Apr152011

Starwood Stay 3, Getaway Free Night May 1-July 31

Starwood Preferred Guest launches a new free night after every three stays promotion beginning May 1. The terms and conditions of the next major Starwood hotels promotion leaked out to the public yesterday, before the promotion was officially announced.

Update April 15, 12:30pm California time: Links are now live.

Update April 15, 9:30am Monterey time:

Starwood Lurker, the official Starwood Hotels representative to FlyerTalk just formally announced the new promotion on FlyerTalk about 30 minutes after I posted the original piece. The original piece has been edited to include more recent promotion information.

SPG Getaway Free

My apologies for all the rumors and speculation over the past few weeks. But, I can officially announce that the next SPG promotion will be SPG Getaway Free. Between May 1 and July 31, 2011, registered members will earn 1 Free Resort Night Award for every 3 stays at any of the more than 1000 Starwood hotels and resorts that participate in the SPG program. Free Night Awards can be redeemed at over 200 resorts worldwide any day of the week through December 21, 2011. There are no limits to the number of awards you can earn, plus awards are combinable for a long stay, and there are no blackout dates.

The registration site will open later today at spg.com/getawayfree and a full list of resorts available for redemption can be found at spg.com/getawayfree/resorts later today as well. All category 1-6 resorts with standard rooms are included, plus the category 7 St Regis Punta Mita, Mexico.

Registration will run from today through June 30.

Best regards,

William R. Sanders
Social Media Specialist
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide

The official promotion announcement is also posted on Milepoint.com by William Sanders who posts as “SPG Champion”.

[original Loyalty Traveler post below]

Starwood Resorts Get Away Free Promotion Summary:

  • Stay three times between May 1 – July 31, 2011.
  • Earn one free night redeemable at participating Starwood Resorts (about 200 hotels worldwide).
  • There is no earning limit for free nights during the promotion period.
  • Free nights may be redeemed from May 6 to December 21, 2011.
  • Register for this promotion by June 30, 2011.

“Get Away Free” offers SPG members one free night at any of 200 Starwood Resorts after every three hotel stays at Starwood properties systemwide. The list of excluded properties for earning and burning are not yet known, but fairly safe to assume the category 7 properties will not be included in free night redemption. Hopefully SPG includes category 6 hotels as redemption choices in this offer. The terms and conditions provide a link to the 200 Starwood Resort properties, however, that link is not live at this time.

Here are the terms and conditions as posted on a W Hotels webpage:

REGISTRATION AND EARNING: Member must register online at SPG.com/getawayfree by June 30, 2011, 11:59 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time. For every three (3) eligible stays at any hotel or resort that participates in the SPG® program between May 1, 2011, and July 31, 2011, the member will earn one (1) Free Resort Night Award to be redeemed at any of 200 resorts worldwide. A list of resorts available for Award redemption can be found at SPG.com/getawayfree/resorts.  A list of non-SPG participating hotels can be found at SPG.com/t&c under section 5.1. 

ELIGIBLE STAY: An eligible stay toward earning a Free Resort Night Award is defined as one or more consecutive nights within the earning dates at any of the more than 1,000 hotels and resorts that participate in the SPG program, at a qualifying rate in the same hotel regardless of the number of check-ins or checkouts that occur and post to the member’s Starwood Preferred Guest® account. Multiple rooms charged to the same member during the same stay will only count as one stay. SPG participating hotels and resorts and a description of qualifying rates can be found at SPG.com/t&c under program terms and conditions. See Section 4B.4 for the complete definition of Eligible Rates, but note that certain prepaid rooms where the booking is made through a third party (including but not limited to travelocity.com, expedia.com and orbitz.com) are not Eligible Rates and do not earn Starpoints® or qualify toward Award Night earnings. 

AWARD: Each Free Resort Night Award must be redeemed by calling the Customer Call Center and mentioning Award ID 3FRN. An earned Free Resort Night Award can be redeemed for a future stay in a standard room at over 200 Starwood resorts between May 6, 2011, and December 21, 2011, for any night of the week. A list of resorts available for award redemption can be found at SPG.com/getawayfree/resorts.

There are no limits to how many Free Resort Night Awards can be earned, and they may be used on consecutive nights for one single or double occupancy standard room only, including the cost of the hotel room and room tax. Free Resort Night Awards are not transferable, even among members of the same household, and may not be given as a gift. However, a member may use two or more Free Resort Night Awards on the same night for additional rooms as long as all rooms are under the member’s name and the member stays in one of the rooms and pays for all the rooms. Free Resort Night Awards are subject to room availability. Free Resort Night Awards will be credited to the member’s account within 3–5 days of every third stay posting to the member’s Starwood Preferred Guest account. Free Resort Night Awards have no cash value and are provided as part of the SPG hotel loyalty program. No credit will be issued for any unused awards.

http://deals.whotels.com/cgi-bin/starwood/get_terms_and_conditions.ipl?so_id=605554&langid=1033

Related Links:

Milepoint discussion on SPG 2011-Q2 promotion.

FlyerTalk: SPG Stay 3, Getaway Free.

DealWeLike.com posted on this SPG promotion yesterday,  April 14: Speculation on Starwood (SPG) Next Promotion.

