Friday, July 31, 2015

One Minute of Fame or Two Month's of Hotel Stays

SPG recently auctioned off an experience to throw out the first pitch at a Chicago Cubs game.  The package included two game tickets, a pre-game photo, and no hotel stay.  The winning bid was 189,502 points. That equates to 20 free nights at my favorite SPG hotels, the The Westin Sydney or The Westin Palace Madrid.  It also could be 50 free nights at the Sheraton Oklahoma City or 73 free nights at the Sheraton Athlone Ireland. The points could also be converted into 234,502 frequent flyer miles, enough four or five transatlantic business class flights.  The auction winner bought a cool and unique experience that they could not buy with money. That is the value of points programs, they make the impossible achievable.  I'm also certain I would not spend that much on an experience that lasts about 45 seconds.
Where Could 234,502 Miles Take You?
Math Note: Math assumes maximizing the 'stay 4 get 1 free' room redemption pricing. I did not include any welcome gift or Make a Green Choice bonus points. Off season pricing used for Westin hotels mentioned. Frequent flyer mile math assumes 1:1 program transfer and maximizing the 5,000 mile bonus for every 20,000 points transferred.

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