Loew's First Confusion at Universal


Aug 20, 1999
I made a reservation via 1-800-uescape yesterday at HRH using the Entertainment Book for a pool view room. I forgot to enter my Loew's First number so I called Loew's 800 number today to do so. They found my reservation but told me that since it was for EB rate that I would receive no benefits. Even said it would not be worth entering my number, and didn't. I then called the uescape number and they entered my Loew's First number on the reservation. Question - has anyone using the EB rate to book at HRH or PB gotten any welcome gifts, upgrades, etc.

This doesn't seem right as many hotels offer discounted rates off the rack rate and don't deny points, etc., to their club members. What gives?
This is fairly standard practice in the travel industry. None of those "free" benefits are truly free. Loews gives bonuses only to those paying a certain rate. The idea is to reward people who pay a higher price. Most of these promotional deals are aimed at business travelers who can picvk their hotel but who don't actually pay the tab (their company does). So they'll book at the higher rate and get the benefits instead of saving their cvompany money by using the Entertainment rate and not getting the benefits.

Same goes with airline tickets, especially international ones. It's possible to get a cheaper ticket but you won't get FF miles when you do.

Kelly Monaghan
Author of "Universal Orlando: The Ultimate Guide to the Ultimate Theme Park Adventure" and
"The Other Orlando: What To Do When You've Done Disney & Universal"
<img height=100 src=http://www.theotherorlando.com/images/use.jpg> <img height=100 src=http://www.theotherorlando.com/images/orl3.jpg>>
Kelly - I agree with you to a point but can tell you from experience that neither Marriott nor Hilton denies you club benefits for discounted rates to include the entertainment book rates. Continental Airlines denies you frequent flyer points when you use your mileage to cash in for a ticket but still gives all other benefits on purchased tickets regardless of price. I have never encountered the Loews policy before. Universal should make this clear when you call. I am going in an off-time and would love to get an upgrade if available. By the way, we have your book.
Hi Packy,
I booked my vacation through a travel agent. Had my Loew's card with me, showed it at check-in.
They told me there were no upgrades available. I was told I would have a fruit basket at 4:00 p.m. following day, nothing. Never received an amenity. So much for the Loew's card.
I definitely would not let these issues spoil my fun vacation!
I think Kelly is right-on with his comments.
Remember, the Loew's membership is free, so if you get anything at all, consider yourself very lucky!

I have been reading way too many people needing to call "guest services" for the Loew's welcome gift because they never recieve it. Some have called several times too. This seems to be a hotel customer service problem and not really the fault of Loews First. However, if your a Loews member and entitled to this benefit, you shouldn't have to call and beg for it.

Actually, I sent Loews an email and made them aware of the fact that too many people booking at HRH and Portofino are not receiving their benefits. Many of them are not necessarily "entertainment card" people either.
Loews advertises a product and a perk and they should make sure that their hotels follow through.

My email may get lost in the shuffle of all other complaints, but at least I tried. Maybe they will fix it by the time I get there. ha! ;)

<font color="003399">UneAmie, creator of: </font>"Poetry Parlor", a romantic poetry reading room...come see!

<font color="003399">when you wish upon a star, makes no difference who you are, but if ya wanna discount ya better live in Florida!</font>
A guest is a guest and should be treated as such no matter what they paid, rack or ER. After all, there are thousands of rooms to choose from and a guest should receive a thank you gift for choosing the more expensive hotel. I will be arriving 9/13/01 and will politely request every day until I receive my fruit basket!

Due to the FOTL perk, I really could care less about the other Loews perks, however, it seems to be rather inconsistent.
Is it just the entertainment card rate that does not get the perks? If I find a rate for HRH on the web for 136.00 per night ( 7 dollars more than we paid with enter. card), will I get the perks then, or is it supposed to be all prices lower than rack rate, no matter where you book thru? Seems that it has become the luck of the draw. Well, I hope that the ones that really need the upgrades will be lucky enough to get them. We didn't have to have more space than our room allowed.

