02 Nov Buy Starpoints at a 50% Discount (Targeted)!
Let me begin today by saying that I am not a huge fan of buying points. I recognize that purchasing points under an airline or hotel “promotional points” sale may be a good deal for some travelers, but for me, I would much rather earn the points through credit card sign-ups and spending!
Many other bloggers in the points game will recommend significant cash outlays ($1,500+) to buy points for bucket-list type redemptions. I have never been on board with this approach. It may provide a great discount, but $1,500 for a casual points traveler is a healthy chunk of cash! Spending my own cash to travel on points has never been my go to… Until now!?
With my aversion to points purchases set aside, Starwood has a GREAT (and targeted) offer on buying points through the end of the year! If you are one of the lucky “Targeted” individuals, Starwood will allow you to purchase Starpoints at a 50% discount. This is the single best discount offered by Starwood, and in the right circumstances, it may be just enough to make me reconsider my previous philosophy!
There is Value in Starpoints
I consider Starpoints to be the most valuable currency in the points and miles world. The value lies in the flexibility of Starpoints. Starpoints can be redeemed directly at SPG Hotels, or they can be transferred to over 30 airline partners – SPG will even tack on an extra 5,000 miles when you make a transfer of 20,000 to an airline partner!
Additionally, given the recent acquisition by Marriott and the linking of rewards accounts, Starpoints can be transferred to Marriott (back-and-forth) at an enticing 1:3 ratio! The ability to transfer points between the two programs opens up a world of redemption options with both Marriott and Starwood.
Find Your Offer
To check if you are targeted for the 50% discount, head to the offer page.
Enter in your name and SPG account number…
Note: Even if you are targeted for a discount lower than 50%, you may still be able to obtain significant value. Research any specific redemption that you have in mind (follow similar steps to those outlined below) and evaluate whether a points purchase is right for your travel needs.
Terms to Note
The discount offer is available on purchases of 5,000 Starpoints or more.
The discount offer is available through December 31, 2016.
Starwood allows individuals to buy/gift a maximum of 30,000 Starpoints per year. However, you can purchase as a gift for other SPG accounts, but note each individual can still only receive 30,000 point per year.
The purchase of Starpoints does not count toward any Starwood or Marriott Elite Status.
Purchase for Specific Redemption
While Starpoints are a great point currency to have locked and loaded in your loyalty account, there is always a risk of devaluation. For this reason, I advise my “earn ‘em and burn ‘em” strategy (and in this case “buy ‘em and burn ‘em”). I also recommend you have a specific award researched and available for redemption prior to purchase.
Personally, I have been eyeing a couple nights in Hong Kong at the JW Marriott and took this opportunity to run the numbers on how much value I may achieve out of this particular promotion.
Since I was targeted for the 50% discount, I can purchase 30,000 Starpoints for $525.
Those 30,000 Starpoints can then be transferred to Marriott Rewards at a 1:3 ratio, providing me with 90,000 Marriott Rewards points! I then checked out the award availability at the JW Hong Kong (a Category 7 Marriott requiring 45,000 points per night), and noted the following for my dates:
Points Rate at the JW Marriott Hong Kong
$525 for a 2 night stay at the JW Marriott sounds like it might be a good value, but let’s just check the paid rate for those same dates to determine just how good!
Versus Paid Rate at the JW Marriott Hong Kong
For those like me who don’t know the HKD to USD exchange rate:
The price for those same 2 nights at the paid rate is a whopping $1,078! Meaning the discount offered by purchaseing/redeeming Starpoints is a cool $553 – about a 50% discount on the paid rate!
A 50% discount on the purchase of Starpoints is enough to have me consider a points purchase! While I typically don’t partake in these promotional offers, and don’t normally advise others to, there is value to be had even for the casual points traveler!
My Advice – First, confirm you are targeted. Second, have a specific redemption in mind and evaluate the paid rate vs. points rate to determine if this deal is right for you!
Were you targeted for a 50% discount? Will you be purchasing Starpoints under this promotion?