodge and Resort. KATIE GENTER/THE POINTS GUY

A few of the main lodge loyalty packages award elite members improve certificates once they qualify for elite standing or after staying a sure variety of nights. Particularly, IHG, Marriott and Hyatt award improve certificates to elites, however some are higher than others.

Marriott Suite Night time Awards

Marriott lets Platinum Elite and Titanium Elite members choose 5 Suite Night time Awards (SNA) as a selection profit once they qualify for standing. Every SNA is nice for one evening of your keep, so a three-night keep requires three SNAs.

Sadly, these certificates don’t outright affirm an improve on the time of reserving. As an alternative, Marriott does its finest to substantiate it beginning 5 days earlier than arrival. If the improve is not confirmed by 2 p.m. native time the day earlier than your arrival, the SNAs are returned to your account.

The TPG workforce has had combined ends in utilizing SNAs to attain an improve at premier properties and through peak seasons. You may normally have one of the best luck confirming these upgrades at off-the-beaten-path locations, on off-peak dates or at massive lodges with a number of suite choices.

Associated: How I used 15 Marriott Suite Night time Awards in 10 months with 100% approval

Hyatt improve certificates

In the meantime, Hyatt gives Membership Lounge Entry Awards and Suite Improve Awards if you attain sure evening thresholds yearly.

Membership upgrades are the much less thrilling of the 2. Once you redeem one in every of these certificates, you merely have entry to the lodge’s membership lounge. These are typically discovered at Hyatt Regency, Grand Hyatt and a few Park Hyatt properties.

You may earn two membership upgrades after staying 20 nights or incomes 35,000 base factors ($7,000 in spending) and one other two at 30 nights or 50,000 factors ($10,000 in spending). It is price noting that Globalist elites have entry to lodge golf equipment with out utilizing a certificates. These awards are legitimate on stays of as much as seven nights booked with money or factors, however not free evening certificates.

These looking for an improve will discover Suite Improve Awards. Considered one of these certificates is nice for a confirmed suite improve for a keep of as much as seven nights. Per the phrases and circumstances, you will be upgraded to an ordinary suite with these improve certificates.

You’ll earn two suite upgrades if you earn 50 elite-qualifying nights or 80,000 base factors ($16,000 in spending) and one other two at 60 nights or 100,000 base factors ($20,000 in spending). Then, you will can one other Suite Improve Award for each 10 nights you keep at Hyatt properties after this, as much as 100 nights. Like Membership Entry Awards, these are legitimate if you happen to pay to your stick with money or factors, however not free evening certificates.

Associated: Find out how to redeem Hyatt factors for upgraded rooms and suites

IHG improve certificates

IHG revamped its loyalty program when it launched IHG One Rewards earlier this yr. As a part of the revamp, it launched Milestone Rewards you can earn if you hit sure evening thresholds. On the 40- and 70-night thresholds, you’ll be able to choose confirmable suite evening upgrades as your milestone reward.

Proper now, you’ll be able to solely apply these upgrades to eligible paid charges, although IHG’s phrases notice that free nights will come at a later date. These certificates are good for an improve to an entry-level suite on stays as much as 5 nights and might be utilized inside 14 days of arrival. Confirmable suite nights are legitimate in any respect IHG manufacturers besides avid lodges, Atwell Suites, IHG Military Resorts, Vacation Inn Membership Holidays, IHG Residences, Mr & Mrs Smith and InterContinental Alliance Resorts.

It is best to be capable of affirm an improve if you name to redeem your certificates, although it might be declined if no suites can be found in your journey dates.

Associated: Here is my plan for IHG standing and nights

Quick-tracking elite standing with bank cards


At first look, incomes lodge elite standing might look daunting, however qualifying is lots simpler than one might imagine.

Almost all the main loyalty packages listed above provide automated elite standing with cobranded bank cards, so it might be price making use of for one earlier than reserving lodges to your subsequent trip.

For instance, these Marriott Bonvoy cobranded bank cards embrace varied tiers of elite standing:

The knowledge for the Marriott Bonvoy Bountiful card has been collected independently by The Factors Man. The cardboard particulars on this web page haven’t been reviewed or supplied by the cardboard issuer.

Hilton Honors additionally gives elite standing with cobranded bank cards, all the best way to its top-tier Diamond standing.

The knowledge for the Hilton Aspire American Specific card has been collected independently by The Factors Man. The cardboard particulars on this web page haven’t been reviewed or supplied by the cardboard issuer.

Higher but, The Platinum Card® from American Specific and The Enterprise Platinum Card® from American Specific embrace each Marriott Gold Elite and Hilton Gold standing so long as your card is open and in good standing.

Associated: Information to Marriott and Hilton elite standing with the Amex Platinum and Enterprise Platinum

World of Hyatt and IHG One Rewards loyalists aren’t omitted, both. Each lodge giants provide Chase cobranded bank cards, together with:

Take a look at your upcoming journey plans and see if it is smart to use for one in every of these bank cards earlier than you depart. For instance, having a Marriott Bonvoy Sensible card may get you free breakfast at choose manufacturers with its included Platinum Elite standing, which may save a good sum of money at high-end properties.

