“Take a vacation; you’ve earned it!”
That phrase might just sound like a dream come true. And here’s the best part about it: if you’re planning your trip while using hotel points and perks, that little saying can actually be true in more ways than one.
We’ve put together a few tips on how to why hotel points and perks can be so valuable, as well as how you can earn your points efficiently.
Benefits of Hotel Reward Programs
The biggest benefit of hotel reward programs is that you can earn them in your sleep – literally.
If you are booking a hotel stay, just make sure that you’re enrolled in the hotel’s loyalty program and you should earn some special perks with your evening’s stay. Those perks might include:
It’s a competitive world out there, and third-party online travel sites often lure rate shoppers in with their great deals. However, if you participate in a hotel brand’s loyalty program, you can probably find an equally good or better rate through their programs.
Many hotel chains offer exclusive rates to those who book directly through their sites and rewards programs. Why? Because they’re betting that once you’ve experienced the benefits and convenience of their offerings, you’ll keep coming back and remain loyal to their brand as you travel.
Some hotels provide small welcome gifts for travelers who are enrolled in their loyalty programs. And, great news for all of us who are technology-connected at all times – free WiFI access or upgraded WiFi access is often a perk provided specifically to reward program participants.
Other nice-to-have add-ons may include things like free breakfast, room upgrades when available and late checkouts.
The free nights are the plum reward that keeps most of us going back to the same hotel brands. As an example, guests who stay in Marriott hotels can earn points at any of their 30 different hotel brands (including Aloft, Westin, Courtyard and more), then use those to cash in and score a free room at their convenience.
The points can be redeemed for once-in-a-lifetime excursions to foreign countries or glamorous resorts, but they can be equally useful right here at home. For example, a staycation or a night away at a downtown Buffalo hotel could do wonders for your relationship or your state of mental relaxation.
Imagine the convenience of enjoying a tasty dinner at Fresh Catch, attending a concert at the KeyBank Centre, then heading back to Aloft Buffalo downtown for a nightcap at w xyz bar and a relaxing night’s rest, instead of fighting traffic, then being woken at the break of dawn by your family at home.
And, then, just imagine that the overnight stay is guilt-free because you were able to cash in your hard-earned hotel points to enjoy it!
How Can I Start Earning Points?
The best way to start earning points is to book a hotel stay right now. We’re slightly kidding, but you do add to your points balance with each and every stay.
Other ways to earn points while you’re saving up for that vacation or staycation include:
- Using a credit card associated with the hotel brand you’re most likely to frequent. Many credit card companies partner with hotel brands to help you earn free stays or other benefits. These cards allow you to earn a certain number of loyalty points based on each dollar you spend, which can then be converted to free nights when you choose to redeem them on a trip.
- Watching for special promotions. Different hotel brands may offer promotions in the form of partnerships with other brands that earn you points when you purchase a plane ticket or other travel-related items. And, in rare cases, some brands may even offer games and sweepstakes online to encourage your browsing and interacting with their brands.
Traveling can be fun, rewarding and unforgettable. Make it even more rewarding by earning perks that help you either reduce the costs of your travels or plan for that next big excursion.
And, if you’re looking for ways to earn or use hotel loyalty rewards and programs in the Buffalo area, check out the full list of Ellicott Hotels and their respective reward programs. We’ll hope to see you soon!