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PAX East 2014 Hotel Discussion Thread

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    FrugusFrugus Photographer MontrealRegistered User regular
    zerzhul wrote: »
    Frugus wrote: »
    rascrush wrote: »
    so you can cancel a hotel through on peak

    Not all the time. Be careful and ask about cancellation policies, especially when dealing with third party booking companies.
    This is not bad advice, but is misleading in this case.

    When you reserve one of the PAX hotels through OnPeak, they will give you a copy of the *OnPeak* cancellation policy and a cancellation date. If you do not cancel by the date they specify, with onpeak, you will have to deal with the hotel directly. But up until like 2-3 weeks prior to PAX, you can totally cancel through OnPeak. If you're worried, you can always call OnPeak (they have real life customer support) and they can explain it to you after the booking.

    Damn, I thought Rascrush wrote Kayak for some reason. I read that too quickly and I apologize for any confusion this may have caused.

    So yeah, what Zerzhul said.

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    rascrushrascrush Registered User regular
    ya not worried just wanted to make sure I would be able to cancel if I did get a furtur away one and then I could do a room share for a closer one.

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    Streetlight345Streetlight345 Seekonk, MARegistered User regular
    I have a big group going this year and considering booking two rooms connected. This would be my first time trying this so I was wondering if anyone has any experiences with this type of thing. Does OnPeak have this option? Any problems with certain hotels? Any info at all would help.

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    stardust462stardust462 Leominster, MARegistered User regular
    edited October 2013
    I have a big group going this year and considering booking two rooms connected. This would be my first time trying this so I was wondering if anyone has any experiences with this type of thing. Does OnPeak have this option? Any problems with certain hotels? Any info at all would help.
    In my experience, that would have to be done with the hotel directly because they end up putting reservations into the specific rooms. I don't remember if OnPeak has a "special requests" text box field, but it wouldn't hurt to put it in there, but you would definitely need to call too. I would recommend calling the hotel once you make your reservation with OnPeak, and they can tell you how you can make the request. They might not be able to take the request until the reservation is transferred from OnPeak to them, but I can't say for sure.

    In a lot of hotels, a lot of the connecting rooms are between a two-bed room and a king room, so availability for connecting between two two-bed rooms might be limited.

    stardust462 on
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    mgriff3456mgriff3456 Registered User regular
    So for anyone like me that booked directly through the Seaport and doesn't want Sunday night but the website wouldn't let them take it off I just called them directly and they were able to take it off for me.

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    TraitoriousTraitorious Registered User regular
    I have a big group going this year and considering booking two rooms connected. This would be my first time trying this so I was wondering if anyone has any experiences with this type of thing. Does OnPeak have this option? Any problems with certain hotels? Any info at all would help.
    I haven't done this, but I have seen a option through OnPeak that you can select when determining the amount of people if you need more than one room. I don't know if this puts you into a connected room, so it would probably be good to contact OnPeak or the hotel directly as stardust stated.

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    rascrushrascrush Registered User regular
    when on peak asks how many people how many should we put down. If we are planning on doing room share should we put down like 4 or 5 or should we just put us down

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    3ricG3ricG New Jersey/PhiladelphiaRegistered User regular
    I have a big group going this year and considering booking two rooms connected. This would be my first time trying this so I was wondering if anyone has any experiences with this type of thing. Does OnPeak have this option? Any problems with certain hotels? Any info at all would help.

    The past three years that I've booked at the Renaissance I have always asked for connected rooms, but they never give them to me. The first year I got two rooms on two separate floors, the second year they were both on the same floor but ~5 rooms apart. Last year we had a lot of problems with our reservation and complained so they gave us the Suite with the two attached rooms.

    If you really want attached rooms make sure you try to specify in the booking request (if there is any way to do so), and call OnPeak after you make your reservations to see what they can do. If OnPeak does say that you will have connecting rooms, make sure to print out their confirmation.

    I'm booking 4 rooms this year (my group keeps growing), so I'm definitely going to be contacting OnPeak/whatever hotel I'm saying at a lot.

