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What are the best hotel promos for November and December?

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Welcome to our regular round-up of the best hotel promotions currently running.

EDIT: the Marriott section contained an error which is now fixed, apologies for any confusion

All of the information in this article can also be found on our ‘Hotel Promos’ page which contains details of all of the current offers, together with links to our major articles on each hotel scheme.  However, a positive response from readers – especially our 14,500 email subscribers – means I am now running this monthly article as a handy summary of what is going on.

Because there isn’t much business travel around Christmas, I decided to delay the November edition of this article by two weeks and run it as a combined November / December round up.

Here are quick links to the registration pages you need for each offer – do it before you forget:

IHG’s Accelerate – register here – plus register here for a separate promo offering 3,000 points on InterContinental stays – plus register here for the new ‘4x’ promotion (these promos stack!)

Hilton’s Power Up – register here 

Marriott’s Unlock More – register here

Whilst we don’t discuss it below, I also recommend you look at this article on how I earned 7,000 Heathrow Rewards points for a one-night hotel stay via a Rocketmiles promotion.

InterContinental Le Grand Paris

Where should you credit your stays for the rest of 2019?

This is what you have to choose from:

IHG‘s Accelerate, which started on 1st September, has personalised targets so it is impossible to tell if yours are worth doing or not.  You have until 31st December to achieve them.

IHG has also launched two additional offers.  There are bonus points on InterContinental stays until 30th November.  More importantly, the new ‘4x’ offer will get you a 100% bonus on your 2nd stay, 200% on your 3rd stay and 300% on your 4th and subsequent stays after registration until 31st January.

Hilton‘s new Power Up offer is the easiest.  You get double base points per stay, until 5th January 2020, increasing to triple points if you still have – and pay with – the old Barclaycard Hilton Honors credit card.

Marriott‘s Unlock More offers 2,000 bonus points for two stays by 14th January.  Once you have achieved this, you will be given an additional personalised target to achieve by 14th January.

World of Hyatt’s Bonus Journeys is offering double base points (triple points on stays at Hyatt Place) on stays until 15th December.  This only kicks in from your second stay after registration.  Registration closed on 31st October, however.

Radisson Rewards and Le Club AccorHotels are not offering any global promotions.

IHG Rewards Club current promotion

IHG (Holiday Inn, Crowne Plaza, InterContinental, Indigo, Staybridge Suites etc):

IHG has got a little carried away and is currently running three global promotions.

First up, IHG is running another version of its Accelerate promotion. It runs from 1st September to 31st December.

Everyone has personalised targets which, in general, are the least generous we have seen for a while.  This is my article on the offer.  You can register on the IHG site here.

Here is a typical set of targets for this round:

25,200 bonus points for staying at four different brands

4,500 bonus points for booking one ‘points and cash’ redemption

2,800 bonus points for staying at three different hotels

8,000 bonus points for four stays using the corporate rate of the company I haven’t worked at for nine years and which very few hotels accept!

Take a look at what you’ve been offered.  You need to register for Acceleratethe link is here where you will also find your personalised targets.

The second promotion is focused on the InterContinental brand.

You will receive 3,000 bonus IHG Rewards Club points for every stay at an InterContinental hotel before 30th November.  You need to register for this offer here.

If you pay $200 to join the InterContinental Ambassador loyalty scheme, the bonus is doubled to 6,000 points per stay and you will receive an additional 10,000 points with your membership kit.  I discussed the pros and cons of this offer in this article.

The third promotion is called ‘4x’ and runs until 31st January.

You will receive 1,000 bonus points on your first stay registration, 2 x base points on your 2nd stay, 3 x base points on your 3rd stay and 4 x base points on your fourth and subsequent stays.

This could work out very well.  One reader told us he earned over 100,000 points for a four night stay at a mid-priced hotel, topped up by eating in every night and so expanding his bill!  Our full article on 4x is here and you can register here.

The IHG home page for bookings is here.

Hilton (Hampton, Conrad, Waldorf-Astoria etc):

Hilton has an Autumn offer called ‘Power Up’.  You can register here.  Our full article on Power Up is here.

You will earn DOUBLE Hilton Honors base points for every stay between 9th September and 5th January.  If you pay with the old Hilton Honors Barclaycard, no longer available to new applicants, you will receive triple base points.

For most brands, you will earn 10 base points per $1 spent, plus an additional 10 promotional points plus any status bonus.

Given that I value a Hilton Honors point at around 0.33p, you are getting a good return on your spending here.  20 points per $1 is an 8.5% rebate and that is before you add in any status bonus.

