Getting The Hotel Bed You Ask For Is Only For The Elite At Hyatt

When Rosalie and her husband reserved a room at a Hyatt Place hotel, they thought that by requesting two queen-size beds, they were reserving two queen-size beds. This is not so: they were requesting two queen-size beds, and the couple learned this the hard way. This wasn’t just a case of travel preferences and first world problems: Rosalie suffers from severe back problems, and needs a nice, immobile bed to herself in order to prevent Even More Pain.

She learned something important: in the future, she would need to mention her medical need for two separate beds in the room. She chose instead to stop staying at Hyatt hotels altogether, and post about the experience on her blog.

…[W]e didn’t get the room with double beds that we had reserved online. In fact, all the rooms with double beds were in use, so we were given a room with a king-sized bed in it instead. This wasn’t acceptable to me because of my back issues: [my husband] flops & snores, and I like to be as immobile as possible. It was late at night & I was already hurting after the long drive there, so we just went up to the room. The next day I complained, and the manager gave me a measly 10% off. I took that because I wasn’t in the mood to hassle, we were in a hurry, and I figured later on I’d email someone to bitch.

I filled out their online contact form and finally heard back from someone in Consumer Affairs today. I was going to name names in this post but decided against it because I’m better than that (but just barely).

Their first email said:

I am truly sorry that your request for two double beds could not be honored. When a hotel experience many guests requesting the same bed type; the hotel will be out of all the requested beds. Since you have a medical need situation; please let us know prior to arrival so your room can be blocked for you.

I replied:

We *booked* the room with the double beds. We have the receipt to prove it. They pulled us up in the computer and saw it too. So then why was it given away before we got there? That is the issue. My back issues being told ahead of time or not, they still gave our room away – and that is unacceptable.

She said:

I am truly sorry this is upsetting. The hotel did see your request for doubles; they were out of doubles. Bed type is on request only; did you arrive late to the hotel. We give rooms on first come basis upon arrival. Again, our sincere apology; the hotel would have provided double beds if they had any left.

Then I was irritated enough to call. I spoke with two lower level people who were pleasant enough, but they said that just because you request a room doesn’t mean you’ll get that room. I was not really happy with that response, so I spoke with a supervisor who was a total bitch. In fact, she ended up being really wrong in what she said. According to her, on the website & in email confirmations, it says “request,” not “reservation.” She said you request the room; you don’t actually reserve it. But nowhere on the site or in our confirmation email did I see that word. I said that, to me, a reservation seems like a guarantee. She said nowhere does it say that you are guaranteed what you request – you are just guaranteed a room.

My head started spinning. Why bother making a reservation in the first place then? Why did they bother sending a confirmation email with a photo of a double bed? She was actually playing semantics with me. When I tried to explain the huge inconvenience this caused me because of my chronic pain, she said she has back issues from time to time too. Apparently they aren’t that bad because she’s able to work & get snotty with customers whereas I’m disabled and wanted my own bed to sleep in. She was rude. Granted, I probably raised my voice first, but it’s her job to keep her cool. And nowhere did it say request like she insisted. I even went back to their site & went through the steps to make a new reservation just to see if the word “reservation” changed to “request” at any time; it didn’t.

While the difference between a “reservation” and a “request” isn’t spelled out in the reservation checkout process, this is an item addressed in the reservation FAQs. Turns out that the chain does guarantee the bed type that you reserve, but only for members of their loyalty program who have reached a certain level (five stays or fifteen nights in one year.) As it says in frequently asked question number 10:

10. Does Hyatt guarantee my reservation bed type preference?

This benefit is reserved for Hyatt Gold Passport® Platinum and Diamond members only and is available at Hyatt Hotels & Resorts® worldwide, Hyatt Place and Hyatt Summerfield Suites. Hyatt Gold Passport Platinum and Diamond members will be guaranteed the bed type (i.e. king, queen, double etc.) for the room type selected at the time of reservation. If the hotel is unable to honor the bed type at check-in, members will receive 5000 Hyatt Gold Passport bonus points and their room will be changed the next day for the requested bed type.

It sounds like Rosalie, for one, isn’t interested in staying at another Hyatt often enough to reach Platinum status.

Hyatt Place review: they suck! [Totally Rosalie]