How to Donate Your Miles and Points to Support Hurricane Florence Victims

I know watching the news stories about the devastation caused by Hurricane Florence can make you feel helpless. The scope of this event just causes you to feel numb and you want to do something but don’t know how you can help.

Luckily, most of the airline and hotel programs are making it easy to contribute in any way you can. Even if you don’t have cash to spare, you can donate those random points you have here and there to the recovery effort. Face it, it’s better to donate them than redeem them for some magazines that you’ll never read.

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Sign Up Now For Marriott’s Fall/Winter Megabonus Promotion

Marriott has just completed the merger of the Marriott Rewards, Starwood Preferred Guest and Ritz Carlton Rewards programs. While the merger of the three programs, which will not be complete until sometime in 2019, has suffered a series of technical issues, the programs are all now working with one currency under the same umbrella.

With the hard work of merging programs behind them, Marriott has just rolled out their newest Megabonus promotion. I’m sad to say that it wasn’t worth the wait.

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20% Universal Theme Park Discount, British Airways’ Info Hack, How To Buy Into Fast Track Security Lanes & More…

Happy Sunday, friends! We hope you’re enjoying your weekend. Here are some articles we’ve read this week from other bloggers (and other sources) that we think you may like, as well, so we’re passing them along.

Continue reading “20% Universal Theme Park Discount, British Airways’ Info Hack, How To Buy Into Fast Track Security Lanes & More…”

Reasons You Should Merge Your Starwood (SPG) and Marriott Accounts

We’re over two weeks out from the merger of the Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) into the Marriott Rewards (or whatever the new name will eventually be) program. Members of both programs were asked to “link” their accounts together months ago. Linking accounts had several advantages:

  • Matching status from one program to the other
  • Point transfers between the two programs with 1 SPG point = 3 Marriott Rewards points

Besides these reciprocal perks, the programs remained separate. Points earned at Starwood hotels were added to your SPG balance and the same for Marriott hotel stays earning Marriott Rewards points. You weren’t able to combine the stays or nights from both hotels to achieve a higher loyalty status level, a lingering problem that left many travelers who stayed at both brands feeling a little left out.

While the plans merged in August 2018, you are now able to “merge” your accounts. What’s the difference between “link” and “merge” and why didn’t they do this automatically? Here’s what Marriott’s saying:

Yes! Account linking offered a status match between the programs. But by combining your accounts, your earnings will be added together. So rather than just a match, you may get a status boost.

 If you already linked your accounts, that’s a great start. You created a connection – but they’re not yet one account. Now, by combining, you’ll only have one login to remember and be able to earn and redeem points across all 29 participating brands with that single account.

Heck if I know what that means. What I do know is that Sharon and I merged our accounts already and everything seems fine. While that’s not the case for everyone, here’s why I went ahead with merging our accounts.

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What You Get If You Sign Up For These Hotel Programs

Miles and points are two ways to improve the way you travel and getting a healthy balance of hotel points is a major part of that. Even if you don’t go out of your way to collect hotel points through other means, just getting points for the stays you pay for can eventually earn you enough for a night or two off on a future stay. That’s money you can use for something else on your trip.

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We used our Starwood points for a room at the Great Northern Hotel in London – it’s just outside King’s Cross Station

Nothing in the miles and points world is free and keeping these points active does require work to make sure the points you have don’t expire.  However using a website like AwardWallet can help you keep track of all of your points and miles accounts.

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