You need to register in advance via the Hilton website hereExisting bookings count, there is no minimum stay rule and all Hilton Honors hotels are taking part.

Hilton is still status matching too.  If you have status with another hotel programme, Hilton will match you to Gold for 90 days with a stays target for getting Gold or Diamond until 2021 – I explain how to do get a Hilton status match in this article.

The Hilton booking page is here.

Le Club AccorHotels current special offers

Le Club AccorHotels:

Le Club AccorHotels is not running a global promotion at the moment.

Current Marriott Bonvoy promotions

Marriott Bonvoy (Renaissance, The Ritz-Carlton, Sheraton, Westin, W, Aloft, St Regis, Luxury Collection, Moxy etc):

Marriott Bonvoy is running a promotion called ‘Unlock More’.

It is very simple but difficult to value because it is open ended.  You will receive 2,000 bonus Marriott Bonvoy points, which I would value at £10, when you complete two stays by 14th January.

Once you have done this, you will receive an additional personalised target.  This must be completed by 14th January.  It is obviously impossible to put a value on this as we don’t know what you will get.

Our full article on ‘Unlock More’ is hereYou can register here.

Radisson Rewards (Radisson Blu, Park Inn, Park Plaza, Radisson Red):

Radisson Rewards is not running a global promotion at present.

World of Hyatt promotions

World of Hyatt:

World of Hyatt, which covers Andaz, Grand Hyatt, Hyatt, Hyatt Centric, Hyatt House, Hyatt Place, Hyatt Regency, Park Hyatt, Thompson and many other brands, is offering Bonus Journeys.

This is a decent offer which is spoiled by two unnecessary rules:

registration closed on 31st October even though the offer runs until 31st December

the bonus only starts from your second stay after registration

You will receive double base points on each stay.  Stays at the lower end Hyatt Place brand will earn triple base points.

Our main Head for Points article on Bonus Journeys is here.  Registration is now closed.

And finally …..

PS.  If you booking a luxury hotel, remember that we can offer you exclusive additional benefits at Four Seasons, Mandarin Oriental, Peninsula and similar hotels.  Click here for details of our luxury hotel booking service in association with Bon Vivant / Virtuoso.  Feedback from readers who have used this service so far has been excellent and we have booked almost £1m of rooms so far.

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  1. Sandgrounder says:

    My Marriott Unlock More seems to offer 2k, As did yours in the original article. Is the 10k inside knowledge on the secret bonus?

    • Mine is also 2000 bonus points. Just checked the app.

      • Mine is also 2000 bonus for the first 2 stays

        • 2000 for me too. Think it is a typo. I would love if it was 10,000. Would have made it a decent bonus. My follow up “personalized” bonus is 15,000 after 6 more stays. Not particularly exciting but better than nothing…….

          Does anyone know how long it takes to get the 50 night Titanium gift option?

          • It is only 2000. No idea where the 10000 came from as I don’t think that’s even one of the unlocked options (FT has a list and most unlocked options aren’t great either). My unlocked option after the 2000 for 2 stays was another 2000 after another 4 stays then 2000 for every 2 stays after that, so pretty poor overall.

            The Titanium gift option should be visible about 3-4 days after your stay to reach 50 nights credits. You should get an email too so you know it’s there.

          • TGLoyalty says:

            Platinum after 50 titanium after 75?

          • Apologies, will fix.

          • Oops sorry, yes Platinum 50 and Titanium 75. Same timescale still applies for when each appears.

          • My follow-up bonus was 10,000 points after four stays.

  2. I applied to Hilton status match twice (IHG platinum) and heard absolutely nothing back, they just ignored it. Meant to chase it but was busy over the summer and forgot until now! Anyone else had this problem?

    • Yes same here. Not sure why but I have attributed it to me already being status matched previously. And it’s meant to be 1x per member lifetime.

  3. Russell Gowers says:

    Having a lovely time with Hilton at the moment. Base points for one night at Wembley 1500, plus a 100% Diamond bonus, 100% power up bonus, 100% credit card bonus, 1000 points MyWay bonus and 10k points “achievement” bonus for 40 nights! Total 17k for a single cheap night!

    • Me too, they game me a substantial ‘overdraft’ to facilitate reward stays next year after they massively messed up my account in the spring. However, earning points to clear my overdraft does not feel very exciting at the moment 🙂 I do a lot of one night stays so the example you quote explains why I uch prefer Hilton to the others, totally dislike Marriott where things usually start with second stays and they refuse to be upfront about what their personal offers will actually mean.