Associated: The perfect bank cards to succeed in elite standing earlier than the tip of the yr

Visiting in the course of the offseason

This may be powerful, however upgrades are restricted throughout peak journey season, and a lodge can solely accommodate a finite quantity earlier than working out of upgraded rooms. Throughout peak instances, there are prone to be extra elites at any given property and friends that pay for upgraded rooms outright.

Usually, upgrades are dished out by degree of standing, so a Hilton Gold elite member is unlikely to obtain an improve on the Conrad New York Metropolis Downtown over the winter holidays. Nevertheless, in the course of the center of the week in October, that visitor might need higher odds of scoring a greater improve as this tends to be a much less busy time for journey to New York.

In fact, planning a seaside trip within the winter will not be reasonable in all areas, however discovering a shoulder season to plan that seaside trip after college has re-started might permit for higher success with upgrades. From Might to August, nonetheless, chances are you’ll be hard-pressed to attain large upgrades at widespread lodges.

Associated: 9 lodges opening earlier than the tip of the yr we are able to’t wait to go to

Guide with Amex or Chase, with one draw back


Some American Specific cardholders can entry Amex Advantageous Resorts + Resorts (FHR) and Lodge Assortment advantages. FHR is essentially the most rewarding of the 2 packages and consists of space-available room upgrades, late checkout and different on-property advantages. Amex Platinum and Enterprise Platinum cardholders can entry these advantages when reserving by Amex Journey.

Chase’s Luxurious Lodge and Resort Assortment (LHRC) gives comparable advantages, together with space-available upgrades and day by day breakfast. Varied playing cards embrace entry to the LHRC, together with most United cobranded playing cards and the Chase Sapphire Reserve®. Take a look at our full information to this system for extra info.

Nevertheless, there are downsides to utilizing these packages. Usually, you’ll not earn factors, elite evening credit score or be capable of use your lodge elite standing perks if you guide with Amex or Chase’s lodge packages or one other on-line journey company like

Due to this, chances are you’ll need to use FHR, Lodge Assortment or LHRC when reserving lodges that are not affiliated with a loyalty program.

Associated: Why you do not earn lodge factors when reserving by an OTA

Be prepared to (politely) ask

Asking at check-in is likely one of the most evident but efficient methods for getting that free improve. Usually, lodges improve your reserving based mostly on standing earlier than arrival, however for one purpose or one other, it might get neglected.

In my expertise on the Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island, Marriott Titanium Elite standing doesn’t normally obtain upgrades at that property. Once I inquired about an improve at check-in, I used to be instructed the property does not normally give elites upgraded rooms.

I did my homework beforehand, nonetheless, and knew that the room I wished was on the primary flooring, one thing that’s normally much less desired. The entrance desk agent regarded once more and accommodated me in my desired room regardless of it being an untraditional improve. Then, I loved the evening in a hearth pit room talked about earlier, which was an improve for me.

Different instances, the lodge’s system might have unintentionally not upgraded you even when rooms can be found. For those who see a greater room accessible on-line, it by no means hurts to politely ask if you happen to might be moved to that room based mostly in your elite standing tier.

Once more, It may be exhausting to search out the best steadiness, however if you happen to present up having accomplished your homework understanding what an improve seems to be prefer to you, chances are you’ll very nicely be capable of rating a greater room. It might be troublesome to not come off as entitled, however it is usually necessary to take full benefit of the perks you could have earned with elite standing.

Associated: Right here’s what I did when a Hyatt resort didn’t honor my ‘confirmed’ suite improve

Be versatile

Typically you might be upgraded halfway by your keep if you happen to ask. BENJI STAWSKI/THE POINTS GUY

Oftentimes, upgraded rooms aren’t accessible at check-in since they’re booked on one of many days you are staying on the property. It’s not a purpose to be discouraged, although.

At check-in, let the agent know you do not thoughts switching rooms in the course of the center of your keep if a greater room turns into accessible. Then, chances are you’ll be upgraded for the primary or final couple nights of your keep, and transfer to/from an ordinary room for the opposite nights you are on the property.

This technique labored for former TPG senior reporter Benji Stawski when he stayed on the Las Vegas Hilton at Resorts World in 2021. Halfway into his keep, he requested the entrance desk if any suites had opened up since he checked in. Lo and behold, he was upgraded to an leisure suite for the final two nights of his keep due to his Hilton Diamond standing.

Associated: 6 superb advantages that make Hilton Diamond standing worthwhile

Backside line

One of the crucial priceless perks of your lodge elite standing is having fun with space-available upgrades. On this article, I confirmed you just a few of one of the best methods to enhance your probabilities of confirming an improve in your subsequent lodge keep.

Having elite standing is usually your finest guess at confirming an improve, and it by no means hurts to ask in case you are not granted an improve at check-in.

For those who’re staying at a property that does not take part in a loyalty program, reserving by Amex FHR or Chase LHRC can enhance your likelihood of getting a greater room.

Extra reporting by Andrew Kunesh.

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