Have a travel related question? Post it here, and I’ll do my best to answer it as quickly as possible.
While anyone can comment on regular blog post, registration is required in order to post a question in this space. Creating your account is free, and you'll be able to see when your question is answered, as well as like comments from other users. And of course, you'll earn status points for offering helpful answers!
This space is intended to be more of a community as well, so please jump in and share tips!
Most useful hotel status & best way to obtain it for trip to Europe
Hi. I am starting to plan a month long trip to Europe in the fall. My travel partner and I plan on spending the vast majority of that in Spain. There will be a day or two layover in Frankfurt coming and going. We also might take a day or two diversion into Portugal and France. But the vast majority of our time will be spent in Spain outside of Barcelona and Madrid. Therein lies the problem.
I do enough traveling to have gold status with Alaska and I am pretty loyal to them. However, I hardly ever stay in hotels. When I do it is usually in a Hyatt, but the only reason I have status with them is because of the reciprocity they enjoy with the Mlife program. Hyatt seems to provide very limited choices in Spain. I still have at least 6 months before I start locking in lodging. Is there any hotel status that is worth having for my extended stay in Spain? If so, how easy is it to obtain status in 6 months and is it worth it? Or should I stick to my free agency and VRBO? In terms of points, the only ones I really bank are Alaska miles and Chase points.
As always, your advice is treasured and appreciated.
Hi Steve, in my opinion Marriott is the american hotel chain that is most present in Spain (there are many AC Hotels, spanish hotel chain that is a subsidiary of Marriott). However, I think your best option will be to remain a free agent. It won’t be very easy to find chain hotels outside of major cities. Additionally many of these US chain hotels are on many occasions more expensive than smaller boutique hotels that offer an equal or better product.
You should still be good off by staying loyal to Hyatt and if you happen to stay somewhere where there are any, you can always help offset the cost with points. But again, independent hotels in Spain (particularly outside of MAD and BCN) aren’t really expensive, especially during the off-peak season.
Look into Hilton hotels – if they work for you, it might be worth getting the Hilton Aspire card form Amex – [URL]https://onemileatatime.com/hilton-aspire-perks-how-they-work/[/URL]
Thanks David. I will have to give it some thought. I would be all over it, but the $250 limited reimbursement for airline fees has me cautious. I usually only fly Alaska and I am wondering how I can recapture the $250 from them. Also I have priority pass access through another card. So is diamond status with Hilton worth $200 ($450 -250 Hilton resort credit) minus the weekend night reward in your opinion?
Assuming you and your travel partner stay at a few Hiltons on this trip, the Diamond will at least get you breakfast every morning. That plus the weekend night is already worth the $200. For the reimbursements, I usually get AA gift cards (though that may no longer be available). Last year, I used it to pay for part of a one way Premium Economy ticket from LAX-HND, which can be credited to Alaska.