3. DO pay attention to loyalty program offers provided by the hotels themselves. Hotel companies have started to step up their promotions and offerings. Starwood is one such brand that has really led the industry with their "Bring on the nights" and "Take two" promotions. These really add great value (and you can really rack up the points!)
4. DO provide your loyalty or rewards program information when you are making the reservation. The sooner the hotel has your information, the sooner they can make sure you receive the recognition. Rooms controllers (the staff who actually block hotel rooms) pay close attention to frequent reward guests and if the hotel is going to be sold out, these rewards guests (even if they are in the basic category) are often given priority room blocks and even upgrades. (This point cannot be stressed enough!)
5. DO crosscheck information on websites with at least one other website or with guest reviews. Sometimes amenities such as "free wifi" are only free in the lobby. (Or are only for one device.--Ed.)
6. DO make a note of names and positions of staff members when calling the hotel to make a reservation request or booking a special amenity. Hotels almost always have guests saying "…but I spoke to someone at the desk…." Well, Mr. Someone is not here right now....
7. DO take hotels seriously when they throw down a "best rate" guarantee. Many of the big hotel brands have made great strides to ensure that their website does offer the best deal. On top of that, booking through a verified hotel website makes it a more hassle-free experience. (See point #1 above.)
8. DO provide as much information regarding your name and home address when making a reservation. Also, review your reservation confirmation when it is emailed to you. Yes, that sounds silly, but mistakes are always made with spellings and addresses and hotels often have multiple guests with the same name. This can make a big difference with one guest being a platinum member versus one who is not! (See point #5 above.)
9. DO pay attention to all the booking perks available to you as a hotel loyalty programmember. Oftentimes even a "basic" loyalty member is entitled to a personalized reservation line that can really make one feel special and even speed up the booking process.
Stay tuned tomorrow when we run down the DON'TS of booking a hotel room!