Yes! I just hung up on the elite silver customer service and was able to make my reservations online myself in half the time. They kept putting me on hold and calling each hotel I wanted to book to check rates, which were always higher than what I was looking at online at the same moment.
Sorry to hear you are having Customer Service issues. Not sure, but it sounds like you are experiencing difficulty reserving a room on points due to lack of availability. Can you elaborate? More information about your issue may provide a better understanding so that the membership on this site may better be able to offer you some useful or appropriate information.
Availability is the issue, but the main issue is the lack of number of rooms that are available to use points. Everyone of the hotels I checked (six) had numerous rooms available - if I wanted to purchase a room at full price. There must be a very small number of rooms that are assigned to be used for points. One customer service representative told me you can probably count the number on one hand - this is not acceptable. In the past 4-5 years I have stayed in Marriott properties around 450 nights, currently averaging 100-120 days a year (business and pleasure). I have only had one Marriott property - Residence Inn Woodlands, Texas who really appreciated my dedication by reducing my rate by around 25% due to my frequent stays, plus the whole group was very friendly. But that was about a year ago, now it seems like all Marriott properties want to offer you points for your loyality - but try to use them for a hotel room is a different story.
I did managed to have a customer service representative to free up a 2BR room (5 nights-200k points) at this resort, but had to go through reservations to book it and it was denied again. The bad thing is I told my daughter and her 3 friends that I got a 2BR room at this resort when they told me it was freed up. So I had to book another Marriott property (ResInn) using points and paying for several days resulting in a lot of money out of my pocket since I had to book 2 different rooms. I am probably going to cash in my points for merchianse and start staying at a hotel property that doesn't limit where I want to stay with my points (Hyatt was extremely good in the past).
Again, I'm sorry you are having difficulties reserving the rooms you want on points. It's so disappointing after save, save, saving for a special event, only to be told 'no rooms available on points,' especially as you have been a customer of high loyalty. I am curious to know how far in advance you are trying to make your reservations, and is your property a high category/popular resort or property? It is true that properties set aside a certain number of rooms for use on points, and these rooms can be reserved on a first come, first served basis. (A rare few hotels - only a handful out of over 3600 Marriott properties - do not even participate in the no blackout date policy. For the full rules and conditions of the Marriott Rewards program, click this link: Rewards Terms and Conditions .) Because availability is limited, I have accepted the fact that when I want to use points at a highly popular/sought after Cat 8 property, especially during high season, I must book a full year in advance. So far, I have met 100% success reserving rooms on points at these properties when doing so.
You are not alone in your frustration with not being able to reserve the rooms you want when you want them on points. The good news is that many members on this site have kept trying (on line) and have reported meeting with success. People cancel reservations all the time, so it pays to look every day. Did you get the name and direct line of the C/S rep who freed up the room for you? I would keep trying and be persistent. Call that representative back and have them do a 3 way call with the reservations line. Always get names and numbers when possible. That way you have a reference or a way to regain contact with that valuable resource. Please don't give up.
Another idea that has been suggested is to contact the hotel Concierge team directly. Explain your request and that you are a Platinum member and see what they can do for you. Keep trying, and I really hope it works out for you. And always book as far in advance as possible.
To be fair to the program, I am only requesting a reservation a couple of weeks away, just after the July 4th weekend, but not during, Was looking from CAT 4 to 6 hotels.
My main problem is that everyone of these hotels are not even close to being sold out, it's just the very small allocation of rooms (less than a handfull) they have for using points. I just want to hang up with them when they say: "You can get the dates, if you pay 2000 for the room", even though I am approaching 800k in points and 465 nights over the years. I have a whole list of names from CS from Debbie, Mercy, Isack, Maria, Lisa, and a supervisor Keith, some direct numbers.
It would be nice for a Platinum level that the room4points allocation restriction would be lifted, so much for a room guarantee within 48 hours that the same doesnt apply for using points.
I used to stay quite frequently at the Hyatt, getting a vacation or weekend getaway was easy, no matter what hotel. One stay was for five nights at the Maui Hyatt, booked around month in advance, no restrictions on availability. The normal price of the hotel was $650 night, so using points was my only option. They even upgraded my room from normal points room.
Does anyone have an email contact that would go to someone that actually has the authority to make something happen?. The hotels and CS each point at each other. The hotel says if they go over the allocation, Marriott wont refund them for the room. And CS says it's all up to the hotels if they do room for points and how many they want to allocate.
I always book my Marriott reservations online through Marriott Rewards. It has a number of advantages: first as you mentioned, it's much faster, and the rates are easy to navigate and compare, and ensures that you receive the best rates that Marriott offers. It also ensures that your Marriott Rewards number is associated with your reservation, which will better ensure that you receive your rewards points and stay credits for elite earnings. Also, you can print a hard copy of the reservation, and you automatically receive an email confirmation.