Things are looking up for members of hotel loyalty programs. Or, rather, they’re looking up for members of some hotel loyalty programs.
After a string of uninspired and uninspiring double-points offers earlier this year, several of the major hotel chains have amped up their promotions for summer stays. Marriott, for example, is offering up to 4,000 bonus points per stay. InterContinental’s new Accelerate promotion features “at least 30,000 bonus points” for completing a series of tasks targeted to each member’s individual stay and earning history. Choice is reprising its popular free-night-after-two-stays offer.
The news isn’t all good, however. Hilton (double points for non-Diamond members) and Wyndham (1,000 bonus points on stays of two or more nights) won’t be winning any points for generosity or creativity with their summer promotions.
Best Western has weighed in with its summer bonus offer, which is decidedly at the lackluster end of the value spectrum.
Between May 22 and September 4, Best Western Rewards members can earn a $10 Best Western Gift Card for every eligible night.
Registration is required.
Deal or No Deal
For a hypothetical $100 one-night stay, the $10 gift card represents a 10 percent discount on a future stay at the same rate. That’s better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick; but it’s not to be confused with a cash rebate.
Gift cards in general are less valuable than cash, because they’re less convenient to use. And a gift card that can only be used for a future Best Western stay, and must be redeemed within 120 days of issue, is even less likely to be utilized than a generic gift card.
By all means, register for this promotion if you already have, or might have, an upcoming Best Western stay. There’s no reason not to. But if you haven’t already committed to Best Western, a $10 gift card is too paltry an incentive to be a difference-maker. There are better bonuses for summer hotel stays.
After 20 years working in the travel industry, and almost that long writing about it, Tim Winship knows a thing or two about travel. Follow him on Twitter @twinship.
This article first appeared on SmarterTravel.com, where Tim is Editor-at-Large.