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Old Sep 1, 17, 4:29 pm   -   Wikipost
FlyerTalk Forums Thread Wiki: New Best Western Credit Cards - 70k Points for $5k spend
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Last edit by: muji
Wiki Link
As of 9/1/17:
https://www.firstbankcard.com/bestwe...-cc-_-ccoffers

The Rewards Mastercard offers 16,000 bonus points after first purchase
(plus an additional 16,000 points on first stay).
There is no annual fee.

The Premium Rewards Mastercard offers 50,000 bonus points after $1,000 spend within first 3 months
(plus an additional 20,000 bonus points when you spend at least $5,000 during each 12-month billing cycle period).
The $59 annual fee is waived the first year.
__________________________________________________ _____________

The Rewards Business Mastercard offers 48,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 within first 90 days.
There is no annual fee.
https://www.firstbankcard.com/bestwe....fhtml?sub=010
__________________________________________________ _____________

These cards are issued by First Bankcard, a division of First National Bank of Omaha.
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Old Apr 26, 15, 9:32 pm   #1
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Join Date: Nov 2013
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New Best Western Credit Cards - 70k Points for $5k spend

FNBO has finally launched the new best western credit cards: https://www.firstbankcard.com/bestwe...rds/index.html

Most interesting is the premium which comes with up to 70,000 points after a total of $10k spend and annual fee of $59 waived first year.

My analysis can be found here.

This post contains a link to my own website, I've included all of the relevant information as per flyertalk rules.
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Old Apr 26, 15, 10:12 pm   #2
  
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Interesting....

If I were to do 20k of MS spending, that's 90k pts, enough for 6 nights anywhere.

The Platinum elite status in theory allows one to buy points at 1 penny, which could be a great perk in very expensive cities where $150 would be considered a deal.
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Old Apr 26, 15, 10:20 pm   #3
  
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Originally Posted by littlewinglet View Post
Interesting....

If I were to do 20k of MS spending, that's 90k pts, enough for 6 nights anywhere.

The Platinum elite status in theory allows one to buy points at 1 penny, which could be a great perk in very expensive cities where $150 would be considered a deal.
I think you're thinking of the new Wyndham program. Best Western still has a tiered redemption chart ranging from 8k to 36k points per night.
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Old Apr 26, 15, 10:26 pm   #4
  
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Originally Posted by micned View Post
I think you're thinking of the new Wyndham program. Best Western still has a tiered redemption chart ranging from 8k to 36k points per night.
Oh right! Those two always looked the same to me.
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Old Apr 27, 15, 7:37 am   #5
  
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yah, 1 point per $1 spending. Doesn't look that great...
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Old Apr 27, 15, 5:32 pm   #6
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Originally Posted by littlewinglet View Post
Oh right! Those two always looked the same to me.
Boy, you confuse programs easily! The Best Western program has only hotels whose names are Best Western, Best Western Plus, or Best Western Premier.

The WyndhamRewards program has a dozen or more hotel brands, including Super 8, Days Inn, Knights Inn, Ramada, Travelodge, Howard Johnson, Microtel, Wingate, and Wyndham.

Most of the properties in the WyndhamRewards program are way lower quality than the average Best Western.

Last edited by sdsearch; Apr 27, 15 at 5:38 pm
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Old Apr 27, 15, 5:49 pm   #7
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Originally Posted by Doctor of Credit View Post
My analysis can be found here.
IMHO you should have waited until you learned about Best Western properties before doing the analysis. What's the point of evaluating a hotel card based on redeeming for gift cards???

As with other hotel cards or with airline cards, what it's worth depends a lot on exactly where you want to travel. The "average" hotel in this program, like in many other programs, may require too many points relative to cash cost, but there are good redemption values here and there, and when you find those redemption values, then the points may be well worth it. (This is no matter how you earn those points.)

