In the past, I tipped pretty heavily at the Mirage and got a sweet suite.
But one important thing to look at when searching for an upgrade is whether or not one would be available.
The Mandalay Bay was pretty sold out and when I pulled up the website, it showed only two room types were available. The most basic kind.
But I like testing things out. And I wanted to know–what would happen if I slipped the clerk a $20 and asked about an upgrade when I knew none were available.
I handed the clerk my card with the $20 bill and asked about upgrades. I could tell she couldn’t see the denomination what I gave her (even though it was facing her). So she placed my card down, fanned it out, and nodded as she noted the $20 bill.
She started typing like crazy. She finally gave me two offers. She could give me the absolute nicest view the have left or try to see what she could do about the Delano.
I told her the nicest view was fine because that was actually what was most important to me on this trip. And she delivered.
The room is high up, but also in the center of the hallway with a complete view of the strip. Not only that, but this plane spotter could see the airport from the room too.
A few other people staying at the hotel stopped by and commented on how much better my view was.
Sometimes some types of upgrades are more important than others at times. And all I really wanted was the view, anyway!