This is my second part on hotel redemptions for a family of five. In my previous post I’ve considered several programs that could provide a decent value on points. Here are a few more.
Hyatt Gold Passport
Hyatt Regency Suites Atlanta Northwest
It costs only 5,000 points and the rate starts at $93 plus tax. I actually found out about this place from this post on PFDigest. It really does look like a nice hotel, especially for a category 1 property. All rooms are suites and will fit 5 people comfortably. If you are going to Atlanta, this is a good choice. There is a newly opened Legoland Discovery Center in the area, so if you have boys, it could probably entertain them for hours.
I couldn’t find any other Category 1 Hyatts that would fit 5 people, though there may be some.
You can see the list of Category 2 hotels HERE
I honestly couldn’t see anything that would work for a family of 5 and provide a good value redemption. The room requires 8,000 points when transferring from Chase Ultimate Rewards (Hyatt partner). If you chose to transfer the points to Southwest, you could get $130 in flight credit on “Wanna get away” fare. So, the opportunity cost is quite high.
Some ways to get Hyatt Gold Passport points:
If you are looking for low category Hyatt redemptions, the only logical choice for a personal card is Chase Sapphire Preferred (pays me commission). It gives 45,000 Ultimate Rewards after spending $3,000 in 3 months and adding an authorized user. There are also Chase INK and Bold, but they are business cards. The points transfer 1:1, so 5,000 Ultimate Rewards points will equal 5,000 Gold Passport points.
Chase Hyatt Visa comes with 2 night certificates that can be redeemed in their high-end properties, so it makes sense to wait till you have a fancy redemption in mind.
Starwood Preferred Guest
The best way to leverage these redemptions is during a high season, particularly during holidays.
If you redeem for 5 nights, the 5th night is free. This place gets rave reviews from families in this hobby. If you leverage the “5th night free” benefit during Winter holidays, you would be getting a $2,000 value out of 40,000 SPG points.
If you have a ton of SPG points and want to stay 5 nights, take advantage of “Nights and Flights” benefit. It costs 70,000 SPG points and will let you get five nights at a Dolphin resort, plus 50,000 miles in a program of your choice. You can combine your points at no charge with those living in the same household, though it takes a few days once you request it.
Four Points Orlando Studio City
It costs 3,000 SPG points per night on weekends, 4,000 points on weekdays. The rate during New Year’s Eve was $131 per night. Each room has two queen beds, and it costs an extra $11.25 per night for a rollaway. Resort fee is $11 per night.
Four Points Sheraton Niagara Falls
The room costs 3,000 SPG points per night on weekends. The rate was $159 per night in June. It costs $20 extra per night to have a rollaway. Each room has two queen beds. This place offers a great redemption opportunity for your Starpoints. The property is located on the American side and offers peaceful river views.
Some ways to get SPG points:
There aren’t many. SPG points are very hard to earn. If you’ve never had an Amex SPG card, I recommend you wait till next summer to get it, when the bonus is increased to 30,000 points. This card does pay me commission, but currently comes with a 25,000 points sign-up bonus. If you a have a good stash and are going to those places, this could be a chance to save some cash.
Radisson Hotel Orlando Lake Buena Vista
It costs 38,000 points per night. The rate was $171 per night during New Year’s holidays. Each room has two queen beds and a sleeper sofa, so it fits 5 comfortably. The hotel offers a free shuttle to Disney parks and has no resort fee. The place looks very nice, and I wouldn’t hesitate to stay here myself if I had a good stash of Club Carlson points. Speaking of,
Some ways to get the points:
Sign up for a US Bank Club Carlson Visa, which does not pay me commission. You can find it on most major blogs, so support the one that benefits you. The annual fee is $85, not waived. It comes with 85,000 points and lets you redeem every second night free.
So if you plan to go to Disney for 5 nights, the best way to leverage your points would be to book 2 award nights, followed by a paid 1-night stay, followed by another 2-night redemption. Just one bonus will easily cover 4 nights.
Originally, I decided not to mention Hilton because most co-branded cards aren’t worth a credit pull IMO. Also, suites cost a LOT more in points. When I did a search in Orlando, several properties costing 20,000 points per night popped up, claiming to fit 5. However, the reservation info only listed 1 king bed and a sofa.
When I called the hotel, the manager said they don’t provide rollaways, and the rooms are only rated to fit 4. Be aware that Hilton website doesn’t always have accurate information on occupancy limit, so always check the details by calling the hotel.
CITI Hilton HHonors Reserve card has a $95 annual fee (not waived), and really would be more suitable for a couple, since you can use your 2 weekend nights at their high-end properties like Waldorf Astoria. However, it does come with a Gold status and a $100 credit to offset it, better than my affiliate offer. BTW rumor is that a $100 credit may be going away soon.
Check out my yesterday’s comment from Dan (Pointswithacrew blog) :
Click here to view various credit cards and available sign-up bonuses
Leana is the founder of Miles For Family. She enjoys beach vacations and visiting her family in Europe. Originally from Belarus, Leana resides in central Florida with her husband and two children.
“For our family of 8, we usually just go for 2 rooms. What we have had a lot of success with is Hilton Homewood Suites. Since I’m a Gold member (from a CC), I’ve had good luck with upgrades.
So I reserve a 1BR suite at a Homewood Suites, and then call and try to get a free upgrade to a 2BR. You can’t pick the 2BR directly because it’s some insane amount of points. (No, really, check it out. If a 1BR is 20,000, then the 2BR is like 54,379).
So far we’re 2/2 in getting the upgrade to a 2BR.”
This could be a good strategy and a compelling reason to get CITI Hilton Reserve card. Remember, gold status gets you free breakfast in many Hilton properties.
You can see my full list of hotel points bonuses HERE
Readers, please, share your tips on maximizing hotel points and status for a large family.