Starwood Preferred Guest allows members to redeem Starpoints for hotel rooms, transfer points to partner airlines or buy flights directly.
With all this choice, the question is which is best?
You can redeem Starpoints for free hotel nights from as little as 3,000 points per night, and as much as 30,000 to 35,000 points for luxury rooms. If you click on each category on the left of the screen below, you can see how many options there are for that redemption rate.
In addition, if you use Starpoints to book a five night stay, you get the fifth night FREE. This could make a huge difference if you are booking one of the luxury hotels.
Here are a few examples, based on a one night stay in the cheapest room available, arriving 26th May 2017.
|Hotel||Cash Cost||Starpoints required for one night||Value of each Starpoint|
|The Westin Soma Golf Resort and Spa||£65||2,000||0.0325|
|The St. Regis Moscow Nikolskaya||£209||10,000||0.0209|
|The Phoenician, A Luxury Collection Resort, Scottsdale||£143||20,000||0.00715|
|The W Maldives||£706||30,000||0.0235|
Five nights in the W Maldives includes one free night and costs a maximum of 140,000 points. This saves over £3,500 on the cash price for the nights. Now that is something worth saving your points for!
Starwood Preferred Guest also offers the flexibility to redeem points directly for flights with over 150 airlines with NO blackout dates. The ticket price includes taxes and fees, but you may have to pay extra for baggage. This is a great feature, as converting points into airmile points does not result in free flights. You still have to pay those ridiculously expensive taxes.
Here’s how these options compare for value.
|Flight value||Starpoints||Max value per Starpoint|
|Up to $150||10,000||0.015|
Your final option is to transfer your Starpoints to over 30 major airline frequent flyer programmes. Starpoints are transferred on a 1:1 basis, and for every 20,000 points you transfer, you will earn a bonus of 5,000 miles. Partners include British Airways, Miles and More, Virgin and American Airlines.
140,000 points transferred would earn you 140,000 airmiles, plus an additional 25,000 bonus miles. This would be enough to buy First class, peak flights to Bermuda for a cost of 160,000 points plus £552.02 in fees. Those same return flights departing in October cost £5560.40 including taxes and fees. Using airmiles saves you a whopping £5008.38 which is a rate of 0.031p per mile, and you will still have 5,000 left.
If you think you might like to transfer points and redeem for flights, I recommend keeping the Starpoints in your account until you have actually found flight redemptions. How much each point is worth really depends on the amount you save when it comes to book and redemptions are not always easy to come by.
Which is best
On the basis of these figures however, transferring points to your airline partner and then using them to book reward flights works out the best option. In second place is redemptions for swanky hotels and in last place is using them to pay for flights directly.
Have your say?
Have you ever used your Starpoints to buy flights or transfer to an airline partner and if so what was your experience? I would love to know.