My Most Boneheaded Booking Ever?!?

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Most Boneheaded Booking

Those who listen to the Miles to Memories podcast know I have spent the last two weeks on a cruise ship slowly crossing the Atlantic. I couldn’t turn down a free cruise offered from Carnival utilizing their very generous casino status match offer. Say what you want about Carnival, but we had a good time for the most part (more to come on that), but the internet was terrible.

How bad was it? Well, it brought me back to my teenage years of dialing into AOL, modem sound and all. Heck it was probably even slower than that while we were in the middle of the ocean. With that said, perhaps booking a cruise without good internet is a bonehead move, but that isn’t what the title is referring to.

Most Boneheaded Booking because of slow cruise ship internet
The internet was slow, but the water was blue in Bermuda!

Why You Should Plan Travel Well In Advance Right Now

One of my plans for the time on the cruise was to solidify the bookings for my upcoming England/Scotland/France trip at the end of the month. Right now I am in Europe with my wife and daughter, but in late May my dad and son are flying out to join us for a couple of weeks. My dad has reconnected a ton with his Scottish heritage in the past few years and he has been very excited to visit. Which only adds pressure on me to make sure it all goes well! 🙂 I’m sure many of you know how that feels.

We got off the ship yesterday and I felt so behind, having not been able to book anything the past couple of weeks. I am a notorious last minute travel person, however that isn’t the best strategy now with insane prices and high demand for the summer. Yes, I should have booked this trip awhile ago, but I have been a little busy since we have been traveling full time since January. I know, excuses excuses.

Paris Is Popular This Summer

Anyway I sat up late into the night last night putting together the pieces of the puzzle. I booked a British Airways flight from London to Edinburgh utilizing Avios I transferred during the recent 40% bonus promo. I bit my tongue as I booked the Hilton near Edinburgh Castle, because it is expensive at 60K points per night, but will be a treat for my dad. But it wasn’t all unicorns and rainbows.

Specifically Paris has been a tough one for me. Hotel prices there for June are simply insane and availability on points isn’t good. Add in the fact that most rooms notoriously only hold 2 people (we need a room for 3 since there are 5 of us) and you have enough to give anyone a headache. Luckily I thought I was up to the task, but perhaps I shouldn’t be booking hotels late into the night.

Most Boneheaded Booking Paris is tough right now
Paris is one of our favorite cities. We had plans to return in 2020 but finally will make it back in 2022!

My Boneheaded Booking

It was 11:26pm Barcelona time when I made the bonehead move. I had been going through the various hotel programs and looking for rooms when I came up with a plan. I noticed room at a Hyatt in Paris but only for three of us. Then I found a Marriott Hotel across the street with availability for one room for two people as well. Better yet I was able to burn two certificates that are expiring soon so in my mind I gave myself a big high five. I then emailed my Hyatt concierge to request to use a tier suite upgrade at the Hyatt, because for some reason a standard suite was showing available. Yaaaaaas!

So what did I do wrong? Well, my very friendly concierge emailed me back today to say she was sorry she didn’t see my upgrade request in time and she hoped that the hotel was able to upgrade me. Whaaat? This booking was for June or so I thought. At some point when going back and forth between cities, programs, flights, rental cars and other plans I booked the Hyatt for May 8-10 instead of June 8-10. The booking was done at 11:26pm and I no showed for my same night reservation. Ouch!

Hyatt Customer Servicer for the Win

Thankfully this is Hyatt and I had some hope that my points weren’t lost. In fact, it didn’t take long for my concierge to respond to my apologetic email saying she had contacted the hotel and they would not be charging me. Disaster averted, but this is the last time I book a hotel for exactly one month out! Well probably not, but hopefully I’ll be a little more careful before I confirm a booking. On the flip side Hyatt passed the customer service test yet again, so there is that!

Most Boneheaded Booking – Bottom Line

Booking travel right now can be stressful unless you want to pay ungodly amounts of money for hotels, flights and other travel related expense. Thankfully I have a few options and know I’ll figure this trip out, but if I had to do it all over again I would have locked some stuff down sooner for sure. Thankfully though my mistake didn’t cost me anything. What is the most bonehead booking you have made with miles & points?

Shawn Coomer
Shawn Coomer
Shawn Coomer earns and burns millions of miles/points per year circling the globe with his family. An expert at accumulating travel rewards, he founded Miles to Memories to help others achieve their travel goals for pennies on the dollar. Shawn also runs a million dollar reselling business, knows Vegas better than most and loves to spend his time at the 12 Disney parks across the world.

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  1. I never did anything that scary but I did book a Red Eye out of LAX (using points) only problem was when I was looking at the date I booked it for a day later since the Red Eye was 12:30 am and I’m thinking I needed it the next day. I try to check-in using the Kiosk and it wouldn’t let me. Counter agent showed me the error of my ways and fortunately she was able to fix it.


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