FeatureImage.Bestwaystoscorehotelupgrade

11 of the best ways to score a hotel upgrade

Hands up if you want to check-in to the superior room.

Something that can really make a holiday is finding yourself at the check-in counter of your hotel being handed a key to a much more luxe abode than you may have originally booked.

What are the secrets to unlocking this perk? While we don’t have a hard and fast answer for you, we do have a couple of pointers that can help increase your chances of securing a hotel upgrade.

Bon voyage!

How to get a hotel upgrade

1. Be part of the program: Some hotel chains offer membership programs that provide you with benefits for frequent stays, including upgrades.

    • Anantara Privilege member: Special members-only rates apply to Privilege members. Upgrade your status to receive complimentary room upgrades.
    • LeClub Accor Hotels member:Get discounts, free nights with points earned and upgrades when you obtain Gold status.
    • Hilton HHonors member: Once you reach Gold Status (20 stays or 40 nights) you can tap into complimentary upgrade options.
    • IHG Rewards club member:Holiday Inn IHG members can earn points that they can then redeem for bonus rewards nights.
    • My Millennium member: The Millennium and Copthorne memberships grant you access to complimentary stays and discounts. Upgrade to Elite status to receive two upgrades per membership year.
    • MyOaks member:While no upgrades are available for MyOaks members, you can still earn points for member deals and discounts.
    • Marriott Rewards member: Stay four consecutive nights and get the fifth free. The more you upgrade in status, the bigger the benefit.
    • Starwood Preferred Guest member: Earn points through stays and shopping that you can then spend on various items including flights. Stay three consecutive nights and get the fourth free. Upgrades come when you obtain Gold Status.
    • TFE Hotels eClub: Sign up to the TFE Hotels eClub for 10% off member stays at hotels like Adina and Vibe. No upgrades available.
    • Hyatt Gold Passport members: Earn points for every dollar you spend and receive nights for free. Upgraded membership status can get you free upgrades.
    • Hotels.com Rewards member:One free night for every 10 nights stayed. No upgrades available.
    • Qantas Frequent Flyer members:Clock up points when you stay at eligible hotels. You can later exchange these for stays.

2. Get the right credit card: Many hotels offer credit cards that automatically make you eligible for an upgrade. Hilton’s Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve card automatically grants you gold status, as does the Hyatt Credit Card.

3. Tell the staff that it’s a special occasion: When checking in, sneakily drop in that you’re celebrating something. Could be a birthday, could be an engagement; whatever it is, it should be something worthy of a better room. Even if you don’t score that upgrade, you might get a free bottle of Champers out of it.

4. Ask for it but be nice about it: The worst they can do is say no, and the hotel staff will appreciate that you are being polite about it. Don’t make a fuss if they say no and don’t ask for the upgrade when other guests are around.

On that note, make a request for a specific room and don’t aim too high. Bumping yourself from a standard room to the Presidential Suite is probably not going to happen, but asking for a superior room might be possible.

5. Say something nice about the staff: When you’re at the hotel, be polite and leave good feedback for the staff. Got a bit of social media influence? Use it by sharing your love for the hotel online. The hotel will remember the praise and if you return, they may upgrade you automatically because of it.

6. Book a new hotel: New hotels don’t yet have the reviews to prove that they’re worth their salt, so they may be more likely to yield to an upgrade request to please you, especially if they have rooms to spare.

HotelUpgrade

7. Book through the hotel: It’s true that booking through websites like Booking.com and Hotels.com can have the benefits of a slightly cheaper rate, but booking through these sites means that the hotel has to pay them a commission. The hotel also doesn’t receive your personal details prior to your arrival. By booking direct you’re suggesting loyalty to the brand itself, which can increase your chances of an upgrade.

8. Arrive late rather than early: The afternoon to early evening is a non-peak time at the check-in desk, meaning they won’t be rushed when taking care of you. It also means the staff will have better knowledge of what rooms are available for the evening. It might not align with your flight but it might align with an upgrade.