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    zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    rascrush wrote: »
    when on peak asks how many people how many should we put down. If we are planning on doing room share should we put down like 4 or 5 or should we just put us down
    It depends on how risk adverse you are. My personal opinion is to be honest and put down the number that will be there. Fair warning though, certain room types have limits of 2 or 4 people. Going over those limits is actually a violation of fire code in most cases. Plenty of people do it anyways, but you should be aware that it is breaking the rules.

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    rascrushrascrush Registered User regular
    so I guess just put down 4 and plan for that I guess. If I put 4 and have 5 do you think this would be a issue. like would I get kicked out of the hotel

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    sacratoysacratoy Colorado, USARegistered User regular
    rascrush wrote: »
    so I guess just put down 4 and plan for that I guess. If I put 4 and have 5 do you think this would be a issue. like would I get kicked out of the hotel

    It's a gamble. Personally, I've been attending conventions and expo's since 2005, and more frequently than not, we would put down 2 people in the room, then put between 5 and 9 people in the room. We haven't been caught yet, and the hotel's I've stayed in haven't been too overly vigilant about enforcement, but we are still breaking our reservation agreement.

    Basically, what I've done is pretty common among con goers, we just all want you to know it is against the rules should you try to do the same thing.

    Could you get kicked out? Maybe. I'm guessing the hotel staff would ask you politely (firmly), to have the people not on the reservation not stay in the room.

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    zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    rascrush wrote: »
    so I guess just put down 4 and plan for that I guess. If I put 4 and have 5 do you think this would be a issue. like would I get kicked out of the hotel
    Will you? Almost certainly not. Are they within their rights to? Maybe, depends on the hotel policy. But they want your money ;)

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    aBByNormaLaBByNormaL Registered User regular
    If exceeding the room capacity like that ... just don't make it obvious and draw attention to yourselves ...

    PAX East 2016 .... gots my Passes [x] Hotel [x] Flights [x] Packed [..] .... ok we're all good !!!!!
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    EscoBladesEscoBlades Product Marketing Manager at Ubisoft Registered User regular
    zerzhul wrote: »
    rascrush wrote: »
    so I guess just put down 4 and plan for that I guess. If I put 4 and have 5 do you think this would be a issue. like would I get kicked out of the hotel
    Will you? Almost certainly not. Are they within their rights to? Maybe, depends on the hotel policy. But they want your money ;)

    This is true. I know people who regularly do it. Then again, they don't draw attention to the fact. The hotels are probably almost always aware anyway

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    aBByNormaLaBByNormaL Registered User regular
    EscoBlades wrote: »
    zerzhul wrote: »
    rascrush wrote: »
    so I guess just put down 4 and plan for that I guess. If I put 4 and have 5 do you think this would be a issue. like would I get kicked out of the hotel
    Will you? Almost certainly not. Are they within their rights to? Maybe, depends on the hotel policy. But they want your money ;)

    This is true. I know people who regularly do it. Then again, they don't draw attention to the fact. The hotels are probably almost always aware anyway

    Hard to miss that air mattress and sleeping bag .... lulz

    PAX East 2016 .... gots my Passes [x] Hotel [x] Flights [x] Packed [..] .... ok we're all good !!!!!
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    TheAggroCraigTheAggroCraig Ultimate Lucky Douchebag MassachusettsRegistered User regular
    rascrush wrote: »
    so I guess just put down 4 and plan for that I guess. If I put 4 and have 5 do you think this would be a issue. like would I get kicked out of the hotel

    I put down 2 and ended up with 6 in my room. Like others say, don't draw attention or be loud or anything and you'll be fine... for the record I'm not recommending you do this lol.

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    stardust462stardust462 Leominster, MARegistered User regular
    edited October 2013
    3ricG wrote: »
    If you really want attached rooms make sure you try to specify in the booking request (if there is any way to do so), and call OnPeak after you make your reservations to see what they can do. If OnPeak does say that you will have connecting rooms, make sure to print out their confirmation.

