Bits: Radisson / Park Inn one-week sale launched, up to 50% discount on buying Hilton points

News in brief:

Radisson Dream Deals sale now on – one week only

Today, Radisson has launched another “Dream Deals” sale – there was a private pre-sale period last week which was exclusive to existing Club Carlson members.

The sale covers 350 Radisson Blu, Park Inn, Park Plaza, Quorvus Collection and Radisson RED hotels across the UK, Europe, Africa, Asia-Pacific and the Middle East. The home page for the sale is here.

The standard saving is 30% off Best Available Rate, although your actual saving will be lower as these are non-refundable rooms and you should really compare it to the previous non-refundable price.  You need to be a Club Carlson member (free to join) to get the full 30% discount – the non-member discount will be 25%.  The stay must be paid for in full at time of booking.

Even better, Club Carlson members get 2,500 bonus Goldpoints per stay.  We would value these at £7-£8 which makes a real extra impact on cheap one-night bookings.

These “Dream Deals” need to be booked before 25th June. You need to stay between 19th June and 3rd September.

These sale deals will also stack with standard Club Carlson promotions.  The current Triple Points offer runs until 30th June.

You can find out more about Dream Deals on the sale website here.

The giant fish tank below, by the way, is in the lobby of the Radisson Blu Berlin!

Radisson Blu berlin

Up to 50% discount when you buy Hilton Honors points

Hilton Honors is currently offering a 50% discount when you buy 5,000+ points – see this page and click through.  A 50% discount is equivalent to getting a 100% bonus.

(EDIT: despite what I was told, it seems that not everyone gets the 50% discount. You may be offered less. I wouldn’t bite at under 50%.)

This may or may not be a bargain as it depends how you redeem them.  At the top end, you can buy 80,000 Hilton points for $400.  That is 0.5 cents each.

Regular readers of Head for Points will know that I tend to value Hilton points at 0.33p each, which is roughly what you are paying here.

Five star Hilton, Conrad and Waldorf-Astoria hotels typically run to 80,000 points per night.  The Conrad New York, which I reviewed last week, has a cap of 80,000 points per night.  In this sale, if you got the full 50% discount, you would be paying $400 for 80,000 points.  Given that the Conrad New York sells for over $600 on many dates, it can represent a saving.  Similarly, buying points would often be a good deal at Conrad Tokyo which I reviewed here.

Hilton Honors is also a decent deal at cheaper point levels.   The Hampton by Hilton in Sheffield, for example is capped at 10,000 points per night.  At 0.5c per point you would be paying roughly £39 per night if you bought the points.  That is a 65% discount on the typical nightly rate of £100.  Hampton properties include free breakfast as well.

On the other hand, the Hilton Sheffield is 30,000 points per night.  Even with 50% off your points, you would be paying around £117.  Whilst a bit less than the typical £125 cash cost, it is not a great deal – especially as you would earn points and miles back on the cash rate.  One upside of a reward night, of course, is that it is cancellable without penalty.

At the most extreme, you could buy the Hilton Salalah resort in Oman, reviewed here, for £19 a night assuming a 50% discount.  That would be the rough cost of buying 5,000 points in this promotion.

(Remember that if you have Hilton elite status, and you get Silver status just for taking out their free credit card, you get 5 redemption nights for the price of 4.  That takes the Hilton Salalah resort down to £15 per night!)

What I can say is that, if you got the full 50% discount, you shouldn’t lose money buying Hilton Honors points at 0.5 cents.

If you just buying a handful of points to top off your account, the price per point doesn’t matter anyway.  If you a few thousand short of a redemption then this is a decent opportunity to top them up.

The link to buy is here.

The offer closes on 23rd June.

(Want to earn more hotel points?  Click here to see our complete list of promotions from the major hotel chains or use the ‘Hotel Promos’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)

Get 5,000 bonus miles with the HSBC Premier credit cards - World Elite is now 45,000 miles!
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  1. Sandgrounder says:

    I have two stays in 5k Hamptons coming up in August, four nights in Minsk and two rooms for three nights in Krakow. This is a well-timed opportunity to replenish my points and feel super-pleased with myself for saving hundreds off the cash price for my stays 🙂

    • Pangolin says:

      Sandgrounder, see my post below. The Minsk Hampton is excellent value on points (I effectively paid $25 for a $67.50 room by using a 50% discount on points purchase). The other benefit from paying with points is you avoid a surcharge when they convert to BYR at the front desk. Even if you tried paying with actual USD (or EUR) banknotes you can’t avoid the conversion charge – and it’s hard to check how much they’re gouging you as the official rate isn’t reliable. Paying by points avoids this issue.

