Aug072011

Hotels.com Buy One Get One Free for First Time Booking

Hotels.com The Great Unloyaling promotion offers new members and existing members who have never made a Hotels.com booking the opportunity to earn one free night after making first reservation through the program. This can be a high value offer worth up to $400 if you plan your hotel stays to maximize the free night offer.

How It Works:

  • Must be U.S. resident and 18 years of age and either a new member of Hotels.com WelcomeRewards or an existing member who has never made a WelcomeRewards.com booking.
  • Register at http://www.keycardcollectors.com/ and fill out form.
  • Within 24 hours you should receive an email confirmation of keycardcollectors promotion registration.
  • Send proof of 3 hotel stays in 3 separate major hotel loyalty programs since 1/1/2011 or proof of 5 hotel stays in any major hotel loyalty program since 2011.
  • Any official receipt, email receipt, screenshot that shows you stayed in three different hotels is acceptable. There appears to be no requirement that these hotel stays earned loyalty points so they can be award stays or Cash & Points stays.
  • Send statement proof within 45 days of promotion registration by email, mail or fax to:
    • E-mail: wrpromo@hotels.com
    •  Mail: Hotels.com, c/o WelcomeRewards, 10440 N. Central
      Expressway, Suite 800, Dallas, Texas 75231
    •  Fax: Toll Free (866) 362 – 2606
  • When you sign up you are enrolled in Hotels.com FiveStar program until December 31, 2011.
  • You will receive a coupon code for your first booking in the FiveStar enrollment confirmation email.
  • Complete a hotel booking on Hotels.com using the coupon code and complete your stay by November 15, 2011.
  • After you have completed your qualifying stay and your hotel loyalty activity has been verified (hotel stays in three hotels from different major loyalty programs or five stays in hotels in any major loyalty program since 1/1/2011 ), your account will be updated to include a free night for the value of the average room night from your completed Hotels.com stay.
  • The free night will appear in the form of 10 Hotels.com WelcomeRewards credits for the value of the average room night from your initial Hotels.com booking, with a maximum value of $400.

Loyalty Traveler Analysis

I see two ways to play this promotion.

Low Spender: You can use this to book a cheap room night on Hotels.com, for say $60 to $100 at a hotel. You will earn the free night credits for another room at the same price you paid for the first room night. This is basically a two-for-one hotel nights deal.

High Spender: The real value opportunity I see here is to take advantage of a high priced property or resort that doesn’t have a loyalty program or does not have a good value promotion. This can also be a good opportunity to book a premium suite room and know that the actual rate will be cut in half with your future free night.

For example: Taj Campton Place, San Francisco is a 5-star hotel at Union Square. Hotels.com shows the rate as $342 for September 23, 2011. Campton Place One bedroom King bed suite is $482.

If I book the $482 suite, then my WelcomeRewards free night value will be the maximum full $400 credit for the free night booking. I can book some other high priced hotel and get $400 off the rate.

Las Vegas is a place where a high cost room night can result in a significant savings using Hotels.com. The Wynn Las Vegas, Wynn Encore and Mandarin Oriental are examples of 5-star high cost hotels in Las Vegas. Book one night, even a suite (Wynn Encore $289 Tower Suite Wed. Sep 21) and you will have credit for a future night at the same price anywhere in the world you can book on Hotels.com.

This is a good opportunity to get a high value rebate when staying at an independent hotel. Many ski resorts, beach resorts and major cities have luxury independent hotels where this deal pays off nicely for booking the hotel through Hotels.com. Europe and other international locations have many hotels not affiliated with a major hotel loyalty program.

Bottom line: This is good deal for a Buy One, Get One Free room night that can be used for a free room at whatever price point you desire up to $400 credit for your free night after booking one paid night. Your free night is good for the same value as your paid night average so you can pick your own price point from less than $50 up to $400 and pay for one night and get a future night free.

Not too shabby for compiling three to five hotel stay receipts to send off to Hotels.com.

I personally qualify for this offer and I have been balking at the high rates in San Francisco for a weekend trip my wife wants to take with her friends in peak season September for the City. This looks like the time to take advantage of Hotels.com for my first booking.

 

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. I finally got it on the third attempt. Not sure what the issue was.

    Man, it’s a struggle to go book a hotel at any cost that doesn’t earn me loyalty points or stay credit in a major chain!

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