A couple questions on Moorea, Bora Bora, and Tahiti

Old Jan 20, 19, 10:20 pm
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A couple questions on Moorea, Bora Bora, and Tahiti

Hello friends,

Our Air France flight arrives at 5:20am at PPT. However, we can't check into the St. Regis BOB until the following day. So, instead of staying in PPT for a night, we are going to leave the airport, catch the ferry to Moorea. We will rent a car and spend the day seeing Moorea.
Question 1-What hotel should we stay at on Moorea if we are only staying for one night? Hilton, Sofitel, or somewhere else maybe a bit cheaper?

After one night on Moorea, we will return our rental car to the Moorea airport and fly from Moorea to BOB. We will stay at the St. Regis for 5 nights.
After 5 nights on BOB, we have to spend one night on Tahiti in order to catch our Air France flight which departs at 7:30am.

Question 2-What time should we leave BOB to arrive in PPT? In other words, after 5 days on BOB will we want to leave in the late morning so that we will have a half day on PPT to explore? I keep hearing such negative things about PPT but isn't there something we should see?
Or, should we stay as late as we can on BOB and just catch an evening flight from BOB to PPT as to minimize time on PPT?
Where should we stay for that one night on PPT (knowing that we have an early flight so it's not really worth it to splurge)?

For some background, we are perfectly fine with a cheap, clean, no frills hotel. We usually stay at Marriotts or Sheratons or maybe Westins. However, I was able to snag a discounted points reservation at the St. Regis, hence our reservation there. I just didn't want anyone to get a distorted view of our requirements based on the fact we are staying there.

Thank you for any help!
Ashley

Last edited by ashley1245; Jan 24, 19 at 9:37 pm
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Old Jan 22, 19, 11:36 pm
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Join Date: Jan 2019
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Subscribing to this thread and hoping others chime in. My fiancee and I are planning to do about 7-10 days in French Polynesia for our honeymoon in May 2020. Current thought is:

2 nights in Tahiti (get used to time change, see some of PPT...and Tahiti can't be that bad, can it?!)
2-3 nights in Mo'orea (have heard mostly positive reviews about the island)
4-5 nights in Bora Bora

Hoping to use IHG points (original, I know ) for all or almost all of the trip.
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Old Jan 23, 19, 1:28 am
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Tahiti isn't bad at all. It's just that the other islands are so much better.

I quite enjoyed checking out Point Venus, where Capt Cook observed the transit of Venus in 1769. Cool history and a black sand beach.

I stayed in Moorea at the IC using IHG points in 2016. Quite a nice property. The Hilton looks slightly better, but it is a fair bit more expensive. A tip, if you buy Ambassador status you'll be treated quite well at the FP IHG properties, and you are guaranteed a free upgrade. That means if you reserve (with cash) the standard room at the IC you get an overwater bungalow FOC. A big bonus. if you stay over the weekend, you can use the AMB BOGO to get that bungalow for two nights by buying just one std room. Then snag your last night or two with points at the std hotel. If it is your honeymoon and space is available, they may let you keep your bungalow for those nights (although not guaranteed).

Here's my photos if you want a taste of what to expect.
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Old Jan 25, 19, 2:22 pm
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Thanks for the insight! I'm a Spire Ambassador, but hoping to book basically our entire honeymoon with points. Would we not be eligible for an upgrade there since it's an award booking? We plan to use the BOGO weekend night, so essentially paying for just one night.

I've read about buying a guaranteed upgrade prior to the trip. Is that worth doing, at least in Bora Bora?

Enjoyed seeing your photos. I think I clicked the wrong arrow and ended up seeing some photos from Whitsunday Islands -- awesome. We'll be in Australia next year as well and plan to spend four nights on Hayman Island. Area looks incredible!
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Old Jan 25, 19, 6:40 pm
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You are never guaranteed an upgrade on a points redemption. Not even as an Ambassador. Unless Spire grants that (I've never been Spire, just Platinum).

So, you can try your luck and maybe you'll get an upgrade. But the difference is SO big, at least at Moorea IC, between the base room and a bungalow, I didn't want to chance it. So I bought a standard room with cash to make sure we got a bungalow. Like I said, maybe use your first night or two that way, then the rest with points. Then they'll be likely (but still not guaranteed) to keep you in the upgraded space.