My analysis: If you already stay a decent amount at Best Western hotels, mostly when they have promos, this card is more likely to be just "icing on the cake" rather than the guts of the cake, and so I'd say for such people the no annual fee version is more likely to be worth it. For people who rarely stay paid at Best Western but want to redeem, the answer might be quite different. And then for people who stay a lot at Best Western but not necessarily when they have promos, the Premium card which earns an extra 10 (rather than just an extra 5) points per dollar spent at BW properties may be more worth it.

So it depends a lot on your BW stay pattern which card is more likely to be the one for you.
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Old Apr 28, 15, 7:47 am   #8
  
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Meager bonus

You have to spend $2500 on this card for the first 25K bonus; and another $2500 for the next. In other words, spend a dollar for every ten points. (You get another 1 non-bonus point per dollar on the spend itself.)

To me that seems very expensive. For example, it is about the same ratio as the Ink and Sapphire cards bonuses, but for those dollars you receive the same number of the *much* more valuable UR points.

Or if you are getting cash back on your Discover miles card, and using it to purchase AGCs through a portal, you are getting about $120 cash per $2500 spend. Would you pay $120 for 25K Best Western points? Effectively, that is what you would be doing with this offer. Not to mention the credit inquiry.

With this offer, the bonus ratio drops still further after $5K in spending.

Even though I appreciate finding Best Westerns in many, many places and would easily find uses for their points, I think I will sit this one out.
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Old Apr 28, 15, 9:47 am   #9
  
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I agree that there's a lot of spending required for not just a ton of return, but I've got another question that I think a lot of people may be asking: how good are Best Western's hotels now?

We stayed in them a lot when I was a kid and we were on family vacations. They were, in general, a cheap place to sleep. I've since found myself avoiding them (either consciously or subconsciously) simply because I could often find something better for not a whole lot more.

Are BW properties still primarily a good place to get a cheap sleep, perhaps at the sacrifice of quality or cleanliness? Or have they brought their standards up somewhat?

I know the answer will be "it depends on the property", but any additional insight would be appreciated.

It does look like their Rewards program offers a "No Catch" Status Match to other hotel programs. If that's good for life, it could be useful.
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Old Apr 28, 15, 2:11 pm   #10
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I agree that there's a lot of spending required for not just a ton of return, but I've got another question that I think a lot of people may be asking: how good are Best Western's hotels now?

We stayed in them a lot when I was a kid and we were on family vacations. They were, in general, a cheap place to sleep. I've since found myself avoiding them (either consciously or subconsciously) simply because I could often find something better for not a whole lot more.

Are BW properties still primarily a good place to get a cheap sleep, perhaps at the sacrifice of quality or cleanliness? Or have they brought their standards up somewhat?

I know the answer will be "it depends on the property", but any additional insight would be appreciated.

It does look like their Rewards program offers a "No Catch" Status Match to other hotel programs. If that's good for life, it could be useful.
There's a whole forum about that:

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/best-...n-rewards-416/

In short, they now have three tiers: Best Western, Best Western Plus, and Best Western Premier. The BW Premier properties are far and few between and I've never seen one yet. But in general the BW Plus properties are a bit more geared toward business travelers, whatever that may mean. If you don't have time to check reviews, then you'll probably have a better "batting average" of getting a nicer hotel if you go for BW Plus than for non-Plus BW. However, there are some non-Plus BW hotels which are quite nice too.

Some years ago they booted the very worst motels out of their system (including one miserable one I stayed at once and vowed never to return), so definitely don't use memories from multiple decades ago as your only "barometer" for Best Western.

One thing you do need to understand about Best Western: "Every Best Western is independently owned and independently operated." You notice more differences from one BW to the next (even when both are good quality) than from one Hilton Garden Inn to the next or from one Comfort Inn to the next or from one Fairfield Inn to the next.
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Old Apr 28, 15, 4:26 pm   #11
  
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Boy, you confuse programs easily! The Best Western program has only hotels whose names are Best Western, Best Western Plus, or Best Western Premier.

