Was emailed my account with special offers, two of which took my eye - both very good rates for 2 different UK hotels, with codes XMA and ZJ8. However, cannot find the cheap rate quoted on ANY date, which says 7 days a week up to 23 March 2012 for one of the deals. So, I decided to use the tool advertised
New! Faster search.
Just click "My dates are flexible.”
however, when you do that for both of these codes it says
The corporate/promotional code entered does not allow for flexible date searches.
But other codes which are more expensive can be found in the above way, so what is going on? Sounds like a con to me
Patinumstar, sure sounds like a con to me...If corporate/promotional codes entered does not allow for flexible date searches, sound to me like someone is "pulling your leg". The best thing to do is call Marriott Customer Service to confirm..I will be interested on the outcome of your discussion!!!
Well the offers are there in black and white, its just that they dont seem to exist. I called Marriott rewards/reservations and they were useless just saying "offers are subject to availability" but I explained I had just got the email and one offer was 7 days a week up to the 23rd March and so it should at least be there on one day between now and then, so they put me on hold for AGES then came back with "sorry the offer is not available!" Frustrating is not the word and why you cant use the flexible date search is beyond me.
I have tried flexible dates and more often than not, I am unable to use special codes within reasonable dates around my desired travel dates.
On the specific e-mail, I got one today, too, but no mention of the UK deals. So different members must be getting targeted with different offers. Here's what I received (required two screen shots to capture):
I got some of the offers you got but me being in the UK I clearly got targeted with UK and Europe offers. I would have loved to have stayed MANY nights at some of these special rates between now and March 2012 but they simply do not exist at the prices quoted. Not surprisingly, nobody from Marriott has attempted to answer my questions (and before they do say "deals are subject to room availability" - there is NO availability at the prices quoted, only much much higher ones, and of course, you cant use the search engine for flexible dates on these cheap rates. Not impressed one little bit, infact, am quite angry with Marriotts marketing.
I've only lived up to my moniker one time on this site. The topic was no black out dates. That claim turned out to be extremely misleading. Discounting, promoting, and added value offers are another sore subject with my favorite hotel chain.
My unscientific data tells me that there is a major disconnect for promos and point savers. On numerous occasions, I'll bite on a very attractive link announcing "point savers" or "discounts from $99" type of marketing ads from our friends at Marriott. RARELY, can I find the properties listed as actually having much availability at the advertised rate. I scratch my head trying to figure out where the problem lies.
My marketing background tells me that if you invite someone in to your brick and mortar or web site location with a discount, you better have it available. The problem with advertising something and then NOT having it available is worse than never offering it at all. It leaves a very bad taste, ie. bate and switch. Hiding behind statements like "while supplies last" and only having enough for 1% of anticipated demand is borderline dishonest.
Discounting is used as a way to reintroduce a product or brand to the public. It can also be used to deplete excess inventory or spice up foot traffic during slow times. It should never be used to trick people in the door and then explain that "only a few" are available at this rate. The whole point was to get me in...Once I'm there, wow me with something that exceeds my expectations and you'll get my repeat business and loyalty. Try and trick me and I'll grimace when your brand is mentioned.