Ok, Ok, I admit it. I’m a little tight with the dollar. Particularly when I know something can be had at a better price if I wait them out. The cash and points redemption from Starwood is a perfect example.
When I started planning this around the world trip, I located all the Starwood Hotels in the places I planned to stay. In Bangkok there is a hotel called the Plaza Athenee which suits our needs just fine. It is a category 3 Starwood property and my choices for payment were:
- 5,600 Thai Bahts or $161 US or
- 7,000 Starwood points or
- 2,800 Starwood points and $45 US (cash and points)
When I was assured of the dates for Bangkok, I went back to book it, there was no cash and points option? The dilemmas we face in life.
After 60 days of waiting Starwood out, the cash and miles option showed up again last night and I booked our room.
The math is as follows:
If I paid 7,000 Starwood points for the room, I would be receiving 2.3 cents of value for each Starwood point.
But, by using the cash and points option my 2,800 Starwood points redeemed were worth:
$161 minus $45 co pay left $116 divided by 2,800 or a value of 4.1 cents per Starpoint
That is not quite twice the redemption value of a straight points redemption, but well worth the wait to me.
Of our 61 nights on this Around the World adventure, 28 are booked with Starwood hotels and every redemption is with the cash and points option.
I guess I am as tight with Starpoints, as I am with cash.
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
- Annual Fee: $95 fee waived for the first year
- Foreign Fees: No
- Card Type: Bank
The Sapphire Preferred offers 2x points on dining and travel, and no foreign transaction fees, making this the go-to card for travelers.
This card accumulates Ultimate Rewards points, which are very valuable for transfer to United and Hyatt. Overall, this card is a great choice for maximizing earnings on dining, travel, and every day spend.
- Earn 40,000 bonus points when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $500 in travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate RewardsSM
- Earn 5,000 bonus points after you add the first authorized user and make a purchase in the first 3 months from account opening.
- 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases
- No foreign transaction fees, plus Chip and Signature enabled for international travel.
- 1:1 point transfer to leading frequent travel programs at full value — that means 1,000 Ultimate Rewards points equal 1,000 partner miles/points.
- 24/7 direct access to dedicated customer service specialists
- Introductory Annual Fee of $0 the first year, then $95