Uneamie - took your approach and sent an email to Loews asking them to clarify the Loews first progarm and what constitutes a 'group or negotiated' rate. About a week ago I received from Loews First an offer for a room at Portofino for $199 night. Now I wonder if this was with or without Loews First benefits since it was obviously a group rate for Loews First members only.
Please let us know their response when and if you receive one. I have not received a word in regards to the email I sent...but then again I was complaining and I guess they had nothing to say about it.

Frankly I can live with out my "milk and cookies" and the upgrade. :D However, I get more and more frustrated these days over the growing lack of good customer service from many companies, as well as advertising hypes that lure customers in only to force you to read some fine print, because the deal ends up "not" being what you thought it was.

<font color="003399">UneAmie, creator of: </font>"Poetry Parlor", a romantic poetry reading room...come see!

<font color="003399">when you wish upon a star, makes no difference who you are, but if ya wanna discount ya better live in Florida!</font>


I was at HRH April 4-8th. I also got the ER and asked at check in if an upgrade was possible. Unfortunately they were full and therefore could not accomodate the upgrade. My garden view room was fine. Beautifully decorated and spacious enough for a family of 3. I did call for my fruit basket and it arrived the next day. We had a wonderful time and the FOTL was fantastic during the holiday week(end). :)
Dianne -
Just tell us that the fruit basket that you got was all dried up and full of bugs and I won't feel discriminated against, because, we, like you, paid entertainment rate. I hope somebody tells me that the cookies are stale, too, cause that is what I asked for!! LOL

I will post the response from Loews as soon as, and if, I receieve one. I am not dying for a fruit basket (an upgrade if they're not full would be nice though) but I think what bothered me after I got off the phone was the attitude (although I must say the Loews agent was very nice) that 'how could you lowly creatures paying only $130 night expect to get any special treatment'. Well, $130 is not really bare bones when considering we are splitting our trip with Disney where I was quoted $89 night for the moderates during the last week of August. My bottom line is that if you are going to offer benefits of membership to encourage follow-on visits you shouldn't discriminate against members who take advantage of your better rates.
I have been to the Portofino 4 times in the last year, and I have always used my annual pass discount (30%). As a matter of fact, I bought the pass for that reason. I have always received my ammenity without asking, sometimes even had it waiting in my room upon arrival. I have received Loews credit for each stay-- now I'm Loews Gold due to my stays at the PBH. I expect that when I'm there next I will be able to upgrade (if available) to a suite for $35 as they say...wish me luck.

The first time I went to the Portofino I was given second class status("you're already paying a discounted rate") but the the service has been MUCH better since then.
If the fruit baskets at HRH are anything like the one I received at PBH,then you're not missing a thing. All the fruit, except the apple, was too hard to eat. It never did ripen up while we were there!

As far as upgrades, I've always gotten the annual passholders rate and was upgraded from reg to bayview without a loews first card. I think it depends more on availability plus we go in off-season.
Here is the response from Loews I received when I asked them if they could explain what constitued a 'group or negotiated rate' in connection with the Loews agent telling me the EB rate did not qualify for any benefits. This doesn't help much.

"Our Loews First program has been designed for the everyday leisure traveler.
Because of this discount, group and negotiated rates do not qualify for credit
in the Loews First program or amenities at the property. For your convenience I
am sending you a copy of our 2001 Membership Guide. Should you need further
information or experience further challenges please call our Loews First
Customer Service line at 800-LOEWS-12.

Thank you for contacting Loews."
Dont'you just love those canned responses???
Makes a person feel real special... :rolleyes:

I don't think that constituted a real answer, but I bet they hope you will just move on and accept it.

<font size="4"><font color="#841004"><font face="Comic Sans MS">
<marquee direction="right" align="middle" behavior="alternate">Just My Pooh Opinion!!</marquee></font>
<font face="Comic Sans MS" size=3 color="#841004">And That's The Truth!!</font>


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