Archive for the Las Vegas Category

Hotel room upgrade $20 trick

Posted in Hotel, Las Vegas, Travel Tips with tags , , , , , on May 20, 2011 by getgowing

This weekend, several of my friends are convening in Las Vegas for an Advisory Board Meeting for Winter Guard International.  I recently made a trip there in February and used a trick to score this room/suite in the Planet Hollywood Hotel & Casino Resort.

The "Boulevard Suite"

View from the front door (double-door entrance; the bedroom had its own entrance, too)


The room also came with 2 sets of robes and slippers

My favorite amenity in the room.

View from the windows

View from the bedroom window in the morning

Our original room was a standard room, though comp’ed (complimentary through some channel, this instance being Harrah’s) through our gambling time in Atlantic City.

The technique used to possibly get an upgrade is called the $20 sandwich.  When checking-in to the hotel, when they ask for an ID and credit card, fold a $20 bill small enough so it fits in between the two cards.  Hand all of that over to the agent.  In the midst of checking in, ask if there are any complimentary (though not exactly cause you just paid $20) upgrades, or ask if there is anything nicer available that you can check in to, etc….  And that’s it.

It helps if you are friendly and cordial.  Strike up a conversation.  Ask them how their day is going.  How much longer is their shift?  Give them some chocolate…everybody likes chocolate (except my friend Sarah).

Now a few other things that I didn’t mention earlier.  My friend who checked in for us also has status with the casino.  AND, the woman who helped us was from Northern New Jersey, so maybe some Jersey pride helped a little bit too.

Here is another recent example (from early April 2011) of getting hooked up in Las Vegas at check-in at The Cosmopolitan from my friend Kim.

She originally had a studio room, or something like that, booked.  She had two nights comp’ed.  And had no status with the hotel/casino.  She told the man at check-in that she was planning a Bachelorette Party for her sister, and gave him a $40 sandwich.  She ended up getting an upgrade to a two bedroom wrap around suite (I’m assuming it was a corner) on the 55th floor.  Granted, she’s a tall, beautiful, blonde woman and a guy was checking her in.  He also gave her 2-for-1 bottle service coupon at the hotel/casino’s nightclub.

Sweet balcony

View from the balcony

Suites are the ultimate upgrade, but many times, you can get a room with a better view, newer amenities, late check out, or a higher floor to name a few.

This technique may not work at the properties in the big hotel chains:  Starwood, Marriott, Hilton, InterContinental Hotels Group, and Hyatt.  I have only heard of this trick working mostly in casino hotels, but I have personally not tried it in the big chains and been denied.  Try it out.  Maybe the stars will align for you making your dream vacation that much dreamier.

Your Mileage May Vary

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