Saturday, June 20, 2015

SPG Hot Escapes

As you LCD readers know, my father loves his Starwood Hotels. After reaching Platinum status and enjoying VIP perks (free room upgrades, complimentary breakfasts, late checkout and club lounge access), it's hard for us to go to another hotel brand where we don't have these benefits.

One of the features of Starwood's SPG program is that Wednesday of every week, they offer Weekly Hot Escapes - sort of a "flash sale" through Saturdays on some of their global hotel properties.

You can get substantial savings here, though you have to fully pre-pay your booking and will not get a refund if you cancel. So we tend to use these Hot Escapes only when we're fully committed to a hotel stay.

For bookings that are more speculative (or prone to adjustment), we try to book flexible (refundable) rates with our AAA membership or SPG Awards. These rates are often only $10-20 higher than the pre-paid rates but for the flexibility, it's worth the small premium as my family does frequently adjust our plans. But as the date of our trip approaches, we re-check rates to see if locking it in would save us some cash. If the prepaid rate is still lower, then we book that and cancel our flexible rate reservation.

We did this a few years ago when we were staying at the W Vieques in Puerto Rico, saving us $440.

This time around, we had an upcoming 1 night stay in Brussels, Belgium for our 14 hour overnight layover on our way back from Israel. We already had a flexible AAA rate booking at the Sheraton Brussels Airport hotel for $122 USD.

For the convenience of being across the street from the airport (39 steps to be exact according to their website), we thought that was a pretty fair deal since it would save us both time and transportation costs. Plus, being a Starwood hotel that would help us re-qualify for 2016 Platinum didn't hurt.

But this morning, my father saw that SPG Hot Escapes had posted a list of hotels offering discounted rates. We were pleasantly surprised to find the Sheraton Brussels Airport to be on the list, offering a rate of $104 USD.

Saving $18 might not be a huge deal for many people, but when you travel as much as we do, these types of deals really do add up.

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