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Since early March, Starwood has been offering up to a 30% bonus on the purchase of points. This promotion ends today, April 30, 2017, so if you’ve been holding off, this is your last chance to take advantage of this opportunity.
How the Starpoints 30% discount works
The bonus is tiered based on how many points you buy in a single transaction, as follows:
- Buy 5,000 – 9,500 Starpoints and save 10%
- Buy 10,000 – 14,500 Starpoints and save 15%
- Buy 15,000 – 19,500 Starpoints and save 20%
- Buy 20,000 – 30,000 Starpoints and save 30%
Starwood ordinarily charges 3.5 cents per purchased Starpoint. If you max out this promotion you can buy up to 30,000 Starpoints at a cost of $735, which is a rate of 2.45 cents per Starpoint.
You can purchase a maximum of 30,000 Starpoints per account per calendar year, and accounts have to be at least 14 days old in order to participate in this promotion.
While Starwood points purchases are processed by points.com, they actually do earn bonus points if using an SPG credit card. So you’d earn double Starpoints if you pay for the purchase with the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express or Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express.
Should you buy Starpoints?
Part of what makes Starpoints so valuable is how flexible they are. Starpoints can be transferred to over two dozen airline partners, including the following:
|AeroMexico Club Premier||ANA Mileage Club||Emirates Skywards||Qatar Airways Privileges Club|
|Air Canada Aeroplan||American Airlines AAdvantage||Etihad Airways Guest||Saudi Arabian Airlines Alfursan|
|airberlin Top Bonus||Asiana Airlines Asiana Club||Gol Smiles||Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer|
|Air China Companion||British Airways Executive Club||Hawaiian Airlines HawaiianMiles||Thai Airways Royal Orchid Plus|
|Air France/KLM FlyingBlue||Cathay Pacific Asia Miles||Japan Airlines (JAL) Mileage Bank||United Mileage Plus|
|Air New Zealand Air Points||China Eastern Airlines Eastern Club||Korean Air Skypass||Virgin Atlantic Flying Club|
|Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan||China Southern Airlines' Sky Pearl Club||LAN Airlines LANPASS Kms||Virgin Australia Velocity|
|Alitalia MilleMiglia||Delta Air Lines SkyMiles||Lufthansa Miles & More|
Points transfer at a 1:1 ratio to a vast majority of partners, and you get a 5,000 point bonus for every 20,000 points transferred.
So at a rate of 2.45 cents per Starpoints, that’s the equivalent of paying 1.96 cents per airline mile. For many mileage currencies, I’d say that’s an excellent deal.
Potentially it gets even better than that. At the moment, American is offering a 25% bonus when you convert hotel points into AAdvantage miles. You could buy 20,000 Starpoints for $490, and they would convert into 31,250 AAdvantage miles. That’s a cost of ~1.57 cents per mile, which is cheaper than I recall American selling miles in years.
Converting Starpoints into Marriott points
Keep in mind that Starpoints convert into Marriott Rewards points at a 1:3 ratio, so this is an opportunity to buy Marriott Rewards points at attractive prices as well. At a rate of 2.45 cents per Starpoint, that’s like being able to buy Marriott points for ~0.8 cents each, which is quite a good deal.
The best use of Marriott Rewards points is for their Hotel + Air Packages, where you can redeem a set number of points for a fixed number of free nights plus a fixed number of miles, as follows:
In many cases it could be worth buying Starpoints in order to top up for one of these redemptions, given what a great value they represent (in many cases it’s an even better value than Starwood’s direct mileage transfer option).
Starwood’s sale on the purchase of Starpoints is ending today, so if you haven’t yet taken advantage of it, I’d seriously consider doing so. 2.45 cents per Starpoint is a pretty good price, and is potentially an opportunity to generate Marriott points for ~0.8 cents each, airline miles for ~1.96 cents each, and AAdvantage miles for ~1.57 cents each.
Do you plan on buying Starpoints for 30% off?