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Between November 1 and December 31, Starwood has discounted the price for purchasing points. Now, it will cost $28 for every 1,000 points purchased. Typically, purchasing points is quite expensive and does not pay off. However, in some instances purchasing points can actually save you money!
- Purchasing points can be less than paying the daily rate at the hotel: For example, this winter I will be heading to Thailand where I am staying at a few category 2 hotels. Asia is filled with great category 2 and 3 hotels, by the way! The cost of these hotels are about $120/night + tax, however, I can redeem for a free night for only 3,000 points on a weekend (4,000 points on a weekday)! Let’s say I had an account balance of zero, I could purchase 3,000 points for $84 – much less than paying for the hotel. And, if the hotel allows Cash & Point redemption that is even a bigger savings! While these hotels are more expensive during the holiday/peak times, it is always worth researching this potential cost saving for all hotel stays, regardless of the hotel category.
- If you were going to purchase points for a particular airline program: With the Starwood program, you can transfer your points to MANY partner airlines at a 1:1 ratio (see list here) and for every 20,000 point transfer you get a bonus 5,000 points. Again, purchasing points for airline redemption typically doesn’t pay off, but you would have to weigh out the benefits based on your fare. If you purchase 20,000 SPG points that will cost you $560. If you transfer the 20,000 points to American Airline, for example, you will end up with 25,000 points. Purchasing this number of points from American Airlines directly will cost you $684 + $30 processing fee – much more expensive than purchasing through SPG then transferring them over! While spending $560 for 25,000 points is still quite expensive and in most cases not worth it, it could help you top off your account to be able to redeem for a certain award or meet that million mile mark!
Things to know:
- Your account must be oven for 30+ days to purchase points
- You can purchase up to 20,000 points per account per calendar year
- Free nights/stays now count towards earning status