9. Stay just one night: Shorter stays are more likely to get an upgrade as premium rooms may be filled the following days or have the potential to be filled.

10. Pay the price: Booking the cheapest room or getting a discounted room is probably not going to win you any favours. Be willing to pay an uncancellable full rate to prove that you’re serious about staying at the hotel. Brand loyalty is everything.

11. Make a complaint - but only if it’s justified. If there’s something wrong with your current room, return to the counter and let them know. The hotel staff are there to make your stay a good one, so if a plug isn’t working or the toilet doesn’t flush properly, bring it up. They’d rather address the problem then and there than have you complain later. If it’s something that can’t be fixed, they’ll likely bump you to another room (hopefully an upgraded one).


Hotel memberships and deals that could help you score an upgrade

Latest hotel offers:

Hotels in Europe from £29

Valid for stays until 15 May 2017. Must be booked through Travelodge UK website to avail room offers. Excludes hotels in Northern Ireland, Ireland & Spain.

Lunar New Year Special: Up to 30% off Millennium Hotels, Singapore

Valid for stays from 20 January - 9 February 2017 at Millennium Hotels, Singapore. Only valid for all Singapore hotels except Orchard Hotel Singapore. Includes complimentary buffet breakfast for 2, complimentary WiFi and welcome drink, unlimited mobile internet and local calls, extra 10% off for my millennium members and up to 30% discount on Food & Beverage outlets. T&Cs apply.

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Up to 30% off stays in Europe, Middle East and Africa

Get up to 30% off stays in Europe, Middle East and Africa at Hilton Hotels. Conditions apply.

Up to 40% off worldwide hotels

Valid on select Accor-branded hotels including Pullman, Novotel, Mercure and Ibis in 92 countries including Australia, England, USA.

$50 off South Australia hotels

Get $50 off South Australia hotels when you spend $400 at Webjet. Conditions apply.

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$100 off South Australia hotels

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Up to 30% off for Chinese New Year

Valid on stays until 12 February at select hotels in Thailand, Malaysia. Deals on stays, room upgrades, airport transfers, dining credits and many more.at Compass Hospitality . Conditions Apply

5% off vacation rentals worldwide

Enjoy 5% off vacation rentals worldwide when you use the code at checkout.

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Up to 40% off: Flash sale

Get up to 40% off flash sale offers at Anantara Hotels and Resorts. Valid for stays until 22nd December, 2017. T&Cs apply.

Save up to 20% at Dusit Thani Laguna Phuket

Valid on stays until 31 December 2017.

Up to 30% off suites at dusitD2 Chiang Mai

Valid for stays until 31 December 2017.Conditions Apply

Up to 30% off Oaks resorts

Stay three nights or more and get up to 30% off stays at 43 participating Oaks Resorts in Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, India and UAE.

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20% off with free dining credit at Dusit Thani Hua Hin

Valid for stays until until 31 March 2017. Conditions Apply

Save up to 35% on selected hotels

Save up to 35% on selected hotels at Canadian Affair. T&Cs apply.

$20 off vacation rentals worldwide

Simply use the code to get $20 off vacation rentals worldwide at Roomorama.

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5% off vacation rentals worldwide

Enjoy 5% off vacation rentals worldwide when you use the code at checkout.

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Up to 25% off: Al Baleed Resort Salalah

Take advantage of stay longer special and get up to 25% off accommodations at Al Baleed Resort Salalah, Oman. T&Cs apply.

Up to 15% off 5-star London Hotel

Get up to 15% off hotel bookings at The Milestone Hotel. Includes overnight UK accommodation and complimentary full English breakfast for two. Discount applies only to room rate. Excludes any additional charges made. T&Cs apply.

Sydney CBD stays from $79

Sample hotel prices include the Great Southern for $79 per night and the Pensione from $99 per night.

Up to 25% off Anantara hotels

Choose the perfect Anantara destination and plan an amazing getaway in advance and enjoy savings of up to 25% on Anantara Hotels. Conditions apply.

