Like everything else, the American hotel industry has evolved over time in their size and approach to marketing. They’ve grown from a handful of major names, each with a reputation based on the market segment they were try to serve to mega-corporations comprising large collections of brands ranging from economical to deluxe accommodations. Many of these brands are now multi-national with major ones being global and because they all offer a range of types and price points that are very similar their marketing changed to find a competitive edge.
Today every major hotel chain has a loyalty reward program with the goal to have you be a returning guest. Most everyone is free to join, but they are all not the same as there are different rules, earning point rates and comparative point values. In addition there are a variety of other benefits from free wifi, freebies on arrival and special discounts. How much you can save depends on your level of travel and how much you’re comfortable spending per night and how often you stay in hotels.
Following are the top five hotel reward programs that also offer the ability to earn and use the points when traveling internationally. They are based on WalletHub.com scores calculated for equivalent dollar values.
WalletHub Score 72.40 Equivalent Earned Per $100 Spent $13.46
For every qualified stay at a Wyndham Rewards hotel or vacation club resort, you’ll earn 10 points per dollar or 1,000 points—whichever is more. Choose how you want to redeem your points with three simple free night tiers—7,500, 15,000, or 30,000 points per night. Wyndham Hotels and Resorts, Wyndham Grand, Dolce Hotels and Resorts, TRYP by Wyndham, Dazzler Hotels in Latin America, La Quinta hotels, Wingate by Wyndham, AmericInn, Ramada, Baymont, Microtel Inn & Suites by Wyndham, Days Inn, Super 8, Howard Johnson, Travelodge and Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham.
WalletHub Score 65.95 Equivalent Earned Per $100 Spent $12.50
Free Award Nights starting at 9,000 points with no blackout dates on Standard Rooms. Members Only Rate – save up to 10% on the best available rate when you book directly on our Radisson’s website. Earn 20 points per US dollar spent on eligible stays. Redeem points for Free Award Nights, airline miles, gift cards, prepaid cards, and more. Radisson RED, Park Plaza, art’otel, Park Inn and Country Inn and Suites.
Best Western Rewards
WalletHub Score 63.71 Equivalent Earned Per $100 Spent $9.75
The Best Western Rewards program is divided into five levels: Blue, Gold, Platinum, Diamond and Diamond Select. •Worldwide Free Night Redemption • Points Never Expire • BWR® Exclusive Member Rates • Rich Rewards & Incentives – Earn points for redemptions including gift cards, free nights and one-of-a-kind adventures. Incorporates the Best Western branded properties, Glō®, Vīb® and Aiden® by Best Western.
WalletHub Score 61.99 Equivalent Earned Per $100 Spent $11.63
Enjoy rewards beginning with your very first stay. Stay weekdays for extra perks like coffee cards and online shopping credits. Use your points your way, with reward options like free nights and gift cards. Save with member-only rates and exclusive offers. Elite members also receive bonus points or welcome gifts with every stay. Sleep Inn, Quality Inn, Rodeway Inn, and Comfort, Ascend Hotel Collection and Clarion.
WalletHub Score 61.01 Equivalent Earned Per $100 Spent $10.89
Participating properties include The Ritz-Carlton and St. Regis on the luxury side, JW Marriott and Westin in the middle of the range, and MOXY and Element toward the budget end of the spectrum. Cost – Elite Gold no fee, Silver Elite and base level members must pay a flat fee of $10. Marriott Bonvoy Points can be used for free nights, airfare, car rentals, gift cards, and even online shopping.