    • Neil Donoghue says:

      This was incredible! Very well done on that earning rate

    • The Savage Squirrel says:

      My last Hilton stay was £0 points stay. With various promos I’d forgotten about that seemed to be engaged by stay and spend, I earned 4100 points for buying one pint at the bar. :D.

  4. The IHG 25% bonus on bonus point packages remains elusive today again 🙂

  5. Slightly OT, but Hilton related.

    Thought it would be a good opportunity to just give a quick mini review of my trip at the weekend to Istanbul.

    Stayed 4 nights at the Conrad Istanbul Bosphorus. Modern purpose built hotel located half way up a hill overlooking the busy river port district of Besiktas. Large circular lobby reception area had the feeling of a cross between a Waldorf Astoria and an upscale Hilton like the Hilton Berlin. Slightly surprised (but reassured) to see bag scanner and metal detector on entrance manned by security staff.

    Hotel Staff were awesome, great attention to detail and sincerely cared about your stay living upto expectations. Gold status got me an upgrade to Twin Executive with Bhosphorus view (boys wknd away) up on the 14th floor right next to the Summit rooftop bar with spectacular 270° views, enjoyed cocktails there til the wee hours.

    Executive lounge is located on 1st floor next to the main restaurant where a magnificent buffet breakfast can be had with views of Istanbul. I repeatedly opted for omelette cooked to order and a mixed olive side salad. In addition to the alternative choice of breakfast, the Executive lounge was always well stocked, coffee/tea all day, sandwiches/cakes 4-6pm, hot evening appetizers 6-8pm, beer/wine seems to be available from 4pm-11pm, spirits for a shorter period.

    Was my first time in Istanbul, with a pop. of 15+MM always knew it’s going to be a busy place. Felt safe walking around at night, took the ferry across to Asia side twice to go exploring in Kadikoy/Moda. Plenty of bars/cafes to sample local beers, cheap cocktails and great value street food.

    Besiktas is getting a Metro station which I imagine when open will really help with accessibility. That said, taxis on crazy busy roads are approx 30TL to Taksim square, so pretty cheap at under £5. We paid 40TL to take us the the Hagia Sophia/Blue Mosque.

    Overall fantastic value 5* hotel (< £100/night) to retire back to away from the hustle & bustle of an intriguing historic place. Would definitely return. Stay accumulated 20k in points with the 3x power up promo on at the moment. If anyone wants further tips on the Conrad or Istanbul just email me (click on my username)

  6. southlondonphil says:

    Rob, not all IHG members will have got the Accelerate offer this time, as IHG appear to run them on a couple of different cycles – I had one which ran from July through October, so the 1st September one wasn’t made available to me, and no new offer appeared on 1st November.

    Given that the previous promotion – Accelerate2 – ran from May-August or July-October depending on which mailing cycle one was in (see here I’ll be interested to see if something opens up on 1st December.

    Marriott Unlock trigger bonus for the first two stays is 2,000 points, not 10,000. My additional offer was 6,000 for 3 more stays, since I already have 3 more sub-£100 nights lined up for November anyway it’s worked out okay. Plus Aloft at the Excel upgraded my £55 standard room to a suite at check-in on my last stay even though I’m but a lowly Silver 🙂

    • I was confused by my lack of Accelerate offers until I read this. I am also on July – October cycle it seems. Thanks for clearing it up!

  7. O/T: The Haymarket glory days of LNEE at Nectar appear to be over, three offers in succession have now required £5 minimum spend.

    • If you do get a generous offer, a first class single on the Highland Chieftain from Dunblane to Stirling on a Sunday (12:29) is exactly £5.

      The Chieftain is diverted via Fife most weekends between now and Christmas due to engineering works between Perth & Sunny D though.

      • Thanks Andrew, was only 500 points today but if I get another 1000 offer then I’ll do that as I save points for double value transfers to LNER.

    • Well it was good while it lasted. I ‘doubled up’ on my way home yesterday and got 3 nice bottles of red for the price of 3 journeys (2 booked, the remainder was cash).

  8. Doog1000 says:

    Slightly OT but re the Marriott spend £200 get £50 back Amex offer, my stay abroad posted just over £200 incl the forex fee but apparently Amex calculates the offer based on the charge excl their forex charge – no mention of this in tandcs of course – currently awaiting manager call back on this but worth pointing out

  9. Hi Rob!

    I thought this might be interesting for some people, IHG is offering Straight o Spire elite status:

    Plus 15,000 bonus points!

    • “allows full time employees of an Eligible Company”

      • Why is the definition of Eligable Company missing from the terms?

