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Old 02-01-2013, 08:33 AM   #76
stargazertechie
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lililoo12 View Post
Its tacky to ask for free stuff.
You miss 100% of the shots that you don't take. It's not tacky at all, it's actually common in the travel industry.

I've been upgraded to first class (no frequent flyer status, no points, no fee) simply by chatting with the gate agent and asking if there was any availability.
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Old 02-01-2013, 09:59 AM   #77
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Originally Posted by Bob NC View Post
Sorry, once again I am probably showing my stupidity, but, was there a reason Lynne couldn't answer that?


The only reason I'm asking these questions is I know I've seen CM's post that they don't mind being asked, and I've seen CM's post that they won't give an upgrade when asked.

I can see where non-CM's might say they would never give one when asked. I can also see where if I were a CM the whole "Not give an upgrade out of spite for asking" might wear out pretty quickly.

I could picture myself giving out upgrades to fun high energy Dis fans whether they ask or not. (Of course it would depend upon HOW they ask.)

This is why I asked LYNNE whether she was a CM, because the way her post was worded it kinda sounded like she might be.
Lynne couldn't answer that because she hasn't looked at the thread since yesterday.

I'm not a CM, but I've read many, many posts over the years from current and former front desk CMs who've described the upgrade process, the things that increase chances of getting a free upgrade, and the things that decrease a guest's chances of getting one. I'm sure there's variation among CMs, to some extent, and there's no hard and fast corporate rule that "thou shalt not give free stuff to customers who ask for it."

There've also been probably hundreds of posts on this board from guests talking about complimentary upgrades they've received, and the common thread in those posts is "we were SO surprised!", which bears out what the CMs have said about the way the process works.

Hotel companies each have their own policies on upgrades, and the tips and tricks of asking for upgrades varies across the travel industry. In Vegas, if you want an upgrade, slipping some money to the front desk clerk will increase your chances. At some chains, flashing your frequent traveler card will get you into a better room.

At Disney resorts, the experience of CMs and frequent Disney resort guests tells us that that if you want to ask for an upgrade, the best way to do it is to ask how much it would cost.

And personally, I think that makes sense. Given that CMs don't always have upgrades to give out, a guest walking up and asking me for a free upgrade puts me in the position of having to say no to the guest, which makes the encounter a negative one. A guest asking me how much one would cost? I don't have to refuse the guest or disappoint the guest, I just give them the number. Maybe they're happy to pay it, and I get credit for an up-sell. Maybe I can give them an upgrade, and really make their day. The guest is happy, I'm happy, it's a Good Thing.

Last edited by Lynne M; 02-01-2013 at 11:21 AM.
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Old 02-01-2013, 12:25 PM   #78
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CuteAsMinnie View Post
I just want to say you and your brother are absolutely, positively, ridiculously amazing and I'm guessing your mom thinks so too!

May I recommend calling CRO with your room requests; they'll ask you what you are celebrating and you can tell them anything! A celebration of your Mom's birthday, a celebration of your Mom's life after a very tough battle.... Whatever you choose, but choose something. You may not receive an upgrade but she'll get a birthday button which to her now has a whole new meaning! An added expense but flowers waiting for her in your room upon your arrival would be sweet

Enjoy this very special trip with your Mom! She is a lucky lady!
I agree! You guys are definitely celebrating your Mom's recovery! I would add that celebration to your reservation. GF service is out of this world! I personally think that if they don't automatically give you an upgrade, it will not hurt to ask. It's all in the way that you go about it.
I hope you guys have an amazing time!
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Old 02-02-2013, 04:05 PM   #79
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Thank you!
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Old 02-02-2013, 04:54 PM   #80
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Originally Posted by MyPrinceWillCome View Post
Hi All,
Been lurking the boards for awhile and this is my first post! Been going to Disney yearly since 1988!

This year my brother and I are splurging to take my mother on a trip for her birthday, in early May. Her "bucket list" hotel is the Grand Floridian, so that's where we'll be staying. I want this to be the trip of a lifetime for her - she has had a rough year... breast cancer, lumpectomy, chemotherapy, etc. and she needs something fun to look forward to.