    I would assume OnPeak can't do anything except put it as a request for when the hotel gets it. In the end, the hotel decides which reservations go into which rooms. You can only make a request for connecting rooms, hotels will rarely say (at least in my 7 years of convention attending) that a request like this is confirmed, because everything is up to availability. Unless maybe you're a super-ultra-diamond-platinum level member or something. For example, I always try to request low floors so I don't have to worry with elevators during a con. I'd say I end up getting one about 90% of the time, but sometimes it just doesn't happen.

    stardust462 on
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    vttymvttym Ardent Gamer Northern NJRegistered User regular
    edited October 2013
    On the topic of underconning the number of people you will have in your room, I'll put this out in the universe, and leave it alone.

    These hotels are taking their normal prices, and in some cases chopping them in half for PAX. They would likely book to capacity even if OnPeak didn't exist, because PAX would still drive the demand. Most of the hotels are very accomdating to our fellow PAXers - we are not these hotels typical clientele, but for the most part, they go out of their way to provide to our needs (see the Westin Pre-Pax gaming night last year). Sure they sometimes screw stuff up (Menolly's unfortunate luggage incident at Prime comes to mind), but that can happen any time.

    My point is, if you're going to cram 4 or more people in the room, tell the hotel you're bringing 4 people. That extra $30-$60 is easily disbursed among that many people anyway, and it shows the hotel a little bit of respect. Think of it as a thank-you for being willing to discount their prices so that you can enjoy PAX.

    I'll get off my soapbox now. And no, I do not work in the hospitality industry. :)

    vttym on
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    aBByNormaLaBByNormaL Registered User regular
    vttym wrote: »
    On the topic of underconning the number of people you will have in your room, I'll put this out in the universe, and leave it alone.

    These hotels are taking their normal prices, and in some cases chopping them in half for PAX. They would likely book to capacity even if OnPeak didn't exist, because PAX would still drive the demand. Most of the hotels are very accomdating to our fellow PAXers - we are not these hotels typical clientele, but for the most part, they go out of their way to provide to our needs (see the Westin Pre-Pax gaming night last year). Sure they sometimes screw stuff up (Menolly's unfortunate luggage incident at Prime comes to mind), but that can happen any time.

    My point is, if you're going to cram 4 or more people in the room, tell the hotel you're bringing 4 people. That extra $30-$60 is easily disbursed among that many people anyway, and it shows the hotel a little bit of respect. Think of it as a thank-you for being willing to discount their prices so that you can enjoy PAX.

    I'll get off my soapbox now. And no, I do not work in the hospitality industry. :)

    I always declare my full party, personally I do not nickel and dime people ... I am always fully prepared to pay my way.

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    zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    Yeah, I am also of the opinion that if you are planning to have > 4 people in the room, choose the highest occupancy you can. If you are planning to have < or = 4 people in the room, just choose the correct number. It's pretty shady to pick 2 people *knowing* you're going to put 4 in there, for example.

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    rascrushrascrush Registered User regular
    So lets say I decided to do this and do "break the rule" I only put 2 but really have 4,5,6 however many. How would I go about getting hotel room cards for everyone. I am guessing the hotel would only give you the amount for the amount of people you have on the reservation correct.

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    OnmitsuOnmitsu I'm just a birdie Ca-caw, ca-caw!Registered User regular
    I used to work at a very classy business hotel (four stars woo!) and to counterpoint that, most hotels don't give a crap if you shove extra people in the room. I notice lots of people tend to think that what they're doing is very sneaky, or not noticed, or somehow highly taboo, and that isn't the case. We saw it happening, and people saving money by cramming some extra people in a room doesn't really make any difference to the vast majority of people working at the hotel. It's no extra or less work for us. The people who see it aren't paid enough to give a shit. The only time it matters is if you're partying or wrecking your room. The only respect your paying is to the wallet of the hotel owner, and at these big places, they don't really need it. Save your extra cash and buy yourself a nice lunch.

    Also, as far as discounting the prices, yes, the PAX prices are discounted, BUT, they're STILL vastly, vastly inflated. Having worked a lot with room bookings, especially seeing people come in through sites like priceline, I've noticed the incredible disparity between what a hotel will charge and what they actually need to pull a profit. Lots of these places simply charge what they know businesses and tourists are willing to pay versus the actual value of the accommodations.

