Most of the hotels process the elite based room upgrades during the overnight shift on the day of arrival and you can see them by checking the status of your reservation online.
As long as the hotel’s in-house reservation system (usually Opera) is connected to the chain’s proprietary one, the room upgrade information is transferred to Holidex (IHG), MARSHA (Marriott) etc. and is for you to see online as well.
The only major that doesn’t have this connectivity is Hyatt. You won’t see room upgrades processed by the property online at all.
Just a reminder that the processed upgrades can also vanish by the time you arrive to the hotel or the front desk clerk doesn’t appear to be aware of it. Sometimes it pays to take a screenshot, as I found out last week.
Case: Holiday Inn Golden Mile Hong Kong
The property had processed an upgrade to an Executive Club room and I went to check in a the club lounge. The lady asked if I wanted to purchase an upgrade to the club level.
Their system was not supposedly showing the upgrade to the club and this took 30+ minutes to sort out that included me sending them a copy of the screenshot by email.
If you don’t want to upgrade to club level, don’t process the room upgrade to the club level room.
I have had this happen few times and actually twice at the Ritz-Carlton properties. The online system showed the room upgrade to club level with all the club level benefits included.
Nothing is funnier than asking the manager on duty to read loudly in front of me the assigned room description with benefits and ask if he/she has a reading comprehension difficulty.
The disaster at the Ritz-Carlton Millenia Singapore ended up resulting in a free night in a suite on my subsequent stay.
Sometimes the property has downgraded my accommodation during the day and the front desk plays dumb. You can always ask them to check the reservation/room type history on Opera and request MOD’s assistance. It usually helps at resolving these situations.