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All the Easy Ways to Earn Starwood points in 2017 – 4x points, 25k bonuses, flights, and more

by on Fri January 6, 2017 • 2 Comments
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People love Starwood Preferred Guest probably more than any other rewards program, so there is no surprise that SPG points are among the most coveted, and often valued at 2 or 3 cents or more each. Earning SPG points, though, is not as easy as earning points in other programs, as SPG doesn’t give them away as freely. However, now that SPG Marriott merger is going full speed ahead, you have more options to earn Starwood points than ever before. Here are some of the best ways.

Earn for Starwood and Marriott hotel stays

While Starwood doesn’t offer as many points for hotel stays as other programs like Marriott Rewards, it’s still a big way to earn them.

Starwood Preferred Guest members earn 2 points per dollar spent at Starwood hotels, while Gold and Platinum members earn 3 points per dollar, and 75 Night Platinum members get 4 points per dollar.

Everything on your room bill earns Starponts.

And you don’t even have to stay at a Starwood Preferred Guest hotel to earn, as you can earn points for dining  just by giving the server your Starwood number.

Elite SPG members also receive welcome gifts that include bonus points.

Gold Preferred Guest members receive the choice of:

  • 250 Starpoints at participating Sheraton, Westin, W Hotels, Luxury Collection, St. Regis & Tribute Portfolio hotels or 125 Starpoints at participating Four Points, Aloft & Element hotels.
  • A free drink.
  • Free In-Room Internet access.

Platinum Preferred guests receive the choice of:

  • 500 points (250 at a limited-service hotel)
  • A local amenity.
  • Continental breakfast

Starwood Preferred Guest Brands that give you Starpoints for stays include:

  • Aloft
  • Design Hotels
  • Element
  • Four Points by Sheraton
  • Le Méridien Sheraton
  • St. Regis
  • The Luxury Collection
  • Tribute Portfolio
  • W Hotels
  • Westin

If you want to earn points for Marriott stays, you’ll need to open a separate Marriott Rewards account, but you can transfer points into your Starwood account anytime. Every 3 Marriott points is worth 1 Starwood point.

delta air lines airplane

Delta Crossover Rewards

If you are an elite Starwood Preferred Guest member and Delta loyalist, this offer might be for you.

SPG and Delta offer a Crossover Rewards program where if you’re an elite member of Starwood or Delta SkyMiles you can earn Starwood points for Delta flights (on top of the Delta SkyMiles you’d normally earn) and Delta miles for hotel stays (on top of the Starwood points you’d normally earn).

You’ll earn 1 Starpoint per $1 for every Delta flight you book, and Platinum SPG members get some additional perks on Delta flights, such as a free checked bag, Priority Check in and Boarding, as well as unlimited upgrades (subject to availability on the day of departure, which means you won’t see many upgrades).

Some special unpublished fares earn a straight 500 Starpoints per ticket.

The Starpoints you earn will be deposited to your account within 4 to 6 weeks after you complete the flight.

Note that you can’t join this program if you’re choosing to earn points with another airline for your Starwood stays instead of Starpoints. You’ll have to call Starwood to opt out of earning other airline miles for your stays before you can register.

emirates700

Emirates Flights

Elite Starwood Preferred Guest members who fly Emirates can earn Starpoints and Skywards miles for Emirates flights in the same fashion – 1 Starpoint (on top of the miles) per dollar spent on Emirates flights that you credit to your Skywards account.

caesarshotel

Caesars hotels and The Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas stays

You don’t have to stay at a Starwood hotel to earn points from a hotel stay.

When you’re in Las Vegas you can earn 2 Starpoints for every $1 spent at Caesars Entertainment hotels, which participate in the Total Rewards program. The Starpoints you earn are in addition to Total Rewards Credits and stays credit toward SPG elite qualification, up to 10 nights per calendar year, even on award stays you pay for with points.

NOTE THIS PARTNERSHIP ENDED DECEMBER 31, 2016

If you’re a Starwood elite, you won’t earn any elite level bonuses for your stays, so you’ll earn just 2 Starpoints per dollar for stays at Caesars hotels, the same level as regular Starwood members.

You’ll need to link your SPG and Total Rewards accounts to participate, and these are the Caesars / Total Rewards hotels where you can earn Starpoints:

  • Caesars Palace
  • Bally’s Las Vegas
  • Harrah’s Las Vegas
  • The Cromwell Las Vegas
  • Flamingo Las Vegas
  • The Linq
  • Paris Las Vegas
  • Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino
  • Rio All Suite Hotel and Casino

Cosmopolitan Hotel

The merger between Starwood Preferred Guest and Marriott Rewards has brought up another opportunity – to stay at the famed Cosmopolitan Hotel on SPG points, although you would need to transfer them into Marriott Rewards first at the 1:3 ratio. Cosmopolitan is a category 9 Marriott hotel, so a night at Cosmopolitan will cost you 15,000 Starpoints.

