I Reached 75 Night Platinum With Starwood… Yay?

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In April I started living in hotels full time, and have been primarily staying at Hyatt and Starwood properties. I also mix in a fair number of Hilton and Club Carlson properties when they’re more convenient, thanks to the benefits offered by their co-branded credit cards:

  • The Club Carlson Premier Rewards Visa Signature® Card offers a free night when you redeem for two or more award nights, so if you stay in two night increments that’s basically buy one get one free.
  • The Citi® Hilton HHonors™ Reserve Card offers Gold status for as long as you have the card, plus Diamond status when you spend $40,000 on the card in a year. While I don’t love Hilton properties in general, they have a massive footprint, unlike Hyatt and Starwood.

Anyway, while I had already requalified for basic top tier status with Hyatt and Starwood for the year a couple of months ago (Diamond and Platinum, respectively), I was trying to decide whether to go for any of the higher thresholds they have:

Anyway, over the past several months most of my stays have been at Hyatt properties rather than Starwood properties. That’s partly because I do slightly prefer staying at Hyatts all else being equal, partly because the cities I’ve visited have had better Hyatt options than Starwood options, and partly because Hyatt’s fall promotion is actually quite lucrative.

While I have over 100 elite qualifying nights with Hyatt for the year, I just reached 75 nights for the year with Starwood. I only realized this because they sent me the following email today:

Starwood-75-Nights

Here’s the content of the email I received from Starwood:

Having a busy travel schedule can be a good thing. After all, it’s helped you accumulate 75 nights with SPG® this year, and we’re happy to see you so often. So let’s celebrate! As part of our new SPG Nights Benefits, you’ll now earn four Starpoints® per eligible U.S. dollar spent through February 28, 2016. That’s a 100% bonus over Preferred members. Plus, receive access to Your24™, a new benefit that allows you to choose your check-in. For example, check in at 9 p.m. and have the flexibility of checking out at 9 p.m. on your day of departure.

Watch your Starpoints balance grow faster than ever, and find all the ways you can redeem them at spg.com/redeem — from Free Nights and Award Flights to unforgettable experiences on the SPG MomentsSM site and so much more. It’s our way of saying thanks for traveling with SPG.

Go ahead, relish your new earning power.

Earning four Starpoints per dollar

It is cool that you an earn an extra Starpoint per dollar spent for stays once you reach 75 nights. At the same time, I’ve never found Starwood to be especially rewarding points-wise for hotel spend, so if anything this only levels the playing field a bit.

Starwood-Points
I look forward to earning a 100% bonus instead of 50%

For example, if you spend $10,000 per year at Starwood properties, this means you’ll earn an extra 10,000 Starpoints. That’s nice, though it’s certainly not worth going out of your way to achieve that threshold, in my opinion.

Your24 check-in option

Through Your24 you’re able to request whichever check-in time you’d like, and then have 24 hours in the room. For example, you can request to check-in at midnight and then would have your room till midnight the following night. This can be great if you have a redeye or an oddly timed layover. On top of that, if you request check-in at 9AM or later, you’re still entitled to 4PM guaranteed late check-out. In other words you could be guaranteed a room for 31 hours, which is pretty cool.

Sheraton-Frankfurt-Airport
Your24 could be a useful benefit at airport hotels, like the Sheraton Frankfurt Airport

There are two catches: Your24 has to be requested at least two days in advance, and it’s up to the hotel whether they want to confirm it or not.

It’s not a guaranteed benefit, and during peak times you’ll probably find it being denied. I’m not sure how much marginal value there is, given that I’ve had good luck checking into hotels early based on availability, even without it being a published benefit.

Bottom line

Best I can tell neither of these benefits are game changers, though I’m grateful to have them given that I didn’t exactly go out of my way to earn the status. I look forward to giving Your24 a shot, and I’ll never turn down extra Starpoints. 😉

To those of you that are 75 night Platinum members with Starwood, how do you feel about the extra Starpoint per dollar spent and Your24?

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Comments

  1. According to my ambassador, the 24 hour check in and suite upgrades are pretty much smoke and mirrors at nicer properties. Would be nice if they made it more available.

  2. I have been a platinum at Starwood for eight years now. You’re right that the 75 night benefit for the extra Starwood Point is whatevs. However, making it to 100 and getting Ambassador Service is a real benefit. Not because of the Ambassador, they’re mildly braindead, but because you always get a room upgrade (you’re next to the top in their internal rankings, after celebs) and wine / fruit or whatever is left over in the kitchen in your room. It’s the little things….

  3. I’m at 60 nights. I’ll get to 75. If it’s not a guaranteed benefit, I don’t care. It never happens for me if it’s asterisked. Thanks Starwood.

  4. At 91 nights now. I love the extra point at SPG 75 because in US I always use SPG Amex…giving me 6x. I sometimes prefer Hyatts, too, but it’s so easy to rack up Hyatt points through Chase URs without staying at Hyatt that I prefer to often stay for work at SPG. SPG points are great for hotel awards AND premium awards on airlines, and that is incredibly valuable to me. The Your24 rarely seems to be useful due to flight schedules, but the few times I’ve tried it, it’s worked just fine–even at a St. Regis and a few Ws.

  5. I actually think that 75 is the best of the three upper Platinum levels benefit-wise. SNAs, eh, we all have frustrations with those. Ambassador is nice, but not really game changing. Getting the 4th point per dollar AND Your24 are both great; for the latter, I’ve had fairly good success with it.

  6. In my view basic Platinum qualification (25 stays or 50 nights) is a game-changer; the additional higher-level Platinum bennies not nearly as useful.

  7. Meh. Like you say, nice but no reason to go out of your way for it. At the rates I stay at, I figure the extra point amounts to only 8,000 to 12,000 points the following year. I mean, I’ll earn 50k Hyatt points just this quarter with their promotion.

    The best thing Sheraton has going for it is that I use the SPG Business card to pay for my Hyatt stays due to the OPEN savings.

  8. @ Lucky – don’t you feel that Hyatt is missing out by not offering an equivalent to SPG’s Plat75/Plat100? Other than property preference, there’s not an incentive to try to go above 50 nights. Whereas with SPG at least you get something extra for Plat75 (Plat100 may not be as useful though).

    P.S. I do admit that at Diamond/Plat50 level Hyatt’s points accrual seems better than SPG’s, especially if you manage to get 2500 points for closed club lounge 🙂

  9. @ Ivan Y — Totally agree. While I don’t expect Courtesy Card, I do feel like it’s unfortunate they don’t offer something extra for people staying double or triple the number of nights required for Diamond.

  10. I have ~20 addl hotel nights remaining for the year mostly in December. I am currently at ~50 nights with SPG and 5 stays (10 nights) with Hyatt. I can either go for SPG Plat75 or Hyatt diamond (I am only platinum currently). I’m leaning toward Hyatt to have top tier status in both SPG and Hyatt. Since my nights will be in December, I won’t get the hyatt fall promotion bonus 50K points. Is this still the right decision?

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