Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide

Miles And Points Are Just Like Dollars

Inspirational Typographic Quote - FOCUS on the Journey not the D

The miles and points game isn’t for everyone. But, if you’re going to collect miles and points it behooves you to understand what they’re worth. Spending on a cash-back credit card has a clear return. It’s defined in the terms of the card agreement. But, miles and points, whether they’re earned from flying, staying in hotels or credit card spend have a variable value. Just like you’d ask how much cash back you get, you should ask how much you can get for miles and points you’re earning. Here are some examples.

Athens & Paris For Dollars A Day: Arion Guest Room Review

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Here’s a breakdown of the two rooms we had at Arion during our Athens and Paris trip this summer. The two room types fit very well together. Either one would have accommodated more than 2 people comfortably.

Today Is The Last Day To Book Starwood Preferred Award Nights Before They Increase Redemption Rates Tomorrow

Today is the last day to book Starwood Preferred Guest hotels at the lower rate before they go up in price tomorrow. I posted my thoughts on the increase just about two weeks ago.  Overall, it’s not horrible.  I think it’s slightly worse than Hyatt’s devaluation but I could see someone arguing the opposite.  The addition of a category 7 to Hyatt’s chart was very painful to some folks.  But, I still think the price at the top end of SPG’s chart is more painful. One of my favorite properties, […]

Cheap Flights To Europe For Christmas, Buy An Airline Ticket And Board a Bus, Starwood Screws Up, Southwest Wakes Up. Things I Find Interesting On Friday, February 28th, 2014

A great fare sale to Europe that includes the Christmas travel season, Starwood corrects their mistakes, Southwest rolls out mobile boarding passes about 10 years too late. Oh, and have you ever bought an airline ticket to ride on a bus?

The Travel Game Is A Journey. The Destinations Along The Way Are Just Part Of The Fun, Part 2

This is part 2 of a complete walkthrough of how I recently planned our summer vacation. Planning a vacation is a detailed process. There are do’s and dont’s for Rome and Venice, as well as some ways to get the most value out of your Starwood Preferred Guest points in Italy.

Have You Registered For The First Hotel Promos Of 2014?

Reminder to enter my Amazon gift card giveaway. Registering for hotel promos is always free and usually very quick and easy.  Since travel patterns are rarely exactly as we intended, I recommend registering for all the promos just in case plans change.  Registration is now open for each of the promos I’ve reviewed, so I assembled the links and a brief refresher on each below.  Take a moment and register today: IHG Big Win: Registration link here. Most folks will get an offer between to earn between 70,000 and 100,000 […]

Year-End Hotel Status Review

It was a long year of hotel nights.  And, while the dust remains to settle on the posting of my last hotel stay, I’m supposed to finish with enough nights to maintain my Hyatt Diamond status as well as Starwood Preferred Guest Platinum status at the 75-night level.  I was hoping to travel less this year. I ended up spending less total days away from home but taking more trips.  It was a pretty exhausting year of travel. I value both programs, but I thought I would include some analysis […]

Sizing Up The First Hotel Promos Of 2014

I’ve written a detailed post about the Hyatt, IHG, Marriott, and Starwood promos slated for Q1 of 2014, but now that I’ve had a chance to step back, I figured it was worth comparing them to each other.  I think it’s important to judge these promos in light of the improving strength of the hotel industry.  None of these are “best of a generation” promo but there’s certainly value to be had here. I’ve included a link to each full review and my general thoughts about each promo individually below, […]

Starwood Extends The Expiration On Their New Suite Night Awards. Why That Really Doesn’t Matter

Starwood Preferred Guest rolled out a bunch of changes to their program back in 2012, all of which were promising: Lifetime Gold And Platinum Status Suite Night Awards For Staying 50 Nights In a Year Personal Ambassador For Staying 100 Nights In a Year 4 Starpoints Per Dollar And A Guaranteed Early Check-in Benefit New Amenity Choices For Gold And Platinum Members. I was certainly excited about all of these.  I had begun to prefer Hyatt much more than Starwood, and these changes brought Starwood closer to Hyatt in my […]