I recently booked two rooms on the marriott.com site for a Marriott in Los Alamitos and found a significantly cheaper rate on hotels.com for the same room. Having read through the entirety of the Look No Further guarantee, I was confident that I would qualify and went ahead and booked the rooms on the Marriott site as it stated. 15 hours later I got a response saying that the rate could not be found on hotels.com Luckily I went ahead an submitted the print screen that I had taken of the site and submitted that to the agent, who again replied that if it isn't there when they get around to looking at the site, then it isn't honored. Marriott must change their prices multiple times an hour on the internet so to expect a rate to stick around for almost a full day while they get around to researching it just seems silly to me. Specifically, they told me "We do not use the screen shots to review the claim. We will use screen shots to see exactly where you found the rate. We still have to be able to find the rate when we review." I asked if they preferred I went ahead an booked that rate (so I would in essence have 2 identical reservations booked, which as a businessperson I think is ludicrous because it would tamper with demand calculations, pricing, yields, and everything else if everyone were doing this JUST to assure that the Marriott would actually HONOR their own guarantee), and if so why not just state that rather than having people find out for themselves?
At this point I am just annoyed of the lack of consideration for the customer. We all have better things to do than waste time going back and forth to save a few bucks, and for a brand like Marriott to be so obstinate in their policies when someone has a legitimate claim goes against every tenet of customer service in my opinion. Instead of making the $600 or so they would have made by honoring their "guarantee" they will now get $0 for this trip and it will be the last place I look in the future for my travel needs. Not a great business decision by any measure.
Not entirely useless, but pretty disingenuous.
A Few years ago I had a couple of valid claims, one of which reduced the rate to £18/night!
Alas nowadays the "guarantee" only works if you pursue the differences relentlessly. But beware, because Marriott are determined not to pay out. I spent a couple of hours recently on 2 bookings both of which were rejected on BRG, one because the website had within its URL the word "club" even though the site required no membership and another supposedly due to currency exchange differences even though the price differed by over 10%, an almost impossibly dreadful currency fluctuation.
The BRG is in reality little more than a sales flim-flam where the job of the staff checking is evidently to refuse them, by any means possible, instead of actually providing a real guarantee. I do know someone who BRGs most of his stays and says its a full time job defeating Marriott's variety of vacuous arguments, since they have a menu of refusals, and if one doesn't work they move onto another until either the customer gives in, as I do, or Marriott finally admits defeat. Glen freely admits it's a battle of wills in which I frankly don't have the time to partake...
Same thing happened to me.
Im surprised for the answers Im getting from a "Rachelle King" (BRG Team). Im seeing a reservation A LOT Cheaper in Hotels.com and they keep answering that they don't see that rate and screenshots are not accepted.
3383 usd (marriott) vs 2836 usd (hotels.com) is a lot of money.
The rate is still there, the whole world can see it, but they don't?
In response they cancelled my original reservation.
I suppose they don't want me as a customer, so im booking in other hotel. It would be great if they honored what they offer, because of the 25% off of the lower rate. (more or less 1000 usd in savings).
I think its because my reservation is for new year in the JW in Miami, they would sell it anyway.
What they are not seeing: Im a silver customer and I use Marriott a lot. (not anymore!)
We just had the exact experience and like you it appears that we will be taking our business (gold members) elsewhere (also reward credit card holders). We received the same run around and like you finally just said forget about it and cancelled our entire reservation. We had also booked a second reservation (in an attempt to prove that the first response was wrong that the rate was unbookable), and cancelled that one as well. Being frustrated I called a hilton hotel (gasp), just ip from the marriott (a 4 star versus the 3-star marriott), and they offered to book the rate marriott declined when I happened to vent my frustrations about my experience. It seems odd when you book more than 50 rooms a year, to refuse to even attempt to make a- your rate more competitive, and b- to try to keep your loyal customers, loyal to you. Despite sending us multiple emails, they never attempted to telephone us, and assist. This is a poor practice. We are now looking at rebooking all of our upcoming trips (8 days in feb, 3 in March, 7 in April, 5 in May, and 10 in June/July) at other brands.
My experience is a little different.
I booked stay in Marriott on booking.com where I normally book hotels for all family vacations.
I have no particular preference for Marriott.
