After much anticipation, Starwood has unveiled the details of their second quarter promotion, and I think most people agree it’s not all that exciting. Starwood is offering those that register one free weekend night after every three stays between May 1 and July 31. The free nights can redeemed at category 1-6 hotels on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights through December 19. The FAQs for the promotion can be found here. Registration will open on May 1.
So overall this is a pretty disappointing promotion, in my opinion. Hyatt is offering one free night after every two stays through their “Big Welcome Back” promotion, and those free nights can be redeemed any day of the week, and not just weekends. On the other hand, Hyatt’s free nights can only be redeemed through August 31, while Starwood’s free nights can be redeemed through December 19.
For what it’s worth, Hyatt’s promotion has made me a very, very loyal customer. I’m embarking on my seventh “mattress run” tonight, where I’ll be staying at a local hotel for no other reason than to accrue points. Starwood’s promotion certainly won’t result in any mattress running on my end.
What makes this promotion somewhat lame is that last year they offered the same promotion, except one free night was earned after every two nights. Offering a worse promotion while Hyatt continues to offer the same great promotion just isn’t tempting. I have a feeling that all those people that switched stays from Starwood to Hyatt thanks to Hyatt’s “Big Welcome Back” won’t feel compelled to switch those stays back as a result of this promotion. It’s a nice bonus, but hardly great.