I don't know if Bora Bora is the same as Moorea, as I didn't go there.

Another option is to email the property and ask to pay for an upgrade on your award. I tried this, but from what I recall the upgrade cost was pretty big.

Yes the Whitsundays are beautiful, in a very different way!
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Old Mar 3, 19, 11:27 pm
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Similar Trip

Not going to Bora Bora but I unexpectedly came upon a $439 fare (a few days ago) SJC-PPT, mid April. Booked 6 nights at IC Moorea, using Ambassador BOGO for the weekend, points for the other 4 nights. Air France flight arrives at 5 a.m. and departs 7:30 a.m. Figured we will just take the ferry to Moorea on the first day. Last day will need to spend the night in Tahiti prior to the early a.m. flight home. IC in Tahiti has no points nights available (any of the days we're there) and the paid rate will come close to $400 AI. Too crazy for me when departing at 5 a.m. So I booked a B&B, highly rated on TA, for $100 that last night, proprietors pu & drop off at the ferry terminal and PPT airport, no cost.

I am Spire Ambassador but am not expecting an upgrade to an OWB with only 1 paid night out of 6 in Moorea. Don't know if 1 more paid night might help. Need to do more research on the room types; when I booked the BOGO only the lowest category showed up. Normally I spend months researching, but when I saw that super low fare I knew I didn't have time to "ponder"!
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Old Mar 4, 19, 2:21 am
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Originally Posted by Steph58 View Post
I am Spire Ambassador but am not expecting an upgrade to an OWB with only 1 paid night out of 6 in Moorea. Don't know if 1 more paid night might help. Need to do more research on the room types; when I booked the BOGO only the lowest category showed up. Normally I spend months researching, but when I saw that super low fare I knew I didn't have time to "ponder"!
For a paid night you should get a guaranteed upgrade as a Spire AMB, and the only upgrade from the standard room booking is a bungalow. So luckily, you should get a bungalow although it may not be OW. Are your paid nights first? If so maybe they will let you keep the bungalow. I was in that situation 3 years ago and they let me stay in my OW bungalow with award nights in a std room (although I paid for a bungalow for the first two nights and so was guaranteed an upgrade to OW for those nights, they let me remain).

The property was very good to me as a Plat AMB. You can email them if you want to see about a guaranteed OW bungalow paid upgrade on your award nights. [email protected]
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Old Mar 9, 19, 5:41 pm
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Mrs Outoftown and myself are going to PPT in late Sept to early Oct 2019 for 10 days. We last went in March 2005, overnighting trip bookends at IC Tahiti and spending a few days at IC Moorea andthe rest of the time at IC Bora Bora in an OTW bungalow. All that was on points. I am Spire but not Ambassador, but I don't see any availability for either Bora Bora IC property through 2020. Is getting Ambassador the trick? Plan B - We are planning to spend this vacation in Tahiti, which I don't mind so much. We were some of the lucky ones to snag AF trips for around $500 and would be willing to spend that again each to include Bora Bora, if I could get either IC on points. Any advice?
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Old Mar 13, 19, 1:47 am
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Thank you CP Maverick, I just sent an email to the address you listed. Did not inquire about paid upgrades to OWB but rather what facilities will be closed (construction/refurbishment) in a month. There's an announcement on IC Moorea's web site stating half the OWBs will be unavailable for most of 2019. I have 6 nights booked--a BOGO weekend Ambassador cert, 1 night paid (Virtuoso rate) and 3 nights on points. Hopefully that will improve my upgrade odds. On my points nights I can see they already upgraded the Lanai room to Premium Lanai. I'm hoping for beach bungalow or garden bungalow (if not OWB).

Re: Bora Bora getting more than 1 or 2 points nights is akin to winning the lottery in reading posts on the subject on the IC board. I checked during my timeframe in April--there are 2 IHG MC free nights at Thalasso but of course several days apart. Nothing else at either IC hotel on Bora Bora. That's fine it puts the kibosh on any crazy ideas of spending additional airfare, hotel transportation $, and time during my short one-week trip.
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