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Which hotel program offers the most Alaska points?

Which hotel program offers the most Alaska points?

Old Oct 5, 19, 6:06 am
  #1  
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Which hotel program offers the most Alaska points?

Iíve got my sights set on Alaska, Australia, and Japan. It seems like Alaska Airlines is a good choice to concentrate my point earning efforts to get there. I travel a lot for work and earn most of my points from hotel rooms. Which hotels offer the most Alaska Airlines points per night?

also, if you think another airline program would be better suited for my stated destinations Iíd like to hear about it.
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Old Oct 5, 19, 7:53 am
  #2  
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None of them. Transferring hotel points for airline miles is a terrible use of points. Use hotel points for hotels.
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Old Oct 5, 19, 9:59 am
  #3  
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Originally Posted by youranut View Post
Iíve got my sights set on Alaska, Australia, and Japan. It seems like Alaska Airlines is a good choice to concentrate my point earning efforts to get there. I travel a lot for work and earn most of my points from hotel rooms. Which hotels offer the most Alaska Airlines points per night?
"The most" is still not all that great: Marriott points transfer 3:1 to airlines, while most other hotel programs start at 5:1. There is nothing left like the 2:1 that existed while SPG existed.

To see how bad even the Marriott is, consider Ultimate Rewards points at Chase or Membership Rewards points at American Express: UR or MR points transfer 1:1 to a number of airlines directly (though not Alaska), and 1:1 to Marriott, but then you only get 3:1 (thus 1.0.33) when going Marriott onward to an airline.

So if you have any credit points, redeeming them for Alaska miles gets you only 1/3 as much as if you redeem them for other airlines that you can redeem to directly.

You have to understand that Alaska doesn't want people to have an easy time earning Alaska miles without actually flying a lot. Over the years Alaska has cracked down (or gotten their partners crack down) on almost every great not-in-the-air earning opportunity out there. It used to be possible to churn BofA Alaska credit cards left an right, now not nearly as much. It used to be possible to transfer to Alaska airlines from at least one or two transferable points programs, now none. And meanwhile it wasn't Alaska's doing, but the consolidation in the hotel industry, which led to SPG and its 2:1 transfer to (most) airlines going "poof".

So if you don't "naturally" earn that many Alaska airlines miles, perhaps you should learn how to use other miles to get to your destinations, rather than "dreaming" of Alaska Airlines redemptions but not having a good way to use that.

Originally Posted by youranut View Post
also, if you think another airline program would be better suited for my stated destinations Iíd like to hear about it.
"Better" is also relative, and may be a different answer for each of those destinations, and depends on how you can earn points.

If you can easily earn transferable points such as mentioned above, then any "legacy" airlines that you can transfer to at 1:1 is likely to be better, as long as they have availability.

But determining availability in advance is not at all a simple thing. Which airline is best for one destination may change year to year or even month to month, but you have to collect for longer than that, so how you collect in advance when it all changes so fast?

My solution is to collect more than I need in lots of different programs, so that no matter which of the three airline alliances (or some other airline) might have the flight I need, I have the miles in some program that can be used for that. But that requires years of collecting as fast as I could while collecting was easier, not caring that I couldn't use all of it immediately.
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Old Oct 5, 19, 10:16 am
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You can earn AS miles at almost any hotel when booked through here: https://www.alaskaair.com/hotels/mp/home/en/

You can earn 10,000 miles a night at Four Seasons', 5,000 a night at Westins, as a few examples.
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Old Oct 5, 19, 10:32 am
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Originally Posted by sdsearch View Post
You have to understand that Alaska doesn't want people to have an easy time earning Alaska miles without actually flying a lot. Over the years Alaska has cracked down (or gotten their partners crack down) on almost every great not-in-the-air earning opportunity out there.
Considering Mileage Plan is constantly selling miles for purchase (often with a 50% bonus), perhaps this is a notable exception to your summary.
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Old Oct 5, 19, 10:36 am
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Originally Posted by RAD_PDX View Post
You can earn AS miles at almost any hotel when booked through here: https://www.alaskaair.com/hotels/mp/home/en/

