How to get a free hotel upgrade - according to travel experts and hotel managers
Ever wondered the insider tips and tricks for getting a free upgrade at a hotel? Well, we’ve got you covered. We spoke to over 30 spa hotel managers on our books and can now reveal the secret tips to securing a better room than you booked. Some of them may surprise you...
1. Look/act like an influencer
It’s the 21st century, times are changing and different professions are becoming more sought after in our current society. Instagram is now being seen as one of the most important platforms and many people are taking advantage of this. Influencers are taking the world by storm with many brands recognising them as being the most influential beings in our present age.
Hotel managers reveal that being an ‘influencer’ or even just looking like one could earn you an upgrade when it comes to your hotel booking. They said they are trained to spot someone with influence, and if you’re likely to Instagram the hell out of your stay then you could bag a better room. So, get those faux Louis Vuitton’s at the ready, and strut into that lobby with your phone out ready to snap. Instagram? It’s your best friend.
2. People with posh names
This may be a self-explanatory tip - maybe not, but, according to our research, having posh names such as Alfreda or Wigbert can earn you a free upgrade at a hotel. Hotel managers perceive posh names as synomous with not only money but also with somebody who would potentially be extra respectful of a more luxurious room. So, before booking your hotel consider jazzing up your name - William you are now Wilfred, Gary you are now Youngblood (according to Cosmopolitan, that’s supposedly a posh name).
3. Shiny wedding rings
Everyone knows that being on your honeymoon may boost your chances of getting a free upgrade even just a tiny bit - but did you know that having shiny wedding rings actually makes you even more successful in your quest for a free upgrade? Apparently, the sight of a shiny, brand spanking new ring can definitely catch the attention of the hotel manager. So get the baking soda and toothpaste out - it’s time to make those rings shine!
4. Your age range
Surprisingly, your age range is a big factor in whether you get an upgrade - according to our research, hotel managers will look for people between the ages of 25 to 40, as they’re more likely to post about their experience online. More publicity and reviews = more bookings for the hotel. Have you got your wrinkle cream at the ready?
5. Special occasions
A special occasion is the perfect time to look for a hotel upgrade, whether you’re with friends or your partner. Our tip, especially for the likes of birthdays, is to be OTT. Walk in with 20 balloons in your hand and the biggest badge known to man and you’ll be well on your way to an upgrade.
6. Be loyal
Not Georgia Steele from Love Island ‘loyal’, but simply a loyal customer to the company. Choose that chain of hotels in every place you visit and make sure you join their loyalty scheme. This will put you in great standing when it comes to a hotel manager evaluating whether or not to give you an upgrade.
7. Drop the hotel an email or tweet ahead of your stay
Close your eyes if you’re a technophobe - this tip isn’t for you. Emailing or tweeting your hotel ahead of your stay with a smooth and persuasive email can help in your pursuit of an upgrade. It’s a well-known fact that sweet-talking the receptionist can boost your chances, so get ahead of the game, and do it before you even arrive.
8. Stay for only one night
You can’t be greedy when it comes to an upgrade, or you won’t get one at all. If you stay more than one night it will cost the company more and therefore the hotel will be less inclined to offer it to you.
9. Arrive as a couple - don't stay in a group
Large groups of people walking into a hotel can be overbearing for a hotel concierge; not to mention the fact that not many hotels have the capacity to upgrade a substantial group of people. Our top tip would be to keep the number to a minimum to boost your chances of a lavish and sumptuous stay.
10. Check in late
The majority of hotels offer a 3pm check-in, but some hotel managers recommend you wait a few more hours to get the choice of a better room. If you check in late, there’s a good chance they will have run out of standard rooms. A standard double or twin is generally the room category the everyday traveller books, so an upgrade to a higher room category could be on the cards if they run out.
Go grab a cocktail or hit the shops - oh, and remember to look tired on your return. You could get a sympathy upgrade.
And there you have it, these are our expert upgrade tips for hotels across the country!