Shops Away - hotels.com

Old Nov 1, 18, 2:57 am
  #1  
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Join Date: Oct 2013
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Shops Away - hotels.com

I've been collecting Virgin Flyermiles via hotels.com purchases through the Shops Away portal for many years but have found 2 issues in the last year or so;
1. I'm not getting the advertised 4 miles/ (or whatever the promotion may be). Even accounting for the fact it excludes tax I'm often getting half the rate - apparently something to do with the fact I also collect hotels.com free night stays. But Virgin cannot tell me how much the Flyer Miles rate drops.
2. I now have 4 stays where my miles have not posted to my Flyermiles account, going back 6 months, all stays paid for and completed. Never seen this before and has only happened this year.

Has anyone else seen recent issues with the hotels.com/Shops Away earnings?

I'm beginning to lose confidence with the scheme and I'm tempted to collect Emirates Skywards via their Rocketmiles hotel booking site instead. For example, I earned 10,000 Skywards points on a 600 3 night hotel stay this September. That's a fantastic earn rate!
jonarnold1 is offline  
Old Nov 1, 18, 3:10 am
  #2  
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
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Hotels.com pays different affiliate marketing commissions depending on whether you earn Welcome Rewards or not. Shops Away takes this commission and uses it to "buy" miles for you. So lower commission = fewer miles for you.

Shops Away ought to update their portal accordingly and you have something of a case if you really want to be a PITA with Shops Away.

P.S. You are usually paying a higher rate via Rocketmiles so that RM can afford to buy those miles for you. If your employer doesn't care then that's a great option. If it's your own money you should do some double-checking against other OTAs.
craigthemif is offline  
Old Nov 1, 18, 6:57 am
  #3  
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I saw a promo for one of the "earn miles if you buy a room from us" sites not long ago.

I have a trip planned so searched on both that site and my usual travel agent.

The cash price via the points site was more than the OTA price. When, out of interest, I checked the cost to buy that number of miles from the airline the cost of the miles was very close to the extra cash price. So the miles aren't free at all they just enable you to get around any buy miles restrictions the airline programmes have.

Paying over the odds with your own cash is fine but I wouldn't do it if my employer was paying. They might not be very forgiving.
UKtravelbear is online now  
Old Nov 1, 18, 10:12 am
  #4  
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Yes true those airmiles are never 'free'. I do compare across several sites (hotels.com/booking.com/rocketmiles) and on the hotel's own reservation system. That 10,000 skywards offer was particularly good though - costing me about 100 more than if I'd gone direct to the hotel. Of course it's not always that good.
jonarnold1 is offline  
Old Nov 4, 18, 10:28 am
  #5  
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
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I find sometimes on one night stays Shops Away pays the advertised rate, despite me collecting Hotels.com reward nights, on longer or more expensive stays always a reduced rate, it mirrors the BA shopping portal. In general hotels.com do pay, some others are just really poor at honouring what's offered. Hilton have something of a reputation for this, and personally Microsoft and Dell have both been reversed on me, only to be re-instated after much chasing on my part.
dougzz is offline  

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