Refuge from Hilton "Upgrade Extortion" - Looking to try Marriott for a year
I am fed up with what I call Hilton's Upgrade extortion ($ or Pts) so am giving Marriott a try based on coworkers claims of many free upgrades after reaching highest loyalty level... Last year I had 58 stays in 52 weeks at Hilton. I know all plans are changing and getting tighter, but I am looking for a hotel brand that will really reward their MOST LOYAL customers... Any anecdotal comments about how Marriott treats their most frequent guests???
Not sure I qualify as "most frequent" (100+ nights/year) but I find variation from hotel to hotel, person to person, etc. In general we can expect things will likely get worse as many businesses try to find ways to extract more $ from their customers (e.g., airline that charges for the right to get on the plane, then more for the right to a seat, and even more to carry on a bag). And keep in mind that an individual is pretty insignificant to a large organization. It would be a whole other story if you had thousands of employees who you could steer away from a hotel chain or airline when they exhibit poor service.
fivenick, I have been a platinum member for about 3 years. We have always been treated cordially at all Marriott properties. I agree with random in that it does vary somewhat from hotel to hotel and from person to person, but we have never been treated poorly. We are not high maintenance; however, we do expect the hotel to provide us with a pleasant, clean, and safe environment. If our rate includes breakfast, parking, bonus points, etc., we like for that to be provided without asking. We like being upgraded when that happens, but it doesn't deter from our stay if we get the room we paid for. If we've had a problem with a missing stay, arrival points not being posted, etc., all it takes is a phone call to customer service and it is taken care of professionally.
If you read through some of the threads, you will find that some customers are very displeased with how they have been treated. I imagine you would find an equal number of dissatisfied guests who are members of other hotel programs. I do think that customers who have been loyal to Marriott for many, many years yearn for the way things used to be. Many of them have left Marriott to try other chains and their programs.
I do hope you will give Marriott a try and find that they meet your needs and expectations.
I like the "not high maintenance" perspective. I believe some folks think of bonus programs as a "right" and expect to be treated like royalty. Let's get real ... the organizations are making these programs available, but that doesn't mean it's a constitutional right for which we should be offended if we don't get treated as royalty. I enjoy the benefits (got upgraded to a corner room in Anaheim, often use the 5-nights for 4 points deals, etc.).
After reading the MANY threads from disappointed P & PP members I had to wonder if anybody at Hilton or Hyatt was unhappy. I am glad to know that Marriott may not be the only place with disgruntled elite members. I was also wondering, does Hilton have a website like this that allows customers to provide feedback?
I've been a Marriott loyalist for many years, and I currently log 250+ nights a year in their hotels. I've been with Hilton and Holiday Inn brands also, but enjoy the way I am treated at Marriott. Most of my stays are in the West and Mid-west, and I almost always am recognized for my platinum status, given an upgrade and generally treated very well. Not that the other chains didn't also treat me well, but my preference is to Marriott. Also, I prefer the ease of use for the rewards nights and other rewards offers. And, it seems the prices at the Marriotts are better than at the Hilton brands, about equal to Holiday Inn.
And in the end, "better than most" is an acceptable track-record to many of us road warriors. Because we travel so often, we have experienced a "perfect" hotel experience from time-to-time. Just as we have experienced a "perfect" dining experience. We long to experience it again, but we understand that 'perfect' is a goal not often achieved.
I agree with you. My experiences with Marriott are usually not perfect, but yes, better than most. I'll take that track record any day!
You are too kind!
I have been lucky, and am blessed to have done what I enjoy. It is not perfect, but I have met MI's like you that have contributed to my enjoyment of travel. Would enjoy having a drink with you, (And your bride) in Washington, Mo at the American Bounty, someday.
But if that wont work, we can have a glass in Paris or London! Will have some other MI join us!
I feel the same. I have status with Marriott, Hilton, Hyatt & Starwood. Each has some +s and -s. I have been treated well at all but have noticed that Hilton has been taking reward stays out of reach. While I was deciding between Homewood Suites & Hampton Inn for 40k, the Homewood moved up to over 100k. I settled on the Hampton. Hyatt always treats me well but offers little free. Starwood has always been quick to offer a 4pm checkout if I want among other things. Marriott varies from hotel to hotel but overall treats me well. After next year, I will probably just have status at Marriott and therefore will use them more.
Thanks for asking. Much of my business is attended to in the southern region of China. We fly into HK, the go by car ( about 1 1/2 hours) to Dong Guan province. Much of our product (footwear) has been produced within 2-3 hours of this area. However, as labor costs increase we fin ourselves expanding to the North of this area in search of more competitive prices. Other provinces near us are Shenzen, GuanZao, and Fuzao. We are a world away form the big cites of Shanghai and Bejing. Also, the Great Wall is so far away that in all my years of going to China, I have not had the time to take visit....
China is a fascinating country.
yup. we also have some production in Viet Nam. we also are testing the waters in North Africa. I've been in this business for my entire career and have watched production continually migrate to the least expensive labor costs available. I cannot see that changing and wonder if there is anything that could ever be done to bring manufacturing back the the USA. My guess is that the answer is NO. sad.
I fly often thru Detroit, a major route to China. Many of the businesspersons I visit with are traveling to China to discuss bringing the manufacturing for North and South American (and to some Europe) business back to the US. It appears the world has become smaller and bigger in the same breath, a need to do business everywhere, but produce closer to the consumer.
Dear Shoeman, Painedp and sd,
Many thanks for the information you've provided - all very illuminating.
I spent a lot of time in HK, but relatively little in China - and none outside of Beijing and Shanghai. The nation is amazingly diverse - for example. there are 56 ethnic groups within the 1.2 billion population. The decades since the introduction of Deng's "reforms" in the mid-1980s have seen the emergence of a commercial "middle-class", major population movements in search of higher wages, increases in standards of living particularly in the cities, and great strides towards food security - each of these raising expectations in a way that is reminiscent of the UK in the mid-19th, and the US in the late 19th/early 20th centuries. Whether the Chinese authorities can countenance the relentless widening of democratic rights that characterised the UK and USA during the equivalent periods of their economic growth is a critical issue
It might be interesting to start a blog around these issues - and their implications for travel etc.
Are you fluent in Chinese? Just wondering. I think it's great when people are multi-lingual.
When I meet someone from another country, like maybe an employee at an Asian food store, I ask how many languages they speak and most of them speak several.
I took 2 years of Spanish in high school and at least a year in college (maybe 2 but that was too long ago to remember) and know very little Spanish to be able to converse.