This is not the breaking news we were looking for…
A loyalty program in itself is a value proposition to travelers, aiming to separate one hotel group from the fray. With any good loyalty program, it’s all about the benefits and values a guest can attain from these decisions. It appears Hilton, without notice, has devalued their points program, by raising points rates at many of their most reasonable hotels, in the dark of the night.
Hilton’s PR team likely wouldn’t agree with the assessment, but dynamic pricing allows hotels to charge more points (or cash) when a hotel is in demand, and standard or low rates when it’s not, with the ultimate goal of raising the minimum points rate. Rather than a hotel requiring a certain number of points per night regardless of the date, dynamic pricing means it may be 10,000 one night, 15,000 another, and 20,000 on another and if people seem ok paying 20,000 sometimes, why ever charge 10,000 again? Before you say “well maybe it works out in our favor sometimes” – it really doesn’t.
Head For Points did some digging and found quite a few hotels which were previously in the 10,000 points per night category, which are now 20,000 points per night, on virtually all dates. That, ladies and gentlemen is what is called a “stealth” devaluation. No warning, no chance to book at old rates, just fire up the Hilton master computer overnight and hope no one notices. It’s about as cool as inviting your friends over for a dinner party and then charging them for wine, without notice.
From Oman to the UK and beyond, this appears to be an overnight epidemic. At least six UK hotels in the 10,000 point price band are now 20,000, including Hampton Inn’s at John Lennon Airport, Newcastle, Sheffield and Newport and there are more to be found in the US, Middle East, Asia and beyond. To be clear: this is not reflective of every 10,000 point hotel, but it’s bad news when a loyalty program changes the goal posts overnight. Roughly 150 Hilton hotels around the world fall into the 10,000 point per night price category, and if you had one in mind, like one of these brilliant 10,000 point per night options, it’s well worth searching to see if anything has changed for your dates.
Have any of your favorite 10,000 point hotels jumped in price?
Featured image Hilton Salalah, Oman.
Yeah, this is right behind all of the increased sign up bonuses on all of the Hilton cards. Knew something smelled fishy.
This is why generally I use my points (and miles) fairly quickly. I don’t save them unless I have a specific goal in mind.
Being a Diamond member I have noticed a definite change in all around service from Hilton. I have found you’re just not that important to them anymore. Thanks for the heads up and comparison may be time to change allegiance.
Hotels.com all the way
Happened to me this August. Hilton Strogino in Moscow was 10,000 points, now it is 20,000 🙁
4 out of the 5 Hiltons in Istanbul are now 10,000, up from 5,000. This coming right after the ‘bonus’ points sale is just downright dirty.
And they stopped giving points if you didn’t book through them !! It didn’t used to matter but now if you do not book through Hilton.com no points for you even though you stayed in the hotel for a week
Conrad Macau 40 to 50.
Doubletree Johor Bahru 10 to 17-20.
Doubletree Melaka 10 to 16-20.
WTF. I thought the Hilton Auckland points price hike was just seasonal but it’s not. I went from being able to book five nights to not. The Embassy Suites Waikiki which you can’t even redeem free nights certificates just went up 5k more.
Recently stayed a week at a Hilton Hampdon Inn Manhattan Soho, using points. What a dump! Overpriced on points by double.
This latest news proves that Hilton has firmly embraced a downhill spiral with folks who used to be its most valuable repeat customers.
More proof: their phony sales of points to regulars. Even at “half price,” anyone with basic math skills will calculate that they are major rip-offs. But then, they reckon they can swindle the poorly educated, who won’t notice.
This bothers me. I’m a loyal Hilton Honors guy. Well, I was. I’ll be shopping again now. No use keeping 3 Amex s if one of them is a dog now.
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