Turkey has long-since been on my bucket list, and though previously limited to Istanbul, I recently discovered this amazing hotel on Uncrate.
The Yunak Evleri Cave Hotel, as the name implies, is a series of 7 cave houses with a total of 40 rooms; there is even a Greek mansion! The rooms are a variety of configurations (Suite, Deluxe, or Classic), accommodating a total of 80 guests. Each room has its own balcony, which is a wonderful touch. The Greek mansion you can find the hotel lobby, meeting rooms, and other amenities. A full list of services and activities can be found here, on the hotel website.
Starwood Preferred Guest’s quarterly promotion (“More for You”) has become active. You have to register before November 30th, and you will earn extra points for stays between September 12th and December 18th.
You can find a list of participating properties on the promotion website, as well as the FAQ.
Earning is straightforward: you get a multiplier based on the length of your stay and if it crosses into the weekend. One catch is that Sunday nights do not count as weekend nights; only Friday and Saturday nights will cause a 3x multiplier to be applied.
Earlier this week I read about TripBAM from Harlan’s experience using it in conjunction with the Citi Prestige’s 4th Night Free benefit.
I wrote about the Prestige’s 4th Night Free benefit recently, and explained how it can be used to save tens to hundreds of dollars on an extended hotel stay. TripBAM in turn monitors hotel rates daily and sends you a notification when the difference in fare exceeds a limit you configure.
Harlan outlines the process to then apply that rate to a reservation you make through Citi Prestige’s Concierge:
Make the original reservation with the Prestige Concierge, using the 4th Night Free benefit
Create an alert with TripBAM to notify you when the price drops
TripBAM will notify you if/when the rate dips
Call the hotel directly and mention your confirmation number. By using the confirmation number, you can apply the new rate to the existing reservation.
Because you use the original confirmation (that Citi Prestige created), you get the original value reimbursed.
Another fun use of this benefit is to find a hotel that is offering a 5th night free rate. If you do, double check to make sure that the 5th night shows as having a cost of $0. Because the last night is free, you will be reimbursed for the 4th night, leaving the net cost as the first three. Not bad, right?
I’m unclear how either of these will work once the new Citi benefits take effect next year – receiving a credit for an average of the nights instead of the 4th night, in particular. However, until then I plan on taking full advantage of this!
It isn’t uncommon for loyalty programs to run seasonal promotions, and hotels are no different. Currently, the larger brands are running some rather profitable promotions. If you are a member at one, or many, of these chains, it is always a good idea to subscribe to the email notifications offered by the chains.
Hilton is running a spectacularly good promotion currently. In fact, it’s an extension of the current promotion given the way it was received by the traveling community at large. There are very few restrictions – largely based on the rate you pay. All hotels and resorts qualify, and there are no requirements for the length of stay. Once you are registered, you earn double points for all stays until December 31, 2016. Simple as that!
Starwood Preferrred Guest
SPG’s new promotion, More For You, won’t be open for registration until September 12th (running until December 18th), unfortunately. However, until then they have a game open where you can win many instant prizes – including Starpoints and free night certificates. Better still, all entries (limited to one per day, per account) goes into a final draw of 5 free nights and 50,000 Starpoints.
The 2016 Fall promotion being run by Marriott is similar to Starwood’s game, but instead of entering daily online, you are required to stay. With every stay after your second, however, you earn an additional 2,000 Marriott Rewards points (up to 10,000). Each stay will also enter you in the grand prize drawing of 100,000 points. There can be 100 winners!
Hyatt’s current promotions are for points redemption and purchases instead of earnings, but a full list can be found here. If you find out otherwise, please let me know!
International Hotel Group
For a few seasons now IHG has been running a customized promotion known as Accelerate. What I mean by this is that while the promotion is available for all IHG members, the earnings and criteria are customized for each member. You can find your personalized offer here and register at the same time. Since it is customized, I can’t lay out the specifics, but I can show you what I was offered!
Regardless of which loyalty program(s) you belong to, it is in your best interest to opt in for their emails and even their physical mailings. They offer quite a few things. I was invited to stay at the Westin Lagunamar for a timeshare pitch thanks to this. Five days and four nights for $499? Yes, please! Happy earning!
If you are a work traveler, can book hotels directly, and use your own credit card, the Citi Prestige is a no-brainier. This card is one of the top-tier cards offered today (along with the Platinum Card from American Express, and the soon-to-be-released Sapphire Reserve from Chase). Though it comes with a hefty price-tag by way of a $450 annual fee, it has a staggering number of benefits.
In addition to the $250 annual airfare credit bundled with the card, one of the most advertised benefits of the card is receiving a free night for every booking of four or more nights. There is no limit to the number of times you use this benefit, so you can easily make your money back many times over. This is particularly beneficial when your work reimburses you for any travel you have to do.
To take advantage of this benefit, you just have to call the Citi Prestige Concierge at (561)-922-0158 and tell them that you would like to use the fourth night benefit for your card. They will walk you through the process of identifying where you would like to stay, any special rates (AAA, AARP, government, or corporate booking code), and your frequent guest information (Hilton HHonors, Marriott Rewards, etc.). They will then make the booking and send you an email detailing how much the entire stay will cost and how much you will be reimbursed. This is key as you will be paying for the full stay and then Citi pays you back the cost of the fourth night including taxes, but not resort fees. Per, TheFrequentMiler, conference rates aren’t bookable this way, but most others are. Be sure to check online through various booking systems (directly to the hotel, sites like Kayak, and others) before calling so you have a general idea of what to expect.
Even though this benefit will be changing over the coming months, so the credit from Citi will be for an average of the four nights instead of the price of the fourth night, the value offered by it easily out-weighs the $450 annual fee.
If you are interested in applying for this card, you can find it on the Citi website[not an affiliate link] with a 40,000 bonus point offer for completing a $4,000 spend in 3 months. I would strongly advise you checking a local Citi branch, however, as there have been reports of local bankers providing the old offer of 50,000 bonus points for completing a spend of $3,000 in the same period of time.