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Starwood Preferred Guest has joined the ranks of hotel chains offering an official, published status challenge (although it has been run more informally before); it will run throughout 2017. You can reach the SPG landing page by clicking on the following image:
In order to be eligible, you need to have elite status with a competitor, although SPG haven’t specified which chains they will consider. You will also be disqualified if you have enjoyed status with SPG within the last 5 years. If you believe that you qualify, you can e-mail SPG using the link provided on the promotion page.
If accepted, you will be asked to choose a three-month window. These will be calendar months – i.e. May, June and July 2017. I believe that you can request BOTH a Gold challenge and a Platinum challenge.
In order to earn Gold status, you must stay nine nights during your chosen three-month period. In order to earn Platinum status, you must stay eighteen nights. Reward stays do not count; these must be paid nights. If you complete the requirements of your challenge, your earned status will be valid until 28 February, 2019.
If you are interested in the fine print, you can read the terms and conditions here.
Considering that the standard method for reaching Gold status requires 10 “stays” in a year (reward or paid) and Platinum status with 25 stays (reward or paid), this status challenge will be most attractive to those who will be spending several consecutive nights in the same SPG hotel.
SPG Gold doesn’t really provide much value on its own. It is actually most attractive if you typically stay at Marriott properties. Due to status linking from the merger, you would also receive Gold status with Marriott Rewards, which comes with substantially more benefits such as free breakfast and lounge access.
This status challenge certainly isn’t easy, but it definitely might work for some… I love travel hacking Starwood Preferred Guest’s Best Rate Guarantee policy – such paid stays would definitely qualify for this status challenge