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Joe has recently written about stacking various Hilton Honors promotions together to earn a pretty substantial rebate. The latest version covered a period when the Avios e-store was offering double Avios for a weekend…
But how does it really work in practice? Sometimes we bloggers must deal in the hypothetical – as otherwise we wouldn’t be giving readers the opportunity to take advantage themselves. But reality often doesn’t quite match the desktop study and nobody is likely to require five weekend stays at the Doubletree Heathrow. So whilst Joe was safely hidden away from the snow inside InsideFlyer Towers, I decided to actually get out there and do some Hilton Honors stays…
Four Paid Stays
- Doubletree Heathrow – £37 (thanks to a Best Rate Guarantee claim)
- Hampton Amsterdam Airport – £67 (another BRG claim and converted to £)
- Hampton Amsterdam Arena – £66 (you guessed it… BRG… converted to £)
- Doubletree Excel Centre London – £82 (a rare BRG failure, but I wanted to be near the O2 Arena and City Airport and my go-to Aloft was substantially more expensive)
So, for my four stays I paid a total of £252.
Points Unlimited Promotion
You can read about the promotion here. For each stay until 30 April, 2018, members earn 2,000 bonus Points. Members receive an additional 10,000 Point bonus for their fifth stay.
I earned 8,000 bonus points. I know that I’ll squeeze in a fifth stay at some point, so we can be generous and apply 4/5 of that additional 10,000 point bonus to these four stays.
Therefore, I earned 16,000 bonus points worth maybe £60-65.
Standard Points Earning
I am “merely” a Gold level member with Hilton Honors, thanks to this Gold fast-track from 2017. This entitles me to a 25% bonus on base point earning. (i.e. 10 points per US dollar, plus another 2.5 points for being Gold)
Gold members can also choose to earn 1,000 welcome amenity points at Doubletree hotels (and the other full service brands) and 250 welcome amenity points at Hampton hotels.
Being honest… due to currency exchange issues and VAT, you never earn as many base points as you think. So my £252 earned me 3,003 base points (equivalent to $300.30 instead of the $350 that £252 is roughly worth in US dollars…)
Add on my Gold bonuses, and I ended up with a total of 6,253 standard points worth maybe £22-25.
Lufthansa Miles & More
Besides the building-up-to 2,500 mile bonus, you also earn 1 mile per US dollar because of the choice of Points + Miles.
So, I earned a total of 8,800 Lufthansa miles. I’m suspicious of putting a value of 1p on a Lufthansa mile, given all the surcharges when booking Lufthansa rewards, but there are plenty of sweetspots available, making these miles worth £88.
“Miles” recently ranted about Hilton and the Avios e-store. It would be pointless to delay this article until those Avios actually post since… well… they might never post. (especially the three Best Rate Guarantee claims)
But if we believe the confirmation e-mails sent by Avios.com, I might receive 2,988 Avios – £30 of value – since two of my clicks came during the double Avios weekend. But since I don’t trust Hilton to pay out on all 4 stays, nor do I value an Avios arriving in 9 months the same as an Avios today, I’ll put a value range of £10-30 on these Avios.
Total spent – £252
Value received – £180-210, made up of:
- Honors points worth £82-90
- Lufthansa miles worth £88
- Avios worth £10-30
So, it’s not quite the 90+% rebate that Joe mentioned, but it’s still pretty good. And let’s not forget that I actually needed four hotel nights… So, if you’ve ever wondered how some travel hackers manage to effortlessly accumulate miles and points, it’s often due to stacking promotions such as these. And if you fancy earning Gold status from Hilton Honors, five heavily-rebated stays will get you there thanks to a Gold fast track.
How about you? Have you managed a higher rebate with Hilton Honors?