Las Vegas is a different animal than most other cities in the United States. It’s the “whatever happens here stays here” city, it’s Sin City. the City of Neon and America’s Adult Playground. It is also a city where hotel rates not only change daily, they can change hourly.
Frequent visitors to the city know that after they have booked to keep checking rates to see if they have lowered. One of the reasons not to book with a wholesaler. With a wholesaler you are pretty much locked in and trying to cancel and re-book, if even possible, is a nightmare.
Then there are the cases where the prospective guest doesn’t understand the flexibility or hotel rates in Las Vegas or that other things that happened last time don’t happen this time. These are the “Last time I stayed here…” conversations.
Guest checking in: Last time I booked the same room and I got upgraded to the other tower with a strip view.
Me: Well I am not sure why you received that upgrade last time. I have the room you booked available and I have you on the 8th floor. If you would like to be in the other tower with a strip view the upgrade is $20/night.
Guest: That doesn’t seem fair?
Me: but you are getting the room that you booked at the price you booked.
Guest: but last time I got the room I want this time.
Me: Well that room is available for a $20/night upgrade if you want to change from the room you booked.
Guest: Why should I pay for an upgrade when I should get it for free like last time.
Me: You got the upgrade because someone, for some reason, gave you that upgrade for free. This time it is not a free upgrade. Not every booking is upgraded.
Guest: Fine, just give me the room I have.
Me: Thank you, here are your keys.
(Prospective guest walks up to counter)
PG: Hi, I stayed here in December and I really enjoyed my stay here and I was wanting to come back in September again. Can you tell me the rates for the 21st-24th please.
Me: So glad that you enjoyed your stay with us last time and that you are considering us again. The rate for those 3 nights is $XXX.
PG: What? Last time I was here I got the room for $XX. I don’t understand why the rate is so high.
Me: Well, when you stayed in December it was our low season and you are looking to book during the Life is Beautiful festival and rates increase significantly during events like this.
PG: Oh, well I am not going to that so what is the real rate.
Me: That is the rate. Our base rate for those days is $XXX.
PG: I don’t understand if the rate in December was $XX and I am not going to this festival I should get the same rate.
Me: It has no bearing on whether you are attending. We base our rates on occupancy and events going on in town. I would be happy to book the room for you but the rate is $XXX.
PG: Well then, I guess you don’t want my business. I am going to book elsewhere.
Me: Sorry we couldn’t get you a booking today. Good luck with your plans.
(phone call from prospective guest)
PG: Hi, last year I had an offer for 3 free nights and $100 in free play. This year, I didn’t get an offer.
Me: Oh, sorry about that. Do you have your player number? I can see if there is anything available to you.
PG: Yes, it is 123456.
Me: Ok, just one moment and I will look you up…. Sir, I see that the last time you visited us was in 2015.
PG: Yes, that sounds right.
Me: Well, because of the lag in time, I am unable to offer you any upfront comps but I can book you a room and then based on your play we may be able to reduce your rate at checkout.
PG: Oh… well then let’s just use last year’s offer that I didn’t use.
Me: There is an expiration date on that offer and it expired a year ago. We can’t honor it at this time.
PG: but I never used it. If I didn’t use it then it should still be good.
Me: I am sorry but our offers do have expiration dates.
PG: So, just use it this time and change the date. If I didn’t use it you should be able to change it.
Me: I am sorry, I can’t use that offer. Do you have a host that you used to deal with?
PG: Yes, I just talked to him and he wouldn’t comp me either.
Me: If they said they can’t comp you then I can’t either. They are the people that tell me who I can comp.
PG: Well why didn’t you tell me that in the first place.
Fun times 🙂