If a honeymoon upgrade at your hotel or resort is what you’re after, be sure to bring a copy of your marriage license. Many resorts offer complimentary honeymoon upgrades but require proof of marriage.
Do: The cash bribe is a decidedly shameless activity, but there’s a slick way to do it. When paying for your stay, hold twenty bucks (give or take) in your hand with your credit card and smile politely, asking whether any room upgrades or well-located rooms are available. Your front-desk clerk will get the hint. This is more effective in some places than others, of course, so it’s important to proceed with caution. In Las Vegas, for example, kickbacks for cash are more likely to be tolerated, especially if you’re a guest who has a good play history with the hotel. At other properties, your front-desk agent may be risking his or her job by accepting a small bribe. Be careful, be respectful, and read the situation carefully.
Don’t: Bribe an airline worker. Chocolates are one thing—but airline employees who accept cash bribes can lose their jobs. Don’t even try.
Bribe A Fellow Passenger
Do: Offer the guy with a better seat $100 to switch spots. This isn’t illegal. There aren’t any clear airline policies prohibiting flyers from paying other passengers for seat swaps. There’s even an app, believe it or not, called AirrTrade that facilitates seat buying and selling among passengers. You may do this, if you want.
Don’t: Have high expectations or be anything other than extraordinarily polite. Passengers are under no obligation to accept your bribe. Some folks might even be offended by it.
Show Your Loyalty
Do: Flaunt your unofficial status. Signing up for a hotel chain’s loyalty program isn’t exactly shameless. But advertising your unfailing loyalty to a boutique property that doesn’t have a loyalty program is a bit bolder. Returning to a B&B for the third time? Write an email to the owners. Mention that you’ve been there a bunch of times. Tell them how much you love their property. If appropriate, write a good review. Send the link to the owners and congratulate them on a job well done. Show that you appreciate your stay, and your hosts just might show you a little appreciation in return, whether it’s in the form of a room upgrade, coupons, or even just free bottles of water by your bed. Better yet, you can feel good about sharing some positive thoughts with your fellow humans.
Don’t: Threaten to write a bad review if you don’t receive an upgrade; anyone who does this should have their hotel privileges revoked for life.
-by Caroline Costello
This content was originally published at Smarter Travel, a TripAdvisor Media Group company. SmarterTravel.com is the largest online travel resource for unbiased travel news, deals, and timely expert advice.