If An Airline Offers You A Hotel Room During A Delay, You Probably Don’t Want To Stay There [Roundup]

News and notes from around the interweb:

  • You don’t actually want to stay in the hotel room that your airline will offer you free during a delay, #8,462

  • Today I Learned: Thai Airways is operating an Airbus A320 with European-style business class (coach seats, blocked middle seat) and even running it Bangkok – Singapore. About 8 airlines operate this route, with Singapore Airlines and the three-times weekly Gulf Air service capturing the premium end (Cathay Pacific no longer flies this). Thai has long offered one of the least consistent cabin experiences.

  • A lot of delays in the Northeast. The food and beverage program here is pretty good but there’s no way I’d stand in line.

  • The premium air travel market that is Switzerland.

  • You discover your hotel room is a 1980s Atari game. What do you do?

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. American didn’t treat us quite that badly.

    They just sent us to a hotel located between a strip club and a sex store.

    They did not bother to tell us said hotel had no restaurant. If you do take the hotel vouchers, then call the hotel and make sure they have food!

    (Thankfully we were in Chicago. We ordered pizza. It was probably better than a hotel restaurant. This is one of the long list of reasons I don’t change planes in Chicago unless NO other routing is available).

  2. Most time it’s true. I mostly charge to my client the delay hotel stay because the econolodge or travel lodge at ORD or DFW are the types of hotels generally offered. However, once I was on a AA flight HNL to LAX, the aging 767 had some issues that captain decided not to risk. My family got another free night in Waikiki Hilton Village. Being HHonors Gold we even got free breakfast buffet, we took evening flight next day with another day on Waikiki beach with awesome pool to sip more Blue Hawaiian and Maitai. Can’t complain.

  3. It’s not always bad. United Express cancelled a flight and put me up at the Hilton inside O’Hare Airport. It’s the big hotel across from Terminal 2. I didn’t have to wait much at the airport to get the voucher.

  4. One of the few perks left for a Delta Medallion is that during IRROPS, Plats and Diamonds get a higher tier of hotel availability. Well…at least as of several months ago. Who knows if DL has slashed this benefit too recently.

  5. Swiss Air ZRH/BHX cancelled at 18:30 Friday evening, no other flights night so rerouted via Frankfurt Friday evening connecting to flight to BHX Saturday morning. Upon arrival at FRA, I head for Senator lounge where I’m given reservation for the on terminal Sheraton and a €30 meal voucher. It’s a 15 minute walk, I’m Titanium with Bonvoy, whether that made any difference I’ve no idea but my room was perfect and a lovely dinner I added €15 to. OK, I didn’t get home Friday but the airline didn’t shirk on my hotel.

  6. The worst place I ever had to spend the night at DFW was in euless at some motel that was encased in a building which was weird. When I went to my room I went to go into the bathroom to take a shower and noticed that my towels were sitting on a bed of dust in the shelves. At least the towels were clean. Second time I got stuck at DFW. Luckily I called the Hyatt hotel at the DFW airport and got a wonderful room at a wonderful rate which I will not disclose and got to sleep in the most comfortable bed with the most comfortable sheets and pillows. And I love the wing shaped pool. The stay was definitely worth the price… Err Lack of expensive price accommodations.

  7. Last month southwest canceled our flight home to phoenix from Puerto Vallarta after the plane got struck by lightning while landing to pick us up in puerto Vallarta. Flight was boarding and captain cancelled. Southwest gave us meal vouchers and transportation to the Marriott(1st class resort). Flew a new plane in from Houston the next morning and comped us all the drinks and snacks while on flight plus $200 voucher for a year! Sent me a check for the extra charges incurred with the food at hotel and the airport. Southwest Airlines handled it like true professionals!

  8. AA put me up in a hotel in Dallas.Gave us a choice of a few hotels. Hotel was fine. It was late. The driver was willing to let a few passengers behind since his shift was done. Hotel made him go back to the airport. It beat sleeping at the airport. Only issue is our plane arrived at our destination with no baggage. Baggage handler at the destination didn;t find it odd?

  9. My wife and I had a perfectly lovely room in Narita one time, compliments of Northwest Airlines, when their flight was delayed taking off and missed the connecting flight to Bangkok. We also had a reasonable room in Bloomington, MN for the same reason. United at ORD on the other hand, lied about the cause of the missed connection saying it was weather related when it was not (I thoroughly researched it the next day). That caused me a lost day at work and a hotel room charge along with food costs. They did act as a shill for the hotel, though. The room was tired and I ended up not getting much sleep made worse by a relatively early morning flight. I have not flown United since. They are relegated to only if no other choice status with JetBlue as my first choice and Delta as a backup.

  10. I got delayed for 2 nights due to a storm, american put us at the sheraton in myrtle beach and it was awesome. We had an extra day on our vacation in a cool location. We got food vouchers and spent a whole day enjoying ourselves.

  11. This isn’t hard folks. If you’re about to be assigned to a free hotel due to a delay, get your phone out and google the review score. If it’s below 3.5, you’ll want to do a bit more research to see if you should stay there. In the meantime, ask what other hotel they can offer.

  12. we were in CLT at 11pm with a 2 hr wait to be rebooked, get a hotel, get a taxi to a hotel since the shuttles close down We could not wait that long in a line for a room with no food etc. thus booked a Holiday inn Express for $145 AA would only give us $100 for it. CHEAP. it was not like we were staying at the Intercontinental or Hyatt for $400

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