Club Carlson, the loyalty scheme covering Radisson, Park Plaza and Park Inn amongst other brands, has launched a promotion for a 30% bonus when you purchase points (scroll down to the Carlson logo and click through). It runs until October 31st.
This is not hugely exciting, to be honest, given that we have seen 50% and 75% bonuses over the past year or so.
However, as 30% is the only offer on the table, we should consider it on its own merits.
You need to buy at least 10,000 points to get the 30% bonus
The annual cap on purchases is 40,000 points
Points are sold at a flat rate of $7 per 1,000
On this basis, you are effectively paying $5.38 per 1,000 points. That is roughly £3.33 per 1,000 points.
I tend to value my Carlson points at 0.5p each because I usually redeem them in London for expensive properties. On this basis, it is possible that you could save some money by buying points instead of booking a room for cash.
The snag with Carlson is that their portfolio is quite varied. You will find lots of Radisson properties in Scandinavia, for example. London also has a number of impressive Radisson and upmarket Park Plaza hotels. There are also quite a few budget Park Inn hotels in the UK.
A 5-star London property requiring 50,000 points would be £167 if you bought those points during this promotion. That could represent a saving. At the other end of the scale, some Park Inn hotels are only 9,000 points which would be £30.
Before you buy, though, remember that Club Carlson is also an American Express Membership Rewards partner. As I wrote in this article, it is potentially their most generous partner at 3 Carlson points for every 1 Amex point you transfer. Instead of paying £3.33 for 1,000 points, you could transfer 333 Amex points instead and effectively get 1p per Amex point of value.