6 Insider Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Hotel Stay

May 19, 2015
By: Jill D.

Having worked in the hotel industry in several capacities since the beginning of post grad-life, I have picked up a few simple tips to ensure your next vacation or business trip is worthy of a Five-Star review.

  • Be Nice to the Front Desk: As a former front desk agent at a ritzy, beachside resort, I can tell you that if you are kind and engaging at check-in, you will up your odds for a better room or early check-in. Also, these hard workers VERY rarely get tipped… so this gesture, if done right, might just be getting you that ocean view. Everyone remembers to slip some cash to the valet, bellman and (hopefully) housekeeper, but don’t forget the people who are selecting the space that can make or break your stay.
  • Get Personal: Most hotels have a guest service team that is dedicated to making your stay memorable and comfortable. When booking your room, utilize the comments section. In this space, note if you are celebrating a special occasion, like a birthday or anniversary. And be specific, i.e. name of birthday girl. You just might receive something special, like a welcome amenity waiting in your room.
  • Save by Upgrading at Check-in: If a hotel has sold out of their standard room category, but has suites left to sell, you can pay a small rate increase upon check-in to upgrade to a higher room category that may have been way out of your budget had you booked it outright. The hotel would rather have the added revenue, even if minimal, rather than having these rooms sit empty overnight. Checking in earlier will increase your odds of availability.
  • Know When to Book: When a hotel is looking to sell rooms quickly, they run “flash” sales on sites like Expedia and Priceline. These sales are most often released on Tuesdays and Wednesdays because, historically, these are the two busiest booking days.
  • Stay a Little Longer: Instead of hitting the road right after your 12:00pm check-out time, store your luggage at the bell desk, and hang out a while! Although you no longer have your room, stay and enjoy the pool, spa, restaurants and other hotel amenities. You can still give your pool bartender your room number if he asks, because he can look up guests that have checked out that day.
  • Utilize the Concierge: Being that our generation is so comfortable with technology trends, you may forgo visiting the concierge desk, instead relying on Yelp and Open Table, among other websites, to help with local area recommendations and reservations. However, if you are having trouble getting a table at that raved-about brunch spot, these guys can most likely get you in. Hotel concierges hold some serious clout in the local community. They have the power to send business to a restaurant on a regular basis for years to come, so the restaurants make extra effort to accommodate their requests.

What do you do to amplify your hotel stay? Share with me in the comments below.