ARGH! Credit me my points, Starwood!

Lucky, stay calm. Lucky, stay calm. Lucky, stay calm. I’m about to go Howard Dean on you all and rattle off all 56 states!

One of the things that has always frustrated me about Hyatt is how manual the points posting process is. Back when they had “Gx” bonuses I needed to call after almost every stay to have points manually posted. Well, at least they always posted them while I was on the phone, which wasn’t too much of a pain.

I’m about to friggin’ lose it with Starwood, though. I stayed at the Le Meridien Khao Lak, and my “eligible charges” were about $1,500. Starwood members earn two points per dollar, plus Platinum members earn a 50% bonus.

So I should have gotten somewhere around 4,500 Starwood points. Instead they posted a total of 300 points to my account.

I called up Starwood customer service to have the correct points posted. The agent noted my eligible spend, and said the points would be posted to my account within 24 hours. 24 hours later I get the following email:

Dear Lucky,

Thank you for your recent Starpoints® inquiry.

Our records indicate that your account has already been credited for all eligible charges incurred during your stay.

Thank you for choosing Starwood Hotels & Resorts. We appreciate your business and look forward to serving you again.

Property: Le Méridien Khao Lak Beach & Spa Resort

Obviously they were wrong, so I called back customer service (since the email address this came from doesn’t allow responses). I explained the issue to the agent, and she called the hotel for the folio. I tried to explain to the agent that I booked a pre-paid rate on spg.com. That means that the amount of my room rate (about $800) wouldn’t appear on the folio, since it was pre-paid. Only incidentals (totaling about $700) would appear on the folio. She took note of that and assured me everything would post correctly.

Sure enough a day later points post. But only for the incidentals, and not for the room rate.

I called back yet again and explained the situation to the agent. She told me to fax the folio to Starwood. I explained that they already had the folio from the hotel, and that didn’t include the actual rate I paid for my room, which they could see on my confirmation. She understood my problem and assured me the issue would be solved within 24 hours.

Sure enough I get an email back 24 hours later saying exactly the same thing as above, that my points have already been credited!

I’m truly at a loss. It’s not worth my time to fight over a couple thousand points, but now it’s getting personal. How the heck do I have them post the points I’m owed?

Comments

  1. Damn, Lucky –

    All of your posts about Starwood’s problems make me really want to avoid them at all costs in the future.

  2. I have had the same issue with a pre-paid rate posting when I stayed at the Le Meridien Plaza Athene Bangkok. I tried a few phone calls and no dice….

  3. go as high up in the chain as you can. speak to the manger, then the manger’s manager and that person’s manager. it might take a little bit of transferring around but i would do it for the points.

  4. I had the same problem with A Club as well this month on prepaid stay. I had to send my credit card statement to show them I have paid the room in addition to my confirmation page.

  5. Yeah, I would think reaching out to their twitter again would get things fixed.

    This Starwood property sounds like a hot mess; given that you weren’t properly upgraded when you were there and now points not posting correctly!

  6. +1 for talking to the lurkers at FT. Lurker II is a really helpful guy. I was trying to work something out with a hotel in Bali, and I was getting a feeling that the correspondent wasn’t all that great with English. Thyetus was able to put me in touch with a native speaker, which really helped a lot.

  7. @Lucky I am surprised you having this much problem with pre-paid stay. One thing I did notice that each time I have had pre-paid stay they did not charge the card until checkout. Every point counts so it is worth pursuing till you get it.

    @Puchi 3000 Star points is good for a free night at lower end properties

  8. Unfortunately, this isn’t surprising. I’m consistently disappointed by SPG customer service (though property-level service is usually stellar outside the Le Parker in New York). The program can be especially poor with respect to ensuring points are properly posted.

    I second @Nancy’s comment above–if you have the email confirmation/receipt for prepayment, that might resolve this.

  9. While I assume the twitter will take care of it, do you have a starwood ambassador? I stayed enough last year for business that they assigned me a person I can email to handle this kind of issue. She resolved it very quickly for my stay at the St. Regis in Singapore.

  10. I’ve never had an issue that the Platinum chat representative couldn’t handle in about two minutes on the SPG website.

  11. I did the facebook ‘check-in’ deal about a month ago while at the Westin DTW. Those points never posted either, but I’m too lazy to fight over 250 points. 3000 points I would definitely follow-up on, though.

  12. Marriott does the same thing whenever I stay abroad, I have to manually get adjustments. So annoying!

  13. Dearest member,

    I saw my name. I would try my best to help. But I need some help in identifying your stay so please email me your details to spgchampion@starwoodhotels.com. I have emailed the hotel regarding this. We hope to achieve a resolution(may not be the same as you have asked for) regarding this.

  14. Send an email. Find out the name of the CEO, or the VP in charge of customer service by googling.

    As a platinum member, you should be getting excellent customer service, not lousy. But a written communication always works better than talking to a minimum wage phone worker.

  15. Ben, same issue here with the same hotel/time frame as you with a pre-paid rate. 🙁 I also emailed Thyetus for assistance. I’ll post back here my resolution.

  16. I have had the same problem with pre-paid rooms with Hilton. It takes weeks of back and forth to get the points credited.

    Pre-paid options cannot be that uncommon for these hotels. Why is it such a challenge to get the points?

  17. Coins, in all the Starwood stays I’ve had over the years, I’ve never had one not post. This is isolated. Since you’re new to *wood, I invoke Murphys Law!

  18. Dearest members, Thyetus has contacted us and we are now looking into this problem. Please allow us a couple of days to get back to you. We will certainly try our best to resolve this problem. Our apology to keep you waiting.

  19. Dearest member,after we have looked into the details and yes, it is indeed we have made a mistake on the point calculation. We sincerely apologize for the incoveniences this has caused you. Our SPG agent will be in touch with you soon with detailed explaination. Spa, transportation and Unicef charges are not eligible for Starpoints. We thank you once again for staying with us and we truly value your loyalty for Starwood Hotels and Resorts. We hope there will be another opportunity to welcome you back again.

  20. Sad thing lucky is this happend ALL the time. I just never pursue it because as I stay about 100+ nights a year its all I would be doing. Maybe the answer is hotels should not be issueing points but should report the room rate plus extras to someone at Corporate and they issue the points…..

  21. Well, at least we now know Lucky donated to Unicef during his stay. At least they didn’t mention the x-rated movie charges…

  22. Isn’t that what the comment above from LMKL on 8.19 says?

    “Spa, transportation and Unicef charges are not eligible for Starpoints.”

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