The WyndhamRewards program has a dozen or more hotel brands, including Super 8, Days Inn, Knights Inn, Ramada, Travelodge, Howard Johnson, Microtel, Wingate, and Wyndham.

Most of the properties in the WyndhamRewards program are way lower quality than the average Best Western.

Hey hey...no need for that comment. I rarely stay at either and Wyndham was on my mind recently due to the program change.

I wouldn't bother with this card. Their points appear to be worth about 2/3 of a cent at best, so even for the bonus it's not worth the high minimum spend.
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Old Apr 28, 15, 5:22 pm   #12
  
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Originally Posted by littlewinglet View Post
Their points appear to be worth about 2/3 of a cent at best, so even for the bonus it's not worth the high minimum spend.
More or less... in some scenarios I get almost 3/4 of a cent per point. I weighed it carefully, and will not apply. I agree that spending 5K for 50K points is not that great. Only SPG has a more expensive sign up bonus, but Starwood offers free nights for far fewer points than does Best Western. There are so many chains that offer 30K points for 1K spend or 50 to 80K for 2 or 3K spend.
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Old Apr 28, 15, 7:50 pm   #13
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More or less... in some scenarios I get almost 3/4 of a cent per point. I weighed it carefully, and will not apply. I agree that spending 5K for 50K points is not that great. Only SPG has a more expensive sign up bonus, but Starwood offers free nights for far fewer points than does Best Western. There are so many chains that offer 30K points for 1K spend or 50 to 80K for 2 or 3K spend.
Not to mention the Citi no-fee Hilton HHonors Visa which gets you 50k points for 1K spend, and is (so far still) churnable multiple times per year. (50k HH points may be worth only what 30k at another hotel program might, though. And then, of course, remember that SPG and Hyatt are "calibrated" completely differently than all the other hotel programs, so SPG and Hyatt points should never compared directly to any other hotel program's points.)

Having said all that: If you are traveling only to cities where you can choose from a wide variety of programs, you probably have little need for Best Western. But if you are traveling to small towns, chances are the only programs in those small towns (if any programs at all) are either Best Western, and/or Choice, and/or WyndhamRewards. And then if you travel outside the big capitals in Scandinavia (for example, out on the fjords in western Norway), the only hotel programs that tend to get you anywhere on points in that expensive country are Best Western and Choice.

So it depends on where you travel whether it makes sense to compare earning Best Western points to earning other hotel program's points (and of course, it depends whether those other hotel programs are "lower end" or "major" hotel programs).

Finally: Many Best Western hotels in the USA are very reasonably priced, and it's a good question to ask whether it makes sense to earn Best Western points, if you do need them, from this card, or only from stays at inexpensive Best Western hotels (and bonuses on such stays during stay promotions).
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Old Apr 30, 15, 5:57 pm   #14
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I have a 39 year history of credit card usage where I have paid each and every bill in full monthly, never been late with a payment and have a house that is paid in full. I currently have a credit rating in the high 700's/low 800's. A few years ago My score was in the mid 700's.
When I saw the Best Western offer yesterday I decided I wanted to add this card to my hotel portfolio. B.W. properties are everywhere and they do have some properties that are perfectly acceptable for my travel requirements. I received a rejection and when I called they're reconsideration line, was rejected again. Keep in mind that I have always applied for and received cards through AMEX, Chase, Citi, USBANK and Barclays.
I don't know what FNBO's underwriting requirements happen to be, but I'll never waste another second filling out one of their applications. I would definitely use BW but only if I have a card to earn points in they're program. Best Western couldn't have chosen a worse company to promote their branded credit card. They'll also never see me in one of their hotels. I believe La Quinta uses the same bank. Save your hard credit pulls for other offers.
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Old Apr 30, 15, 6:11 pm   #15
  
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I received a rejection and when I called they're reconsideration line, was rejected again.
Did they offer any explanation? Did you ask?
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