Wednesday, June 15, 2022

Is the Breakfast Credit at the Doubletree or Hilton Garden Inn Worth It?

 I am a loyal fan of the Hilton brand hotel chain, if I can get a room at a good price.  There have been so many good introductory offers from IHG and other places, that I have put free rooms over my favorite Hilton brands for a season.  In fact, for a future trip, we got free rooms from Hyatt for the whole trip.  It may not be Hilton quality, but the price can't be beat.  Let's get back to the subject of this post.  Is the new breakfast credit worth it or not?

If you stay at a Hilton brand hotel, and are not a big breakfast eater, you may enjoy the credit that can be used for other times of the day or for purchasing snacks.  If you are catching a 6 a.m. flight, and don't have time to make it to the breakfast, it can also work in your favor.  

For those of us who have enjoyed the benefit of two adult adult breakfasts and free breakfasts for kids 12 and under, think twice about staying at a Doubletree or Hilton Garden Inn.  You may end up paying a lot more for your breakfast.  If the credit does cover your breakfast, chances are they may have changed it to only the continental breakfast or have raised the price so your credit doesn't cover the breakfast.  The hotels we stayed in also offered no free breakfast for kids.  The price of the snacks you can substitute in place of the breakfast have doubled as well.  If you don't have the name of the additional adult with you on your reservation, like spouse for example, they won't give you credit for their breakfast either.  

In the past, we have loved going to the Hilton Garden Inn.  Not any more.  We had some very negative experiences.  One HGI we stayed at stopped offering the great breakfast and instead charged for each item on the menu separately.  You were lucky to get oatmeal and fruit without going over budget.  There was no all you can eat anything offered.  No more HGI for our family.  

There was a lot of variance between the hotels.  Some offered the continental breakfast, some charged for each breakfast item, some gave you the adult breakfast but no kids breakfast, and none of them gave me credit for my husband's meal unless he was specifically on our reservation.  There was one exception, a place where I would stay again.  The Doubletree Sea World Resort gave everyone a free continental breakfast that stayed there.  If you were a gold or diamond member, you got the full breakfast for free.  It was amazing.  There is a resort fee, but if you can get a room for $50-$60 dollars, then it is as much or less than other hotels in the area.  The pools are fun and you get more bang for your buck.  We went there last Christmas.  With inflation these days, who knows if they still have the same offer any more.  Another way you can beat the system is if they offer a "to go" box and fill it up.  You won't overeat like you might do when you eat at the restaurant.  You can even share the food with your kids in the room, who do not get the benefit any more.  There are plenty of calories for all, even if you each have half an omelet and half a muffin.  

If money is a determining factor in your vacation plans, I would strongly suggest that you call the hotel ahead of time and get the scoop before staying there.  You will have more realistic expectations and can choose to stay somewhere else if it doesn't fit your budget.  

Be sure to check your bill.  You may have extra charges that you weren't planning on or may not get the credit you were expecting to receive.  Hotels have been hit hard with the pandemic the past couple of years, and they are having a hard time finding people to work.  I can't help but wonder if they offer fewer rooms and charge more to make up the difference.  

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