Once, when she and I had stayed at the Boardwalk several years ago, she casually asked if an upgrade was available. We ended up getting a great room on the concierge level, overlooking the Boardwalk (right over Spoodles! Or where Spoodles used to be!)

I'd love to get some kind of upgrade at the GF, if possible. Since the rooms are so pricey, we're doing the basic garden view. I'd like to ask at check in if an upgrade it possible. I don't want to play the cancer card, but if I mentioned it was her birthday, do you think that would help my chances? I don't want to come across as feeling entitled or being rude. It would just be AMAZING if it would be possible on this trip.

Any tips for increasing my chances of an upgrade? Or is this something I shouldn't even attempt?

Thanks!
I just stayed at GF a few weeks ago..also in a Garden room and our room was facing the main pool but we could see the fireworks every night from our 5th floor balcony! It was very magical without a view of the castle. Both my DBF and I agreed that we'd rather have that view which was a Garden than a Lagoon View (more $$) of Poly..of course MK view is the best! If you'd like to request it, it was Big Pine Key and we were in room 9510. We could hear Wishes perfectly and hear the MK Rope Drop music and Dream Along with Mickey! The other side of the building was a Lagoon view of the Poly and the new DVC of GF. I doubt you could see the fireworks from that side.

Have a great trip
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Old 02-02-2013, 05:03 PM   #81
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The one time we got an upgrade (GF, pool view to RPC), it was unexpected. I didn't even know to ask. Nowadays, if I want an upgrade, it's because I have more money than I anticipated, and can pay for it. I'm more than happy for Disney to choose to surprise people with pixie dust!
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Old 02-02-2013, 05:30 PM   #82
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We have been upgraded twice. Once at CR and once at Poly. Both times it was a complete surprise to us.
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Old 02-02-2013, 05:55 PM   #83
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I like the surprise and never expect it. I pay for what I want.
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Old 02-04-2013, 10:16 AM   #84
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Originally Posted by keishashadow View Post
special is in the eye of the beholder? lol most of our friends who visit less often than we do take turns designating one of their kids as having a milestone birthday, etc. even if it is actually months away. I'm not judging just know that there are a lot of people who spin a good tale.

when booking via CRO my DH and I have often wondered if the standard $20 bill trick upon checkin used in Vegas for room upgrades is ever is employed in WDW.
I used to get $20s slipped to me all the time... to which I would politely decline because we aren't allowed to take tips (again, works in Vegas and other places, just not here).

As for birthdays. I tell Guests all the time that fess up when I'm like, "Oh! I see it's so-and-so's birthday!" and they sheepishly go, "Well, not for a few weeks or next month or whatever".

I respond with, "Well, we here at Disney celebrate our own birthdays for 18 months at a time... what's a few more weeks for you?" Usually gets a few laughs.
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Old 02-04-2013, 10:18 AM   #85
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Originally Posted by FirstTripEver View Post
After the check-in process began, I kindly asked the CM, "how much more would it cost for us to upgrade to a larger room?"
Can't stress the bold part enough. Pretty sure you would have gotten a different response if you asked for a free upgrade.
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Old 02-04-2013, 10:23 AM   #86
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Originally Posted by Lynne M View Post
There's an important point here that I wanted to emphasize. When people talk about cast members being less than happy when they're asked for an upgrade, they're NOT talking about paid upgrades. No CM minds being asked how much it would cost to upgrade to a better room, why would they? It's more money for the hotel.

What doesn't go over quite so well is guests asking for free upgrades. Every hotel company has their own operational procedures, and at Disney hotels, directly asking for a free upgrade isn't going to work like it does at Vegas, or some other chains. Most upgrades are assigned in advance of your arrival. In the (less common) situation where a CM has the ability to grant a complimentary upgrade at check-in, it's the CM's choice who to give it to.

And given that choice, the CM would much rather give some nice, friendly guest a wonderful surprise and make their day, than just hand out the upgrade to someone who walks up and asks for it.

