EDIT: The initial allocation of this $59 package has now sold out. I will let people know when it is available again.
Whilst most readers of Head for Points will be familiar with Flyertalk, far fewer know much about Milepoint. Milepoint was created in 2011 by Randy Petersen, the founder of Flyertalk (later sold to a big US business called Internet Brands).
Milepoint was set up to address issues that Petersen thought were developing at Flyertalk – the reliance on very old-fashioned software to power it, and a feeling that newcomers to the board were not looked after well. Milepoint has a far slicker, modern look and is deliberately designed to appeal to newbies through its forum structure.
Where Milepoint has failed so far is in taking much volume away from Flyertalk. At the end of the day, there is an advantage to volume on a chat board, as the more people you get, the more people there are to bounce ideas around – ‘crowdsourcing’, if you like. Milepoint simply does not have the critical mass at the moment.
However … all that is irrelevant to the main topic of this post!
Milepoint has just launched a ‘premium membership’ level, costing $59 a year. Even if you never ever visit Milepoint, you might still be interested in signing up! There is a long list of benefits, but the key ones are:
- Hyatt Gold Passport Platinum status through Feb. 2014 or 2,000 Hyatt Gold Passport points
- 2,000 United MileagePlus miles
- One year of ad-free viewing on Milepoint.com
- Free upgrade to National Car Rental Emerald Club Executive Status
If you collect United MileagePlus miles and stay with Hyatt, then this is a decent deal.
If you only have the occasional Hyatt stay, then it is worth looking at the benefits of Platinum status in Gold Passport. The first thing to note is that Platinum is actually the bottom elite level, and you only need 5 stays or 15 nights in a calendar year to achieve it anyway.
These are the key benefits:
- Achieve rewards faster with a 15% point bonus when choosing points
- Enjoy a preferred room including rooms on higher floors or larger rooms
- Stay connected with complimentary in-room internet access
- Extend your stay until 2:00 p.m. with a late check out request
Of these, free internet is likely to have the most value. Given the usual price of hotel internet, you would get back the value of your $59 spend within a few nights, and you would have the other benefits on top. You would also receive 1,000 bonus Gold Passport points or a free drink on your third stay as a Platinum member.
This is clearly not a slam-dunk bargain that everyone should jump on. However, if you think you could use the Hyatt status, then the overall package is worth a look.