Sunday Reader Question: Does Gifted Status Count Towards Elite Qualification?

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TPG reader Danny writes:

“I can’t get a straight answer from Starwood to save my life.  Like a lot of other folks in the points and miles game I have a Platinum AmEx, a personal Starwood AmEx and a business Starwood AmEx. The Platinum card grants Gold status from SPG (as I learned originally from your blog – thanks for that!).

According to an e-mail I received from Starwood today, each of the personal and business Starwood AmEx’s gives 2 stays/5 nights credit towards status for a total of 4 stays/10 nights. What I’m trying to find out is does that mean that I’d need 21 stays or 40 nights to hit Platinum or only 11 stays or 15 nights (with the “automatic” Gold status from the AmEx Platinum card counting as 15 stays/25 nights)? I’m not sure I’m explaining that well but I’ve contacted a bunch of people at Starwood and none of them have actually been able to give me an answer.”

There are many ways to get elite status, including getting it from credit cards and comped from promotions or status matches/challenges. However, in almost all cases, your comped status does not mean you get comped elite qualification.

For example, if you get Starwood Gold as a benefit of your Amex Platinum, you still need 25 stays/ 50 nights to get to Platinum. It doesn’t give you the equivalent of Gold qualification (10 stays/ 25 nights).

So to answer your question, you’d still need to complete 21 stays or 40 nights since you get 2 stays/5 nights elite qualifying credit for both the Personal and Business SPG card.

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