  2. Michael says:

    The Radisson Blu Berlin is a beautiful central hotel – my go to central Berlin hotel, highly recommended though you can go into the fish tank via Sea World if you’re not staying.

    • Agree the Radd in Berlin is lovely. You can take the lift via Sea World which takes you up the fish tank, but you can’t go into the tank 🙂

  3. JamesB says:

    I have not quite got my head around the detailed implications of the new points and money option yet. How does the sliding scale of points and money generally compare with buying points at 50% discount/100% bonus? Are there any generalisations that can be drawn? Apart from buying points for an all points redemption to get a 5th night free, does buying points make any sense at all unless one has a very low points balance?

    • Pangolin says:

      At a 50% discount you can buy with a clear conscience, as this brings them to around the cash value most points bloggers value them at (TPG’s Brian Kelly values them at 0.6c but he factors in US only benefits relating to credit cards, etc.).

      At 40% or lower, I’d only buy to top up points needed for a specific upcoming booking.

      There’s still a lot of value to be found for redemptions if you’re willing to look at lower category properties (e.g. 5,000-10,000 per night).

  4. tim rooke says:

    Just checked my Hilton account and it’s only offering a 40% discount

  5. I agree with tim rooke, the Hilton Promotion is staggered and not everybody gets the 50% discount, some have lower discount. I was only offerd 35% as a Hilton Diamond since ten years, who occassionally buys between 5k and 10k pounds annually.

  6. If I am booking 2 rooms for 3 nights each, would I get the 5 for 4 deal?


    • No, its 5 “nights”.

    • JamesB says:

      You cannot, you need to book one room for five consecutive nights at thd same hotel to take up this offer. You need to be logged into your account which will show the cost of four nights spread over five nights giving you what appears to be a lower nightly rate (for example a 20000 points per night hotel will be displayed as 16000 points per night over five nights which is same as one night free).

  7. Kevin H says:

    I’ve only just joined the scheme – and am being offered just a 30% discount.

    • Clive says:

      What do you mean ‘just’? The discount is 30% for members. 🙂

      • Kevin H says:

        It’s “just” 30% (in my case) compared with the 50% discount Rob mentions in his lead article

        • Genghis says:

          That’s the trouble with a Bits article – two different articles and people getting confused over what people mean.

  8. totaltool says:

    My HH account won’t let me buy as I already bought the maximum amount on the previous promotion. Mrs totaltool recently opened an HH account and she is being offered 30% discount. This makes a point 0.7 cents which completely skews the calculation as to whether its worth buying. Still tempted to buy them because I recently stayed in Hilton hotels with very high cash rates and having points and using them made sense. Also planning to spend a lot of time in USA next year and having points keeps options open for 5 night stays. However as the last offer was in April/May and its only June is it likely that another offer, perhaps a better one, will come along before the end of the year. Does anyone know how often these have appeared historically?

    • JamesB says:

      Would not be unusual of Hilton to follow this soon after with 100% bonus open to everybody. Personally I would wait but it’s the chance you take.

      • Choons says:

        Good point. Didn’t they run one around Easter that was 100% bonus?

      • Pangolin says:

        100% bonus is the same as a 50% discount so that would be fine but clearly not everyone is getting offered the 50% discount on this current deal. I got the 100% bonus about a month ago.

        If you’re not going to the USA till next year then I think it’s fine to wait. These things come around quite often. Personally, I’d avoid buying at 30% unless you need it immediately to bag a good points redemption.

    • Genghis says:

      They must be some expensive stays vs points you’ve had. 0.7c = 0.55p and when Hilton usually have such great points back promos, it’s not unreasonable to get say 20-30% back in points. Taking 20% to err on the side of caution, that’s c. 0.66p per point as your comparison vs cash prices.