Your next question might be whether or not you can also transfer Cosmopolitan Identity points to Marriott Rewards and then to Starpoints. Indeed, you can, but it’s not a good deal.

You can’t earn SPG points for staying at the Cosmopolitan Hotel. But you can earn Cosmopolitan Identity points, and you can transfer those to Marriott Rewards points. Every 1 Identity point gets you 0.8 Marriott points. So, 1,000 Cosmopolitan Identity points gets you 800 Marriott Rewards points.

And Marriott Rewards points can transfer into Starwood anytime at a 3:1 ratio, so 800 Marriott points gets you 267 Starwood points.

uber app photo

Uber rides earn SPG points

Like using Uber? Good news, you can earn Starpoints on all your Uber rides and sometimes even more. Starwood Preferred Guest members will earn more on rides during their stays at a Starwood hotel.

  • During stay: 3 points per dollar
  • Other days: 0.5 points per dollar (1 point for every $2 you spend on Uber)

You need to register and link your SPG / Uber accounts before you can earn.

Note that according to the terms and conditions you are limited to a maximum spend of $10,000 in Uber spend in a calendar year that can earn points, and you won’t be able to start earning Starpoints with Uber until you complete at least 1 stay at an SPG hotel during the current calendar year.

When will I become eligible to earn Starpoints for an Uber ride?

You will become eligible to earn Starpoints for Uber rides 24 hours after you have both registered for the SPG-Uber benefits program and you have at least one SPG stay credited to your account in the current calendar year. If you are registered for the SPG-Uber benefits program but do not have a stay posted to your account for the current calendar year, you will be eligible to begin earning Starpoints for Uber rides 24 hours after your first stay within the current calendar year posts to your SPG account.

broadwaymusical

Points for Broadway show tickets

Starwood Preferred Guest has a partnership with the Audience Rewards program, the official loyalty program of Broadway, so you can earn and spend Starwood points on Broadway show tickets and special events. The earning rates are not 1 point per $1, rather they are show-specific and sometimes there are specials.

To browse shows and events, check the SPG On Broadway website.

Some of the current special offers include Chicago offering up to 1,900 bonus Starpoints, Cats offering 1,600 Starpoints, Wicked offering 1,300 Starpoints, and more.

carrental

Car rental partnerships

SPG has several partnerships with car rental agencies that allow you to earn points on rentals.

Avis

You can earn 50 Starpoints per day for every qualifying rental worldwide and save up to 30% off with a special code.  There are also limited-time promotions that can be found here.

Budget

Starwood Preferred Guest members can enjoy a similar deal on rentals with Budget, and there are limited-time promotions, as well.

Sixt

The Starwood deal with Sixst is more lucrative. You can get 250 Starpoints for every rental, and 500 points for using the company Limousine service.

Hertz

Hertz has a great option for earning Marriott Rewards points that you can transfer to Starwood Preferred Guest at the 3:1 ratio. With this deal you can earn over 2,000 Starpoints. You can get 2,000 Marriott points for 2-4 day rental, 5,000 Marriott points for renting a car for 5 days, and nothing prevents you from making two separate reservations if you need a car for 1 week or longer and earn 7,000 Marriott points or 2.333 Starpoints.

Buy SPG Points

You can buy or gift Starpoints to someone else for $17.50 per every 500 points for up to 30,000 points a year. While it looks expensive, Starwood runs special promotions from time to time that make it a decent deal.

For example, in June 2016, SPG had a 30% discount on the purchase of Starpoints, and back in May – even more, 35%, although that particular promo had targeted Amex SPG credit card holders.

SPG Hotel Stay Promos

Starwood Preferred Guest has special promos around the world where you earn some bonus points if you stay at certain properties.

For example you can sometimes earn 2x – 3x Starpoints on stays, in addition to any elite level bonus you’d normally earn.

Check the SPG Promos page to browse the latest deals.

Use the Marriott site to get bonus points for online shopping

While Starwood doesn’t have its own online shopping site, Marriott Rewards does. Since Marriott points can transfer into Starwood points anytime at a rate of 3:1, it’s a great way to add to your Starpoints balance.

You can use the Marriott Rewards shopping site to activate extra points for shopping at big name retail websites you’re probably already using, like Macy’s, Sears, Overstock, and Walmart. You’ll earn an extra 2, 3, even 5 or more Marriott points per dollar you spend.

The prices you pay are the same you would if you went straight to a retailer’s website, and you can use all the same coupon codes and shipping deals. Plus you can pay with any credit card you’d like, including your Starwood Preferred Guest card, and earn all the usual points you would, on top of the bonus for going through the Marriott shopping site.

shopmyway

Extra Points for Meetings and Events

If you are in a position to decide where to hold your next corporate or personal event, you can earn a lot of Starpoints with the SPG Pro Meeting Planner program. First, you would need to register for the SPG Pro Program (must log in first).

