Starwood SPG points are at the top of the rewards food chain. Their conversion rates are astounding, their transfer partners are many, and the extreme savings you can land are truly one-of-a-kind. Even though many of the below rewards are for first class travel, those on a budget can also enjoy the benefits of SPG points.
You can fly around the world, stay in the best airline suites, and soak up lavish hotels for free with many Starwood rewards programs; including Cash and Points, 5th night free, and Nights and Flights where combining your travel purchases pays off. Starwood SPG points are worth the $65 annual fee because you gain access to redemptions on 150 airlines, 1,100 hotels in 100 countries, and enormous point discounts and bonuses when transferring between partners.
Current Reward Offers for the Starwood SPG Card
- Earn up to 25,000 bonus Starpoints: Earn 10,000 Starpoints after your first purchase with the card and an additional 15,000 Starpoints when spending $5,000 in the first 6 months
- Earn Free Nights: Over 1,100 hotels and resorts in about 100 countries allow use of SPG points with no blackout dates (hotels include St. Regis, The Luxury Collection, W Hotels, Le Meridien, Westin, Sheraton, Aloft, Element Hotels, and Four Points by Sheraton)
- $0 Annual Fee for the First Year: Pay no annual fee the first year you have the card and then $65 per year after
- Earn Up to 5 Points Per Dollar: Earn 5 Starpoints per $1 when you use your card with hotels and resorts that participate in the SPG program.
- Transfer SPG Points into Airline Miles: Starwood SPG points can be redeemed for free flights on over 150 airlines (30 frequent flyer programs) with no blackout dates. You can receive a 5,000 Starpoint bonus when you transfer 20,000 Starpoints to a frequent flyer program
Both cards are currently offering 25,000 signup points, which is a pretty good offer. The highest we’ve seen is 30,000 points, and that came last September.
1. Stay at the Walt Disney World Swan or Dolphin for 10,000 Starpoints per Night
If you love Disney World, this is a must for your SPG points. You can redeem one night at either the Swan or Dolphin hotel for 10,000 SPG points (originally, this booking comes in at about $240/night). That means 1 SPG point=2.4 cents, which is an excellent rate with great savings. A family can stay at one of Disney’s high-end hotels for 5 nights for 50,000 SPG points, or free. After the cost of the Disney World tickets and running around the park all day, you’ll be glad you booked such a great room.
2. Stay at The Park Lane Hotel in London for 12,000 Starpoints per Night
Traveling internationally can be fun and exciting, but costly at the same time. Sheraton’s Park Lane Hotel in London typically goes for $550/night but you can grab it for only 12,000 SPG points. This works out to be 4.6 cents per point, which is above many other hotel offers. This hotel is luxurious and has a celebrated Art Deco style while also being centrally located; basically a steal for the low points value. You score a room that’s double the price of Disney but for only 2,000 more SPG points.
3. Stay at the Sheraton Genova Hotel for 2,000 Starpoints on Weekends and 3,000 Points on Weekdays
For those traveling on a less extravagant budget or are hoping to save on costs while traveling the world, using 2-3,000 SPG points for the Sheraton Genova hotel in Italy is a great bang for your buck. This category 1 hotel’s rooms typically sell for $150/night but you can use a small amount of SPG points to cover the cost instead. Although it’s not the lap of luxury that some other hotels offer, it’s superb value for the points and allows you to travel the world for free.
4. Stay at the Westin Paris Vendome for 8,000 Starpoints plus $150 with Cash and Points Combined
This is luxury at it’s cheapest. A room that typically sells for $535/night during off-peak times of the year and is at a category 6 hotel, is available for 8,000 SPG points plus $150 to cover the rest of the cost of the room. The Cash and Points program gives you exemplary benefits while saving money and points. If you were to go for the free night, you would need 20,000 Starpoints coming in at a value of 2.7 cents. If you were to use Cash and Points, the value skyrockets to 4.8 cents per point. You’ve saved 12,000 points and $385 and although the room isn’t free, you can use the rest of your saved points and dollars to stay a few more days. Instead of 60,000 SPG points for a 3-day weekend, you’d need 24,000 points plus $450; not bad for a category 6 hotel and almost double the cents per point.
5. Transfer Starpoints to American Airlines Miles: Fly to Europe or South America for 40,000 Miles
Getting to Europe on the cheap is easy when you convert SPG points into AA miles. SPG points transfer to AA miles at a 1:1 ratio but you get a 25% point bonus for each 20,000-point transfer. That makes 100,000 SPG points into 125,000 AA miles. This puts your earning potential at 1.25 points per $1. That could be a bump from business to first class. Off-peak awards ring in at 40,000 SPG points for a round trip flight to Europe or South America. American Airlines also offers free one-way tickets in certain routing situations and hardly ever have fuel surcharges on award tickets. With exceptional bonuses and award rules, American Airlines is by far the best airline transfer award option for SPG points.
