Hilton Best Rate Guarantee: Case Ramses Hilton In Cairo (For $15)

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Hilton also has a Best Rate Guarantee (which hotel chain doesn’t) and I have not read or heard anything too positive about it.

Hilton HHonors Best Rate Guarantee

I am going to be staying in Cairo for a night between flights and decided to check one of the Hilton hotels in the city and to see if there are any Best Rate Guarantee opportunities around.

You can access Hilton’s web page for Best Rate Guarantee here.

The next time you book a room through an official Hilton Worldwide booking channel, we guarantee that you will be offered the best possible rates. In fact, we are so confident with our best rate guarantee, that in the unlikely event you do find a cheaper rate elsewhere within 24 hours of your booking, we want you to let us know. If we are able to verify your claim within 24 hours, we will not only match the lower the rate but we will give you US $50, subject to the following terms and conditions.

The key is “able to verify” and subject to he “following terms and conditions”. Usually, the T&C’s of BRG programs (sans SPG) are rather restrictive and quite difficult to claim under.

  • You must find a lower publicly available rate (“Lower Rate”) on a non-Hilton Worldwide booking channel (except for “opaque” websites) for the Same Accommodations. “Same Accommodations” means the same room type, at the same hotel, with the same dates and length of stay, same number of guests, same designation as either cancellable or non-cancellable, same advance purchase policies, and the same terms and conditions governing the room rate.
  • You or your Travel Agent on your behalf must complete and submit a claim form to Hiltons guest assistance department in accordance with the claim forms instruction, or you must call 1-800- HILTONS (International: 00 800 888 44 888) and follow the telephone representatives instructions to process the claim.
  • You must submit your claim within 24 hours of making your reservation and at least 24 hours prior to your arrival at the hotel.
  • The Same Accommodations must be available for purchase at the Lower Rate when we validate your claim.
  • You may only submit one claim for each stay. A “stay” means the total number of consecutive nights spent at the same hotel by the same guest or guests.
  • Rate comparisons will be made net of taxes, gratuities, service charges, early departure fees, or other fees and incidental charges.

The key here is how closely the Guest Assistance team that handles these claims follow the above restrictions. It is not uncommon for the cancellation policies to differ by an hour or two.

Our Guarantee does not apply to the following:

  • Reservations booked through a non-Hilton Worldwide booking channel or a non-designated GDS, third party website or any other channel.
  • Rates available on “opaque” websites where the hotel brand and specific hotel are not known until the booking is made (e.g., Priceline.com, Hotwire.com).
  • Hotel packages or travel packages which may include hotel, airfare, car rental, food and beverage offers or other similar packages or amenities.
  • Discount or negotiated rates not available to the general public, including but not limited to the following rates: membership (e.g., AAA, AARP or Saga), corporate, government, promotional, unpublished, Senior HHonors®, employee, offline wholesale/FIT, pre-paid rates which may include a voucher (including electronic vouchers), group or other specially negotiated rates.
  • Reservations made within 24 hours of arrival.
  • Taxes, gratuities, service charges, early departure fees, or other fees and incidental charges.
  • Rate disparities due to fluctuations, rounding, or differences in the currency exchange rates.

Hilton also has a long list of rates that the Best Rate Guarantee is not applicable for that are listed above. Many 3rd party sites provide a voucher by email that the guest must turn in at the time of checking in. These rates and sites are excluded per the guarantee.

Best Rate Guarantee Case: Ramses Hilton

I was looking at the prices for this and other Hilton family of hotels in Cairo using Trivago, HotelsCombined and Kayak. These aggregate prices from number of websites.

Hilton HHonors Best Rate Guarantee 3rd Party Site

I found one seller that had very interesting price for this particular hotel that was roughly 50% off of the Hilton.com one.

Hilton HHonors Best Rate Guarantee Hilton.com

Made the booking on the Hilton.com first…

Hilton HHonors Best Rate Guarantee Hilton.com Confirmation

…. and then filed the Best Rate Guarantee form and submitted it. The confirmation promised that someone from Hilton would be in touch by email within 24 hours.

Hilton HHonors Best Rate Guarantee Hilton.com Reply

It took 36 hours and 34 minutes to get the reply from Hilton and I was surprised that they accepted the claim (my very first with them) and lowered the matched rate by an additional $50 because:

For Hotels outside the USA, Canada, Mexico and Puerto Rico, we will adjust your bill by US $50 (or local currency equivalent).