Up to 40% off hotels

Valid on stays until 9 April. Global hotel sale with discounts available in Australia, South Pacific, Asia, America and Europe.

Up to 30% off stays in Europe

Valid on stays until 27 February 2017.Conditions apply

Up to 30% off stays in Europe

Valid on stays until 27 February 2017.Conditions apply

Up to 30% off stays in Europe

Valid on stays until 27 February 2017.Conditions apply

Up to 40% off hotels

Save up to 40% on hotels at Wotif. Valid on selected hotels only. T&Cs apply.

4-night Hamilton Island stays with breakfast from $1480

Valid on stays within 72 hours of booking. Sample stays include Garden View Rooms for $135 per person, per night including return transfers from Airlie Beach, use of equipment at the hotel, Wi-Fi access and island shuttle service.

Last-minute stays from $135

Valid on stays within 72 hours of booking by people living in Port Douglas and Gladstone. Sample stays include Garden View Rooms for $135 per person, per night including return transfers from Airlie Beach, use of equipment at the hotel, Wi-Fi access and island shuttle service.

Worldwide sale: Hotels from $13

Sample destinations include Bali from $13, Fiji from $20, Phuket from $30, Singapore from $46, London from $62, Canberra from $67,Gold Coast from $96.

Up to 25% off stays at Hyatt

Valid on stays until 15 March at more than 160 Hyatts around the world in destinations like Paris, Zurich, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Dubai, London and Singapore.

Up to 20% off summer stays

Valid on stays until 31 January at select Travelodge and other TFE hotels including Adina, Vibe and Rendezvous.

Up to 20% off summer stays

Valid on stays until 31 January at select Vibe and other TFE hotels including Adina, Travelodge and Rendezvous.

Up to 20% off summer stays

Valid on stays until 31 January at select Rendezvous and other TFE hotels including Adina, Travelodge and Vibe.

15% off + FREE unlimited wifi access when you stay minimum 2 nights

Book now and get 15% off with free unlimited wifi access when you stay minimum 2 nights on Monday to Thursday and Sun at The Big Sleep Hotel Eastbourne with Compass Hospitality. T&Cs apply.

FREE upgrade to a 2 Bed Apartment for the price of a 1 Bed Apartment: Christmas Special

Book a 2 Bed Apartment for the price of a 1 Bed Apartment at select Oaks hotels and resort. Includes Oaks Mews, Oaks Aurora, Oaks Carlyle and Oaks Felix. T&Cs apply.

Hotel rooms from $89: Green Season Sale

Participating hotels include Oaks Cable Beach Sanctuary, Oaks Lagoons and Oaks Elan Darwin. T&Cs apply

Up to 20% off stays

Book now and get up to 20% off stays at Crowne Plaza. Valid on stays until 31 January. Conditions apply.

Up to 20% off stays

Book now and get up to 20% off stays at Holiday Inn Express. Valid on stays until 31 January. Conditions apply.

Up to 20% off stays

Book now and get up to 20% off stays at Holiday Inn. Valid on stays until 31 January. Conditions apply.

Up to 20% off stays

Book now and get up to 20% off stays with InterContinental. Valid on stays until 31 January. Conditions apply.

Up to 20% off stays

Book now and get up to 20% off stays with InterContinental, Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express and Crowne Plaza at IHG Hotels. Valid on stays until 31 January. Conditions apply.

Berjaya Hotel Colombo from $206+

Book for minimum of 2 nights stay for 2 adults from $206+ per package. Inclusive of a half day city tour with refreshments to the places of attractions in Colombo and wide selection of daily breakfast, daily set/buffet dinner for 2 adults. Conditions apply.

10% off + free return airport transfer: Swiss-Belinn Legian, Bali, Indonesia

Book the 3 nights package at Swiss-Belinn Legian, Bali, Indonesia and get 10% off with free return airport transfer. T&Cs apply.

