Win 70,000 Starpoints Courtesy Of The Starwood American Express — Only Six Hours To Enter!

I’ve been invited to participate in the Starwood American Express “Stars” program for the past two years, which has given me the incredible opportunity to experience some events courtesy of the card. Possibly the coolest part of participating in the program is that with each experience I’m able to give away a prize to a reader courtesy of the Starwood American Express. For example, earlier this year I stayed at the St. Regis Monarch Beach, and was able to give away 30,000 Starpoints in conjunction with the stay. Similarly, I was invited to the US Open and stayed at the Westin Grand Central, and was also able to give away 30,000 Starpoints in conjunction with the stay.

A few weeks ago the Starwood American Express sent me on a peak season holiday trip. They deposited 70,000 Starpoints into my SPG account, which I could redeem for two nights at any US property in the November through December timeframe. Given that I live in the Pacific Northwest, escaping to a warm climate in November sounded pretty awesome. So I decided to book the St. Regis Bahia Beach, which costs 30,000 Starpoints per night.


It was certainly nice to escape freezing Seattle and spend a couple of days in sunny Puerto Rico at the St. Regis! A review of the property will follow shortly.


Anyway, as part of the experience the Starwood American Express has given me 70,000 Starpoints to give away to a lucky blog reader, so they can have a similar vacation. The window to enter will only last for six hours, till 5PM ET today, Friday, December 6, 2013.

How to enter:

1. Follow me on Twitter @OneMileataTime

2. Tweet me letting me know your dream place is to visit during the holidays using the hashtag #spgamexOneMile.

An example of an eligible Tweet would be:

@OneMileataTime I’d love to spend the holidays at the St. Regis Bahia Beach #spgamexOneMile

The fine print:

It’s that simple! To be eligible you have to enter between 11AM ET and 5PM ET today (in other words, in the next six hours). You can find all the fine print of the promotion here. Some of the fine print includes:

  • You have to be at least 18 and a resident of the US to qualify
  • Only one entry is allowed per person/Twitter account
  • Winner is responsible for paying taxes on the value of the prize
  • A winner will be announced within 24 hours

Good luck and please let me know in the comments section if you have any questions!


  1. why is it always twitter? some of us refuse to participate in the retarded twitter post orgy.

    is our blog readership and all the application referrals you receive from us not worth anything to you? why can’t we just enter by commenting here?

  2. @Lantean, my guess it that Ben (like other bloggers) doesn’t really set the rules w/ these types of contests. AmEx & SPG want it to be on twitter so more people see the contest.

  3. @Lantean: I believe the Twitter requirement is because the contest is actually run by AMEX, not Ben and that’s how they roll (maybe they’re harvesting twitter account addresses; maybe someone within AMEX has to demonstrate that they’re “engaging with twitter”.
    I’m also not a Twitter fan, but I set up an account just for this contest. You don’t have to install the phone client, there’s a web page that you can bring up for the rare time you want to enter a contest.

  4. @ Lantean — Sorry, but this is out of my control. I don’t set the rules, I just run the contest. Hopefully you know I appreciate you guys reading, and when it’s a contest where I’m giving away the prize I always give an option to enter in the comments section of the blog.

  5. Thanks for letting us try for a chance to say in a luxurious brand resort I would never be able to afford it myself. Just grateful for a chance! Wish I got in this points and miles thing a Long time ago instead of last year!

  6. It would feel great to win this, but would it feel great to pay taxes on winning this? How much would that be? What is the prize tax on 70k at 2.5 cents ($1750)?

  7. @ Steve — Prize tax depends on your income bracket, but even in the highest income bracket you’d be paying at most a cent per Starpoint. Still an absolute steal.

  8. So the points have to be used this month for max 2 nights at a US property or they disappear from the winner’s account?

  9. @Steve: The prize would be reported to you on a 1099 and you would add it to your other income. Therfore, the tax “bite” would depend on what your tax rate is. Expect to pay one-quarter to one-third of the reported value (eg, up to about $600) in taxes.
    For what it’s worth, Gary Leff had an article sometime in the last year on challenging the value of a prize like this with the IRS — if you can convince them the points are worth less then you would pay tax on the lower valuation.

  10. Thanks for the contest Ben. I will not be entering because of Twit. That is my decision, I did love my stay at Starwoods Hua Hin last Jan. and just cancelled it for next year. I’ll look at Mariott next door or someone else that is also my decision. Twit is one of the worse security risks out there which is my main reason for not twitting.

  11. Ben, I rarely tweet – could I trouble you to see if my 11am-ish entry has shown up ok? ugh, sorry to ask 🙁 gleasonja Thx 🙂

  12. there must be some way to verify a tweet went through ok – can anybody help us novices??!! I know it’s no the right forum, but since we’re on the topic… Thanks!

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