6. Transfer Starpoints to US Airways Miles: Fly First Class to South America or Hawaii for 50,000 Miles
US Airways and American Airlines will merge on March 31st, 2014 and that will have some effect on this award. Until then, you can snag a first class ticket to South America or Hawaii for 50,000 miles. Who doesn’t want to go to Hawaii in first class for that low of a miles cost? US Airways boasts lower redemption rates than other airlines for specific rewards, such as the 90,000 mile trips to Asia, never charges fuel surcharges, and allows stopovers and open jaws.
With stopovers or an open jaw, you can get several vacations in one. You can hop from Asia to Europe and spend a few days in connecting cities for fewer points than booking several different trips. The SPG point transfer bonus does apply here as well where you earn 1.25 points per $1 and if you can book an off-peak award with stopovers or an open jaw, you score an attractive around-the-world trip.
7. Transfer Starpoints to British Airways: Fly from Kansas City to Chicago for 4,500 Avios or Fly to Toronto from New York for 9,000 Avios
British Airways can be finicky at times but for short trips, they have you covered for awesome Starpoints awards. Let’s say you wanted to fly from Kansas City to Chicago one-way. This ticket only costs 4,500 Avios plus $2.50 in fees when flying on American Airlines. Had you booked you booked this flight through American Airlines redemption, you would have had to cough up 12,500 points for the same flight in the same seat.
To fly round-trip from Toronto to New York is only 9,000 Avios, but 25,000 American Airlines Miles. The ability to transfer your SPG points to British Airways gives you extreme savings for short flights. American Airlines Miles are better used with SPG points for longer trips and the value can’t compete with British Airways’ award chart for short domestic flights.
8. Transfer Starpoints to Alaska Airlines for Cathay Pacific and Emirates Flights: Fly in Business Class to Asia for 80,000 Starpoints (100,000 Alaska Air Miles) or to the Middle East for 75,000 Starpoints (90,000 Alaska Air Miles)
You can enjoy business class on Cathay Pacific, a distinguished luxury brand, to Asia for an incredible 80,000 SPG points. If you’d rather fly first class, that ticket will cost you 115,000 Starwood points, but still an outstanding bargain.
For an in-flight shower and the chance to have your own first class private suite, you can fly one-way on Emirates to the Middle East or India for only 75,000 SPG points (90,000 Alaska Airline Miles). That’s quite the steal for exclusive privacy and an on-board shower. This award embodies the value you can get from transferring Starpoints to one of its partners for first class luxury flights.
9. Transfer Starpoints to Singapore Airlines: Fly from New York to Singapore in a Singapore Sleeper Suite for 78,500 Starpoints (93,500 Singapore Airline Miles)
The ultimate exclusive seat on any airline flying anywhere is the Singapore Sleeper Suite and you can score this sumptuous reward for just 78,500 SPG points after you book the award online and receive a 15% point discount. You can call 213-404-0301 to book this offer but you won’t receive the 15% discount like you do when you book online. New York to Singapore is a pretty long flight and to have a full bed, door, top-tier food, champagne, and super service is the best your points can get.
There are other great options like a one-way ticket to Hawaii in coach for 30,000 SPG points (35,000 Singapore Airline Miles) or business class for 50,000 SPG points (60,000 Singapore Airline Miles). You will have to pay fuel surcharges but your best bet is to save up your SPG points and enjoy an amazing first class experience.
10. Nights and Flights and Landing the 5th Night Free: Score Extreme Discounts by Combining Airfare and Hotel Stays and Get the 5th Night Free on a Longer Stay
Starwood offers a Nights and Flights package that allows you to combine airline and hotel bookings for the best savings. You don’t have to use the miles you transferred to the airline of your choice at the same time that you’re staying at the hotel, but you still get the value on both items.
Nights and Flights is only available for category 3 and 4 hotels yet they provide some of the most superb value around. You can get 5 nights at a category 3 hotel with 50,000 airline miles for just 60,000 SPG points (without Nights and Flights it comes to 68,000 SPG points). For a category 4, you can get 5 nights with 50,000 airline miles for 70,000 SPG points (without Nights and Flights it comes to 80,000 SPG points). Although these rewards can’t be booked online, they’re easily scheduled by calling 1-888-625-4988 if you are a preferred guest, 1-888-625-4990 for gold preferred guest services, and 1-888-625-4991 for platinum preferred guest services.
Combining the above offers with the 5th night free option just puts icing on the cake. If you bag the category 3 Nights and Flights with the 5th night free, you can get a value of 7,000 SPG points/night. Many of these hotels run for over $300/night but with SPG points, you’ll be savings thousands of dollars and points with the combination of Nights and Flights and 5th night free.
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