Ever receive a better room on an award booking than on a revenue booking?

I’m staying at the InterContinental Frankfurt at the moment for two nights. Originally I booked both nights as a revenue stay, but ultimately decided to switch to a “Sweet Dilemma” night for the first night. “Sweet Dilemma” was Priority Club’s “stay two get one free” promotion in the fourth quarter, whereby you could make two stays at a Priority Club property, and then receive one free night to redeem at a later date at any Priority Club property outside of Asia Pacific. While there are more high end properties than the InterContinental Frankfurt, I found it to be a good use for a free night since they’re generous in honoring all Royal Ambassador status benefits on award stays (something they don’t have to do, per the terms and conditions). So I booked the highest room category available using my “Sweet Dilemma” night, and then booked a basic room for the second night (revenue stay). It’s worth noting that usually only basic rooms are bookable on award nights.

I noticed online that my reservation showed as being upgraded to a panoramic suite for the first night. When I checked in, I mentioned that I had two reservations, and that one was an award stay and one a revenue stay. After the agent talked to her colleagues for a few moments, she said that for the first night, I was upgraded to a panoramic suite, and for the second night I was upgraded to a deluxe studio (basically a large standard room). I was a bit confused, though it seemed that my first night booked into a higher category, despite being an award night. Bizarre.

She gave me the option of either paying 50 Euro for the second night to upgrade to the panoramic suite, or switching rooms after the first night. I instead asked to have the more basic, deluxe studio room, for both nights.

This was just a first for me in that I was asked to downgrade on a revenue night. I’ve been asked to downgrade on an award night (which, on an unrelated note, I consider to be tacky), but never a revenue night.

The other funny thing about the InterContinental Frankfurt is that they give Royal Ambassadors club lounge access, though only upon request, in a pretty twisted way. I forgot to ask at check-in, so showed up at the front desk a bit later to ask if it might be possible to get club access. The agent called the guest relations manager, and then our conversation went something like this:
Me: “I just wanted to confirm that I have club access on this reservation as a Royal Ambassador, as I’ve had in the past at this hotel.”
GRM: “Club access is not a Royal Ambassador benefit, you have received a two category upgrade.”
Me: “True, though I’ve always gotten club access at this hotel as a Royal Ambassador. Also, I don’t remember the last time I’ve stayed at any InterContinental where I didn’t get at least a suite OR club access, and sometimes even both, and I definitely only got a large executive room on this stay… though it is technically a two category upgrade.”
GRM: “While club access is not a Royal Ambassador benefit, we are happy to grant it to you because of your loyalty.”

…okay?

Anyway, a perfectly nice stay as always. The InterContinental Frankfurt isn’t the most modern hotel in the world, but it’s reasonably priced, well maintained, and is a great value.

Comments

  1. Aren’t you supposed to be visiting family for Christmas – or is the entire family gathering at the IC? (and I know, it’s none of my business – just interested how you pull this off as my family would not have a bar of it!)

  2. This past April, I was in Milan for an overnight and stayed at the Sheraton Diana Majestic on points. I have no status with SPG (don’t stay often enough, and generally prefer Hyatts), but they upgraded me to a beautiful suite. I was surprised, but didn’t argue with the upgrade.

  3. Frequent occurrence at Westin for myself. Once downgraded in Vancouver at the Grande to a queen room with bad view from a king room (there the was the overnight fire the same night). Recently stayed in the smallest room ever at a Westin in Whistler on a reward night…not even an SPG room….. with a great anti view.

  4. Don’t you just love the inconsistency of InterContinental/Priority Club? It is my ONLY complaint about IC, and it is something they could easily fix.

  5. @ Raffy — Heh, have family in different parts of Germany, though there’s no way I can stay there anymore. Most of them don’t even have internet! So spending most of the day with them, though staying at hotels where I earn points, which is perfectly justifiable financially (as you’ll see in the upcoming trip report). Main reason I’m visiting is to spend time with my mom, though. She’s trying to find a place to live, so it works out quite well because she’s actually staying at hotels with me. So it’s a nice way to spend time with her.

  6. You are comparing apples and oranges. The availability and capacity on the first night may be vastly different than the availability/capacity on the second night. If you had two reservations on the same evening at the same hotel then you would have reason for comparison.

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