Most of us stay at hotels when we travel and most of us are always looking to get more out of the experience. Whether it’s learning the rules of the road or how to maximize our hotel points, this is a topic almost every traveler has an opinion on. That’s why we thought it was the perfect topic for our May Twitter chat.
What is a Twitter chat? For those not familiar, TripIt holds a monthly chat on Twitter on the third Thursday of each month from 2-3pm Pacific Time on the hashtag #TripItChat. Every month there’s a new travel topic where we encourage participants to share advice with one another. To learn more, please see: http://landlopers.com/2013/05/01/tripitchat/
Here are some of the key takeaways from our last #TripItChat on Hotels: Etiquette, Points & Hacks.
Most frequent, or even infrequent, travelers belong to a hotel rewards program, but they’re not all made the same. We asked everyone to share their favorite hotel rewards program and as well as some examples of the perks that make them so great.
- At their root, hotel rewards programs should be all about getting points, and that’s what drives @goodglobalcitiz who said she uses both Hyatt Rewards and Marriot Rewards for points toward hotel stays on her vacations.
- In addition to points, most rewards programs have special perks and for chat co-hosts @ThePlanetD one of the most important is the ability to enjoy both early check-in and late checkout.
- One of the most popular hotels named in the chat was @Kimpton which has some alternative perks like complimentary happy hours and a Raid the Mini Bar perk.
- Some other favorite perks mentioned were free Wi-Fi, automatic upgrades and complimentary breakfasts.
Some Are Better Than Others
People tend to be fiercely loyal to particular hotels and brands so we wanted to know everyone’s go-to hotel and why.
- For chat co-host @RickGriffin his go-to brand is the luxury fan favorite @RitzCarlton, thanks to their superior and consistent service.
- Chat participant @nickmil said that he loves Aloft due to their modern finishes, stand-up showers and funky lobby bars.
- For travel pro @LeeAbbamonte two hotel brands stand out, the luxury hotel collections @FairmontHotels & @FourSeasons
- Not everyone is loyal to one brand though like chatter @twoifbyair who admits to “playing the game” and not staying loyal to just one hotel or brand.
Golden Rule of Hotels
Hotels are little villages unto themselves and just like any real mini-town there are unwritten rules we all have to abide by. Our chatters had a great time sharing both their pet peeves and best hotel etiquette tips with the entire group.
- Chat participant @dailysuitcase brought up the important point of tipping! It’s important we all tip the housekeeper and other professionals who make our stay more enjoyable.
- Many chatters pointed out the importance of being a responsible guest. Hang up your towels and don’t change sheets daily to be eco-friendly and kinder to housekeepers.
- Other great hotel tips include: don’t be too loud, don’t leave your hotel room a mess and always be nice.
All the Points
Points mean a lot to most frequent travelers and hotel reward programs can be a great way to enjoy free room nights on your next vacation. But there’s a lot to know about this sometimes confusing world of getting more points, so we asked the experts to share their best tips for increasing their point totals.
- The most popular answer was echoed by chat participant @JeffGreif who advised getting hotel branded credit cards for more points. Just read the fine print and be responsible!
- Hotels also offer creative ways to earn points as @twoifbyair pointed out, mentioning the SPG Crossover Rewards with Uber and Delta.
- For others the hotel points don’t matter as much as airline miles, like @flyingwithfish who transfers hotel points to his favorite airlines.
The Ultimate Hotel
It’s always fun to dream about the best travel experiences imaginable, so we asked our great chatters to share what features their ultimate hotel experience would include. The answers will make you want to book a room somewhere soon!
- We love to travel but it’s always nice to feel like we’re at home and for chatter @cybycmu that’s the feeling they love most at a hotel.
- @Jetaport loves hotels that are self-contained featuring the best restaurants, bars, spas and more.
- Other folks like @lillekasvol2 were more practical who want everyday concerns taken into consideration like showers for both short and tall people, outlets next to the beds for phones and places to sit and relax that’s not the bed.
- Other popular “dream” features included: champagne amenities, plush beds, luxurious pools, soaking tubs and strong water pressure.
Don’t forget to join us for the next #TripItChat. They’re held on the third Thursday of every month at 5 pm EST. Chat you then!