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. Expedia can often book flights that the airline’s website can’t – especially non-Europe Expedia versions. For European bookings amex travel usually works but I manage to book lots of Asian flights on mainstream airlines that don’t seem to work elsewhere using Australian Expedia (which I pay with my Australian CCs). Expedia is probably more trustable than dodgy-looking OTAs even if they are £1 more

  2. Yes, that seems to be the only time I use Expedia – they are a reputable OTA operating in lots of points of sale so very handy for Asia or US tickets (even from London, the availability can be wildly different buying in the US, so always worth a check if your ticket is looking particularly expensive, though you do have to pay in $ of course)

  3. Apparently the registration for free gold membership is still available till early Dec by searching the direct link via Google… (hint: hsbc uk expedia gold)
    Also, if you redeem points against +VIP hotels, you get double of redemption value.

    • Has anyone using this link with hsbc premier actually been upgraded to +gold though? Used it last week and still showing as +blue.

      • Did it today but I didn’t have an existing Expedia account. Set a new one up and it went straight to gold+

  4. Look at Expedia’s sister (or is it daughter?) instead. Orbitz run a better scheme where I’ve saved hundreds of $$$ over the years redeeming orbit’z awards for hotels.

  5. Currently in NZ, and found Expedia to have a great selection of NZ hotels, motels and car rentals, with the rates not available elsewhere. I don’t usually like to use 3rd party sites, but here in NZ, it has made booking travel a lot easier.

  6. HSBC Premier seems to be getting less attractive, losing the £20 Uber vouchers and now losing Expedia gold, does anyone know if they are looking to add new benefits?

  7. So I’ve built up a decent number on this, saving up to redeem it on a VIP hotel one day to recieve 2x.
    Few tips (mentioned already), book via the app to earn 2x and also there are 10% off codes (non major chains) from work’s discount site. Couple with Nectar points, who regularly run double / bonus points.
    Some alternatives are CheapTickets.com (Expedia owned) who have 16% off code running 95% of the time (non major chain), works out cheaper even when taking into account the Expedia points / nectar.
    Also Booking.com £15×2=£30 refer a friend is good value…
    I guess I’m not really in to major chain game so have always used independent /smaller chain hotels.

  8. Shoestring says:

    O/T Nectar – can anybody good on Nectar points kindly tell me good ways to redeem them? I can only usefully see 0.5p/ point on Sainsburys (don’t often use them) and Ebay. Got 45K burning a hole 🙂

    • I don’t know if it’s good… But you can convert 500 points into £2.50 Expedia voucher which is what I’ll likely do.

      • Lady London says:

        Did see a promotion a while back where you could have got £5 for that. No idea if it’ll repeat.

    • We just burned our £200 worth of Necter points on petrol and used the money saved on buying the fuel to pay for flights on EasyJet to Iceland – easier than trying to redeem with different partners.

      • Shoestring says:

        Would that be petrol @Sainsburys pfs? How do you get petrol or Nector vouchers? Or can they see the points on your Nectar card? Is that 0.5p/ point as well?

        • Yes you can redeem at Sainsbury’s petrol the same as in store – just use your nectar card and ask to redeem xx amount. Has to be your local Sainsbury’s where you have used your nectar card before. If not a Sainsbury’s you have used before then you need to buy something in store and wait 24 hrs. We tried to redeem one time we were down south and it wouldn’t let us. Didn’t know that rule but it is in the t&cs. A good security rule.

        • Forgot to say it’s 0.5p the same. We don’t buy on eBay, eat at pizza express etc so this was the best way for us to get the money back and use elsewhere.

        • Shoestring says:

          ah thanks. Nearest one with a pfs is some way away & I didn’t use N card there before, so useful to know that rule

    • eBay occasionally has a deal where they refund 50% of your nectar points. Works out at 1p per point I guess if you buy ever decreasingly cheaper items!

      • They do, but targeted. I sat on a large pile of Nectar points for a couple of years but never got targeted a 2nd time for this so cleared them out on some train tickets.

        • Shoestring says:

          I looked this up & it’s also usually strictly limited in terms of max points you can get the 50% refund on, not much good at all for my Ebay Carrera bike purchase if I only get 50% back on 5000 points

        • +1. Only 0.5p / point but still a decent c.200% profit on the life insurance. Points only get value when you redeem them.

    • Pizza Express is still better (marginally), not sure if the Caffe Nero deals are still going which are also better. Only marginal though.

      • TGLoyalty says:

        Discounted Cafe Nero deals about once every 6 months can get you 1p/point especially if it’s one of the fraps etc

        • Shoestring says:

          no time for either but thx for suggestions

        • TGLoyalty says:

          Just checked it’s on right now for another 3 days. Just picked up 10 drinks for £1.75 of points each.

        • Shoestring says:

          Unfortunately they decided to not open an outlet in my village! 🙂

        • The Caffe Nero deal you’re talking about is permanent (unless they have made an unpublicised change). It’s only the promotion thereof that is occasional.

        • TGLoyalty says:

          You’re right the discounted deal I used last time was 200 points per coffee but I’d used all 10 and was now using hard cash.

    • Sainsbury’s usually have a double up promotion in the run up to Xmas. Change £20 of Nectar Points for a £40 voucher for money off “Taste the Difference” Wines (and other items such as kitchenware). And if you have more than one regular store where your card is recognised, I believe you can get multiple vouchers. All my Nectar Points come from buying train tickets from First Transpennine Express, and I only visit Sainsbury’s to redeem them.

  9. I find the eBookers scheme more generous and as an Expedia company they have the same prices. Might be worth looking into this.

    People rave about the hotels.com scheme but the occasional booker will get more from ebookers. The big plus is that ebookers have regular hotel discount codes (usually up to 13%) and you can still earn points and get the discount.

    • You can stop Hotels.com nights from expiring by making and throwing away a cheap booking.

      I had 1.8 Rewards Nights which I wanted to use on an upcoming trip. A two night stay in a Hostel in Liverpool changed this to two Reward Nights for a cost of £20.

      (And no, I didn’t stay at the hostel!)

      You will find hostel bookings if you search for a room for one (you will find a bed in a room for a dozen!)

      • £5 in Bangladesh I find ….

        Don’t always credit though if you are reported as a no show.

        • rams1981 says:

          Some kind person recommended me this place on here before – best £2.33 i’ve Spent in a while

          Vibol Happy House – Phnom Penh

  10. I used to use Expedia & Hotels.com until I found izendirect.com – membership required but they sell the rooms at wholesale price so aren’t subject to the price parity agreements the others must follow. Rooms are usually 10-20% and as much as 70% cheaper than Expedia, and it’s especially good for higher level rooms eg suite/breakfast included etc. Definitely recommended for anyone who spends more and a couple of grand a year on hotels and possibly worth HFP looking into!

  11. I used to use Expedia when Avios.com were offering good points per £. Expedia points & nectar points too!! Plus your guests could pay for their own room at the hotel – awesome ????

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

  13. 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.

  14. 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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