How to Obtain Rooms at Sold Out Hotels


One of the biggest parts of planning a trip no matter if it’s for business or pleasure is the hotel stay. Nothing can be more disappointing than to find out the hotel you want to stay at is unavailable. When you call hotel reservations and you are told there are no rooms available, don’t give up--you may still be able to reserve a room at that hotel.

Things You'll Need

  • PC or Mac
  • Internet connection
  • Telephone

Sign up with guest recognition programs at different hotel chains and build up your status level through hotel stays. Guest recognition programs are a system where the hotel shows their frequent guests appreciation by awarding them points whenever they stay at their hotel. Some of the guest hotel recognition programs also award different levels such as, the VIP level. For example, the VIP level with Hilton hotels awards their VIP members the ability to reserve a hotel room if their hotel is sold out. The stipulations for this benefit is that the Hilton VIP member must make reservations 48 hours prior to the arrival day and before midnight.

Request to be put on the hotel waiting list. Many major hotel chains offer their guests a waiting list opportunity.

If you are attending a function such as a meeting, expo or convention, you may be able to reserve a hotel room. Call the group coordinator of the meeting, expo or convention you are attending and inquire if they have a block of rooms set aside at the hotel you want to stay at. The hotel may be out of rooms for a traditional reservation but have availability for your group reservation.

Check online with different travel websites such as Price Line, Hot Wire, or These travel websites often reserve rooms in advance and can negotiate with the hotel. For example states they have availability when the city is sold out.

Call the hotel directly each day to check for cancellations and availability. Consider calling in the morning, most travel agents and office administrator’s call hotels in the morning to cancel reservations.

Check with your employer to see if they have a special arrangement set up with the hotel you want to stay at. Many hotels have major corporations that they have special arrangements with where they are able to make a reservation for the company's employees even when the hotel is sold out.

Tips & Warnings

  • Plan your trip in advance to ensure hotel availability.
  • Check with your credit card company to see if they offer hotel incentives such as a personal travel agent. A personal travel agent may be able to reserve a room due to their in-depth hotel reservation knowledge and expertise.

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