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Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here – Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express, Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express, Chase Freedom Unlimited
Earning hotel points via the traditional method (actually staying in hotels) is just one option for growing your account balance. However, it’s relatively easy to accrue points without booking a stay — whether through top credit card offers or through various promotions. If these methods leave you short of your travel goals, you can also purchase miles directly from the hotel.
This morning, Starwood launched a new buy points promotion that makes it a bit cheaper to stock up on Starpoints. Now through April 30, you can buy or give Starpoints at up to 30% off. The standard cost for purchasing Starpoints is 3.5 cents per point, and this promotion can drop the price down to 2.45 cents apiece.
Whether you buy or gift Starpoints, the bonus structure is the same:
- Buy 5,000 — 9,500 Starpoints and save 10% (3.15 cents per point)
- Buy 10,000 — 14,500 Starpoints and save 15% (2.975 cents per point)
- Buy 15,000 — 19,500 Starpoints and save 20% (2.8 cents per point)
- Buy 20,000 — 30,000 Starpoints and save 30% (2.45 cents per point)
Keep in mind that the usual restrictions for purchasing Starpoints apply to this promotion, including the following:
- You must purchase at least 500 points. Points may be purchased in increments of 500 miles up to 30,000 points.
- Members can only purchase 30,000 points per account per calendar year.
- Purchased points do not count toward Preferred Guest, Gold Preferred Guest or Platinum Preferred Guest Status.
- Starpoint purchases can be made by members whose accounts have been active for a minimum of 14 days. Accounts that are less than the required 14 days in age will have the purchase attempt cancelled.
Note that the purchase is processed by Points.com, so you won’t get any travel category bonuses from this purchase. Make sure to use the best non-bonus category credit card for your situation. Based on TPG’s valuations, the Chase Freedom Unlimited’s 1.5x Ultimate Rewards points would be the most rewarding choice.
Is It Worth It?
Based on TPG’s valuations, Starpoints are worth 2.7 cents apiece. This promotion drops the price as low as 2.45 cents, so it definitely could be worth considering. There are a wide variety of ways to maximize Starpoints, from hotel stays to transferring to airline programs to SPG Moments.
There’s one especially lucrative opportunity ending March 31. If you’re looking to earn the Southwest Companion Pass, you can still get it through Marriott’s Hotel + Air Packages. 270,000 Marriott points gets you 120,000 Companion Pass-qualifying points (which you can also use for ~$1,560 of travel) and a seven-night hotel stay. If you buy 30,000 Starpoints through this promotion, you can transfer these Starpoints to Marriott at a 1:3 ratio. This 90,000 Marriott points will get you one-third of the way to the 270,000 goal — a great way to top off your Marriott account if you need one last push.
And, provided you haven’t applied for these cards in the past, there’s a much cheaper way to get 35,000 Starpoints: the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express or the Starwood Preferred Guest Business Credit Card from American Express. Now through April 5, both are offering 25,000 Starpoints as a bonus for spending $3,000 (or $5,000 for the business version) on the card in the first three months from account opening. Plus, you can get an additional 10,000 for spending an additional $2,000 ($3,000 on the business card) within the first six months.
Starpoints are one of the most valuable and versatile points/miles currencies out there — with great value for hotel stays, airline award redemptions and incredible SPG Moments. This promotion is an excellent way of buying up to 30,000 Starpoints at 2.45 cents per point vs. TPG’s 2.7 cents per point valuation.
Will you be taking advantage of this buy points promotion?
Featured image courtesy of the St. Regis Mauritius Resort.
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NEW INCREASED OFFER: 60,000 Points
TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,200
CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners
*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.
- Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
- Chase Sapphire Preferred named "Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption" - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, June 2018
- 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- No foreign transaction fees
- 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
- No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards