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Conde Naste Traveler recently came out with it's best hotel rewards program.  Here's that link.


I'm curious how many of you use these programs, and if so, do they affect your selection of hotels when traveling?  Or do you just stay at the cheapest place you can and try to collect points (which are free)?


I have to admit loyalty to the Marriott brand.  You'll find Marriott properties almost anywhere.  I have an allergy to feathers and sleeping in a down bed anywhere will ruin my sinuses for days, so Marriott is always sure to provide me with a feather free room, something that is a genuine plus for me.  That said, price does matter as well.

Twitter: @DrFumblefinger

"We do not take a trip, a trip takes us".  John Steinbeck, from Travels with Charlie

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The main usefulness that I have found for these loyalty programs is not the tangible rewards.  The staff just seems to be more attentive and accommodating when they see that I am a regular with their company.   There have been times when the extra attention has made a big difference in an otherwise harried trip. 

I'm a Holiday Inn Express or La Quinta member. On my most recent road trip, I did get upgraded at the HIE for being a member. The free nights are always great too and that's the main goal. I've used many La Quinta free nights when I do workshops out of town. With HIE, I usually use the points for a discounted rate in expensive areas, like Sonoma or Paso Robles - wherever a vineyard may be!

That's what I do, too, SayMoi.  I think it's a good plan.  Use my rewards for expensive cities.  Pay in lower priced cities and built up more points there. 


It is nice to get little upgrades and free nights for being a member of a program.  Plus I like having a place of consistent quality I can count on.  I like knowing what kind of room I'm going to get.

Using the points for the expensive properties works well.  We have stayed at the Marriott very close to the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam.  It was a treat just to see the Leidesplein and Vondlepark from our room .  We have used points to stay at the Hotel George V in Paris, just around the corner from Champs-Élysées .  Why stay extra nights in Des Moines when you can be in Paris ?  Not knocking Des Moines - but, hey, Des Moinesians would go to Paris, too.

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