You can earn 10,000 miles a night at Four Seasons', 5,000 a night at Westins, as a few examples.
I book my hotels now almost exclusively through alaskaair.com/hotels - good pricing, miles, and its actually cool to try boutique hotels w. no points programs of their own and still get rewards.
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Old Oct 5, 19, 10:51 am
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Originally Posted by sdsearch View Post
"The most" is still not all that great: Marriott points transfer 3:1 to airlines, while most other hotel programs start at 5:1. There is nothing left like the 2:1 that existed while SPG existed.
I don't know what you are referring to by "the 2:1 that existed while SPG existed". SPG:Alaska was 1:1 or 1:1.25 when transferring in 20k:25k increments. Now Marriott:Alaska is 3:1 or 3:1.25 when traferring in 60k:25k increments. This is identical to the SPG transfer rate since SPG:Marriott was done at 1:3.

Originally Posted by sdsearch View Post
To see how bad even the Marriott is, consider Ultimate Rewards points at Chase or Membership Rewards points at American Express: UR or MR points transfer 1:1 to a number of airlines directly (though not Alaska), and 1:1 to Marriott, but then you only get 3:1 (thus 1.0.33) when going Marriott onward to an airline.
The bad value of a Chase / Amex points -> Marriott -> Alaska transfer is because Chase / Amex -> Marriott is a bad value. It has nothing to do with whether Marriott -> Alaska is a bad value, which it isn't. It's identical to the value proposition of SPG -> Alaska, which is pretty good.
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Old Oct 5, 19, 11:38 am
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So a lot of people are focusing on TRANSFERRING hotel points to miles.
Frankly, I usually just use Rocketmiles, and earn actual Alaska miles that way.
You can even buy up bonus miles, although the price to do so is not usually a good value.
Also, the more expensive the hotel room, typically, the more miles you'll earn. Great for biz or lux travelers, not so great for budget travelers.
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Old Oct 5, 19, 11:49 am
  #9  
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Originally Posted by Bbcei View Post
I don't know what you are referring to by "the 2:1 that existed while SPG existed". SPG:Alaska was 1:1 or 1:1.25 when transferring in 20k:25k increments. Now Marriott:Alaska is 3:1 or 3:1.25 when traferring in 60k:25k increments. This is identical to the SPG transfer rate since SPG:Marriott was done at 1:3.

The bad value of a Chase / Amex points -> Marriott -> Alaska transfer is because Chase / Amex -> Marriott is a bad value. It has nothing to do with whether Marriott -> Alaska is a bad value, which it isn't. It's identical to the value proposition of SPG -> Alaska, which is pretty good.
Sorry, I confused it with United which was 2:1.

But you're oversimplifying things to say that it's identical to the SPG -> Alaska, because while SPG:Marriott points conversion was done at 1:3, and thus it's good if you earned them as SPG points, there is no earning anymore anywhere that matches the earning that happened in the SPG days (especially the 1:1:1 earning on the SPG Amex credit cards). So if you don't have points that you earned back in the SPG days, then I consider just pointing at the SPG->Marriott conversion rate of 1:3 and not factoring in that earning conversions did not convert at the same rate is misleading.

Lots of people on FT dropped their SPG credit cards because of this. The card used to earn 1 point "everywhere" which turned into 1 mile (at most airlines including AS), and now the equivalent card earns 2 Bonvoy points "everywhere" which turns into 2/3 of a mile. Which means the Chase Freedom Unlimited, which earns 1.5x, earns about the same after UR->Alaska transfers as earning with a Bonvoy credit card.

So I'm not understanding what earning plan you see that gets you much greater value in Alaska Miles than transferring from Amex MR or Chase UR. If Marriott had rich promos and you stayed a lot there, and needed no points for hotel stays, perhaps, but Marriott stay promos have few and feeble since the merger.

In fact, if you're going to earn on hotel stays, I'm wondering if Choice Privileges hotels might not present better value than Marriott Bonvoy? Choice Privileges often has promotions where two separate one-night cheap stays earns at least 8000 points, and Choice to Alaska is I think 5:1, so two nights during such promos gets you at least 1600 Alaska miles. What other hotel program will give you 1600 Alaska miles for two cheap one-night stays? Now, you won't get lounges, you won't get suite upgrades, etc, etc, but if you want Alaska miles more than anything else from your hotel stays, then maybe something like that is the way to go?

Ie, you have to factor in earning, not just redemption.

