September 2, 2008

SPG Flights – Redeem Starpoints for plane tickets without any blackout dates

SPG Flights Website

Launched today, SPG Flights is the newest feature of the Starwood Preferred Guest program. With SPG Flights, you can redeem your Starpoints for the full cost of airline tickets on hundreds of carriers around the world. This includes business and first class tickets. Best of all, you can even earn frequent flier miles on these redemption tickets!

The program has borrowed the concept of no hotel blackout dates and applied it to the flight program as well. You can redeem Starpoints for airline tickets on any dates you choose, even during peak periods such as holidays. This gives SPG Flights a competitive advantage over the airline frequent flier programs which are often heavily laden with award restrictions. This also comes at a time when airlines are rapidly adding additional fees and surcharges. All booking fees and taxes will be included in the SPG Flights price.

In addition to no blackout dates, members can also earn airline miles when booking through SPG Flights. This is because through SPG Flights, you are not actually exchanging your Starpoints for airline miles, and then redeeming those airline miles for a ticket. You bypass the airline’s points entirely and book tickets directly with your Starpoints. From the airlines’ perspective you are still buying a ticket from them, though the currency used is Starpoints instead of cash. Circumventing the airlines’ programs also means circumventing their award restrictions and blackouts.

Starwood Preferred Guest is the first and only hotel loyalty program that allows members to redeem points directly for airline tickets. Check out the multimedia press release . . .

So how many Starpoints will it take to get a free airline ticket? 10,000 Starpoints will get you a ticket worth up to $150, and generally speaking each additional $65 on top of that will cost you 5,000 Starpoints. Here’s the official conversion chart below . . .

Ticket Price (including taxes and fees)

 up to $150 = 10,000 Starpoints 
$150-$215 = 15,000
$215-$280 = 20,000
$280-$345 = 25,000
$345-$410 = 30,000
$410-$475 = 35,000
$475-$540 = 40,000
$540-$605 = 45,000
$605-$670 = 50,000
$670-$735 = 55,000
$735-$800 = 60,000
$800-$865 = 65,000
$865-$930 = 70,000
$930-$995 = 75,000
$995-$1060 = 80,000


Source: WSJ


1 Comment »

  1. […] introduction of the SPG Flights program yesterday set a new milestone in hotel loyalty programs and made headlines on travel-related […]

    Pingback by 250 Starpoints for completing a survey on the new SPG Flights program « *wood — September 3, 2008 @ 11:35 am

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