Power To The Points

Power To The Points

This Fall, hotel loyalty programs are united in their efforts to get everyone traveling again (hello airlines … are you out there?) The Gang of Four (Marriott, Starwood, Hyatt and Six Continents) are all launching some of the best promotions we’ve seen to date. Which ones to pick? We’ll let you decide (with a little help from us of course).

Qualifying stays for the Hyatt Gold Passport Faster Free Nights promotion with American Express ended on Sept. 2. What’s next? Beginning Oct. 1, Gold Passport members will receive a free night after every two stays when paying with a MasterCard. That’s right, a MasterCard. As far as we know, this is the credit giant’s first foray into the world of points and miles. The rules are basically the same – there is no limit to the number of nights that can be earned. Qualifying stays must be completed by February 28, 2003, and free nights must be redeemed from Nov. 1 to April 30, 2003. Current members must register. To do so, go to www.goldpassport.com or call (800) 51 HYATT.

Marriott Rewards kicks off fall with a free weekend offer (two free nights) after just three separate stays before Jan. 31, 2003. In addition, members who qualify also earn Silver elite status with Marriott Rewards good through 2003, which means more bonus points since members at that level are eligible for a 20-percent bonus. Free weekend nights may be redeemed separately or consecutively any Friday, Saturday and/or Sunday through June 30, 2003. Registration is necessary and can be done at www.marriottrewards.com or by calling (888)627-7468.

And the one that started it all. Priority Club Rewards has its Autumnatic Rewards promo going that allows members to earn up to 20,000 points or 5,000 bonus miles starting with 2,000 bonus points or 500 bonus miles for every second qualifying stay through Nov. 27. Look over the many property bonuses the program is offering (Bonus Bulletin) and you’re in for some serious points from this program. As with the others, registration is necessary and can be completed online at priorityclub.com/autumn or by calling (888)560-5660.

Triple Play: Whose tougher than Starwood? Last fall’s 1K bonus promotion is a tough act to follow but this might even be better: triple points or triple miles through Jan. 31, 2003. There’s not much to explain except that for four months you get to really kick up the volume on your point or miles total. Registration is necessary at www.spg.com. Tip: Because of the extra bonus you get when converting points to miles with SPG at the 20,000-point level, we recommend you claim triple points during this promotion and later convert to miles if you wish.

The winner? You. We like the Hyatt and Starwood promotions because there are no limits. The elite benefits coming from the Marriott promotion are appealing if you are yet to get metal status with the program and if you read Inside Flyer much, you know we’ve always been partial to Priority Club Rewards. At the end of the day – Priority Club Rewards and Starwood win our favor because their bonus offers add into your point bank for you to enjoy many years from now.

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