10% off flexi rate + free beer bucket: Swiss-Belinn Legian, Bali, Indonesia

Get 10% off flexi rates plus enjoy a free beer bucket at Swiss-Belinn Legian, Bali, Indonesia. Minimum stay of 3 nights. Conditions apply.

Rooms from $19 per night: Veracruz, Mexico

Book now and get rooms from $19 per night at Hotelopia. Hotels included are Acuario, Suites Mediterraneo Veracruz and more. T&Cs apply.

Up to 20% off 3-nights or more at any Adina Apartment Hotel worldwide

Available on stays until 31 December. Enjoy up to 20% off your next stay when you book three nights or more at any Adina Apartment Hotel worldwide. Conditions apply.

€99 per night for an overnight stay + FREE breakfast and welcome drink: Nuremberg Opening Special

Enjoy overnight stay including breakfast and welcome drink for just € 99 per night. Minimum 1 night stay required. Valid on participating hotels only. T&Cs apply.

Get a late check-out, free welcome drink and 2-for-1 breakfast in Darwin

Available until 30 April, 2017. Get a special rate inclusive of 1pm late check-out, drink on arrival and 2 for 1 breakfast. Stay in Adina Apartment Hotel Darwin Waterfront to take advantage of this Darwin Deal. T&Cs apply.

Get a late check-out, free welcome drink and 2-for-1 breakfast in Darwin

Available until 30 April, 2017. Get a special rate inclusive of 1pm late check-out, drink on arrival and 2 for 1 breakfast. Stay in Travelodge Mirambeena Resort Darwin to take advantage of this Darwin Deal. T&Cs apply.

Save up to £20 off your stay

Book a stay at Britannia Hotels at least 10 days in advance and save up to £20 per night of your stay.

Get 10% off bookings

Book direct with Swiss-Belhotel and get an instant 10% off your stay.

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Save up to 25% on advance bookings

Book a stay at an Ibis property at least 30 days in advance and save up to 25%.

Save up to 30% with Agoda Insider Deals

Sign up as an Agoda member for access to special deals and discounts.

38% off Swiss-Belhotel International, Segara, Indonesia

Enjoy 38% off flexi rate at Swiss-Belhotel Segara, Bali with special benefits. Includes late check out until 6pm - free one way airport transfer (drop off from hotel to airport, daily breakfast and more. Minimum stays 5 nights. Conditions apply.

Book in advance and save 25%

Make a reservation for a Novotel property at least 30 days in advance and save up to 25% on the regular price.

Save 25% off your stay at select NSW hotels

Book a stay at the Mercure Penrith, Mercure Sydney International Airport or Mercure Sydney Parramatta at least 30 days in advance and save.

Up to 30% off + FREE breakfast for BCA credit card holders

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37% off Thailand summer getaway

Book your Thailand summer getaway and get 37% off at Adelphi Grande Sukhumvit with Compass Hospitality, Thailand. Valid for bookings and stays until 16 March 2017. T&Cs apply.

Save up to 30% on Sydney hotels

Get up to 30% with these Flaming Hot Deals at Wotif. They're constantly updated, so get in quick!

Up to 50% off when you subscribe

Get up to 50% off your next trip when you subscribe at Booking.com. Enjoy amazing secret deals just for their subscribers.

Vegas Vacation Sale: rooms from $29

Book cheap rooms from $29 during the Vegas Vacation Sale.

Darling Harbour 4-star hotels from $110 per night

Book a Sydney 4-star hotel with Lastminute.com.au from just $110 per night.

Gold Coast stays from $92 per night

Find accommodation on the Gold Coast from $92 per night on Lastminute.com.au.

Book a Secret Hotel for up to 40% off

Not fussed about where you stay? Book Lastminute's secret hotels where the name is revealed when you book for up to 40% off the regular price.

10% off Oaks stays

Simply use code to get 10% off your booking at Oaks Hotels & Resorts. T&Cs apply.

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Stephanie Yip

Stephanie is a journalist, avid traveller and all-round bargain hunter. If there's an online coupon code, deal or cheap flight available, she'll know about it. And she'll let you know about it, too.

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