The earning structure is easy. You’ll earn 1 Starpoint for every $3 in eligible meetings and events revenue spent, up to 20,000 Starpoints per event. You will also earn 1 night toward elite status for every 20 group rooms up to 20 nights per event. You’ll achieve elite status after the first 25 eligible nights per calendar year. See this page for more information.

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Starwood restaurant points

As we mentioned earlier, you don’t even have to stay at a Starwood Preferred Guest hotel to earn points.

You can also earn from bars and restaurants in SPG hotels when you’re not checked into a room.

You’ll only earn 1 point per dollar spent on top of what your credit card earns, although SPG runs special promotions from time to time. The last one, called SPG Twice As Nice was for double points, but it ended in June 2016. It doesn’t mean you should go out of your way to eat or drink at an SPG property, but it’s something to consider if you have one nearby and it’s good.

Starwood also offers dining and bar discounts for SPG members via the SPG Cravings program.

Starwood Amex credit cards (offer expired)

Earning Starpoints via credit card sign up bonuses is a fantastic way to load up on a tens of thousands of valuable points before you even set a foot at the property. There are two SPG credit cards – one for personal expenses, and one for business expenses:

Unfortunately, Amex SPG cards don’t offer a lot in terms of spending bonuses. You will earn 2 points per $1 on your SPG purchases in addition to what you already earn at a hotel, which equates to 6 points per dollar if you are a 75 Night Platinum member. You will also earn 1 point per dollar on all other purchases.

And, now that Marriott points convert into Starwood points (3 Marriott points gets you 1 Starwood point), the Marriott Rewards credit card bonuses, as well as Chase Ultimate Rewards credit card bonuses (which convert into Marriott Rewards) can help you earn more Starwood points.

For example, 80,000 points from the Marriott Rewards Premier can net you about 26,000 SPG points.

Amex Membership Rewards points also transfer to Starwood at a 3:1 rate, so, bonuses on Membership Rewards cards can help you boost your Starwood balance.

Refer a friend offers

You can earn 5,000 points for up to 55k total if your friend gets approved for an SPG card. Marriott Rewards, which is now linked with SPG, has a referral program too, although it doesn’t involve a credit card. Instead, you can get points when your friends stay at Marriott hotels.

You can refer up to 5 new friends and get 2,000 Marriott points per stay for up to 5 stays, so you can earn up to 50,000 Marriott Rewards points per calendar year and transfer them into about 17,000 Starpoints.

Madrid-Marriott-Auditorium-Hotel-Conference-Center-1

Transfer points into Starwood

You can transfer American Express Membership Rewards points to Starwood Preferred Guest, but the 3:1 ratio is not a good idea unless you urgently need to top up some SPG points. Amex has too many great airline partners that you can transfer the points to, so this option is not a great use of Membership Rewards points.

You can also transfer Marriott Rewards points to Starwood Preferred Guest at 3:1 ratio (30,000 Marriott points = 10,000 SPG points), but it’s not usually a great value unless you’re planning to do an airline transfer. High-end SPG properties can make quickly dilute Marriott points, as a 1-night stay at an SPG Category 7 hotel will cost you 105,000 Marriott points to transfer.

But there are some lower tier hotels where transferring Marriott points to Starwood Preferred Guest might make sense.

Starwood Preferred Guest has some low category international hotels starting at just 2,000 points for Category 1 and 3,000 points for Category 2 on the weekend. Here are a few examples when you can stay for as low as 6,000 or 9,000 Marriott points per night.

  • Marrakech Le Méridien N’Fis (Cat 1)
  • Four Points by Sheraton Medellin (Cat 1)
  • Aloft San Jose Hotel, Costa Rica (Cat 1)
  • Sheraton Suites Chicago Elk Grove (Cat 2)
  • Four Points by Sheraton Mexico City, Colonia Roma (Cat 2)
  • Aloft Cancun (Cat 2)
  • Le Méridien Angkor (Cat 2)
  • The Great Wall Sheraton Hotel Beijing (Cat 2)

 

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2 thoughts on All the Easy Ways to Earn Starwood points in 2017 – 4x points, 25k bonuses, flights, and more

  1. Paul

    Additional Method:

    Earn Marriott points shopping online (including with local pickup) on Marriott portal. (SPG doesn’t have a shopping portal.) Transfer to SPG. Many stores give 3-6 Marriott points/$. meaning you get 1-2 SPG points/$, which is better than using an SPG card, PLUS whatever you get from the card you used. For instance, today you can get 6 Marr/$ = 2 SPG/$, plus 2% from your card at backcountry.com. The Marriott portal also has coupons which don’t disable the portal payback.

    Reply

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