Twenty bucks could get you a sweet Vegas hotel upgrade

We all know that hotels have various tiers of room quality; one can pay 50$ for that smoke stained single on the first floor or 1000$ for the honeymoon suite on the 60th. And for most of us, the cheap room is fine — we just need a place to stay for the night. But what if you could stay in a nicer room for at or near the price of the cheap one?

Upgrades aren’t all that uncommon; occasionally a hotel will sell out of a particular tier of a room and bump any latecomers into the next tier up (car rental companies do the same thing). But usually upgrades only come if you’re an elite hotel club member or the hotel is overbooked.

Suppose then, that you were to subtly increase the chances of obtaining an upgrade when you got to the desk to check in. Suppose, say, that a twenty dollar bill found its way under your credit card when you handed it to the clerk and you asked politely if there were any upgrades available. Would that help the cause?

Apparently it could. actually has a thread on the topic centered around Las Vegas that I’ve been following for the last couple of years (yes, years) with an astonishing success rate of over 74%.

Forum members are split on how exactly this works. Some think that the desk agent is actually just giving you a room that’s 20$ higher in the fare bracket. But most have reported getting significant upgrades, from beautiful rooms with views, to concierge service to other goodies, all for the extra twenty bucks.

Of course, I’ve never been brave enough to try this myself (I also never visit Vegas). The whole awkwardness of potentially being turned down is too much for me. But for those of you brave souls out there willing to give it a try, you’ve got a good chance of being upgraded. Check out the tread for some tips.