      • totaltool says:

        Due to visiting someone in hospital often at short notice I was “forced” to stay in the Hilton Strathclyde…very little elsewhere. Mid week as a business hotel it is often close to full and the only rooms available were often the higher end ones at £130 to £150 per night. However at 20k points it was a better deal to use points even if I was missing out on getting points back.

  9. Pangolin says:

    I’m only getting 40% discount. I was able to get a 50% discount in May, which I used to buy points for a weekend stay in Hampton Minsk. That was a category 1 hotel (5000 points) so a 2-night stay cost me $50. The cash rate would have been $135 with the HH member discount so a good deal – even though in the end I cancelled one of the nights and switched to Renaissance to kickstart the Megabonus promotion via Marriott.

    For anyone else interested in staying in Minsk/Belarus, I would recommend paying with points as for cash you get a nasty surcharge when they convert the USD rack rates to BYR (which is the only legal currency). There’s no way of avoiding this if you pay cash but if you pay in points you avoid the conversion charge.

  10. Genghis says:

    OT. @Alan. Just checked and my second batch of 10k IHG points have posted in my Creation account on my IHG white card. This was after I made a £1k purchase this month but around now will be 3 months since account opening anyway.

    • Genghis says:

      Sorry, a £1 purchase. What a waste of a £1k purchase that would be!

      • EwanG says:

        As a data point I’m still waiting for the bonus points for my IHG white card. I did call Creation last Thursday to chase them up. It is almost three months since I met the £200 threshold for the bonus points. The t&cs say they should be added within 8 weeks.

        Unlike Genghis I have not put any additional spend on the card and so no statement generated – perhaps this is why the bonus points are not on automatically.

        • Paulm says:

          Another data point, mine have appeared in the last few days, I am spending on the card. Not sure if it had anything to do with me contacting creation as they have ignored my secure message!

      • Haha I did slightly wonder, I thought I was being generous doing a £14 tx 😉 (used to love the self-checkout tills in Woolies in Oz that let you do split transactions – I’d happily put different amounts to different cards!)

        • Genghis says:

          £1 Amazon account top up! 🙂

        • Haha yep that’ll do it – I had it linked to my Curve so just chucked a Tesco spend on, will cope with the loss of 13 extra IHG points I would have got on the Black card tho 😉

        • Genghis says:

          “Every little helps!”

    • Gareth says:

      I did the same small purchase on the white card and the points are now visible.

    • Grimz says:

      Genghis, can you help OT.
      My Partner had the BAPP card and when she triggered the companion voucher I downgraded to the blue card – can she refer me for the BAPP and get the 9k?
      When should she move back up to the BAPP card before the end of year 1 or the start of year 2 to work on the voucher for year 2?

      • Genghis says:

        Yes, your partner can refer you. The referral link will be for the BA Blue card but once you click on it just select the BAPP at the bottom. They’ll get 9k avios

        I don’t really chop and change between BAPP and BA Blue. @Polly might be able to help out properly. I believe you can spend £9999 on the BA Blue, upgrade, spend £1 and the voucher on the BAPP (2 year validity) will trigger. I’d much rather churn the card for sign up bonuses and so don’t mind paying the fee. Amex have to make some money from me!

    • Thanks, Genghis – that prompted me to check my account too! I made a £14 Tesco purchase just in case it was necessary and indeed 10,014 points are now showing as pending on my White card 🙂 Now if only (once they post) they would offer lots of deals to keep it like Barclaycard used to with the free card for me previously!

  11. We’ve got the full 50% but is it more difficult to get an upgrade if paying by points rather than paying with money? Plus there’s always the possibility of a devaluation to factor into account….

    • You can never tell …. depends on many factors including what is available when you arrive.

    • Genghis says:

      I’m not sure it matters. My last year of Hilton stays as Diamond:
      – DT Manchester. To Exec room but no difference really. Paid cash.
      – WA Shanghai. Upgrade to a riverside room (great view). 1 night HH voucher, 1 night cash
      – Conrad HK. Upgrade to harbour view suite (fantastic). 1 night HH voucher. 2 nights cash
      – Conrad Singapore. No discernible upgrade. P&M
      – Conrad Bali. Ocean view suite upgrade. Paid cash
      – DT KL. Suite upgrade. All points.

