You should not have to ask for them, but.... Even as a Platinum member I often feel that I do not receive any upgraded room. I fully understand that if a hotel is full, they are going to give the better rooms to those who pay for them. However I have receiveda couple of what I consider less desirable rooms rather than an upgraded room. It may sound funny, but it sometimes not the fact that the room is not upgraded, rather than how it is handled. I stayed at the Marriott Minneapolis Northeast a few months ago. When I checked in the front desk agent aplolgized because she could not offer me an upgraded room. My room was just fine, but the acknowledgement was almost as good as receiving the upgrade. On the other hand one of my worst experience was having a guaranteed king, bay view room at the Coronado Island Marriott and arriving at the room to find it with two beds. (It was my wife and my anniversary). I had to call back to the front desk and only then was I offered my guaranteed room THE NEXT DAY. If the associate would have apologized and said your guaranteed room is not available but we will move you tomorrow, that would have been OK. I have started asking "are you giving me a really good room?" when I check in. You should not have to ask, but I think it helps. OKI, this reply is way too long!
I always (always) call a night (or two) ahead to confirm my reservations. I always start with a friendly and polite "Hi, My name is so and so and I am a gold elite member; I would like to confirm my reservation for (date of arrival)". I noticed a big change after that is out in the open and often times, whoever answered the phone will enthusiastically inform me of an upgrade. Sometimes, they just surprise me when I check-in. This is also the best time to remind them of your preferences such as feather free room, extra fridge or location of room (close to pool or etc). By the way, it would help to also remember the name of the person you spoke to, just in case. So far, I have been lucky and have received multiple upgrades and other extras. Maybe this will work for you as well. Try it and let me know how it works for you!
Excellent advice Thor,
I call about two nights but have called as much as a week out, or better yet my wife calls and asks for the Front Desk manager, we normally only do this for hotels we have a specific room that we enjoy and knock on wood it has worked just about every time. The last time I did this they told me that room was already occupied during our stay by a guest that had checked in the day we called, we got to the hotel and got our favorite room anyway.....it does work and great idea to remember.
I have emailed the general manager on two occasions recently with a short polite email requesting an upgraded room. Both times I was contacted back and was given exactly what I was asking for. My best advice is to email the GM about a week before your stay with and requests. Also keep in mind the shorter the stay the easier the chance of upgrade.
I should know after all these years, but how do you email elite services? I have been constantly frustrated by Marriott in this regard. When I make my reservation through expedia, orbitz, booking, or a hotel itself, I have an email contact. Marriott's hotels have none. I've never asked for upgrades (being only one person) but consistently get them at a few places -- 1) Athens; 2) Brussels Marriott; 3) Ghent Marriott.
In any case, I don't stay much at Marriotts any more -- the grass has been greener in Europe for me at independent hotels as well as franchises that have comped status. But at least at the Athens Marriott, where I will be staying my 8th and 9th time between a cruise in 2 weeks, I expect the full treatment. They've always upgraded me as Platinum or Gold to suites with Acropolis views. Kalliopi unfortunately for us but good for her, has transferred to the Cannes Marriott, but she and the staff always made sure I got a fabulous room. If I don't this time, I guess I will have to attribute it to Kalliopi's absence.
Use the below link:
In the drop down box choose Hotel Information or Other. I find those work well. In the comments box simply ask for the email address of the GM or other staff you might want to contact. You will hear back within 48 hours but usually within 24 in my experience.
I've emailed on occasion but why make it a hassle? Every independent hotel I've stayed at in the past two years has their email site clearly marked on their website under 'contact us'. Why, with all the other info on Marriotts' different hotel properties (telephone, fax, etc.) can they not include an email address for that hotel? The only thing that helps me is usually when I'm staying in Europe or the Middle East (my main areas of travel) is that they send me a pre-arrival email about preferences.
But my main point in contacting hotels ahead of time is not to ask for upgrades but to make myself a person and not a reservation number. So when I can write to them ahead of time (usually in their language when I know it), it has almost always gotten me very special treatment on arrival.
I haven't tried calling the hotel, but that might work as IAHFLYR mentioned. I have the one for the CasaMagna Marriott Puerto Vallarta that I got from communicating with someone here on the MI site, and since we always want to make the most of our vacation trips, we have emailed him directly every year. Simon has told me that if anyone would like to come stay there, I can refer them to his direct email. He has made sure our stays were wonderful each year.
If you have a particular place you want, I don't think it would hurt to ask anyone on this site, if they have the direct email address. Most of the MI members are very helpful here.
Thanks for the tip tryt53, but we are done with our Mexico adventures even though the many of them have each been great....we are focusing on the Caribbean and Hawaii for beach spots even though CUN is only 1:40 flight time away.
I have found upgrades take place without asking in most cases. For typical business travel it is nice to get an upgrade but for me it is not a necessity. Where you want to ask in advance for an upgrade is when the upgrade is "Important" like a vacation. Call the Marriott and ask for the front end reservation manager or get their e-mail address a couple weeks in advance. This is where you can make a request and confirm the confirmation via e-mail. Most of the time they will mark you request in the system and then follow-up a day or two prior to arrival with the same person.
I agree with most of what's been said. When traveling on my own or for regular trips, I'll typically just ask at check-in, unless they pro-actively tell me that I've been upgraded. Some Marriott's are good at updating your booking a day or two in advance to your new room type, which indicates the upgrade.
For the more special trips, I will indeed just send a quick email to the hotel, highlighting the special occasion, and then just seeing what happens.
Note: Personally, I only do this on rare occasions. I'd rather get the upgrade when it really means something, than on that one night stay at an airport hotel on my own.
I take every upgrade thankfully, and enjoy them as much as I can.
I agree with geneva flyer. Most of my travel is for business and is solo. An upgrade does not mean much to me. I like the CL floor, but that's about it. When I travel with my wife, that is completely different. I want her to have the best. Like others, I have found reaching out to the GM, or in larger properties someone in the concierge staff, really facilitates getting a nice room. This happened at the Wailea Marriott, the San Jose Costa Rica Marriott and the Camelback Inn. Each time we received a wonderful room. I only ask when it really will mean something!
I completely forgot about an upgrade my son and I got at Camelback a few years back when we went out there to play golf in the summer. I know, 116 degrees but it was a dry heat, in fact one day we actually got finished before sunset and hit the pool, it was genuinely cold when you got out of the water as the shade came across the pool deck....but I digress.
Back to Camelback, I'd reserved a room with two double beds, when we checked in they told me welcome back, thank you for being a Platinum guest and told us they had a nice upgraded room for us. Upgraded room, WOW, it was one of the Casita's with the sun deck upstairs, it was awesome with a good sized refrigerator, huge bathroom with great walk in shower. Needless to say they impressed the kid and myself with that move and I'll always return the now the JW Camelback Resort!
P.S. Will you miss D12?
My gold status only kicked in a few months ago, but I have received a couple of upgrades so far... one was a surprisingly nice view of the Empire State Building at a hotel I stayed at in New York City (Fairfield Inn Chelsea). The stay was on a Friday night and was a really great way to end the week. The second was for a "city view" room, also at a hotel in New York (the new Fairfield Inn Penn Station), where I think city view just meant the buildings near my window were a bit more attractive.