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Is Hotels.com "free night" better than rewards program?

Is Hotels.com "free night" better than rewards program?

Old Jan 3, 2019, 3:28 pm
  #181  
 
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another excellent gold amenity - about $60 savings per night vs breakfast included rates
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Old Jan 10, 2019, 11:30 pm
  #182  
 
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I stay 160-200 nights a year in hotels (literally all over the world) and also use 95% hotels.com. This in combination with topcashback (before 10% cashback now only 3% or virgin atlantic miles when they have deals i.e. 9/12/15 miles per 1 spend) and paying with Amex for another 1.5pts. Obv. i am gold and get the free nights aswell..

I do feel tho they could treat their 'top spenders' i.e. the ones staying over 125 nights something a little better with a personal e-mail from a 'account manager' or so to check on needs of customers or see if they can help you with things or do a survey with their top users. Suprised that never happens with them.. But as i also spread my stays over a gazillion different chains i reckon this is also the best option for me to use… Even tho sometimes you feel 2d rated at a property because you use a 'discount' site and didnt book direct and dont get some of the perks you get when booking direct.
The gold extras are a improvement tho (altho a lot of times you need to attend the front desks staff to it).

And as others said: Customers service IS top notch! They do try to go sometimes the extra mile for you by contacting hotels itself to arrange cancellations even after the cancellation date or other things.
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Old Jan 13, 2019, 2:22 am
  #183  
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Originally Posted by itisme
I stay 160-200 nights a year in hotels
With that number of nights you could certainly get to top status with one chain or mid status with 2-3 chains, while remaining top status with hotels.com. Unless you only travel to rural areas or your country mix is odd... As you say, hotels.com isn't really rewarding your loyalty beyond the 30 night mark
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Old Jan 15, 2019, 11:51 am
  #184  
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Originally Posted by :D!
With that number of nights you could certainly get to top status with one chain or mid status with 2-3 chains, while remaining top status with hotels.com. Unless you only travel to rural areas or your country mix is odd... As you say, hotels.com isn't really rewarding your loyalty beyond the 30 night mark
Except for a rebate for free nights + rebates from topcashback. Which are a hell of a lot more straightforward than the hotel loyalty chain dance, and hotels.com at the moment isn't in continuous and steady devaluation mode like Hilton/IHG/Radisson, soon to be joined by Starriott. That's sort of my angle on this: how much messing around with loyalty chains that lead you on and then snatch the football away like Lucy from Charlie Brown do I want to deal with, as opposed to keeping it simple, stupid, knowing I'll occasionally lose an angle but I gain consistency and simplicity?

(My response has been that I burn Hilton, Radisson and IHG pretty readily because I don't trust them to devalue massively five minutes from now, Starriott is too new and it sounds like they'll be devaluing the upper end Real Soon Now™, I trust Hyatt more to the point that I am more OK accruing on them, and hotels.com most. So far. But place no faith in princes...)
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Last edited by eponymous_coward; Jan 15, 2019 at 11:56 am
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Old Jan 15, 2019, 12:22 pm
  #185  
 
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Originally Posted by itisme

And as others said: Customers service IS top notch! They do try to go sometimes the extra mile for you by contacting hotels itself to arrange cancellations even after the cancellation date or other things.
Cannot agree more !!! - and as an example:
This morning I had to cancel a noncancellable stay. After the agent contacted the hotel (in Bali), I was informed that the IHG-hotel would cancel, but not issue a refund or change the dates.
The Hotels.com agent (in Manilla) was so kind to proceed and issue at her own initiative a voucher - valid for one year - for the value of the cancelled stay.
I did not even have to mention or ask for it ..... simply amazing !
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Old Jan 28, 2019, 3:42 pm
  #186  
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One thing I have experienced with hotels.com in the last few months is an inability to redeem reward nights. Once in Moscow, Russia, and the other time in Chur, Switzerland, I wanted to use a reward night credit to pay one of the nights of a 2 night stay. But it said that redeeming hotels.com free reward nights with this hotel is not possible. So I just paid the 2 nights with cash, because it wasn't particularly expensive. But I do hope that this is not the beginning of an ongoing trend, where we find it is impossible to redeem those free nights.
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Old Mar 7, 2019, 11:29 am
  #187  
 
