Which Hotel Programs Let You Earn Points & Elite Nights For Multiple Rooms?

Different hotel loyalty programs have different policies as to how many points, elite qualifying stays, and elite qualifying nights you can earn if booking multiple rooms. In other words, if you often travel with family and book two rooms, can you receive elite credits and points for each of the rooms?

The rules vary by program, so in this post I figured I’d look at the policies of the major hotel loyalty programs, as they impact earning points and elite qualifying credit for multiple rooms (in the title of each section I’ve added a link to the terms & conditions):

Club Carlson

Club Carlson lets you earn points for up to three rooms booked on the same reservation. However, you don’t earn elite qualifying nights for multiple rooms.

Hilton HHonors

Hilton HHonors lets you earn base points for up to two rooms, assuming all eligible charges for both rooms are paid on one folio. However, you only earn elite qualifying stay and night credits for one room.

Hyatt Gold Passport

Hyatt Gold Passport lets you earn points for up to three rooms, assuming the member pays for all three rooms. However, you only earn elite qualifying night credits for one room.

IHG Rewards Club

IHG Rewards Club lets you earn points for up to nine rooms at properties in the U.S. and Canada. However, you only earn elite qualifying night credits for one room.

Marriott Rewards & Ritz-Carlton Rewards

Marriott Rewards and Ritz-Carlton Rewards let you earn points for up to three rooms, assuming the member pays for all three rooms.

Starwood Preferred Guest

Starwood Preferred Guest lets you earn Starpoints for up to three rooms. On top of that, you can earn elite qualifying stays and nights for up to three rooms. In other words, if you make a four night reservation for three rooms at the same hotel, you’d earn three elite qualifying stays and 12 elite qualifying nights.

Basic things to be aware of across the board

This should go without saying, but across all programs:

  • The member has to be staying in one of the rooms in order to qualify
  • Only eligible stays qualify, the definition of which varies by program (for example, with Hyatt free night awards don’t count towards status, while with Starwood, they do)
  • The stays have to be at the same hotel (in other words, you can’t generally earn points for stays at different hotels on the same night)

What about getting elite benefits for multiple rooms?

Technically you only receive elite benefits for one room, meaning the room being occupied by the elite member.

The one exception is when using Hyatt’s “Guest of Honor” benefit. With this, Hyatt Diamond members can redeem points for someone else, and that guest will receive Diamond benefits for the stay. However, this doesn’t work for cash or Points + Cash stays, and also there’s no need for them to stay with you. You can use the “Guest of Honor” benefit to book a stay for someone else even when you’re not traveling with them.

Aside from that, it very much comes down to the individual hotel. On paper hotels don’t need to honor elite benefits for multiple rooms, though in practice they often do. For example:

park-hyatt-vienna-suite-12
Beautiful suite at the Park Hyatt Vienna

So expect not to get elite benefits for multiple rooms (with the exception of Hyatt’s “Guest of Honor” perk), though don’t be surprised if you do.

Bottom line

The policies for how hotels handle multiple rooms greatly impacts how I book hotels. For example, the ability to earn elite stay and night credits for multiple rooms with Starwood really helps me with requalifying for Starwood 100-night Ambassador service, and means that I try to stay at Starwood properties when traveling with friends and family.

At the same time, if a stay is really important to me and I want to be sure I get elite benefits for all rooms, Hyatt’s “Guest of Honor” program is tough to beat.

What has been your experience with earning points and receiving elite benefits for multiple rooms? Do the various policies impact which hotel chain you stay at?

Comments

  1. IHG got totally ignored…? They allow earning points (elite qualifying as well) for at least 2 rooms by the way but I’m not sure about the high limit. Only one room will receive elite S/N credit though.

  2. Ben,
    I don’t know if you really need to be too concerned about the 100 night program since Marriott will probably be doing away with it.

  3. @ Santastico — I assume because they only want to award stay credits if you’re actually paying for a stay and responsible for driving the decision, rather than just picking up bonus points for a colleague who doesn’t care about loyalty programs.

  4. This is where qualifying on spend (i.e., base points) is important. While one gets stay/night credit for only one of 2 rooms under the HH program, one is eligible to get elite qualifying base points for up to two rooms (provided that both are put on the same folio paid by the HH member). I always qualify on base points so that occasionally I would pick up the tab for a second room occupied by family/friends who do not care about earning HH stay/night/base point credits.

  5. @Lucky: How about if you pay cash? Believe me but I know people that like to pay cash and not use a credit card. I then assume Hyatt won’t credit any points if that is the case.

  6. A stay of five nights at the Darwin Hilton last year resulted in a transfer from the Exec/Lounge floor for my two rooms to a suite and adjoining Exec room after the second night (they were sold out prior to then, with the suites already sold out). Although only mine and my partner’s room/suite were technically eligible for breakfast as a Diamond, they proceeded upon check-out to comp the second room’s breakfast (we had quite happily paid something like AU$20 a day for them to have brekky with us too), and allowed us all the buffet rather than just a continental. Was, and still am, pleasantly astounded.

    As you say quite wisely though, Ben; just go with the flow and expect nothing.

  7. Marriott –

    I have a monthly, long-term rate at one location for work that I never check out of. When I go somewhere for the weekend and book another Marriott property, I always get points for both even though I’m still checked in at the other location.

  8. I took the family to South Africa and stayed at the Sandton Hilton and the Cape Town Doubletree.

    In both cases we received two upgraded rooms (Exec Floor in Sandton). In both cases I received credit for two stays and two nights each.

    Don’t know if we were ‘just lucky’ or it was part of my Diamond status. It was appreciated.

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