For Hotels inside the USA, Canada, Mexico and Puerto Rico, we will give you a US $50 American Express Gift Cheque. The Gift Cheque will be sent to you the next business day after your stay, as reserved, is completed.

Conclusion

My first experience with Hilton’s Best Rate Guarantee was rather positive, although the reply time was rather long. I would say that reasonable verification time should be more than 6 hours, as hotel rates change often.

The Ramses Hilton must be dumping their rates outside of Hilton.com. The 3rd party site has their margin of 10% to 20% built into the rate too.

Have you had positive and/or negative experiences with Hilton’s Best Rate Guarantee program?

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  • jessie

    Congrats, John. I stayed about more than 40 nights at Hilton Ramses this year, haha… and will probably be back again soon at my return to Cairo. It’s a very old property but reasonably well-maintained. It almost felt like home to me at times. It has been particularly popular among Gulf Arab men (you will see the reason there…). As a Diamond member, they gave me a suite at times, but I def. prefer just a room in Exec floor (better condition in general compared to rooms in other lower floors). Anyway I did a quite amount of Hilton BRG so far in developing countries, particularly very successful with Hilton properties in Turkey and some of Europe countries, but quite opposite in Hilton properties in Cairo (including Conrad Cairo). Hilton normally rejected the website like Amoma.com or Easyclicktravel.com as opaque ones. IMO with advance purchase (non-refundable) rate, there seems more room for approval, but I myself hardly book a non-refundable rate for BRG. One day I found a (obviously) lower rate at booking.com for Conrad Cairo and even took several screenshots till payment page. But BRG teams’s response was so slow (almost two days) and when they responded, they informed me that they failed to find that rate at booking.com. Even if I sent several screenshots, rejected in the end.

    • Kenny

      I have used the Hilton BRG once previously for Hilton South Wharf Melbourne. Rate details and conditions were exactly the same, yet the first agent knocked me back after about 12 hours saying that she could not find the rate I found and screen saved. I checked again and my matching rate was still there on WOTIF, so I wrote back again, this time I got a different agent. It was not a straightforward process, after I got the first reply, I was wondering if the agent was blind or stupid or intentionally trying to knock back my request, making me feel furious. But it worked out after that, but the experience left me with little interest if it takes so much effort.

  • Guilherme Utz Horst

    I have used the BRG a few times for the Conrad Punta del Este, which always has lower rates on Booking.com. They usually take 36-48 hours to reply, and always reduce the rate further 50 USD instead of the voucher.

  • Lorenzo

    i tried the hilton BRG a few times, never got one approved. they always denied it because the third party sites had free cancellation until 4pm on the day of arrival while hilton.com offered free cancellation until 6pm. i stopped tring after a few times.
    starwood and marriot BRGs are so much better, even IHG BRG works better for me, even though they lie and have reply times of up to 60 hours (of course lots of rates are gone by then).

  • Martin

    I’ve managed once out of 10 claims.
    Only managed a success when it’s been in my currency of GBP.
    The rest they blame on small currency differences.
    So I’ll stick with claiming for Hilton terminal 5 which is usually cheaper on third parties by a pound when I fly from Heathrow.

  • Susan

    I have never had any success with it. The reason always given is that the site with the better rate was an opaque site – not true – but they won’t enter into any discussion with you. Just a flat no. I have had much better luck with getting claims accepted from both SPG (a couple of times) and IHG (once). As far as I’m concerned, the Hilton ‘guarantee’ is totally bogus.

  • Sharon

    I’m especially surprised to see that they accepted the BRG, since your less expensive hotel offering was not only cheaper, but was also cancelable rather than Advance Purchase AND included breakfast. I continually read that they refuse the BRG even if the conditions are BETTER (and not worse) at the 3rd party site than at hilton.com. Congratulations!

  • disqust101

    Aren’t Hilton’s ridiculously cheap on points in Egypt these days? Lots of CAT 1 properties going for peanuts.

  • Lim Wei Jie

    luckily they approve your BGR, or else 70 USD will gone for good.

  • Schrott88

    I have stopped staying at Hilton hotels because their BRG program is bogus and run by imbeciles or crooks (perhaps both). I find others like SPG, IHG etc. to be much more fair.

  • Mike Dos Santos

    Sorry, but I nee to say this now…

    Sometimes I wonder who is more bogus, the WRITER or the READER…

    • I removed the actual stay date from the screenshot. The Oct 14 means that the stay was sometime in October 2014, but didn’t want to publish the exact date BECAUSE I published this piece before of my stay there.