Questions: Scandinavia on Points

Old Feb 1, 16, 8:53 pm
  #1  
alc
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Questions: Scandinavia on Points

I was wondering if there was some changes to the Choice Privileges program where we can't redeem our points for hotels in Sweden any more. I can't even seem to find how many points it required per night. I admit I never really play too much attention into the Choice Privileges program, so, it may be just me not knowing the facts.

Thankss.
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Old Feb 2, 16, 12:34 pm
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It's more complicated than that. If I do a search for Redeem Points (while logged in and having points; dunno if that matters) around Stockholm for very close-in dates, I get nothing available. If I go out two weeks to two months (for example, the night of April 1), I still get nothing available except this one (apparently new?) property (out of 16):
Yasuragi, an Ascend Hotel Collection Member
Hamndalsvagen 6, Saltsjo-Boo, 13281, SE
6.31 mi / 10.16 km
(0 Reviews)
Featured Amenities: High Speed Internet, Hot Breakfast, Smoke Free
20,000 PTS OR 6,000 PTS + $105 Per Night
(I'm glad I tried Stockholm first, or else I might have thought that no properties were ever returned. I just tried both Bergen and Oslo in Norway, and go zero properties available two months out.)

If they had taken away the ability to book Rewards Nights at Nordic Choice hotels, there wouldn't be this one exception. So I think it's something else, whether it's yet another website glitch or whether someone forgot to load the availability calendar from Nordic Choice to Choice International or what.

The fact that only a very new (?) property seems to be showing implies perhaps that some data didn't get loaded from Nordic Choice to Choice International, but that since this property was new it had to send that data separately, and that's why it's the only hotel that Choice International knows availability for.
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Old Feb 2, 16, 12:58 pm
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alc
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Thanks for checking it out. I do recall some properties was only 10K in the past, hence want to get that list to start checking out the review on TA and whether the locations are good for what we need. My trip isn't until Summer, but do want to book the room once my Diamond booking window open up. I guess I will try again in a few weeks.
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Old Feb 2, 16, 2:24 pm
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Denmark, Norway, and Sweden Choice hotels -- except for the Ascend Hotel Collection properties -- basically wiped out from award redemptions using Choice points from non-Nordic Choice Club accounts.

I wouldn't be surprised if this was a decision from Nordic Choice management related to substantial currency shifts and a weakening economic situation/outlook, more so in Norway than in Sweden. [Denmark was already thin/marginal for Nordic Choice.]

Only 9 hotels in Nordic Choice are Ascend Hotel Collection properties, and they were already rather miserly in making award night space available -- at least relative to the vast majority of Nordic Choice hotels.

Last edited by GUWonder; Feb 2, 16 at 2:31 pm
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Old Feb 2, 16, 2:35 pm
  #5  
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Originally Posted by sdsearch View Post
It's more complicated than that. If I do a search for Redeem Points (while logged in and having points; dunno if that matters) around Stockholm for very close-in dates, I get nothing available. If I go out two weeks to two months (for example, the night of April 1), I still get nothing available except this one (apparently new?) property (out of 16):
Yasuragi, an Ascend Hotel Collection Member
Hamndalsvagen 6, Saltsjo-Boo, 13281, SE
6.31 mi / 10.16 km
(0 Reviews)
Featured Amenities: High Speed Internet, Hot Breakfast, Smoke Free
20,000 PTS OR 6,000 PTS + $105 Per Night
(I'm glad I tried Stockholm first, or else I might have thought that no properties were ever returned. I just tried both Bergen and Oslo in Norway, and go zero properties available two months out.)

If they had taken away the ability to book Rewards Nights at Nordic Choice hotels, there wouldn't be this one exception. So I think it's something else, whether it's yet another website glitch or whether someone forgot to load the availability calendar from Nordic Choice to Choice International or what.

The fact that only a very new (?) property seems to be showing implies perhaps that some data didn't get loaded from Nordic Choice to Choice International, but that since this property was new it had to send that data separately, and that's why it's the only hotel that Choice International knows availability for.
Yasuragi has been part of the Choice redemption options in 2014, in 2015 and even in 2016. I don't know why it would be called new.

The new Nordic Choice property rooms that opened in recent weeks were not being made available for redemptions using Choice points from the non-Nordic Choice Club accounts. For example, Quality View in Malmo's rooms have never been made available for redemption nights using my US Choice points -- and this is the Nordic Choice group's newest property to have opened for regular paid stays.

What I'm left with for redemption night options in DK/NO/SE is basically the Ascend Hotel Collection properties.
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Old Feb 3, 16, 6:45 pm
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Originally Posted by GUWonder View Post
Denmark, Norway, and Sweden Choice hotels -- except for the Ascend Hotel Collection properties -- basically wiped out from award redemptions using Choice points from non-Nordic Choice Club accounts.

I wouldn't be surprised if this was a decision from Nordic Choice management related to substantial currency shifts and a weakening economic situation/outlook, more so in Norway than in Sweden. [Denmark was already thin/marginal for Nordic Choice.]

Only 9 hotels in Nordic Choice are Ascend Hotel Collection properties, and they were already rather miserly in making award night space available -- at least relative to the vast majority of Nordic Choice hotels.
Well, it gets stranger than that.

Japan is equally affected! I can find no points availability anytime within my booking window for any Choice hotel in Tokyo.

And with one exception (Shimla), I can find no points availability in India either.

While Brazil is not quite as bad, still only a minority of the hotels in Sao Paulo return availability on any date I try.

So it's not Nordic Choice specific. It seems to be affecting to some degree all regions of the world where Choice Privileges is redemption only (no earning ability).