I checked out Marriott website and saw more expensive rate.
I booked same room on Marriott website and contacted Marriott Look No Further.
Within 12 hours they got back to me with rate reduction including 25% discount.
I have to say I was very impressed.
On a rare 1 or 2 occasions, I have booked marriott rooms on travelocity, while marriott.com was indicating the room was sold out. When I inquired to marriott at the time, it was indicated that certain websites commit buy-up blocks of rooms which they offer on their websites. So, it was sold out at marriott, but I was able to get it elsewhere. It should be noted the rate was the same.
I agree with you. Look No Further (LNF) is just a sales gimmick. The people staffed at LNF primarily exist to deny claims. They are worse than insurance claims adjusters and this in the Hospitality industry - consider the irony!
Besides the phone banks in Customer Care and LNF are staffed with people whose job is to advocate for Marriott rather understand the customer's perspective. No wonder Marriott is getting beat by brands such as W etc. especially amongst millennials. They will also lose their Gen X-ers if they continue to operate in this way.
I was recently booking for a trip to Venice and noticed that Hotels.com had a Non-Refundable rate that was much lower ($222 vs 324 Euros, also non-refundable) for the same room. It was past midnight EST and I called Reservations asking them if they could match the rate. They could not see a better rate than that published. The reservation agent suggested I get the lower rate at Hotels.com because I was worried it was showing only a limited rooms were available. She also suggested that I fail out the LNF claim after booking. As a further measure I called the Hotel in Venice to see if they could give me the lower rate but was told that their reservations staff had not arrived yet (it was 7:30AM there).
I filled out the LNF claim form with the explanation that it made no sense for me to book 2 Non-refundable rooms of the same type, especially since I was booking 2 rooms for 2 nights each at that Marriott look at my booking rate and verify it against their advertised rate at Marriott.com but they rejected my claim on the technicality that I did not have a reservation with Marriott.com.
Worse, they themselves tell customers this regarding their BRG program:
Customers should consult rate rules for each reservation for specific restrictions. Cancellation charges apply if a reservation is changed or cancelled after the deadline identified in the rate rules. For certain rates and rooms (for example, advance purchase rates), changes to the reservation may not be permitted once booked. Applicable restrictions are communicated in the rate rules for each reservation.
So, on the one hand they need up to 24 hours to verify the customer's LNF claim, in which case the rate may not exist on the other website and they can deny the claim but on the other hand they also protect themselves that they will NOT refund non-refundable bookings.
What is the customer to do? Make 2 Non-Refundable reservations and pay 2x to Marriott? Unfortunately, the people staffing the phone banks are not trained to think independently - probably in fear of losing their jobs for thinking outside the box to advocate for a customer (what a blasphemy).
To make matters worse, the LNF person tells me that she does not believe me that the reservations agent would advise me to buy the Hotels.com deal. When I ask her if she's suggesting I'm lying, she laughs and sniggers at me. I remind her I'm the customer that spends 50+ nights in a Marriott in any given year and am reserving and paying for several $K worth of bookings in the next 30-days so she tells me she was coughing.
I call customer care and she tells me that 'Common Sense' would have told me to make the booking at Marriott.com and then file a claim. I ask to speak to her Supervisor and she hangs up on me.
Marriott Rewards customers beware! Look No Further than Best Rate Guarantee to be reminded where loyal customers stand with Marriott - dead last!
I filed a claim. They said it was invalid because my reservation was prepaid. It was not. Then they said my rate was higher because there would be an extra person charge. Confirmed with the hotel there would be no further charge. Rachelle's reply?
No further correspondence will be forthcoming regarding the comparison rate described in this specific claim.
So I called them up and this line was repeated to me multiple times. There will be no further discussion regarding this claim. They just won't answer or explain anything. Just like biztrvl, when I ask to speak to someone else, Erica hangs up on me!
Marriott refused my request. ONCE. After that I booked reservations on both Marriott site and a second site.
Called BRG, speak with a confrontational rep insisting they won't and don't pay unless THEY can see proof.
I tell her to look at my Marriott reservation while emailing her the second reservation.
I also attempted to use this bogus guarantee from Marriott. I received a response that in effect says the rate guarantee does not apply if you use AAA, Senior, Government rate, or are a MARRIOTT REWARDS MEMBERS. This was the reason given for not honoring the lower rate. The fact that I was out of the 24 hour period was an after thought. Like one poster said, the people are there to deny, deny, deny just like insurance companies.
