There has been some noise about possible changes to Hilton Honors Gold and Diamond member complimentary upgrades after an app update.
Hilton has been pushing eStandby Upgrades for years at the time of making the booking, and there is also a “Request Upgrade” tab on the Apple and Android apps (relies on the same company and process).
You can access Hilton here.
READ MORE: Hilton Honors Rate & Bonus Points Offers
When you confirm a reservation or view it later, there is usually a box that offers upgrades for a small amount of cash.
When you click the link, you will get the Nor1 screen that usually lists several upgrades and other options (early check-in, F&B credit, late check-out, etc.) at a price. These are NOT confirmed instantaneously but at the time of checking in.
There is an option on the app to “Request Upgrade,” which is also handled by the same company, Nor1.
You get the same options as on the web version.
The prices here are not as discounted.
I never check in using the app (basically no benefit at full-service or luxury properties), never has, so I cannot confirm how these Nor1 upgrades are presented during that process.
Per the information I have gathered, it appears that this check-in process is pushing these paid eStandby upgrades.
Statement from the Hilton Spokesperson:
Thanks for your interest in Hilton Honors and for the opportunity to correct and clarify some confusion about our recent upgrade of the Hilton Honors app to allow members to purchase a guaranteed room upgrade.
While this capability is new to the app, it is the same capability and practice that has been available to guests when they book online at Hilton.com.
This represents no change to our benefit of complimentary space-available room upgrades for our elite Honors members.
Since last November, we’ve awarded more than one million complimentary room upgrades to our Gold and Diamond members. Complimentary space-available upgrades for Gold and Diamond members will continue to be available worldwide based on hotel availability, member status and reservation details.
Hilton introduced Global Automated Upgrades in 2021:
It wouldn’t surprise me if hotels would more aggressively merchandise their upgrade inventory in the future.
They must, however, be quite delicate, or they will piss off elite members who rely on upgrades as one of the deciding factors whether to achieve elite status or not.
Hotels offer early check-ins and late check-outs for cash for those not eligible for them based on elite status or rate booked.
I have been quite satisfied with upgrades that international properties extend to Diamond members, and this Global Automated Upgrades has streamlined the process. I expect the upgrades to be even better next year when I’ll pass the 1,000-night mark and become a lifetime Diamond (mine or theirs).
Have you experienced changes in how Hilton hotels have processed upgrades and is the app pushing more paid upgrades during check-in?