Last edited by sdsearch; Oct 6, 19 at 9:03 pm Reason: clarified that the program is called Choice Privileges, not Choice Hotels
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Old Oct 6, 19, 9:24 am
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Originally Posted by sdsearch View Post
Lots of people on FT dropped their SPG credit cards because of this. The card used to earn 1 point "everywhere" which turned into 1 mile (at most airlines including AS), and now the equivalent card earns 2 Bonvoy points "everywhere" which turns into 2/3 of a mile. Which means the Chase Freedom Unlimited, which earns 1.5x, earns about the same after UR->Alaska transfers as earning with a Bonvoy credit card.
Well for CFU, 1.5x = 0.5 alaska points vs. 0.66 points via the Marriott cards. So they are notably different I'd say.
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Old Oct 6, 19, 6:04 pm
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Coast Hotels is pretty generous at 500 miles per stay. It's especially handy for those one night stays. You have to make sure that you're earning frequent flier points versus their own hotel program. I find that their IT is not good in this regard.
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Old Oct 6, 19, 9:00 pm
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Originally Posted by worldtraveller73 View Post
Coast Hotels is pretty generous at 500 miles per stay. It's especially handy for those one night stays. You have to make sure that you're earning frequent flier points versus their own hotel program. I find that their IT is not good in this regard.
Except that Coast Hotels only has hotels in 5 USA states and 4 Canadian provinces, and not many total at that. The OP not stated in their profile or this thread where they're based, but based on browsing other threads the OP started, I get the impression the OP may be based in Denver, which is nowhere near any Coast Hotels.

So I doubt the OP could rack up many miles with Coast Hotels (at 500 per stay) unless amazingly they constantly go to one of the handful of cities which Coast Hotels are found in.

I think the OP was asking among the widespread footprint hotel programs, not about hotel programs that only work if you visit a handful of different cities.

And at any rate, this 500 per stay rate at Coast Hotels is way less than the effective rate of 1600 per night at giant program Choice Privileges that I mentioned above.
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Old Oct 7, 19, 4:33 am
  #13  
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Originally Posted by Legend717 View Post
So a lot of people are focusing on TRANSFERRING hotel points to miles.
Frankly, I usually just use Rocketmiles, and earn actual Alaska miles that way.
You can even buy up bonus miles, although the price to do so is not usually a good value.
Also, the more expensive the hotel room, typically, the more miles you'll earn. Great for biz or lux travelers, not so great for budget travelers.
I have used RocketMiles once or twice with other airlines when a first-time user bonus was offered and made it a decent deal. But in general my (limited) experience has been that RocketMiles makes you pay for the miles you earn through higher room rates than available elsewhere. No free lunch, IMO
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Old Oct 7, 19, 6:34 am
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I had RocketMiles give me 10K miles for three nights at a Best Western; price they had was same as Best Western Website. It was a no brainer.
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Old Oct 26, 19, 9:31 pm
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Rocketmiles thru the Alaska Mileage Plan can be very generous with some more expensive venues offering up to 10,000 bonus Alaska Airline miles per night. As always your mileage may vary, and always check their price against what you can get from other sources. but for an example a 5 night stay at the Four Seasons in Vancouver, Canada, can cost you $1,844 but net you 38,000 bonus miles. That works out to 21.6 miles per $$ spent. If I charge up 5 nights with the AMEX PLAT direct, you only get 5 points per $$ spent which is still not a bad deal, but not Alaska Miles. 5 night in Newport, Oregon at a nice oceanfront hotel can run you as little as $816 and you get 8,000 bonus miles. That one works out to 10.8 miles per $$ spent. Those are pretty outstanding stays for bonus points earned. Not every stay is that generous and if you have a hotel elite status it may not be recognized if you book thru Rocketmiles, so be aware of that. I usually only look at using Rocketmiles in locations where my hotel elite status is not represented.

So far, it has been the most generous and quickest way to earn elusive Alaska Miles. Transferring Marriott points in 60,000 point bundles to Alaska runs at a rate of 2.4 to 1, not a great deal but close to the only transfer partner out there. 60,000 becomes 25,000 Alaska Miles.

There is a miles bonus boost feature in some reservations with rocketmiles but then you really are just paying more for additional miles. Do the math first.
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