How To Score Cheap Hyatt Points and Avis Car Rentals
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This is week 3 of the 2015 Daily Getaways, an assortment of daily discounts and deals with various travel brands and loyalty programs sponsored by the US Travel Association. Over the next few weeks, the Daily Getaways will offer hotel packages, points/miles purchase promos, rental car discounts, and more. Last year’s Daily Getaways included some great deals, and there are some equally worthwhile ones planned for the weeks ahead.
Each Monday I’ll hash out the details of the deals for that week to help you figure out which ones are worth taking advantage of. The deals go live at 1 pm each day, so be ready to buy if you’re interested. Let’s take a look at the deals for this week:
Monday, April 6: Avis Deals
- One day car rental for $30, 700 available (Maximum of 7 per person)
- One Avis Chairman’s Club Membership for $1,115, 15 available (Maximum of 1 per person)
These deals are very similar to the ones offered last year, and remain pretty uninspiring. The one day car rental certificates are usable at participating US locations (specifically not the New York metro area), and work for Premium cars (Group G) and below. There’s a long list of restrictions, most notably the following:
- Holiday and other blackout periods may apply.
- A limited number of cars are made available for this promotion.
- 24 hour advance reservation is required.
- Not valid for one-way rentals.
- Taxes and other fees still apply.
You can pretty commonly find economy and compact rental cars for less than $30/day including taxes and fees. If you tend to rent premium vehicles from Avis, you might end up saving a modest amount, but given the various limitations, I don’t think it’s worth your time. The blackout periods aren’t specified; they could include the entire summer for all we know.
Chairman’s Club Membership includes benefits like guaranteed car availability and complimentary upgrades (subject to availability), as well as rental delivery anywhere within 25 miles of participating Avis locations. The main attraction here is that individuals cannot get this status on their own — Chairman’s Club has to be sponsored by your company, and the service is almost always reserved for higher-ups like a chairman or CEO. I don’t rent cars often, and it’s hard for me to see the value in this unless you rent with Avis a lot. There aren’t many of these memberships available, so if your lifelong dream includes being a Chairman’s Club Member, be ready to click at 1 pm.
Tuesday, April 7: Omni Hotels & Resorts
- 1 night at Exclusive Omni Hotels & Resorts for $238, 10 available
- 2 nights at Omni Premier Hotels & Resorts for $338, 33 available
- 2-night weekend escape at select Omni Hotels for $245, 49 available
- 2-night Omni Hotel getaway for $162, 36 available
These deals are also pretty similar to the ones from last year, except they’ve all been discounted by about 10%. Each offer comes with a short list of hotels where you can use the purchased certificate, so first decide whether you’ll be visiting any of those destinations soon. If so, consider the price compared to other hotels in that specific city or area.
For example, the first deal costs $238 for one night at an exclusive Omni, including The Omni Berkshire in New York City. Decent hotel rooms in New York rarely drop below this price, and prepaid rates at that property start at $260 for a weekend night in June. If you already have a preference for any of the listed properties, then these deals should offer you modest savings. Of course, the terms and conditions include the dreaded caveat that “Blackout dates apply.”
Check out the list of properties available for each deal and decide whether they fit with your travel plans. Note that there aren’t many of these deals available, so be ready to buy immediately when the sale begins if you’re interested.
Wednesday April 8: Loews Hotels
- 2 nights in an Ocean View Suite at Loews Miami Beach for $1,000, 5 available
- 2 nights in a suite at Loews Regency in New York City for $1,000, 5 available
- 2 nights in an Ocean View Suite at Loews Santa Monica for $950, 5 available
- 2 nights at a Four Diamond Loews Resort for $325, 20 available (resort options include Loews Miami Beach Resort, Loews Don Cesar Resort, Loews Royal Pacific Resort in Orlando, and Loews Coronado Bay Resort)
- 2 nights at a Luxury Loews Hotel for $275, 16 available (15 different options)
The first three options offer substantial savings. For example, a Grand Ocean Front Balcony Suite at the Loews Miami Beach can easily top $1,000 for one night even during the week. That’s a good deal if you’re interested in any of those three hotels specifically. However, there are very few deals available for each.
The best option is probably the Luxury Loews hotels at $275 for two nights (with 20 deals available). This comes out to just $137.50 per night. This is a great opportunity, especially when used in a bigger city where hotel rooms are pricey. For example, the Loews Regency in New York is one of the options, and rooms there in June start at $399 per night, so you’ll save about 65% with the Daily Getaways deal. Once again, blackout dates may apply, but the potential savings here might actually be worth the risk. Check out the list and see if any of the eligible properties appeal to you. If so, try calling ahead to see if your dates are blacked out.
Thursday April 9: Las Vegas Hotel Packages
- 3 night getaway for two people at Mandalay Bay for $1,525, 6 available
- 2 nights in a suite at New York, New York for $475, 4 available
- 3 nights in a suite at the Mirage for $1,780, 8 available
- 4 night getaway at Excalibur for $475, 8 available
- 2 nights in a penthouse suite at Monte Carlo for $1,050, 6 available
The main attraction here is that each of these packages includes other items like dinner vouchers, spa treatments or show tickets, which add considerable value to the deals if you can manage to get one. For example, the Mandalay Bay deal comes with two $500 dining credits (one per meal). However, rooms in Vegas can be had for much less, so compare prices on the dates you’re interested in. Note that resort fees are not included, and will be charged separately.
Unfortunately, there are so few of these available that I probably wouldn’t bother, since the chance of winning the mouse button lottery is low. I’d rather set my sights on a deal that’s easier to come by, like the Hyatt points.
Friday April 10: Hyatt Hotels
- 24,000 Hyatt Gold Passport points for $260, 95 available
- 30,000 Hyatt Gold Passport points for $330, 35 available
- 40,000 Hyatt Gold Passport points for $415, 15 available
- 72,000 Hyatt Gold Passport points for $775, 15 available
This Hyatt offer is marketed as free hotel stays, but really it’s just points packages. The prices for these points are between 1.0 and 1.1 cents per point, which is not only much less than their normal price of about 2.4 cents per point,but also is much less than my valuation of 1.8 cents apiece.
I think this deal is a no-brainer even if you’re just buying the points speculatively, and I’ll definitely be looking to purchase one or more of these deals. To see how you could maximize these points, check out Nick Ewen’s post on 10 Hyatt Properties that Make for Awesome Award Redemptions.
Unfortunately, there aren’t many packages available, and these will go very quickly, so be ready at 1 pm ET on Friday.
Stay Tuned for Next Week’s Getaways
Be on the lookout for my assessment of the Daily Getaways for April 13-17, which include Caesar’s properties, Hertz, and 20% off Marriott gift cards.
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