Last year Starwood added a new Suite Night Award benefit for Platinum members that rack up at least 50 nights per calendar year. While it only takes 25 stays OR 50 nights to qualify for Starwood Platinum status, this is something Starwood added to differentiate those that are staying 50 nights at their properties from those that are making 25 one-night stays (which I assume is the minority). Fortunately if you have the Starwood Personal and Starwood Business credit cards you really only have to stay 40 nights to qualify, as each card offers two elite qualifying stays and five elite qualifying nights towards status annually.
Eligible Platinum members receive 10 Suite Night Awards, each valid for a one-night upgrade on a paid or award stay. In a way this has addressed my biggest frustration with Starwood. While Starwood theoretically promises “unlimited suite upgrades” subject to availability, I found in practice that often translated to suite upgrades on one night airport hotel stays, while I wasn’t getting upgraded on the “vacation” stays I actually cared about.
With these new Suite Night Awards it’s possible to lock in suite upgrades up to five days in advance. For what it’s worth I’ve had great luck with the program, and don’t think I’ve missed a single suite upgrade yet when using a Suite Night Award.
Anyway, I still have two Suite Night Awards remaining from this year, and it didn’t faze me till earlier today when I got an expiration notice from AwardWallet that my awards will be expiring on January 1, 2014. For whatever reason I had assumed they expired in February, much like Hyatt’s confirmed Diamond suite upgrades.
I was a bit irked since I don’t have any more Starwood stays planned for the rest of the year and there were certainly stays where I could have used them earlier in the year.
However, per The Mr Pickles, it appears as if Starwood is extending the expiration date of Suite Night Awards that were set to expire at the end of the year to April 30, 2014.
That’s awesome news!