I realize that I was out of the 24 hr window but a company who wants to keep customers coming back would have accommodated that customer.
We booked three weeks early at the Residence Inn in Sioux Falls because of concern that hotel rooms may sell out due to an event in town. We prepaid a total of $271.75 for two nights using our AAA to get what we thought was a reduced rate
Last night I found the rate was dropped to $98.00 -not prepaid- using AAA rate- and able to cancel until the night before our reservation for total for the two nights $224.50.
This morning the prepaid rate is $89.00- not using AAA. Alas, the guarantee that Marriott says is so great is a loss to me.
Never Ever Prepay, check all search engines/websites, book if you find a good price, keep trolling and cancel if you find a better price, and don't limit yourself to one hotel chain/chains. Don't automatically assume that AAA gives you a better price. With Marriott, the price goes up! Ask for their lowest regular rate first. Don't expect anything from being loyal to a brand or from being a Rewards Member.
Happy travels everyone, keep your eyes/ears open, your minds sharp, websites running, and get your best values.
I am also really disappointed with Marriott's look no further guarantee.
I made a two nights reservation (reservation number 83118576) for Renaissance hotel in Hong Kong for the total of HKD 4851, which is cancel-able reservation. I then came across a much lower price on ctrip's Chinese website, 2429 RMB is equivalent to 2777 HKD for the same two nights, the reservation is non-refundable.
I filed a claim through Marriott's Look no further guarantee, I gave them the exact link and mentioned that I am okay to prepay my reservation. I did hear back next morning, however my claim was denied because they could not confirm the lower price. I then called Look no further department and was told that they don't take the exact URL link, instead they need to go from the main page and navigate to find the exact price. The agent told me to email back and tell them the exact steps I have taken to get the price.
So I took a snapshot of every single step I took from the main page, and emailed the back. I was surprised that I didn't hear anything back, eventually after one day I got email failed to deliver message. I then realized that replying to their email will send the email to firstname.lastname@example.org not email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org is not a real email address. I don't know why they do this, but it certainly make customer's life harder to contact them.
I emailed back again (now two days already passed), however, at this time, the new price on ctrip has changed a little, actually it went down a little, now it's 2427.2 RMB instead of 2429 RMB for the same two nights. One day later, I heard back from Marriott, they denied the claim again, with two reasons. First my reservation is not prepaid (although I did say I am okay to make it prepaid), and 2nd the current price is not the same as what I claimed (even though it's actually lower than what I claimed).
I found this really absurd, if I have booked prepaid, with the way it went, there is no way I could have the claim resolved within 24 hours, so I would be stuck with my existing reservation. Basically Look no further doesn't really work for prepaid. Second, if by the time they finally find the lower price, it's lower than what I claimed, and still much lower than current Marriott price on their website, should they honor either one (what I claimed or the lower one)?
I used to love Marriott, always tried to book with Marriott, it provided nice promotion, now most of the promotions are gone, and with this experience, I really think Marriott is not as good as it used to be, and will probably book more with Hilton from now on.
I understand the challenges with LNF. I have seen many people being very successful with it (usually outside of US and booking outside of US, though I have seen others) and have seen many people being discouraged as well.
I honestly don't even bother using it as there are so many points of potential failure, and if it doesn't go through, you have likely lost the ability to get the room you wanted. It is also extremely time consuming, and I'd have to be saving an extraordinary amount of money to be worth my time and energy.
Two items of consideration:
1. Screen shots are your friend.
2. Every single thing about the two reservations have to be identical in order for it to sail through.
Yes, prepay rates are difficult to LNF due to the 24 hour window and uncertainty that any claim will be accepted by the LNF team. It does work very well with flexible rates though, see fistuks excellent guide, here Using the 'Look No Further' rate - All you need to know+Tips
The lower rate normally is prepaid, but LNF could be really dangerous for prepaid, since they could find all the reason to deny and make you lose the 24 hours window. Normally I never bother with LNF since the price difference is not high enough to justify the trouble. But this time it's almost half price. It does make me realize though that Marriott.com price is not really the low price, and from now on, I will be much less likely to book directly. I do start to like Hilton brand more and more.
