A couple of months ago Dan’s Deals wrote about the limited options some chains have in Jerusalem, how the Waldorf=Astoria Jerusalem is probably the nicest property, but that they were playing games with award availability.
At one point there were no award rooms available for six months. Then there were no award rooms for Thursday and Friday nights. He quoted a hotel manager saying that the room type for awards was made available only midweek, and that the option was “CLOSED on High season.”
I read the post and reached out to the folks at Hilton HHonors. Hilton doesn’t have blackout dates or capacity controls. When a standard room is available for sale, it should be available on points.
But what about hotels playing games with their revenue inventory? Hotels aren’t supposed to do this. I was told that “standard room type availability should not be restricted for the purpose of limiting redemption availability.”
And the HHonors program reached out to the property. The property fell in line. I then promptly forgot about it.
I was looking for the email address yesterday of the person I had been corresponding with, which reminded me to share that you can now book award nights there most of the year at the regular points price — which is quite high, at 80,000 HHonors points per night whether close-in or months into the future.
Hotels sometimes play games with their inventory, we’ve seen that across various chains. I’ve heard the head of one program a long time ago describe the game a ‘whack a mole’ — a local property will decide that they can earn more money by being a member of the chain and program, but not making award rooms available. Even though they’re compensated for those rooms, they think they can earn more without fulfilling their redemption obligations.