This is our review of the Expedia Rewards loyalty scheme.
Expedia introduced its loyalty scheme Expedia Rewards (originally called Expedia+) to the UK market several 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 various changes since the launch.
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 2020 you would keep your status for the rest of 2020, all of 2021 and until 28th February 2022.
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. 140 points gets you £1 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%. You’d need to spend £700 on flights to get just £1 back!
Get double points via the mobile app obviously makes a substantial difference. Your rebate on hotels would increase to 3%.
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. Hotels are also told not to honour your elite benefits although some may do so unofficially.
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 Access. The majority of your stays won’t get you any additional goodies.
Bearing in mind that Hotels.com and Expedia share the same ownership, it is a bit surprising that Expedia Rewards 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 no minimum redemption – I have just 36 points and the website says I can save 26p on my next booking!
(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.)