Well, I posted a reply to this thread over 2 years ago basically agreeing it's premise. But I must now swallow my words.
See fistuks very helpful thread on the subject, here Using the 'Look No Further' rate - All you need to know+Tips
Since reading that thread in May this year and following his tips I've secured substantial LNFs at Montreal Marriott, Gettysburg Courtyard, Richmond Marriott, Houston Icon and the Budapest Marriott. I also secured others but had to cancel them as m plans changed but even so, I saved over $500 thanks to LNF.
So, yes, know how to do it (reminder, visit Using the 'Look No Further' rate - All you need to know+Tips) and LNF really does work...
I book through Marriott for my stays but I check the rates ever 1 to 2 weeks. By doing so, I have rebooked 2 different hotel stays in Boston (1 in December and 1 in January) and have saved well over $120!!!! I was shocked on one of the stays as it was New Year's Eve - I saved almost $50.
I don't bother chasing the Marriott Guarantee - I just wait and watch and see how much I can save...
I will be checking the 2 hotels again in another 2 to 3 weeks and see if I can get it even lower!!!!
The 24-hour rule is a condition of LNF. Hotel rates are dynamic meaning they can go up and down as the date approaches depending upon reservation activity. LNF, like Hilton, IHG and SPG guarantees you get the lowest rate at the time of reserving, hence you need to show it wasn't at that time, thus the 24 hour condition.
my point is that in the past i had a price adjustment done for a reservation i had done months ago and I was never told they couldn't adjust it because it wasn't within 24 hrs or making the original reservation. So my question was if that's a new rule or if i just got lucky in the past where they overlooked it?
IF it was an LNF then you got lucky, though I suppose it is arguable that if your rate is cancellable and remains the same on Marriott.com, what's the point in forcing you to make another Marriott.com cancellable reservation at the same rate and on the same terms just to claim the LNF. Even so, i would make the new Marriott.com reservation to ensure I met the rules as the LNF team are usually sticklers for them...
the reason why i got LNF to work is because of the passage of time, rates went down over time and then i just got the price adjustment. I have only done it twice but both times the reservation was done way ahead of time.
Which brings me back to my original question:
Did the rules ever change or did a claim always have to be submitted within 24 hrs of original reservation and i just happen to get lucky?
If by 'price adjustment' you mean you got the LNF rate (which includes a 25% reduction along with the lower rate) months after booking, you were remarkably fortunate. The rule has been within 24 hours for the several years I've been aware of it.
I don't have any dated policy, but by way of showing the 24 hour rule has been in force for several years; here's a thread from 2012 highlighting how many Insiders check rates weeks and months after booking to capture the potential savings (by rebooking) of price decreases. We would have loved to have pocketed the additional 25% kicker had it been allowed; and of course, Marriott would have changed the rule promptly if they were forced to pay an additional 25% every time they lowered the price and clients rebooked.
by "price adjustment" i meant i got the lower LNF rate incl 25% additional reduction months after booking.
I must have gotten lucky then.
i don't really understand the strategy with the 24 hr rule in place. If you book months ahead of time and then u find a lower rate then they just adjust the rate down without the additional 25% savings. In that case i could just cancel and rebook myself, why go through a LNF claim if it doesn't yield an extra 25%?
If people are really finding lower rates outside of marriott.com within 24 hr of booking and are getting the 25% additional savings than they must really be better at it than me because i've tried hard and i have never found it available.
You are correct, if you (like I do) book months in advance and find a lower rate days later, you just re-book. I often don't even cancel, I just call the Plat line and they adjust the rate w/o changing the Reservation number. You might have been one of the few that re-booked and filed a claim (although rewardingly so).
Often booking months in advance, you ( and we that do) find some of the lowest prices (frequently the lowest until staying) and it is difficult to find a better online travel agency price in that 24 hour time span, which is understandable, since the ota doesn't want to give away (thru unnecessary low pricing) any of their profit potential so early in the process. The ota's are playing the same revenue optimization game with their algorithms as Marriott. This is what makes it difficult to capture a LNF bonus discount in our early booking scenario.
The good news, those of us with the advantage of being able to book several months out, often get the best price Marriott offers and if not, we adjust accordingly later in the process.