    Man, even Dora the Explorer thinks you're slow.
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    lirelentlirelent Registered User regular
    heh. yea it's like the jewelry business. "6 key" /maybe/ 5 key is pretty standard for the end store. Where 1 key is 100% markup.

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    zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    edited October 2013
    I don't think anyone thinks it's "taboo" but it's important to not give people advice that is incomplete. Note I didn't say "oh man you're totally going to get kicked out if you do it." But is it within the rights of the hotel to do so? Absolutely. I have absolutely put 3 people in a room where 2 was the max I could pick, by the way. It's still good to know the risks.
    Onmitsu wrote: »
    The only respect your paying is to the wallet of the hotel owner, and at these big places, they don't really need it. Save your extra cash and buy yourself a nice lunch.
    That's a nice way to rationalize away just about anything that costs money and has a wealthy owner. Do you make sure to steal the pillows and towels when you leave? I'm sure they can afford it. 8->

    zerzhul on
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    Streetlight345Streetlight345 Seekonk, MARegistered User regular
    That's a nice way to rationalize away just about anything that costs money and has a wealthy owner. Do you make sure to steal the pillows and towels when you leave? I'm sure they can afford it. 8-> [/quote]

    Pillows and towels? ppfftt thats too low key. PAX is more of a "throw your mattress off a roof" event

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    zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    edited October 2013
    zerzhul wrote: »
    That's a nice way to rationalize away just about anything that costs money and has a wealthy owner. Do you make sure to steal the pillows and towels when you leave? I'm sure they can afford it. 8->

    Pillows and towels? ppfftt thats too low key. PAX is more of a "throw your mattress off a roof" event
    My wife and I actually joked about the mattress thing last year after being treated poorly by some Westin staff, funny you should mention it.

    zerzhul on
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    OnmitsuOnmitsu I'm just a birdie Ca-caw, ca-caw!Registered User regular
    edited October 2013
    I do love rationalization. When was the last time you copied music from a friend? Let's not get into that slippery slope here.

    The point was more that the respects being paid by putting down the extra people on the room (and thus paying more on the already grossly inflated "discount" hotel price) won't be noticed even a little bit by the people at the hotel. Like I said, it's mostly matter of pay grade. If you do want to pay your respects for the good service, be a darling and leave a tip. Keep your room clean, don't trash it, and don't be noisy. Don't steal the pillows, they have your credit card and will charge you (oh man did we get some bitching between that and the people who smoked in the rooms and got hit with the fee for getting that wretched stench out).

    Yes, it is within their rights to kick you out of the hotel. Will it happen? Almost certainly not. Four to five people in a two bed hotel room is practically de rigueur at conventions.

    Onmitsu on
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    zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    edited October 2013
    Onmitsu wrote: »
    Yes, it is within their rights to kick you out of the hotel. Will it happen? Almost certainly not. Four to five people in a two bed hotel room is practically de rigueur at conventions.
    Which is just about precisely what I said earlier :)
    zerzhul wrote: »
    rascrush wrote: »
    so I guess just put down 4 and plan for that I guess. If I put 4 and have 5 do you think this would be a issue. like would I get kicked out of the hotel
    Will you? Almost certainly not. Are they within their rights to? Maybe, depends on the hotel policy. But they want your money ;)

    zerzhul on
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    OnmitsuOnmitsu I'm just a birdie Ca-caw, ca-caw!Registered User regular
    zerzhul wrote: »
    My wife and I actually joked about the mattress thing last year after being treated poorly by some Westin staff, funny you should mention it.

    I've noticed in general that the Westin staff is much less amenable to the nerd crowd than the Seaport staff. I'm not sure if it's because they bear the brunt of the ancillary nerd activities in their lobby and cafe area, or because they're getting tipped poorly, but it's a definite difference. Actually had one guy try to wrangle tip out of us before our bags were even to the car. After staying at the Seaport, I'll probably not swap back to the Westin. Much better, cheerier, and more accommodating service.