      • Pangolin says:

        Genghis/Alan, would you say that Diamond is worth going for over Gold (which I get by default with the Amex Plat) given that I have Plat status in SPG/MR?

        • Genghis says:

          It all depends how often you stay in Hiltons and the kind of stays you do. I would never hit Diamond from normal stays but it has come in really handy on recent leisure trips staying at nice hotels – upgrades, free brekkie in lounge, lounge access, free food and booze etc. It has meant we have chosen Hilton brand hotels over other brands so I guess the loyalty aspect is working.

          Take my recent Conrad Bali stay. Without Diamond (but Gold) I’d have had to have had breakfast in the main restaurant (along with loads of Chinese tour groups – tried it one day and it was awful), wouldn’t have got an ocean view suite upgrade, wouldn’t have got free afternoon tea, wouldn’t have got evening cocktails, wouldn’t have got access to the Conrad Suites pool, wouldn’t have got access to the spa infinity pool etc. In summary, I think being Diamond significantly enhanced our week long stay

          My status expires in 2018 and if a status match is running, I’d go for it again if it’s not too bothersome and can fit into my travel plans.

          For work stays I’m indifferent re the aforementioned benefits since I’m by myself and on expenses. And if you stay lots in Hamptons, the benefits received might be limited (e.g. no lounge, brekkie free anyway)

        • Pangolin says:

          Genghis, you’re a legend. Thanks a lot for getting back to me so soon and with such helpful info.

          So it sounds like it could be worth shooting for the status match (I guess that’s what you did originally). I’m pretty sure that I couldn’t maintain Diamond in the long term as Hilton is generally my plan B after MR/SPG, and I also travel at my own expense (freelancer) so maintaining Plat in the MR/SPG program is tough enough as it is!

          I do really value lounge access though – probably the #1 thing I go for (along with the extra breakfast options that come with it) and it’s nice to have that guaranteed. I’d even put it above suite upgrades as most of stays are solo (and a suite is only a big deal if my partner is with me).
          I also like travelling in off the beaten path type places such as Central Asia and Eastern Europe where the SPG footprint is limited, to say the least.

          I know exactly what you mean about Chinese tour groups! I spent 6 months in China and nothing would persuade me to hit an open buffet restaurant in a Chinese hotel, given that sneezing and coughing all over the food seems like standard practice.

          Sounds like Conrad is an excellent choice when it comes to HH. I guess we’ll have to wait and see what happens to the Plat qualification requirements once the MR and SPG programs finally merge. If they make it as strict as the current MR requirements then I can kiss Plat goodbye so I might then switch HH to my Plan A.

          Thanks again.

        • I must say the nice thing about Diamond is know that you’ll definitely get into the lounge regardless of any upgrade.

          I’ve also found over the years that the Diamond Desk were really good at sorting out post-stay issues, although I find that emails to them now don’t seem to get through and I’ve resorted to Twitter instead.

          Over the years I’ve had superb treatment as Diamond – not sure I’ll be able to maintain it next year but will miss it (Gold is still great but in many properties I did notice a difference with Diamond). A friend has Lifetime Diamond, I’m nowhere near earning that though!! Wish there was an earning route to Diamond with the Hilton Visa (rather than just Gold)

        • I have just done a couple of mattress runs to ensure my Diamond match runs to 3/19. Relatively safe bet I will come out on top although we have zero plans beyond 2/18.

    • Don’t think it makes a difference – I’ve had lots of fantastic upgrades on points (and on cheap cash) stays. I think one of the biggest factors that helps (above the hotel being very quiet) is if it is just a one-night stay – they obviously are much happier to tie up an upgraded room for one night. Also if you’re not happy with the room you’re given then go back to reception and ask for another! (I learnt that tip from my Mum as a child :D)

  12. Thanks Rob, mine was only 30%, but I’d booked a 4 night stay on points plus cash, which is now a cheaper five night points stay, so worked for me this time…

  13. Paulm says:

    OT, might interest some. Tesco offering £50 gift card for taking out their premium credit card.

  14. Slightly OT. Completed my 3 nights in Oslo and bagged 41,615 points during the June promo. Nearly worth a nights stay at some properties. Thanks Rob for posting all these details.