I will provide promotion analysis in a post next week. A free night at SPG Category 7 St. Regis Punta Mita Resort is like a 10,000 points per stay bonus when a free night saves 30,000 Starpoints. WOW!

About Ric Garrido

Ric Garrido of Monterey, California started Loyalty Traveler in 2006 for traveler education on hotel and air travel, primarily using frequent flyer and frequent guest loyalty programs for bargain travel. Loyalty Traveler joined BoardingArea.com in 2008.

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Comments

  1. If you stay using cash and points or just using points, does this count towards the three? Do they have to be consecutive?

  2. @Maury – Cash & Points stays and award nights using points do not count as eligible stays for this promotion.

    A stay can be just one night, but two consecutive nights at the same hotel can’t be two stays, even if you check out and check back in on a different reservation and rate and room type.

    Hotel hopping or a mattress run is where you change hotels each night to maximize a stay based promotion like this Starwood offer.

    For example: Starwood has several hotels in San Francisco. The Palace Hotel, W Hotel and Westin Market Street and Westin St. Francis are within easy walking distance. I could stay Thursday night at Westin Market Street, Friday night at The Palace Luxury Collection, Saturday night at Westin St. Francis. 3 stays in 3 nights earns a free night.

    You can also alternate between two hotels. The Palace and Westin Market Street are across the street from each other. You can stay at Westin Market Street Thursday and Saturday nights and The Palace Hotel on Friday night and that is three eligible stays.

    You only need a break of one night away from a hotel to use the same hotel for two eligible stays.

  3. But if you have multi-night staysand want to use C&P or award nights, it should be possible to have two consecutive stays — one night cash to qualify for the promo an then subsequent nights as non-qualifying stay. Right?

  4. Yes, you can combine paid nights with discount or free nights to receive a stay credit and avoid changing hotels every night.

    The main issue I see is the chance that the hotel stay is not reported as eligible stay, but a call to SPG customer service should rectify that easily.

    Another strategy my wife and I used for a high value Starwood promotion a few years back was to book the hotel in my name one night and her name the next night.

    If you tell the hotel what you are doing in advance, then you might not even need to change rooms. Just go to the desk and check out and then check back in again on the other person’s name. Or change rooms if necesary.

    The problem my wife and I had was our different elite levels generally required changing hotel rooms. Most hotels upgraded me to a suite as SPG Platinum for my night, but then required us to downgrade from the suite to a lower category room for my wife’s night who was SPG Gold. One hotel let us keep the suite for two nights and we earned a stay in each of our accounts.

    For SPG members who are not elite members this room change should be a non-issue.

    Again it is up to the hotel as to whether they require you to physically move rooms, but this strategy keeps the hotel changes and even room changes down to a minimum if the hotel works with you.

  5. If you were on a multi-day trip in a single city would you be able to check out of one hotel and into another on consecutive days to more rapidly accumulate awards?

  6. Joe G – Yes. See Comment #3.

    Seriously if you wanted to maximize hotel stays and you were in San Francisco, you could bounce between Westin Market Street and The Palace every night for 21 nights and earn 7 free nights. This is totally within the rules of the promotion.

    I have never taken it that far to alternate for weeks with just two hotels, but in 2008 I earned Hyatt Diamond status with 25 stays in two weeks during a Stays Count Double promotion for about $1,600 by hopping around Hyatt hotels in the San Francisco Bay Area every night.

    My wife and I earned 100,000 Starwood bonus points in 10 nights in Australia by staying in five hotels and changing reservations every night between my name and hers.

    This promotion is a really high value opportunity that may not be repeated again for some time if the hotel economy continues to improve. I think this is a promotion worth investing some cash.

    I think I will try to get 21 stays or so to requalify for SPG Platinum and earn a nice vacation opportunity for summer travel.

  7. Hi Everyone,

    Can someone help me with my logic? Let’s say I want to mattress run. The only hotel near me is $140/night midweek. Three nights means I’m paying $420 for the free night. Even if I look at Bora Bora or the Maldives over Thanksgiving, I’m only saving about $100/night. I could see the benefit over New Year’s or something, but this has to be used by 12/21/11.

    Is that right or am I missing something?

    Of course, if I can find a cheaper Starwood to mattress hop, this deal gets better.

    Thanks!
    Andy

  8. Andy – Hotel hopping is really only a strategy for savings if someone else is paying your tab like a company or client or you are getting cheap rooms.

    $140 per night is what I pay when I want to stay really upper-upscale. When I pay $140 per night, then the hotel’s average daily rate is usually in the $200+ range and I am getting a low rate at a low travel period time.

    You need to find cheaper rates to hotel hop and make it worth your money.

    In the San Francisco Bay area I can’t hotel hop Sunday through Thursday since the rates at most Starwood Hotels are 2x to 3x the weekend price. So I focus on Friday and Saturday night rates.

    Here is a post I wrote in May 2009 describing “How I Search Hotel Rates” focused on Starwood Hotels and their 2009 “Stay twice for one free night” promotion.

    http://loyaltytraveler.boardingarea.com/2009/05/08/how-i-search-hotel-rates/

  9. Thanks, Ric! That’s a great link.

    I did find a Starwood for $89/night near LAX, but that’s an hour drive. I’ll use your strategy and see what I can do. Even $270 for a free night is a good deal for a $550 night in Tahiti.

    Thanks again!
    Andy

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