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Originally Posted by Concerto
One thing I have experienced with hotels.com in the last few months is an inability to redeem reward nights. Once in Moscow, Russia, and the other time in Chur, Switzerland, I wanted to use a reward night credit to pay one of the nights of a 2 night stay. But it said that redeeming hotels.com free reward nights with this hotel is not possible. So I just paid the 2 nights with cash, because it wasn't particularly expensive. But I do hope that this is not the beginning of an ongoing trend, where we find it is impossible to redeem those free nights.
This is definitely going on. I'm not sure if the restriction is increasing, but there are definitely a significant number of hotels that cannot be booked with "reward nights". In fact, I'm seeing some special rates that do not count for rewards. Also, as far as I can tell, all the ~10% coupons thats been floating around automatically exclude the booking against counting toward reward. I'm ok with that... 10% off right now is better than 10% off later.

For my travel pattern, I'm also noticing that Priceline express deals are usually a tad cheaper (even when you factor in coupon and reward night collection). I focus on very low 2-3-star motels/business hotels.
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Old Mar 7, 2019, 8:57 pm
  #188  
 
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A couple of things: first, I've not noticed any problems using my free nights (actually a credit towrds whatever the rate is plus, their CS is top drawer, as I had a 2 night stay at a Thai countryside "resort" that had the word paradise in their name and was anything but that. Cancelled right after we checked in and found out how bad it was, and they gave us a full refund plus credit towards the 10 nights; if you do a review of the property, wait for the email requesting it and they will send you a code for an extra credit towards the 10 nights, with credit at the same rate as you book thru the extra night credit link. And, no problem getting creditted towards the 10 nights unlike using the 10% off coupons which specify no rewards credit in the T&C's. Mahalo
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Old Mar 26, 2019, 4:15 am
  #189  
 
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Seems like the hotels.com gift card merge tool has been down for weeks. That's not good at all.

Pretty much a non-starter for me from continuing to use them.
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Old Mar 26, 2019, 7:17 am
  #190  
 
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Originally Posted by Sandeep1
Seems like the hotels.com gift card merge tool has been down for weeks. That's not good at all.

Pretty much a non-starter for me from continuing to use them.
They list a number to call to combine them. I called and the rep said he'd be happy to do it. Don't know why that's such a big deal.
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Old Mar 26, 2019, 7:24 am
  #191  
 
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Originally Posted by fredc84
They list a number to call to combine them. I called and the rep said he'd be happy to do it. Don't know why that's such a big deal.
It's a hassle to have to call. I prefer to minimize human interaction.

​​​​​​I don't get why they can't fix whatever the problem is.
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Old Mar 29, 2019, 12:45 pm
  #192  
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Originally Posted by Sandeep1
It's a hassle to have to call. I prefer to minimize human interaction.
Interesting approach to life!
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Old Apr 15, 2019, 7:21 pm
  #193  
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Last edited by nk15; Apr 15, 2019 at 7:50 pm
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Old Apr 27, 2019, 10:12 pm
  #194  
 
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Hmm, we're now hotel free agents after years with Marriott. We used to use hotels.com a lot but quit them after having a hotel never receive our free night reservation and nearly stranding us on an unexpectedly busy week in LA. (Huge convention we had no idea about, and I question the "never got it" story, since we were staying at a definite 1-2 star hotel that was charging $200/night.) Hotels.com wasn't really helpful, and we had to fight with them to get them to push through the reservation, which took hours standing in the lobby after a 6 hour drive. That was the second time we had a problem with a "free night". I'm willing to give them another shot (somewhat reluctantly), but are they that much better than just piling up Orbitz cash back rewards and using the TCB portal? Especially if you aren't going to reach status?
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Old Apr 29, 2019, 11:11 pm
  #195  
 
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are you able to search for silver and gold specific hotels?
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