As the new year begins you’ll have to start thinking about your travel strategies anew so here are the top 5 hotel loyalty programs for earning, burning and sharing your points.
Sometimes it’s hard enough to keep up with airline miles, let alone hotel points. But I think in general if you pay attention there is still good value offered by hotel loyalty programs and so I carefully collect hotel points and you should too.
Hotels, like airlines will not always allow you to use points whenever you want. Some hotels will charge you more at busy times, others have blackout periods altogether. This sometimes makes it difficult to use your hard earned points or they are devalued when you need a lot of points to stay just one night. And as Murphy’s Law always comes into play, the one night you need will be the one night when the hotel requires a premium.
Hilton HHonors make you rack up about 60,000 points just for one hotel stay. The higher up you are on their tier level, will determine how many points you’ve earn for every dollar spent, but in geenral I find this to be quite expensive.
Some hotel plans are better than others and some allow you to transfer your points to air miles. I like this, with certain caveats it can be good value when you to move hotel points over to your airline.
Hilton with give you about 2,000 air miles for every 10,000 points you transfer. So 160,000 Hilton points only get you about 32,000 miles. So weigh that up. A free domestic ticket within the USA or 3 nights at a Hilton?
IHG is another option that is similar and Marriott is also about the same. So all-in-all this can be expensive.
The best in my opinion is SPG from Starwood. We’ll have to see how Marriott which recently acquired them, changes the program in the year ahead. But for now SPG is my favorite hotel loyalty program.
Starwood has relationships with most airlines and if you are taking a flight with Delta you not only earn Starwood points but they also reward you with a bonus on every paid Delta ticket. With Starwood , when you transfer 20,000 points to an airline, they also give you 5,000 bonus points.
So generally I think it makes sense to move over 40,000 points for 50,000 air miles and a free transcontinental flight rather than to get one or two nights stay at a Starwood property. And if you are Starwood Platinum, you get the best room available at any hotel. For me this makes SPG the best loyalty reward hotel plan.
I consider loyalty programs a lot and in my opinion here are the best of the best when it comes to earning, burning and transferring.
Top 5 in order are:
What do you think? What’s your fav program? Hit us up on Twitter @goingglobaltv.
Daniel Green, the Model Cook is a Celebrity Chef known for his healthy approach to food and living well. With TV, books, magazines and live appearances, Daniel spends his time helping fans to cook better, feel better and live better. He’s also an avid traveler and a self-confessed Foodie.