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7 Ways to Score a Free Hotel Upgrade

7 Ways to Score a Free Hotel Upgrade

Read on to find out 7 different ways to score a free hotel upgrade that you can use during your next trip:

1. Be really nice. Dress well

Front desk staff and hotel managers deal with lots and lots of people. Be polite, friendly and act nicely when dealing with them. Dress nicely- hotels don’t want to give away free room upgrades ‘just because’. Sometimes the way you look and act can go a long way when aiming to score a free hotel upgrade.

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2. Join the loyalty programs

You will have a better chance to score a free hotel upgrade if you are loyal to the hotel and provide repeated business. All the big chains have loyalty programs, make sure to join them. Let the hotels know that you are a rewards program member. Also, make sure to let the hotels know if you have stayed there before (or you can just say that you did). The reasoning behind this is that it is hard to acquire new customers and consequently hotels will give you special treatment if you are a returning customer. This will increase your chances of scoring a free hotel upgrade.

3. Check in late

Timing is key. Do not check in early in the morning. Wait to check in later, the best is between 4-6pm because this way the front desk can see the cancellations and no-shows of the day. Booking dates can also have a huge influence on your chances of scoring a free hotel upgrade. Aim not to book your stay during busy dates because upgrades cannot be given if the hotel is at full capacity.

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4. Make it a special occasion

Just make it one- it doesn’t really matter what is it. Let the hotel know prior to your booking if you are going to be spending your birthday or anniversary there. If you are not celebrating anything, make sure to make out of your stay a special occasion. Whether it is an anniversary or a divorce, let them know you have something to celebrate. This way you’ll boost your chances that they’ll treat you to a free hotel upgrade.

5. The $20 trick

Ever heard of the $20 trick? It goes like this: slip the person that is checking you in at the front desk a $20 bill between your credit card and passport and ask if they have any “complimentary” room upgrades available. It is no secret that the front desk folks are not making very much money. This is an old trick that you can learn more about online. It even has multiple websites dedicated to it such as Frontdesktip and Twentydollartrick.

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6. The business card trick

This is fresh out of Justin Ross Lee’s collection of tricks on how to maximize what you get for your money when traveling.This is an easy trick that only requires some research and preparation prior to your trip. Many large companies have agreements with hotels to get their rooms at discount rates. For example, a room might be $1k per night usually, but Remington gets it for 199$. You just need to conduct research and print your business card for $4.99 prior to your trip to become a Remington employee for the night. You can learn more about this trick from its creator Justin Ross Lee.

7. Do some research

Make sure to do at least 45 minutes of research prior to your check in at the hotel. If everything else fails, you will be able to leverage this research to obtain a free upgrade. Find out about the nearby hotels, the different room types the hotel you are staying at has to offer and the name of the managers on duty at your hotel. Once you check into your room, carefully scan the whole room in search of something that might not be working (you can even pretend something isn’t working if you don’t find anything, as Justin Ross Lee suggests; for example, lighting a match in a non-smoking room). Once you find the issue, call front desk and let them know you wouldn’t like to have to change to the nearby hotel XYZ just because this issue is going on in your room. They will offer you a change of room and it will most likely come with a complimentary upgrade.

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Last Updated on September 16, 2019

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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  • (1) Research
  • (2) Deciding the topic
  • (3) Creating the outline
  • (4) Drafting the content
  • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
  • (6) Revision
  • (7) etc.

Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

2. Change Your Environment

Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

6. Get a Buddy

Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

7. Tell Others About Your Goals

This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

Reality check:

I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

More About Procrastination

Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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