You’ve limited your travel to road trips and staycations all pandemic long, but now you’re finally ready to take to the skies and check out a fancy bucket-list destination outside the country. As a determined revenge traveler, you want to make sure that you’re maximizing on the opportunity and cashing in on every perk, reward and upgrade possible. But what’s the best way to go about it? Find out more below.
So, what’s the one phrase you can use to get a travel upgrade?
Well, according to Lorraine Lam, founder, SnowboardHow, all you have to do is ask. But the key is to make sure your approach is friendly and genuine, not entitled. “Just say, ‘I was curious if you have any upgrades available. I love traveling with X airline/hotel and want to let my friends and family know how well they treat their customers,’” Lam says. Not only will that statement set you up for an upgrade or perk, but it also offers free marketing for the hotel or airline.
“It ends up being a win-win situation for both sides, and I’ve used this to get everything from a room upgrade to free travel points and referral discounts,” she explains. “It’s vital to use this tactic in a very friendly manner rather than with a tone that you expect something for free. If you are snobby or mean, you will really limit the chances of getting a free upgrade or perk.”
Axel Hemborg, CEO of Tripplo—a website providing travel discounts and deals—concurs. “Being simple, straightforward and polite is the best way to ask,” Hemborg says. “Airline staff deal with people using manipulative tactics to win upgrades on a daily basis. So, take a different approach: Just walk up, and inform them that if there are any upgrades available, you would like to be considered. It's that simple. They may even appreciate your candidness and award you the first-class experience that you're looking for.”
So, if you want to try your luck at snagging a room with a view or getting some extra legroom on the plane, just ask nicely. Easy, right?