If you really, really want a complimentary upgrade, and you really, really want to ask, I'd strongly suggest phrasing it just like FirstTripEver did: "What would it cost to upgrade to a larger room?" Or club level, or a preferred room, or whatever you're looking for. That's a much pleasanter situation for the CM, and IF there's an upgrade available, gives them the chance to offer it to you.

If there aren't any upgrades available, they'll quote you the price difference, and if it's more than you care to pay, you can just politely decline.
Perfect! Again, when people kindly ask me what it costs to do a paid upgrade, if I can I usually do it comp if there is availability (that's the key word, availability!). Most comp upgrades are done per business need (like we're seriously oversold on a category that you booked, those upgrades are done days in advance of your arrival to fix inventory).

Lots of Cast Members think if that you're rude enough to ask for a free upgrade... that you're probably rude enough to start yelling at me if I couldn't (even if I wanted to). Usually, so it's not a negative situation by me telling you "no", if there is availability then I will give you the upgrade price and will only do a paid upgrade. Those who ask for paid upgrades, I'll most likely do it for the upgrade price (if there is availability) or comp if I can and there is a special occasion or something.

Last edited by Burnt Toast; 02-04-2013 at 10:32 AM.
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Old 02-04-2013, 10:26 AM   #87
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Originally Posted by Bob NC View Post
I'm just curious, you state this as fact, are you a front desk CM or is this your opinion?
I was a Front Desk CM and I can confirm that Lynne is saying. Of course, it varies from Resort to Resort... but again, we liked to choose when Magic happens, not have it to be demanded it be done. Unexpected Magic was always the best kind.
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Old 02-04-2013, 10:29 AM   #88
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Originally Posted by Lynne M View Post
And personally, I think that makes sense. Given that CMs don't always have upgrades to give out, a guest walking up and asking me for a free upgrade puts me in the position of having to say no to the guest, which makes the encounter a negative one. A guest asking me how much one would cost? I don't have to refuse the guest or disappoint the guest, I just give them the number. Maybe they're happy to pay it, and I get credit for an up-sell. Maybe I can give them an upgrade, and really make their day. The guest is happy, I'm happy, it's a Good Thing.
Bolded for truth. You're a smart one, Lynne!
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Old 02-04-2013, 11:07 AM   #89
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Originally Posted by nkereina View Post
If you don't ask, the answer is always no! It's no skin off the front desk employees' noses to give you an upgrade, so it's not rude to ask.
Okay, this is not really true. Lots of folks have reported getting upgrades without asking. It happens. Indeed, that's normally how it happens.

Second, there is a way to ask about this that's not tacky, and a way that is tacky. I think it's tacky to ask for a free upgrade, but there's nothing wrong with asking how much an upgrade would cost.

I've said many times, it never hurts to treat various employees you meet politely and kindly. Lots of time, at WDW and others, we've been given freebies just for being polite and for being a repeat customer.

If I am inclined to ask about a room upgrade not that often), then I ask what the price difference is. Sometimes, it's only a few dollars. You may find that to be true for you.

I'll never forget one trip I had where I planned to stay at ASMu on arrival night. Just after arriving, there was a sudden downpour. Suddenly, trudging to a room on the back of the property in the pouring rain with luggage, was less than appealing. Turns out, an upgraded room was only ten dollars!

Last minute cancelations also happen- so maybe when you booked- the room category above yours was not available (or not available withthe discount you booked) but now it is (for the difference in price). So like the difference between a "Standard" view and the next category up might only be $5 a night- even at the deluxes!

Sometimes upgrading is more than I want to pay, and that's okay too.

I've been to WDW many times....once in a great while we get free upgrades without saying anything at all.

Either way, I'm sure your stay at GF will be very enjoyable. I often stay at deluxes in the least expensive rooms, and I'm often surprised by how nice they turn out to be.
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Old 02-04-2013, 01:30 PM   #90
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Originally Posted by Burnt Toast View Post
I was a Front Desk CM and I can confirm that Lynne is saying. Of course, it varies from Resort to Resort... but again, we liked to choose when Magic happens, not have it to be demanded it be done. Unexpected Magic was always the best kind.
I AGREE!!! The unexpected Magic is the real kind!!!
anyway hope it smiles down on me when I go....
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