I’d like to get a consensus here from all of you that use Rewards for free stays. Like a lot of my compadres here, I travel a lot and use the Rewards to treat myself and family to nice, well earned vacations. The question here is whether you get an Elite room upgrade when you travel on points. My personal experience has shown overwhelmingly that when I travel on rewards, I’m just another customer getting a free room. As a general rule, my status plays no role in the room I am given and most of the time the free room that I get is typically the free room that John Q. Public would get (i.e. low floor, overlooking the dumpster). I have traveled extensively throughout Europe using points and feel I was treated just like a regular person. The only exception was a stay at the Prague Marriott where I was treated to a suite. The Paris Marriott, while a very nice property, put us in a very plain, non-view room, as was the case in Vienna, Berlin and London. Again, all very nice hotels, just run of the mill rooms for this Marriott warrior.
Been upgraded 99% of time at domestic hotels. Haven't used points abroad as of yet - but will be visiting the JW on Grosvenor Sq in London soon.
Very disappointed a few weeks ago at the Atlanta Airport Marriott - not on points - and wasn't upgraded. TINY ROOM with a broken heater.
I am also platinum and I think the answer is it depends on a few things. 1. Location, 2. Time of year, .ie. Busy season, other stuff going on. Conference etc. 3. Can they get a full rate for the upgraded room/suite. It has been hit or miss for me.
However, I do ask when I check in, if a suite or upgrade is not available, please contact me when one opens up.
We are also platinum members and have always received the upgrade at JW Marriott.
We had 8 free nights this year visiting Canada only time we had a problem was at Residence Inn by the Toronto airport when we where flying out, Not all Residence Inn's offer the upgrade but at the end of the day we got our two bedroom suite.