How Credit Cards Affect the Cost of a Free Night

Award Cost - Status vs Card

During an on-going analysis of hotel loyalty programs, I decided to take a look at the credit card bonuses each offered. There is an opportunity cost when you use a co-branded card rather than some other credit card. For example, you may give up 2.14 Ultimate Rewards points you could have … [Read more...]

Free Club Carlson Gold Elite Status from American Express

Amex Club Carlson Gold

American Express has a targeted promotion for its European cardholders that includes free Club Carlson Gold Elite status through February 28, 2015, but it appears that anyone can register as long as they have a European address. Be sure to use your real name. (HT Points, Miles, & … [Read more...]

Comparing Hotel Elite Status in 2014

HotelStatus_UpperTiers2014_v6

I've finally found time to finish creating my comparison tables of hotel elite status in 2014. These things always get ripped to shreds in the first draft, so I won't do much analysis in this post; I'll wait until later this week. But do feel free to comment. I will try to get a corrected … [Read more...]

How Much Does It Cost to Earn a Free Night?

Hyatt SPG Weighted Average

I'm in the process of updating my hotel elite status comparison chart, and as part of that process I need to collect information on the different award tiers and the points earned with each stay. That allows me to do what I consider a very useful analysis of the relative cost of earning an … [Read more...]

Club Carlson Finally Devalues Its Program

I've been critical of Club Carlson for a long time. No program can be so generous -- huge bonus point promotions, easy elite status, redeem-one-get-one-free, 50-75% bonus points on every stay on top of 20 points per dollar -- and expect to remain profitable. My assumption has been that … [Read more...]

38K Club Carlson Points after Three Nights

Club Carlson 38K Promo

Club Carlson shared its winter promotion today. You can get 38,000 bonus Gold Points after spending three nights at any Club Carlson properties. You don't need to complete all three stays at the same hotel, but they must be paid stays to be eligible (not cash + points) and you must … [Read more...]