The hotel chains within the Wyndham group range from inexpensive (Knights Inn, Days Inn, Microtel, Super 8, Howard Johnson, Travelodge, Ramada) to pricey (Wyndham Grand Hotels), yet they all offer a free night for 15,000 Wyndham Rewards points. This seems illogical, but it does make for some interesting arbitrage possibilities.
Right now Wyndham is running a ‘stay 2 nights, get 1 night free’ promotion. The free night is actually 15,000 points, which can be used to rent a room in some very nice properties. The promotion runs through June 30, 2018, and is limited to one free night per Wyndham Rewards account.
Last Fall Wyndham ran a very similar promotion. I did two one-night stays in inexpensive Days Inn properties while traveling in Missouri, and earned the 15,000 point bonus. With those points I spent a free night at the downtown Wyndham Grand Chicago Riverfront hotel, which provided an incredible view of the Chicago River from my room.
Note that, as per the Terms & Conditions, hotel nights must cost at least $25 to count toward this promotion. I see Wyndahm properties in north Austin, San Marcos and New Braunfels listed at $49/night (plus ~$7 tax). Do two 1-night stays at these (you must check in, but you don’t really have to spend the night) and you will earn a free night at an aspirational hotel like I did.
In addition, you will earn 1000 points for each stay. Even if you don’t stay at a Wyndham property, you can always purchase 5000 points for just $55 on their website.
As reported in the Loyalty Lobby blog, Hilton now allows you to “Restore Your Points” after they expire. The cost is 1/4 of a cent per point for up to 100,000 points. That will cost $250. Any additional points, up to 1 million, can be restored at no added charge.
You can restore points up to 18 months after they expire, but the Terms & Conditions state that you can do a restoration only once.
IHG is the second-largest hotel chain in the world, although you will never find a hotel by that name. Registration for their most lucrative promotion, called Accelerate, is open now.
IHG (Intercontinental Hotels Group) owns Holiday Inn (and its variants), Intercontinental, Crowne Plaza, Staybridge Suites and some other lesser-known brands.
About 3 times a year IHG runs a promotion called Accelerate, which gives you lots of IHG points if you meet some goals. Everyone’s set of goals is different. Here are mine for the upcoming Accelerate, which begins January 1 and ends April 30, 2018:
As you may be able to see, if I meet all of the 6 main goals I will receive 47,000 IHG points! That’s not likely to happen this time, but if I meet 5 of the goals I will receive the points for those goals plus an “Achievement Bonus” of 17,700 points.
It looks like I can meet my “easiest” 5 goals by staying a total of just 3 nights. That’s a pretty easy accomplishment.
Compare this with the fact that certain IHG hotels can be had for just 5000 points per night during their PointBreaks promotions.
You can register for the Accelerate promotionhere.
IHG hotels are my favorites, because you can earn a lot of points with the Accelerate promotions and you can rent rooms in select hotels for only 5000 points per night during the PointBreaks promotions. That’s a winning combination in my book.
A One Mile at a Time blog post by Tiffany describes something I’ve never run into, and hope never to run into. It’s expen$$$ive New Year’s Eve dinners at luxury hotels, dinners that you must pay for even if you don’t attend.
Dubai, the Grand Hyatt Dubai charges $354 per person for New Years Eve dinner. The nearby Park Hyatt Dubai dinner is $325 pp.
If you are in Thailand, your dinner at the Vana Belle in Koh Samui will run you $489.
If the above numbers are chump change to you, then hotels in the Maldives may be more appealing. Mandatory New Years Eve dinner at the Park Inn Maldives costs $590 + $131 tax per person.
Still too cheap? Then head over to the St. Regis Maldives and be prepared for $895 plus $197 tax per person. Tipping is presumably whatever you feel like.
Club Carlson is the loyalty program for Radisson, Park Plaza, Park Inn, Country Inns & Suites and Quorvus Collection hotels.
Club Carlson has a promotion to encourage people to use their mobile app. Purchase something from one of their Extras Partners through the app, and you get 3000 Club Carlson points. The promotion runs until the end of 2017. One of their partners is eBay, and there you can find items like USB and Apple cables for as little as 79 cents shipped. I chose a USB cable costing slightly over a dollar, to make sure it registered as a purchase.
To do this, first install the Club Carlson app on your phone and log in. Click the Extras icon at the top. You will see several sellers, I selected eBay. Enter “USB cable” (or whatever you would like to purchase) in the Search box and tap the magnifying glass icon.
Look for the word “Refine” on the right side, under the magnifying glass. Tap Refine and make these selections:
Sort – Lowest Price + Shipping
Buying Format – Buy It Now
Shipping – Free Shipping
Then tap Done. Select any item you like, tap Buy It Now and complete the purchase. The item should arrive in 2 or 3 weeks (if you need it sooner, go back to the Refine step and select United States as the vendor location), and you should receive 3000 points from Club Carlson.
Easy peasy! Club Carlson has other promotions going also, including one for 10,000 points for a stay at some of their hotels. See the ClubCarlson.com website for details.
I stayed in Radisson hotels in Reykjavik, Iceland, using points and found them to be comfortable and clean.
Update: Deal is dead. Someone called Hyatt to ask about it, which alerted them so they pulled the offer. The rule is: If you see a great rate book it, never phone in to ask about it.
The Hyatt Regency Paris Etoile has a possibly-mistake rate which is bookable now for stays until next summer. This is an unbelievably low cost for this quality hotel near the center of the City of Lights.
I’ve made a personal reservation a few minutes ago for 3 nights in July 2017. They are showing as cancellable until 4 PM the day before. Some commenters believe this is just payment for an upgrade, not an actual room…I hope for clarification in the next few days as people begin arriving for their upcoming stays.