So you check in at the hotel and they give you a room key. “Did you manage to upgrade me?” you ask, being sure that the answer is going to be positive.
“No sir, I am sorry, we’re sold out”
What? The lobby is empty, no roaming bands of conventioneers, no groups of language students, no anyone.
So what do you do when this happens?
- Accept it, after all you’re only sleeping in the room?
- Demand to see the manager?
- Check-out what the hotel is still selling for rooms?
Me, I do the last one. Pop up to the room, get out the laptop and have a look at what they still have for sale. If it’s truly sold out their web site is going to tell you.
This was my experience recently at the Grand Hyatt New York, a huge property right next to Grand Central Terminal on 42nd St.
My previous stay had been pretty poor and one of the managers asked me to email him before I came next time, so he could make sure I had a nicer room. I duly did this, and arrived thinking that a combination of this and my status might get me a better room. How wrong could I be?
28th floor, tiny room at the end of the corridor.
I checked the web site and they had a number of better room types still for sale, and to add insult to injury my standard room was about $30 cheaper than when I booked.
I did email the team that sends you a welcome email in advance of your stay to ask what had happened and they repeated the ‘sold out’ story. When I sent the web page, then it was an ‘error’ on the site. But here are 10,000 Gold Passport points for your trouble. The next day someone else reached out and offered a two category upgrade if I wanted to move for my last night. No thanks.
Oh, and I checked the second night and it too had rooms!
So, perhaps it’s just a rogue property, or a ghost in the machine that is the Hyatt web site. I don’t know, but it didn’t make me feel great about how this property looks after its Diamonds.