It’s been a year since Marriott took over the beloved Starwood program. Our credit card earnings have been devalued and customer service has gone down the drain. Luckily Marriott gave us a verb we can use when things go wrong: Bonvoyed.
Residence Inn Surfside Florida:
I went to Miami for 1 night last month to go to the bris of my brother Dovid’s son. I figured I’d use one of the anniversary nights that come with the Marriott cards, so I booked a stay at the Residence Inn Surfside.
I got to the hotel at noon and they said that they had no available rooms, but they did have a prize wheel at checkin which I spun and won 300 points. W00t!
My brother JJ lives in the area, so we went out to eat at 26 and waited a couple of hours until they called letting me know that my room is ready.
I have Marriott Titanium status, which means that hotels are supposed to upgrade me to a standard suite if there is availability. So at the front desk I asked about a suite upgrade and was told that none were available.
I didn’t need a suite for the night as I was by myself, but I figured pictures of a suite would be nice for a trip report, if I decided to write one.
I went up to my room and started unpacking when I decided to take a look at the app. Sure enough, there were standard suites still for sale. I called the front desk and they explained that there were suites, but they weren’t available yet. However, if I checked back later in the day they could switch me over if they were available.
So I went back a few hours later and the front desk agent said that she checked, but everything was sold out.
Not taking her at her word, I opened the Marriott app and showed her the rooms for sale. First she claimed that the app wasn’t updated, so I asked what would happen if I booked the room now?
She went to the back to talk to a manager, who said I couldn’t have the upgrade because I already checked into my room.
But it’s a great hotel if you want to see how the do not disturb sign never actually working. There were knocks on my room at 12:30am, 9:30am, and 10:30am.
Marriott and the hotel had no response to my emails, though they promised a follow up a month ago. I’m also not holding my breath on when the 300 points will post from the checkin wheel.
It’s back to the S. Regis Bal Harbour for me next time. Luckily I still have several stays reserved there from when it was on sale for 48K points/night.
Front desk @Res_InnSurfside: Sorry we're sold out of suites for the night, so no Titanium upgrades.
Go to room and check the app, only to see there are several suites for sale.
Front desk: Sorry, you've already used the room, so no upgrades.#Bonvoyed pic.twitter.com/KsvNuOIsbp
— DansDeals (@DansDeals) July 7, 2019
Checked out at front desk. No follow up. #bonvoyed
— DansDeals (@DansDeals) July 8, 2019
Thank you so much for your kind words! ^DM
— Hyatt Concierge (@HyattConcierge) July 9, 2019
Westin Harbour Castle Toronto:
I went with my grandfather to Toronto for a night last month to catch the Indians play the Jays.
He used his anniversary night for the room that was expiring within the month and then added me onto the reservation.
Surprisingly they recognized us as Titanium members despite me being an additional guest on the reservation. No upgrade was offered, but I wasn’t expecting one given that I was merely an additional guest. Though the room key was in a Titanium Elite cardholder that said to enjoy our “upgrade.”
I’m a fan of Quaker Oatmeal Squares, which are only certified parve in Canada. I had ordered a case from Amazon and they had them for me at the hotel.
At checkout I was surprised to see a charge for $57 for package receipt. When we travel to a hotel in a location without kosher food I often order a toaster oven to the hotel and I’ve never been charged by the hotel for that privilege. The front desk explained that it was because a 3rd party located in the hotel’s basements handles package acceptance.
So I went to the basement and they were happy to waive the charge. They also called the front desk to have them remove the charge from my folio and the front desk reprinted my zero folio.
After the stay I noticed that both my account and my grandfather’s account were missing an anniversary night.
Marriott.com doesn’t show redeemed certificates, so if I wasn’t paying attention to what I previously had, I would have been #Bonvoyed.
I sent a direct message to @MBonvoyAssist and at first they claimed that only I was debited the anniversary night. After I explained that my grandfather made the reservation and had been debited the anniversary night before the stay they were able to confirm the system bug that took certificates out of both of our accounts and they returned my anniversary night.
Then I noticed that my credit card had been charged for the package delivery!
Once again I direct messaged @MBonvoyAssist and asked why I had a credit card charge if I had a zero folio balance. They said they investigated and it was due to the package delivery. Once again I explained that we had already gone through this and the charge was waived and removed from the folio, so why was my credit card charged?
Supposedly the charge will be reversed. Eventually.
Make sure you have your eyes wide open if you’re staying with Marriott and don’t want to find yourself #Bonvoyed!