Our to-do list for Hawaii
tickets booked to and from Hawaii – checked
inter-island flights – still need to do
car rental – researching
tips from friends and readers where to go and what to see — checked
hotels booked on two island — checked
Yes, we booked our hotels. We had SPG points, Hilton points and 2 free nights at a Hyatt from our credit card. We really want to use points to pay for our hotel stays.
I needed first to find out if there were any Hyatts on Kauai and the Big Island. Turns out that there is one and it is on the island of Kauia – just as I had hoped. I went on their website, clicked on the Gold Passport tab, put in my dates and waited for the great news that we would have a lovely room for two nights – for FREE!!!! Except, that didn’t happen. Apparently there were no rooms available for redemption. My heart sank. This was the Grand Hyatt Resort and Spa. Oh, I wanted to be bathed in luxury. I needed to think more about this. On the website site I decided to send a message explaining that this was my first time in Hawaii and I had some difficulty navigating their website and could they help me use my free night certificate for the nights I wanted.. I really didn’t help but I needed to say something to them. I sent the email off and waited patiently for their reply.
Meanwhile, I needed to continue with our planning. My next best option was to use the SPG points. I found a nice Sheraton on Kauai that I made a reservation for 12,000 points per night. I could always cancel this reservation if Hyatt came through. We booked it.
Then it was on to our stay on the Big Island of Hawaii. They also had a Sheraton and although I didn’t have enough points for free nights, they do have the option of paying fewer points and combining it with cash. That was a doable option. I looked further and there is a Hilton although it is requiring 50,000 points per night and we are planning on staying three nights. I have plenty of those points but I hate burning through that many points but it was an options. In my mind, I play out the different scenarios. IF the Hyatt free nights come through, then I can cancel the nights on Kauai with the SPG points and then use them on Hawaii and cancel the Hilton points.
We checked our email and we had a reply from Hyatt asking us to call them. We did and explained what we wanted. No problem and we were booked. I felt like doing a dance. I know, it’s rather silly but I was so excited at staying at such a beautiful property and the fact that we could use our free certificate would be icing on the cake.
Now, we need to cancel the Sheraton hotel that we booked with points on Kauai and have the points redeposited so that we can cancel the Hilton property and use the SPG points on the Big Island. Sure, it has taken me a little time to figure all this out but I knew what my options were and I had a Plan B.
As you could tell, Hilton properties require more points but for me they are very easy to obtain. With my AmEx Hilton Honors card, I get 5 times points in grocery stores. I can purchase Vanilla Reloads at a grocery store here. Last week I bought $2000 worth of VR’s with my Hilton card and earned 10,000 Hilton points! SPG points can be used at several hotels, require fewer points but can be more difficult to get those points. I think since I am using about three quarters of my SPG points that I need to move this card up toward the front of my wallet and replenish and grow my SPG points for the future.
I have a lot of Club Carlson points but they didn’t have any properties in Hawaii. They are now saved for our big trip in 2014 to South Africa..
What hotel points do you have and collect? Are you happy with the redemption values? Are you thinking about becoming a loyalty member of a different brand and is so, why?