Last week I was thinking about what new topic I should write about, what would people want to learn? And then something accidental and awesome happened to me at work...
I work for a state agency. There is one person who handles all the travel for everyone who works here. Because we are a part of the state and we are here to help people, there is a limit on how much we can spend when we travel (of course we cant get the presidential suite). Let's say, for the sake of round numbers, that amount is $100 a night on hotel rooms. One day last week, the girl who does travel was out sick and I was "voluntold" to book some small things for that day, a couple of hotel rooms and flights. I looked up the maximum that we could spend on hotel rooms quickly and in my haste to get work done, saw the number wrong. Instead of $100 a night, I thought it was $75 a night. I called the hotel that we needed to book, and asked how much the price would be. "The price is $100 a night" the kind lady told me. My response was, "Is there any way we can pay $75? that would be a better price for us." She put me on hold for a few minutes, and when she came back on the line, her answer was yes. My accidental misread caused me to ask, which resulted in a discount. The moral of the story is: Ask and you might receive.
When was the last time you simply asked for what you wanted?
It's not necessarily the first thing we think of doing when we are booking a vacation, but when you're traveling broke like I am, its something you should consider. What's the worse thing that can happen? You might get told 'No', but you never know until you try. On your next trip, find a hotel that is everything you want it to be and give them a call and see if they are will to give you a lower price.
From flight and hotel upgrades, to free items and discounts, the best way to get them is 1) to be nice and 2) to simply ask for them when the time is right. Flight attendants, counter workers at the airline, and check in clerks at the hotel are gatekeepers to the free upgrade to first class or that beautiful suite with the view of the swim out pool. So remember, please and thank you go a loooong way. Here are a couple more tips:
If you are celebrating an occasion, make sure you let people know. Honeymoon's, birthdays, and bachelorette party are a good reason to get perks.
Make sure you sign up for membership if the hotel you're visiting or they airline you're flying has one.
Arriving late to check in to your hotel might not be a bad thing, as regular rooms fill up, upgraded ones are often the all that's left.
I hope these few tips help! If there is anything specific you want to know about, leave a comment below or shoot me an email.