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Gift More Than Just Stays With Hotel Loyalty Points



As the holidays approach, even frequent travelers might be looking for unique gifts for their friends and family while minimizing their out-of-pocket costs.

That’s where hotel loyalty programs can come in to make up the difference. Both Marriott and Hilton offer large experience programs for their members, where they can redeem or bid points for unique experiences not available to the general public.

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Hilton Honors members can give experiences as gifts that aren’t generally available elsewhere. Examples include a tennis match with John McEnroe or a VIP distillery experience in Dublin.

The distillery experience includes two nights at the Conrad Dublin, transfers to and from Teeling Distillery, and daily breakfast for two. Once at the distillery, guests will be regaled with stories of the distillery’s past, learn about the history of Irish whiskey, and have a tasting of the famous tipple.

Other experiences include private concert access with chart-topping artists, access to the Latin Grammy Awards in Las Vegas, or a VIP football experience in the Northeast.

Members of the Marriott loyalty programs also have the option to redeem for what that brand calls the “Moments” program, which was expanded earlier this year.

SPG Moments redemption options include a private dinner at New Orleans restaurant Herbsaint with Chef Donald Link or a hands-on cooking class with Chef Scott Clark of Dad’s Luncheonette at the Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay during the Global Culinary Series.

Music fans can redeem for access to the SPG Luxury Suite at London’s O2 Arena during the Capital’s Jingle Bell Ball, where they can enjoy a fully-stocked food and beverage area while listening to top artists. The SPG Luxury Suite is also available for Moments redemption at New York City’s Madison Square Garden for select sporting events throughout the season.

Whether redeeming from Hilton or Marriott/SPG, hotel loyalty programs offer holiday gift shoppers the opportunity to share exclusive events with their loved ones without significant cash layout. It also means greater points value for frequent travelers who have chosen to invest in their favorite hotel brand.

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