How do people get "surprise" upgrades at check-in?
Read so many boards from people who check-in and find they have been upgraded to a suite or much better cabin. How does this happen and how do you get an upgrade? Better to book through cruise line or agency? Are they "guarantee" cabins? Have taken cruises with Carnival before but never get an upgrade. A penny for your thoughts.
Its been my experience that the best way to get an upgrade is to book a guarantee category cabin. For example, I booked an 8A guarantee on the Pride leaving this Sunday. I was booked into an 8D. The other way to get an upgrade is your loyalty to a certain cruise line. The cruise lines all have loyalty programs and Carnival is no exception. There are times when a sailing is not full that you can get upgraded but I think this is the exception and not the rule. I do not think it really matters much if you book with a Travel Agent or directly with the cruise line. There was a day when a good travel agent could work miracles but those days are pretty much a thing of the past. It also never hurts to ask on cruise day. You never know...if the planets are all aligned just right and its high tide and a leap year and....well you get the idea...You might get lucky and get upgraded at the pier.
RCCL Voyager of the Seas 2002
Orient Lines Marco Polo 2003
Celebrity Mercury 2003
Celebrity Summit 2004
Celebrity Infinity 2005
Clipper Cruises Yankee Clipper 2006
Avalon Cruises Artistry 2006
Carnival Pride 2007
I booked my son and his gf into a balcony guarantee (8A) and they wound up in a cat 11. First time cruising with Carnival for all of us. Hubby and I were already booked in a cat 11 so dont know if that had any bearing on things - probably not. I think it's just the luck of the draw.
I never expect an upgrade because I always book connecting cabins. They are to few and not available on the upper ranks of cabin class, so no upgrade fairy visits for me!
RCCL Independence 4/4/09 - Revenge of the JUGS
Carnival Liberty 3/25/07 - "Spring Break" J.U.G.s (Just Us Girls) Cruise - plus my kids
Carnival Liberty 11/20/05 "I ain't cookin' Thanksgiving dinner" Cruise
NCL Norway - "I'm Pregnant with a 1-year-old" Cruise
Carnival Destiny 6/28/98 - "Honeymoon from Hell" Cruise
Royal Caribbean - 1988 - "Ex-Husband" Cruise