SPG Fall 2014 Promo Offers Double And Triple Starpoints

Starwood Preferred Guest announced their 2014 fall promo on Milepoint this morning, More For You.  The promotion offers double Starpoints on all stays and triple Starpoints on any stay that includes a Friday or Saturday night.

Triple Starpoints

You do need to register by October 31, 2014.  Since registration is free, there’s no reason not to click on that link right now and take care of it, even if your plans don’t currently have you in an SPG property before year-end.

It’s very similar to their summer promotion, Earn Away, Get Away, though slightly more generous in that you can earn triple Starpoints on stays that include a Friday or Saturday night as opposed to just a Sunday night with the last promo.  Business travelers won’t be able to leverage triple points easily but leisure travelers may get a pleasant surprise.

Leisure stays tend to be planned further in advance, and there’re a hefty 200+ properties of those not participating.  So, you may ultimately not be in control of stays now that would earn you triple points.  But, if you’re planning a mattress run between now and the end of the year, you’ll want to pick weekend days.  For those unfamiliar, a mattress run is when you book a hotel room solely for the purpose of earning points and/or status with a hotel chain.  As we get closer to the end of the year, there will be some folks (potentially myself included) who find themselves a few stays away from a goal.  In those cases, look for weekend rates!

As it would happen to stand, every property I plan to stay at through the end of the year except for one is not participating in this promo.

Now that we have the final promo of the year, we can see that SPG blanketed most of the year with promos.  Other than the first 5 days of the year and the last 15, 45 days in August and September is the only time there wasn’t a global promotion running.  That’s generally a slower time for corporate travel, what with final summer vacations and the start of school.  I’m guessing they think that even a double points promo wouldn’t alter behavior in that time period.

On par, that puts them on par or ahead of their competitors in terms of length of the promo.  I haven’t analyzed all the other promos fully yet but I suspect this promo will slot in behind the Hyatt promo I was offered and ahead of everything else.

It’s interesting that Starwood has made the standard for most of 2014 to be double Starpoints.  While not overwhelmingly generous, it’s a significant investment for the chain.  The fact that they targeted Friday and Saturday for higher earnings surely points to softer occupancy on the weekends.  But, offering double points midweek is still likely more generous than Marriott, IHG and Hilton given the relative value of a Starpoint.

I’d certainly be curious to see how many folks SPG figures will opt-in to this promo.  It’s not truly “double” the number of points for those opting in since it only doubles base points and not any elite bonuses.  The global economy is still not booming, but hotel occupancy and daily average rates have risen.  Chains must still feel it’s necessary to have an extra carrot to drive marginal business.

I’d also be curious to hear SPG’s opinion about the 200+ properties opting out of the promotion.  The list, this time, is pretty similar to the summer list, so there are a group of properties that don’t feel they need to drive sales through this channel.  That’s interesting, for sure, as some are not in high occupancy markets like New York City.

SPG also announced two small items that folks may find useful.  There’s a point tracker for the current promo:

Triple Starpoints

I’m not sure if the second announcement is actually new, but I haven’t seen it in the past:

Triple Starpoints

Essentially, clicking the link hands you off to a page in your account without a whole lot of direction.  Under “Manage My Account”, if you click on “My Profile”, you can add a phone number to receive specific alerts:

Triple Starpoints

Some language on the screen also suggests you might receive texts about member promotions, and the announcement today also references your Starpoint balance.  I view all of these bits of information as valuable, but I prefer to process these bits via e-mail/website/app.  At any rate, I signed up for text alerts, for now, to see if anything interesting shows up.

 

2 Comments

  1. Little problem counting this morning? Less than 170 properties excluded in this promo, 86 out of which are located outside the US.

    Unless you’re planning on staying 20+ night at Hyatt, there’s absolutely no question that this offer is a lot better than what YOU were offered from Hyatt, with or without Hyatt blinders on :P. At the end of the day, there were plenty of folks who were not offered anything from Hyatt this fall, yours truly included.

    It’s not just the NY City occupancy and rates that are on record high, it’s in many areas all over the US, like San Fran, Chicago etc. which of course means less generosity from hotel programs.

    http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-us-hotels-highest-occupancy-in-20-years-20140827-story.html

    So at the end of the day, your question should be if excluding members from a promo or giving high occupancy properties the opportunity to opt out is the best strategy.

    Or if this is going to be another, what’s best for me, Ed “analysis” 😉

    1. I guess problems for both of us counting. I went and re-checked my math and got 172 total and 88 outside of US.

      As to the comparison between Hyatt, let’s dig a bit deeper. My promo from Hyatt gave me 5,000 bonus points after 5 nights. To get there on double points with SPG, you’d need to spend $2500 over those 5 nights, or $500 a night ($333 a night if you had all triple point nights), if you assume that a Starpoint is worth exactly the same as a Hyatt point.

      I don’t think a Starpoint and Hyatt GP point are equal. I’d value a Starpoint at roughly 2 cents. I’d probably value a Hyatt GP point at about 1.7 cents. But, let’s use a much more aggressive valuation and say a Hyatt Gold Passport point is worth HALF of a Starpoint (or a penny, in my world). That would mean you would need to spend an average of $250 a night over the course of 5 nights for double Starpoints. At triple Starpoints, you could get to an average daily rate under $200 at a valuation of one penny a piece for Hyatt GP points.

      These are just the base numbers for the Hyatt promo, the LEAST rewarding of the tiers.

      Tommy, those are the numbers. So, I guess if you think the SPG promo is better than the Hyatt one, you need to ask yourself:

      1. How high a rate are you paying at SPG every night?

      2. What do you value a Starpoint versus a Hyatt Gold Passport point?

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