Starwood Preferred Guest Announces Their First Promo Of 2016

Starwood Preferred Guest has announced their first promo of 2016.  It follows a consistent theme of past SPG promos in providing double points on stays of more than one night.  Registration is required, and everyone should register since it’s free to do so.  Here’s what they’re offering:

Starwood Preferred Guest

  • Double Starpoints on all reservations of 2 or more nights (reminder, this is only on the base Starpoints, not any bonuses you receive for elite status).
  • 250 bonus Starpoints per night at a list of participating hotels in key cities.

The promotion starts January 11, 2016 and runs through April 30.

This differs a bit from their 2015 fall promo, wherein members earn double points on stays of 2 or more nights and get an additional 500 points for stays of 3 nights or more.

There is a list of properties participating in the 250 bonus points per night portion, but it basically boils down to the key properties in these markets:

  • California
  • Hawaii
  • Illinois
  • Massachusetts
  • Nevada
  • New York
  • Puerto Rico
  • Brazil
  • China
  • Egypt
  • Germany
  • Hong Kong
  • Japan
  • Macau
  • Maldives
  • Peru
  • Singapore
  • Spain
  • Turkey
  • UAE

I see both positives and negatives in this promo:

  • On the plus side, all properties are participating in the 2X Starpoints portion.  That’s something SPG has really struggled with IMO in the past.  The fall promotion had roughly 10% of the properties opting out, including many of the locations you want to stay at.
  • On the down side, there’s really not much here for folks who don’t stay 2 nights or more.  There are only a handful of markets that are offering 250 points per night.

I find it interesting that SPG structured the 250 bonus Starpoints the way they did.  The first quarter of the year can sometimes be a tough time to fill beds, but we’ve seen a general rise in hotel occupancy over the past few years.  And, key properties in markets like NYC are usually the ones opting out.  Here, they’re opting in to a larger than normal promo, where they’ll give away double Starpoints on longer stays and 250 points per night.

That’s more coin than they’re usually putting in the game, and it makes me wonder a bit if SPG is picking up some of the tab for the double Starpoints portion.

I broke one of my own “rules” when I was finishing up this post.  When it comes to forming my opinion on things like this, I generally try to finish my thoughts before reading what other bloggers feel about a specific issue.  There are some smart folks out there, and I figure if I read everyone else’s opinion first it might slant my own view.

I took a peek at what View From The Wing thought of the promo as I was assembling the post, partially because I could tell he wasn’t thrilled from the title.  Weak sauce, heh.  Promos as a whole aren’t getting better right now in the hotel industry.  That’s just the reality.  But, I don’t think this promo is as bad as Gary makes it out to be.  That being said, I do place a high value on a chain getting all of their properties to honor the current promotion so members don’t have to guess or research whether a stay qualifies for bonus points.

All in all, I’m reasonably pleased that SPG is continuing to try new elements to see what excites members.  While it’s unlikely I’ll be staying at any of the 250 bonus Starpoint properties in the first quarter, they’re popular markets and many folks who are smart enough to register for the promos will see their account balance go up because of it.  That’s a good thing.

We’ll have to wait and see what other chains offer, but I suspect this will be one of the stronger promos available to members in the first quarter of 2016.  It may not be enough to move your business from a different chain, but you’ll definitely want to register.

The post Starwood Preferred Guest Announces Their First Promo Of 2016 was first published on Pizza In Motion.

3 Comments

  1. Call me paranoid, but I see these 2night mins as an incentivization strategy from them to reduce mattress running during the cheap downtime-season in Q1. Hopefully it doesn’t do well, bc I plan on 25 $50-$75 nights to renew my Plat before 4-1-16.

    1. Ninja, I think the key to remember here is that those of us in the hobby represent a very small sliver of the folks they’re trying to market to. If you’re planning on a Plat run, make sure you find an SPG Keyless property to get that 2,500 bonus points. I’m likely to make a Plat run early in the year as well, although for a different reason. Although my math shows that I have 10 years as a Plat, SPG thinks I have nine. I’d hate to lose out on lifetime status because of a technicality, even if it’s going to be Marriott status. And, I’d like to get that wrapped up before Marriott and SPG do their thing. Just….in….case.

  2. <—– excellent points all. Another black comedy hypothesis would be they are starting to reduce the value of their promos in order to better seamlessly integrate with Marriott ha ha. Also -Thanks for the keyless reminder !

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