        • Probably because if you’re part of an Eligible Company you are made aware….you’ll notice the link posted includes the word ‘Amazon’ so you can guess at least one company!

          • I’ve seen elsewhere that “An Eligible Company is defined as a company that is specifically selected to participate in this promotion”

            Makes sense then that each company has its own URL.

            Wonder how well it is policied…

          • Company email address

          • I saw this ad in Holiday Inn in Lisbon, why would they put a big banner for everyone if this was specific to a company? that seems weird!

          • I guess that hotel gets a lot of business from an “eligible company”

          • Sina, you were probably in the hotel during a company conference.

          • BTW I was upgraded to Spire elite yesterday! although I do not work for Amazon!? 😛

            Guess it was not for specific people after all!

          • Or indeed was also for people who work for a major professional services firm ….

  10. I’m about to buy some Hilton points under their new offer, but as it isn’t an insignificant amount (£1000+) I wanted to check if this kind of spend would be covered by travel insurance? We want to use the points to book a hotel stay and just aren’t sure if we’d miss out completely on the money if for whatever reason we couldn’t get there. Does anyone have any experience?

    • No experience, but surely the insurance doesn’t care HOW you paid for a trip, just that you are going on said trip?

      • Your points are refundable until the last minute (special rules may apply at some resorts) so insurance is unlikely to be an issue. Not sure what would happen if you broke off half way.

        • Points are refundable so you’d get the points back. You wouldn’t get the cash you’d used to buy the points back.

        • Thanks Rob and E. I’m more concerned about if a flight were to be cancelled the day we check in – would travel insurance reimburse us what we paid for points?

  11. fivebobbill says:

    Hilton question, and probably a stupid one. As HH Gold, does a one category upgrade only come when you actually pay for a room, or can you also get one if you book the cheapest room with points?
    Have stayed in Hilton properties many times, but any time i use points I always book a “premier” reward with lounge access, so would never really see an upgrade even if it was policy. On this occasion however I am going to be in Dubai over the New Year, got a great points deal at Sheraton Grand for 31st Dec – 2nd Jan, but am now looking at Hilton for 2nd – 6th Jan. As you can imagine some of the cash prices are ridiculous the higher the room category you go, and to compound that, points redemptions for Exec rooms are coming in at even worse value, around 0.2 – 0.25p per point if you are lucky!
    So much so I’m actually tempted to book an entry level points redemption with a balcony and bring my own booze!
    Anyway, back to my original question, if I do book an entry level room on points, will an upgrade be possible “if available”?
    As I say, might be a silly question, but never struck me before to ask…

    • A Gold upgrade can include the ‘best’ room in the category booked. Read the small print.

      • fivebobbill says:

        Yes Rob I know that, but I mean’t worst case scenario on an entry level points booking just that, the room you booked, or may there be at the discretion of the hotel, the chance of a better one.
        I was specifically referring to a points booking too, not cash, does it matter?

        • fivebobbill says:

          To be clear, can you still be upgraded even if you pay on points?

          • I’ve always assumed that upgrades relate to status and not payment method (as is the case with free breakfast). The only time I haven’t been upgraded by at least one category is when I’ve stayed at the Manchester airport Hilton and they have been full (or so they said).

          • fivebobbill says:

            You see Anna, therein lies my dilemma, I’ve always (probably wrongly) assumed the opposite, that if you booked a particular room on points that’s the room you got, irrespective of status.
            On reflection probably a stupid assumption given that all your other benefits are honoured, but it’s something I’ve just gotten into my head over the years and wanted to see if someone could clarify one way or the other.

          • ankomonkey says:

            As HH Gold, I have been upgraded on points bookings at more than one Hilton. I would say my upgrade rate is over 50% on points bookings.

    • fivebobbill says:

      Thanks everyone, pity it took me nearly 10 years to work that one out 👀

      • fivebobbill says:

        Just to update, have now cancelled Conrad Dubai Exec Suite and booked a King Delux Studio at Hilton Dubai The Walk. Five nights, 1st – 6th Jan 240,000 points (inc free night), cash price an eye watering £1,843!!
        I make that almost 0.67p per point, which has got to be good value – the Conrad was giving me 0.23p.
        All we need now is a nice friendly person on the desk to upgrade us to the gin floor 😜
        Thanks again.

        • fivebobbill says:

          * 280,000

          • I’ve had upgrades to exec rooms before and no upgrade, and “upgrades” (told I’ve been upgraded but given the same room as booked) on points bookings.
            Overall it’s been a decent hit rate I have to say.

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