Hopefully this is either just a technical snafu of some sort, or at worst a period where they're suspending these pending a reevaluation of the redemption levels. I'd much rather have the redemption levels go up than for these to disappear completely.

Originally Posted by GUWonder View Post
What I'm left with for redemption night options in DK/NO/SE is basically the Ascend Hotel Collection properties.
Actually, Sweden is not as simple as that either. The Stockholm search returns that one Ascend which is available on points, but two more Ascends which are just as "blocked out" as all the Clarion, Comfort, and Quality locations.

Last edited by sdsearch; Feb 3, 16 at 6:56 pm
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Old Feb 4, 16, 2:52 am
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Interesting that the hit indeed seems to be so geographically wide.

Originally Posted by sdsearch View Post
Actually, Sweden is not as simple as that either. The Stockholm search returns that one Ascend which is available on points, but two more Ascends which are just as "blocked out" as all the Clarion, Comfort, and Quality locations.
All the Ascend Collection hotels in Scandinavia have been booked on Monday or Tuesday this week using points from the US Choice program. I sort of got in a hurry to lock in things when the rest of the Nordic Choice properties got zeroed out.

I'm not sure if the following is related to the situation or not, but my credit cards have been hit for very recently completed Swedish award night stays at properties where I've never had this sort of billing issue before.

Maybe this all is indeed part of a award price adjustment for places that have a separate Choice program when it comes to at least earning points.
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Old Feb 4, 16, 5:47 am
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the issue with Japan started last year... I had to tweet to the choice twitter desk and they force the hotel to release the basic rooms as only that day was made available. u can email choice hotel for help.
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Old Feb 11, 16, 1:23 pm
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Has anyone called to find out what's happening? We were planning to visit Norway in summer using Choice points, I'm worried about this plan now...
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Old Feb 13, 16, 1:59 pm
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Wondering the same thing. I've been saving up points for a trip to Norway, Sweden and Denmark this summer. Hoping I didn't get hosed
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Old Feb 14, 16, 7:24 am
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Wondering if I can switch a US-based account to a Nordic based account and keep the same amount of points. I have a swedish address
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Old Feb 14, 16, 8:43 am
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Originally Posted by w0r1dtrave1er View Post
Wondering if I can switch a US-based account to a Nordic based account and keep the same amount of points. I have a swedish address
It's not a different account.

It's a different program.

So I severely doubt you can move points from the Choice Privileges program (which is nearly "worldwide", not just US) to the Nordic Choice program (which is a totally separate program).
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Old Feb 14, 16, 12:32 pm
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Originally Posted by sdsearch View Post
It's not a different account.

It's a different program.

So I severely doubt you can move points from the Choice Privileges program (which is nearly "worldwide", not just US) to the Nordic Choice program (which is a totally separate program).
Ah I see now. What a let down as I've got quite a cache of Choice points and I've been using them here and there in expensive towns. Mainly Stockholm and Tokyo. Really hope to see Swedish hotels come back available for award nights but I'm not holding my breath
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Old Feb 14, 16, 8:08 pm
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Originally Posted by w0r1dtrave1er View Post
Ah I see now. What a let down as I've got quite a cache of Choice points and I've been using them here and there in expensive towns. Mainly Stockholm and Tokyo. Really hope to see Swedish hotels come back available for award nights but I'm not holding my breath
If no one's contacted Choice Privileges yet (and no has reported contacting them yet), we don't even know if Swedish hotels are gone for award night availability right now, or just require human intervention (like in post #9 it was documented that Japan hotels have required for many months now).

The problem is that Choice may not be able to answer the question theoretically. They may only be able to answer the question when you want to try to book a hotel, and they then look into whether it's really possible or not. So it'll take someone who wants award nights in Nordic Choice countries in the next couple months or so (whatever the booking window is for their status level) for us to figure that out anytime soon.

If you want to redeem for Tokyo, you presumably have use the "tricks" mentioned in post #9. If you've used one of them already, try the same thing for Stockholm. (Then please come back and tell us what happened.)

Last edited by sdsearch; Feb 14, 16 at 8:14 pm
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Old Feb 15, 16, 4:46 am
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Originally Posted by sdsearch View Post
If no one's contacted Choice Privileges yet (and no has reported contacting them yet), we don't even know if Swedish hotels are gone for award night availability right now, or just require human intervention (like in post #9 it was documented that Japan hotels have required for many months now).

The problem is that Choice may not be able to answer the question theoretically. They may only be able to answer the question when you want to try to book a hotel, and they then look into whether it's really possible or not. So it'll take someone who wants award nights in Nordic Choice countries in the next couple months or so (whatever the booking window is for their status level) for us to figure that out anytime soon.

If you want to redeem for Tokyo, you presumably have use the "tricks" mentioned in post #9. If you've used one of them already, try the same thing for Stockholm. (Then please come back and tell us what happened.)
At least as of bookings made last night for stays last night and/or tonight (using US Choice program points), the only Swedish Choice hotels where I could book were a subset of Nordic Choice hotels within Ascend Collection hotels -- apparently those which were not part of a particular acquisition that brought in the Nordic Sea/Light hotels (and some others) into the Nordic Choice Hotels group.

I've not yet cared to contact Choice in the US (or here in the Nordic region) about the details of what has happened, so I've not tried the Tokyo/Japan workaround. Until next month at least, the only hotels I need here is one for skiing and perhaps one on the eastern side of Sweden -- basically the only two Swedish Ascend Collection hotels of interest to me at this point.
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