So you don’t have a job that requires travel but you like checking out new hotels and you like earning points. What should you do and where should you start?
Before you decide which hotel loyalty program to choose, determine whether you have the time to stay at hotels and if it’s in your budget. Busy weekends offer you the opportunity to stay at plenty of hotels. You’re already out, so just don’t go home!
Of course if you have a home, that makes it tough to justify spending additional income on hotels. Make sure you have the budget for this new hobby. If you’re in this to earn status with your preferred loyalty program, you can expect to spend up to, or more than, $2,500 a year. This figure is based off of an average $100 per night room. There are legitimate ways to get lower rates and save a lot of money in the process. If you’re a deal hunter, then you may have just found yourself a nice, new hobby.
If you’ve determined that you have the time and the budget for this new hobby, let’s look at some of the ways you can earn points faster:
- Promotions – Hotels may be inclined to run quarterly or seasonal promotions that offer bonus points to entice people to stay at their properties. Time your stays to coincide with promotions to get more points than you normally would.
- Loyalty Program Status – When you’re first starting out, you will have the lowest status. The more often you stay with one hotel chain, the faster you’ll climb the status ladder. At higher status levels you’ll find that earning points becomes much easier and faster. The best part is that you get these bonus points without having to do anything. It’s all based on your status.
- Hotel branded credit card – There are quite a few cards on the market that can reward you with points for your normal spending habits. Whether you’re buying, gas, groceries or paying your cell phone bill, you can rack up a lot of additional points that you wouldn’t have earned if you were only relying on staying at hotels. Which credit card you choose should depend on which program you choose. Many credit cards are also offering lucrative sign-up bonuses that can really jump start your points balance.