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When I stay at Hotel chains I am presented with an option – either have breakfast (up to 2 people usually) or have 1000 points credited to my account instead for each night. Which one will I pick? Easy – I would almost always have the breakfast instead of claiming the points. Let me explain.

It comes down on how much points are valued. If I take Hilton for example – if I am given 1000 points per night instead of taking the breakfast – then use the Conrad Hong Kong for example. Each room costs on at least $400 a night. If you use Hilton points – it requires 80,000 Hilton HHonors points per night. So $400 = 80,000 points

So therefore 1000 points is equal to $5. Usually a Hilton Breakfast for an adult costs $40 in Australia and overseas. Also if I use points and am a Hilton Gold member – I am provided breakfast for 2 adults and 2 small children – so is easily over $100 value had I just come to the hotel for buffet breakfast.…

I started to understand more about elite status for hotels on my first stay in the Hilton Tokyo hotel back in 2007. We were staying 10 nights in Tokyo and I wanted the stay there to be comfortable as possible for myself and my wife as it was a “baby moon” before our first child was born in 2008 and also because it was the start of our first world trip.

I researched the hotels – not knowing anything about status, benefits etc – and found the Hilton Tokyo hotel in the CBD. During that time I found the price to be $300 AUD per night. This was actually quite expensive and if you multiple it by 10 – then it costed us $3000 for those 10 nights. Plus I had no benefits – so I made sure that breakfast was included in the package.

Now roughly for 10 nights – I spent $3000 – so with Hilton you each 10x points per dollar you spend. So I received about 30,000 points. This would also lift me up from the basic Hilton level (Blue) to the Silver level. Not much benefits with the Silver – but I did get 30K Hilton HHonors points. During that time you needed 40,000 Hilton points to stay at the Conrad Hong Kong hotel. So my initial thought was – stay at least 10 nights and I would get one free stay at a nice hotel.…

All the hotels these days have a best rate guarantee. It’s not just the hotels – but the hotel websites such as Expedia also a similar policy. For us as the consumers – this is a great thing – but hardly anyone will be bothered to search at least 3 different hotel websites to see if it is cheaper.

I’ve had a couple of successes with the Hilton Surfers Paradise Residences in regards to the Best Rate Guarantee. Wotif.com had a cheaper rate of $150 cheaper than what was advertised by Hilton.com. So the policy is that if you book with Hilton – they will match the rate by providing the difference in the refund and also $50 USD as well.

So I booked 5 nights with Hilton – I was given $150 x 5 + $50 = $800 refund back. That was a huge amount – so I scored big on that one. Also as I booked on Hilton.com – I received the full amount of Hilton points before the rate was matched.

IHG have a great best rate guarantee. If you find another hotel site cheaper – they will match it and give the first night free! So if you are able to find it – then book on IHG.com and submit a claim.…

Stayangel

If you love big chain hotels – Hilton, Hyatts, Sheraton etc. and love even more the best deal out there on the market – this tool is for you!

There is a website called www.StayAngel.com which is very innovative and exciting as it searches high and low for you on the internet for the best price. I met the founder/owner of this website on a recent trip to Chicago and he is also from Australia!

This is how it works – and I know as I’ve signed up for it and experiencing the best possible price as I sleep and does the work for me.

Sign-up for it. It is free and has a 7 day premium membership trial. Once signed-up – link all your hotel accounts. Currently there is Hilton, Hyatt and Starwood that is working. Next month (December, 2014) there will be Marriott, Shangri La, Rydges, IHG and Accor included as well.…