Is Expedia’s loyalty scheme worth a look?

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This is our review of the Expedia Rewards loyalty scheme.

Expedia introduced its loyalty scheme Expedia Rewards (originally called Expedia+) to the UK market a couple of years ago.

It has not set the world on fire.  In fact, you may not even know it exists.  Whilst you can collect points on flights and car rentals as well as hotel stays, the actual rewards still aren’t that great despite some recent changes.

Is Expedia+ loyalty scheme worth joining?

What is Expedia Rewards?

There are three tier levels: +blue, +silver (£5,000 spend or 7 hotel nights of £50+) and +gold (£10,000 spend or 15 hotel nights of £50+).  You move through the status level based on your £ spending or room nights, not the number of points you earn.

Once you have earned +silver or +gold status, your benefits extend from the day that you qualify through the next calendar year to 28th February of the following year.

For example, if you achieve +silver in June 2019 you would keep your status for the rest of 2019, all of 2020 and until 28th February 2021.

How do I earn Expedia Rewards points?

You earn 2 points per £1 spent on hotels, flight and hotel packages, excursions and most car hire

You earn 1 point per £5 spent on flights

You can earn points for ALL travel booked through your Expedia account, irrespective of whether you travel yourself

You can collect double points when you book with the mobile app

You cannot collect points on insurance or train bookings.

Status members get an additional points bonus:

+silver members get a 10% point bonus

+gold members get a 30% bonus.

Status members also get special benefits at selected hotels. +gold members receive room upgrades at selected hotels and flexible check-in and check-out times.

What can I do with my points?

Not much.  This is a revenue-based redemption programme.

You can redeem as few or as many points as you want against your next hotel, package or car hire booking.  You cannot redeem your points against a flight-only booking.

The rate is weak.  700 points gets you £5 off.  The rate is the same irrespective of whether you redeem 7 points or 7000.

This is pretty underwhelming. You would need to spend £1,750 on hotels to get £25 back which is a rebate of a little under 1.5%.

Does Expedia Rewards stop me earning air miles and hotel points?

No, with airlines.  You will always earn airline miles and status points when you book flights via Expedia.  It makes no difference to booking directly via the airline.  On the downside, Expedia adds booking fees which usually makes it more expensive than a direct booking unless the airline has given Expedia a special deal.

Yes, with hotels.  None of the major hotel loyalty schemes let you earn hotel points or elite night credit if you book through an online travel agent such as Expedia.  Most chains will also not respect your elite benefits.

Expedia Rewards review

Is Expedia Rewards worth joining?

The most attractive part of the scheme may be the hotel benefits, but these are only valid at a selection of hotels branded +VIP.  The majority of your stays won’t get you any additional benefits.

Bearing in mind that Hotels.com and Expedia share the same ownership, it is a bit surprising that Expedia+ isn’t anywhere near as generous as Hotels.com Rewards which we love.  This article explains why we like Hotels.com Rewards.

Despite this loyalty scheme not being very attractive, it is obviously still more rewarding than no loyalty scheme at all so you might as well take the points if you are making a booking.  There is now no minimum redemption – I have just 36 points and the website says I can save 26p on my next bookings.

Does Expedia Rewards work alongside Nectar?

Yes, you still earn Nectar points with your Expedia bookings as well as earning Expedia Rewards points.  As a reminder, you earn:

  • 1,000 Nectar points (worth £5) on flight+hotel or flight+car packages
  • 200 Nectar points (worth £1) on flights, hotels and car hire

There are often bonuses available which make the Nectar option more interesting.  Take a look at the Nectar app or website before booking.

You can find out more about Expedia Rewards here.

PS.  It is worth noting that HSBC Premier is apparently withdrawing the benefit of Expedia Rewards gold level membership which currently comes with either the free or paid version of the HSBC Premier Mastercard.

(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.)

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Comments

  1. OT seeing as no bits today has anyone seen their SPG Amex points arrive in their accounts as yet?

  2. Expedia gives you points even when using discount codes which hotels.com doesn’t. You can often get 10% off in discount codes, and you will therefore not get any rewards on Hotels.com, but Expedia will still give you points and nectar points on top + potential VIP treatment on some hotels.

  3. HSBC still said free 12 month Expedia +Gold on the free Premier Card, just not on the paid version (may just said addition benefits??)

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