Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Your Hotels.com Rewards free nights and stamps have been extended

Links on Head for Points may pay us an affiliate commission. A list of partners is here.

Whilst I haven’t received an email yet, Hotels.com Rewards has put an announcement on its website to say that free night credits, or ‘stamps’ as they are now called, and ‘banked’ free nights have been extended.

If you go to the Hotels.com Rewards page on the website here and look at your statement, you will see this message:

“(Due to COVID-19 we will be extending nights and reward* nights due to expire between April 2020 and September 2020 by 6 months. Please allow up to a few weeks for this to reflect in your account).”

My current free night is due to expire on 27th September 2020 and is not yet showing as extended, so it seems that it really will take a few weeks to show.

This is one less thing to worry about.

EDIT:  A reader with Hotels.com Rewards status sent me a different email he received!  He was told:

  • We have paused the expiration of any collected nights or reward1 nights due to expire between 1 Apr 2020 and 31 Dec 2020.
  • We’ll extend all Gold and Silver memberships that are up for renewal between 1 Feb 2020 – 31 Jan 2021 for an additional year.
  • Plus, we’re giving you more time to qualify for Gold or Silver membership. We’ll assess nights stayed in the previous 24 months to see whether you qualify for the next level of membership by your new renewal date.

It isn’t clear which version is accurate, but in any event you will definitely have more time to use any outstanding free nights.

Hotels.com Rewards extends free night vouchers

How does Hotels.com Rewards work?

This is a good excuse for a reminder of why we rate Hotels.com Rewards highly.

It is a pleasingly simple scheme.  For every 10 nights you stay, you receive a free night.  The value of the free night is the average of the ex-tax price of those ten nights.

There is no time limit to how long it takes to earn your free night, as long as you do at least one stay in every 12 month period.  The coronavirus extension means that you will effectively be allowed a gap of up to 18 months at the moment.

The only ‘snag’ is that you don’t get any change when you spend your free night, so you need to use it on a fairly expensive stay.  You will also not collect new Hotels.com Rewards credits on your reward stay.

Some Head for Points readers find Hotels.com Rewards BETTER than a standard hotel loyalty scheme.   Hotels.com has more hotels than every major hotel brand PUT TOGETHER.  You never have to compromise on location or hotel quality, as you often do if you are tied to Hilton, IHG etc.  You also get rewarded for ALL of your stays, even at independent unbranded properties.

The downside is that you don’t earn any hotel loyalty points or status benefits – no upgrades, no late check-out, no free breakfast – on your stays.

You can find out more about Hotels.com Rewards on its website here.

(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.)

Comments (24)

  • Sam says:

    Hi all, I currently have 7 nights out of 10, I need to do a stay before Oct 2020 otherwise will lose the 7 nights accrued so far, if I just book anywhere, (but not actually stay as have no hols plans currently), is that enough so I don’t lose my existing 7 nights? Thanks!

    • Tony says:

      Yes, should work fine. I did something similar with a cheap stay (£15) at a hotel in India. The stay was credited as if I’d stayed and extended my existing stays timeline.
      You should wait until closer to the time to see if they extend the qualifying period anyway.

    • Rob says:

      Yes, book a £3 hostel in Delhi for later this week and it should post OK, giving you a full 12 month reset.

  • Tommy says:

    I received the email yesterday and the policy is actually better than what they have put on the website.

    Your Hotels.com Rewards membership
    We have paused the expiration of any collected nights or reward1 nights due to expire between 1 Apr 2020 and 31 Dec 2020.
    We’ll extend all Gold and Silver memberships that are up for renewal between 1 Feb 2020 – 31 Jan 2021 for an additional year.
    Plus, we’re giving you more time to qualify for Gold or Silver membership. We’ll assess nights stayed in the previous 24 months to see whether you qualify for the next level of membership by your new renewal date.

  • Lumma says:

    “The only ‘snag’ is that you don’t get any change when you spend your free night, so you need to use it on a fairly expensive stay.”

    To be honest, I’d say I use the free night to stay somewhere more expensive than usual, so this has never been an issue

    • Graeme says:

      I do the same – use it for something better than you’d normally get. The ethos of this site, I’d say!

    • Scandinavian traveler says:

      And the value of the free night is equal to the average price paid for the 10 nights, so actually you’ll just need to stay at a place with a price equal to or higher than for the 10 nights stayed to obtain the voucher…

    • Genghis says:

      Equally, ideally you don’t want to shoot over the amount of the free night as there’s no effective 10% back on the delta.

  • Gavin says:

    I was waiting for this to be extended, I think my night has approx £100 of value and expires in July. My last piece of Covid19 travel admin is sorted now.

  • Concerto says:

    Sure hope the proposed changes to Hotels.com Rewards don’t go ahead in the meantime.

    I was going to say, what they are offering here is similar to what Air France Flying Blue have offered. But the major difference is that Hotels.com are actually offering a 24 month requalifying period, instead of just resetting your nights to zero at the end of your qualification year.

  • Roberto says:

    Has anybody successfully cancelled and been refunded on a “free” night booking?

    I used mine for a night at the LHR Sofitel for the night before a flight that now looks unlikely to go ahead. The booking shows as non-cancelable on thier app with no refunds allowed.

    TIA

    • Simon says:

      Yes. On the phone.

      • Roberto says:

        Thanks simon, I will wait nearer the time and follow your lead. I presume the free night appeared back into your account and any money you paid was returned to your card?

        • Liz says:

          I cancelled my reward night online and it was returned to my account immediately.

    • Graeme says:

      Yes, online. Everything returned immediately.

  • Mike says:

    I’d booked three sets of stays in New York and Boston for May (back in January), as I was worried by Corona, I booked all the stays as refundable and used PayPal for payment. When I cancelled, they refunded one of them and said they had difficulties refunding the others which doesn’t make sense as the first was fine. Their call centre said they would refund the other two within a week which they didn’t manage and the call centre became uncontactable. I ended up raising a dispute with PayPal and it all got sorted.

    I would suggest caution with hotels.com whilst the current issues are ongoing.

  • WZ says:

    Has anyone else had problems with hotels.com reservation cancellations? I am using their Gold contact details trying to get them to cancel a reservation and refund for over a month and they keep saying they can’t get hold of the hotel therefore I’m not entitled to any refund. I decided to ring the hotel myself yesterday and got straight through which makes me feel like hotels.com are just messing me around. Unfortunately the hotel IS still open (in St Petersburg) and as it was a non refundable rate so I dont know what to do next. The booking is in 2 weeks. Do I ring the hotel myself and cancel and try to get a refund? Do I ask hotels.com to try again? Is there any charge back option if the U.K. government is not allowing people to travel or is travel insurnace the only fall back option I have? Either way pretty disappointed with Gold service from Hotels.com

    • Guy says:

      @WZ I’ve had nothing but a positive experience with my bookings;

      We had ~£6500 of hotels.com booking in May, paid for with a mixture of reward nights and cash; all non refundable rates.

      Hotels.com have allowed refunds on all of these reservations, my reward nights have appeared back (the cash, admittedly has yet to hit the bank, but I’m sure it will arrive!)

      I’d encourage you to persist, in my experience they have been very good in this situation…..