Spending Hilton Points on Family: Hampton Inn Gdansk Airport

To me, one of the best things about miles and points is sharing them with your loved ones. I especially enjoy booking getaways for my nephews in Belarus. It became a sort of a tradition to send them somewhere in the summer. In the past, I’ve used my hotel points for a Baltic getaway in Lithuania in 2016, and Krakow stay (with a side trip to the mountains in Zakopane) in 2017.

And this year was no exception. In fact, they started asking where their aunt in America is going to send them next. I was so wrapped up in my own two-week trip to South Pacific, I didn’t really give it much thought. Plus, I wasn’t exactly swimming in hotel points anyway.

Nevertheless, I asked my sister where she would like to go and she mentioned Gdansk. Even though this Polish city isn’t well known outside of Europe, it has a rich cultural heritage and unique architecture. You can see this TripAdvisor page  for more information.

Anyway, I checked and the only option I could afford via points was Hampton by Hilton Gdansk Airport. It was running at 10k points per room/per night, and my sister wanted to spend 5 nights in Poland. In addition, I needed to book a second room because my mom decided to come as well. Still, 80k points for two rooms during high season isn’t bad, especially since paid rate was $100 X 2  per night.

But who wants to stay near airport on vacation? I thought about checking AirBnB options, but since I just came back from my expensive trip, we were low on cash. I figured I would offer the hotel to my sister and let her decide. She had zero problems with staying near airport, plus, they could easily reach Gdansk or Sopot (nearby oceanside resort city) by bus.

Taxi would take only 15 minutes, so I sent them some money to compensate for poor location. Of course, my mom still ended up  going by bus because it was cheaper. Sigh… The first question she asked me was whether the breakfast is included in the rate. Yes, mom.

I asked them for photos of the room in case some of my readers  want to stay here (unlikely, I know):

 It’s definitely nothing fancy, but my family only used it to sleep, eat and shower. It was nice to have two separate rooms, so my mom and sister wouldn’t kill each other.

Everyone had a great time, and here are photos to prove it.

Something that I find odd  is Polish fascination with Mexican food, or their interpretation of it. Not that there is anything wrong with Mexican food, of course. I love it! Here is a restaurant in Gdansk where my family had lunch:

Pol-Mex cuisine?

Trading convenience for points

In general, I recommend you stick to central options, especially in Europe. Sure, using points instead of cash may be tempting, but you will pay with your time. And time=money. I recommend you look into AirBnB options (my referral link that will give you free $40 credit, and $20 for me) before settling for an airport location, especially when staying for several nights.

In this instance, my family has been to Poland a number of times, and simply wanted a base to explore Gdansk, as well as surrounding area. It didn’t hurt that my sister speaks fluent Polish. According to my mom, the commute was neither long nor expensive. Depending on a country, that’s not always the case.

Where you may want to consider a tradeoff is in the United States. Don’t get me wrong, I love beachfront hotels as much as anyone, but they usually cost a fortune in points. Instead, look into nearby options that are a lot cheaper. Then just pack a cooler and drive there for a day.

A few months ago, I wrote about one such option in Florida. It’s only about a 20 minute drive from a beautiful beach, and you can’t beat a cost of 5,000 Hyatt points per night with full breakfast included. Of course, I’m assuming you are low on hotel points. If not, burn those suckers to get what you really want and don’t think twice.

Almost every hotel program has bargains, and Hilton Honors is no exception. Awhile back, I wrote some tips on extracting the most value our of your Hilton points. I wouldn’t say that this particular Hilton redemption is my best ever, but it served its purpose. Plus, how can you place value on my nephews’ smiles, right?

Click here to view various credit cards and available sign-up bonuses

 

Author: Leana

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.

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14 thoughts on “Spending Hilton Points on Family: Hampton Inn Gdansk Airport

    • @Stephanie Thanks, but it’s honestly no big deal. I mean, I booked them in airport hotel, for goodness sake. 🙂 I’m cheap like that!

    • @Nancy Thanks! These are not the typical places frequented by American tourists, but still. And yeah, being based in Texas, I thought you would appreciate the photo of Pol-Mex dish.

    • @Samantha Thank you! To be honest, I don’t do enough for my nephews. Using hotel points here and there isn’t a huge thing. They are my family, and I want them to be able to travel, even if it’s just to a neighboring country. Apparently, they went to the Gdansk zoo and saw elephant and giraffe for the first time. They were quite excited!

      • Thanks. Leana, something off topic. I got to do some choosing. Just to clarify- were both – Moorea and Bora Bora cool? If you had to choose all over with about 6 days to play with, would you do both or choose one – Bora Bora/Moorea? And would you pick that IC in Bora Bora again? Appreciate the answer. Thanks again

      • @Boris I loved both Bora Bora and Moorea. That said, I would pick Bora Bora if I had to choose only one, hands down. And yes, IC Thalasso (if you can find award availability or use BOGO Amabassador weekend cert) is the way to go. Obviously, I haven’t been to other resorts, so can’t really comment on them. But at 70k IHG points that place is an absolute steal. The views from the bungalows are simply stunning. Apparently, IHG Card unrestricted renewal certs have much more award availability.
        Honestly, with 6 days you can easily do both. I only had 4 nights, and just couldn’t resist adding Moorea. Not for everyone, but I don’t know when we will be back, if ever. I would hate to miss out on seeing Moorea. But the scenery is very similar to what you can see in Kauai. Bora Bora lagoon is one of a kind, and the island just feels more remote. Many people who live in Bora Bora have pure Polynesian lineage which I found interesting. I bet it can be traced all the way back to explorers who came across the island in their canoes.

  1. Thanks for review. I just booked 3 nights out of 6 needed for my dates using certs splitting them between Thalasso and Le Moana. Hoping the rest could be booked with points if they ever open up availability. Is that true that Thalasso’s snorkeling sucks big time? Do you know if Le Moana has better snorkeling? Thanks again

    • @Boris I recommend you check IHG website a few times per day because you never know when availability may open up. And rest assured, other people will be checking too! Supposedly, Thalasso and Le Moana recently started opening up award rooms four months in advance (when using points), but that may change. If you are willing to risk it and have a friend who had an unrestricted cert, you could put yourself as a second guest. But again, it is risky, so using points is a better option IMO. I do think you should be able to find availability in Le Moana as your dates get closer. Thalasso is iffy. But honestly, as long as you get a few nights there and don’t mind switching accommodations, it’s really fine. We only had two nights in Bora Bora, so it was critical to stay put. I was lucky to find points availability.
      On snorkeling: there is none to speak of at Thalasso. They do have an artificial area on the motu island, close to pool. There are stingrays that you may spot near your bungalow as well, and they have a daily stingray feeding in the lagoon. Very cool! I wanted to make it to the main island and check out Le Moana, but Decided against it. I have seen photos and read reviews, and Thalasso looked to be vastly superior. But some may disagree. Supposedly, snorkeling is way better at Le Moana. Honestly, this wasn’t a critical factor to us, but if it is to you, I highly recommend Hilton Moorea. https://milesforfamily.com/2018/08/10/hilton-moorea-resort-and-spa-spectacular-setting-but-not-a-5-star-property/ It’s located in a beautiful area of the island, and I spotted eels and all kinds of fish near my lagoon bungalow. But if you decide against Moorea, then staying at Le Moana is probably the next best thing. Sorry for the long-winded answer, I hope it helped!

  2. Pingback: Jumping Between Prague, Vienna and Bratislava with the Help of Hilton Points - Miles For Family

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