    Man, even Dora the Explorer thinks you're slow.
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    zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    edited October 2013
    The only reason to stay at the Westin over the Seaport is being attached to the BCEC. It's still a pretty great reason, but the Seaport is better in every other way afaik.

    zerzhul on
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    rascrushrascrush Registered User regular
    So lets say I decided to do this and do "break the rule" I only put 2 but really have 4,5,6 however many. How would I go about getting hotel room cards for everyone. I am guessing the hotel would only give you the amount for the amount of people you have on the reservation correct.

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    aBByNormaLaBByNormaL Registered User regular
    edited October 2013
    ummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm ... deja vu , rascrush?!?

    aBByNormaL on
    PAX East 2016 .... gots my Passes [x] Hotel [x] Flights [x] Packed [..] .... ok we're all good !!!!!
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    shepdshepd Registered User regular
    Here's how you do it, rascrush: You don't do anything that would tip them off. Seriously, if you book for 2 people and ask for 6 cards, enjoy finding another hotel. What they can't see won't hurt them. What you literally go there and tell them about will get you in trouble. Loose lips sink ships. Personally, I wouldn't even show up with more than 1 other person if I booked a 2 person room. The other people would stay in the car until I had gotten the room booked, gone in, figured out where it is, and figured out a way to the room without making it obvious what I was doing.

    Also, as a little bonus, no booze in the hotel rooms. Friend of mine found out that in Boston it's illegal to bring your own drinks into a hotel room the hard way (An employee seized his liquor bottle.)

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    rascrushrascrush Registered User regular
    I wasnt asking how to do it without getting caught I know you would have to have a text system to let people know which room you have so on so fourth. Obviously if you have 6 people with you when you show up they will know something is up. My question was how would I go about getting extra keys for all the people if I said there was only 2 people but yet there was really 4 or 5. Obviously if I say there is 4 they would give me 4 room keys but If I say there is only 2 they wouldnt just go and give me 4 keys. So I was wondering if anyone had a way around this. How have people worked this out in the past. I guess as long as I had a key would not really matter to me but I am guessing the 4 or 5 other people would not want to share one key that would become a pain in the ass. So how getting those extra 2 or 3 keys without setting off red flags was my main question.

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    aBByNormaLaBByNormaL Registered User regular
    Here is the policy from the Westin Waltham Boston site ...

    Alcohol Policy

    State law prohibits us from allowing outside alcohol on the premises. Any liquor brought into the hotel by guests will be kept at the front desk until checkout. We reserve the right to search luggage and bags if a guest is suspected of carrying alcohol.

    If you are interested in hosting a post-hospitality event, please coordinate with our catering manager to have the event held in a private function room. Alcohol must be purchased through the hotel and is restricted to those 21 years of age or older with valid ID.

    PAX East 2016 .... gots my Passes [x] Hotel [x] Flights [x] Packed [..] .... ok we're all good !!!!!
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    mgriff3456mgriff3456 Registered User regular
    Actually last year I had a room for two people at the Westin but we really had 5 people and they still asked me how many keys I wanted upon check in. So maybe you will get lucky.

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    zerzhulzerzhul Registered User, Moderator mod
    did someone ask about the alcohol policy? I missed that.

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    xenardxenard Registered User regular
    I didn't know Boston was so serious about alcohol. That's good info to know.

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    DaveRHDaveRH Registered User regular
    I wouldn't go and advertise that you have more than the room capacity either though. While they usually are willing to look the other way, if they come across stuffed rooms, they may have to take action.

    Since this is sometimes an issue of fire code, they simply don't have the option to ignore it (as it makes them liable). The Sheraton actually had a paper with the regular pax info this year for Prime, that talked about this (calling it Room Stuffing) and hinted that they would potentially evict people caught with more than the allowed capacity (for fire code reasons).

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    aBByNormaLaBByNormaL Registered User regular
    zerzhul wrote: »
    did someone ask about the alcohol policy? I missed that.

    It was in shepd's post, I was curious and looked it up

    PAX East 2016 .... gots my Passes [x] Hotel [x] Flights [x] Packed [..] .... ok we're all good !!!!!
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