A hotel chain's Best Rate Guarantee (or equivalent) can make or break a brand. While different hotels have different Best Rate Guarantee policies, I have had some successes with Hyatt recently when I was shopping for rooms at the Grand Hyatt Melbourne where I might be staying in a month or two. Hyatt guarantees the best rate when booking directly with them and they will match a lower, qualifying rate published on another site before beating that by an additional 20% - remember you will still earn your elite qualifying points and nights this way! While it isn't always easy to find a lower competing rate elsewhere (since the terms of the booking have to match entirely), it isn't at the same time, impossible.
Since I will be traveling to Melbourne, Australia pretty soon, I wanted to check if it was more affordable to stay at the Grand Hyatt Melbourne instead of the Hilton Melbourne South Wharf which I loved. A quick check reveals a Standard Rate from AU$275 (and a My Hyatt Rate for AU$262 which has the same cancellation policies). Since I will be staying there for 8 nights, this will be approximately AU$2,200 before the ridiculous credit card charges that the country still practices.
After shopping on an OTA, I managed to find a competing rate of approximately AU$238 a night with the same cancellation policy. After submitting a Best Rate Guarantee claim (remember you can submit a BRG Claim with Hyatt without an existing reservation), I was quickly informed (within 24 hours even on a weekend which is great!) that the competing rate has been matched and a 20% price beat has been given. All I had to do then was to make the booking via Hyatt and then contact the service representative who would then adjust my rate down to approximately AU$190. With a little time and effort, I have managed to reduce the total rate of my stay from AU$275 a night to AU$190 while still earning elite qualifying nights for status renewal - approximately 30% - which is not bad at all!
In conjunction with Apple Pay launching in Singapore, the five participating banks have revealed their promotions. Even though I thought UOB had the best deal of a S$10 Cash Rebate initially, it is pretty disappointing to see that it is only valid for 25 May 2016 (today) only. All the information below are accurate at the time of writing and it seems like Standard Chartered cardholders will have the most benefit - up to S$50 rebate! Check out the summary below for all the Apple Pay Promotions in Singapore,
Everyone knows I'm always up for a great deal. I truly believe in traveling well but it is also important to make every cent count - this is why 95% of my daily transactions are made cashless via credit card (in one way or another). I have written on ShopBack on multiple occassions and if you still do not have an account, click here to get a free S$5 credit to start you off. Remember if you book your hotel stays via ShopBack, you will still earn your eligible room nights/points as always and on top of that, you will also be earning additional cashback!
It has come to my attention that there are people who believe that by using ShopBack, you will not earn any elite-qualifying nights with your loyalty program of choice - this is NOT true as you are essentially still booking DIRECTLY with the hotel chain on the website. You will still earn elite-qualifying nights with your loyalty program AND cashback by using ShopBack so there is really no reason not to use it at all.
You should know by now that Kaligo gives you 10 miles per S$1 spend if you use an eligible Citibank or UOB Credit Card. Remember you have until 31 May 2016 (that's the end of this month) to earn an additional 1,000 bonus Citi Miles when you make an eligible reservation (minimum S$200 spend) - this is on top of the bonus Citi Miles that you will earn!
The Citi PremierMiles Visa Card occupies a permanent spot in my wallet and also because you get 10,000 Citi Miles when you renew the card every year for an annual fee - find out more about buying miles in Singapore here! It is also possible to earn 10 miles per S$1 when you make hotel reservations via Kaligo with an eligible credit card. If for some reason, you do not already have this card in your wallet, read on to find out how you can earn 30,000 bonus miles (on top of the regular accrual of Citi Miles) when you sign-up now!
Only three weekends (Friday to Sunday) left to take advantage of the 12X Membership Rewards Points promotion with American Express. As you already know, the American Express Platinum Credit Card gives 2X Membership Rewards Points per S$1.60 spent. With the EXTRA Partners, eligible cardholders can earn up to 20X (for Charge Cardholders) points. However, if you charge your eligible American Express card at a participating merchant, you will earn 12X Membership Rewards Points per S$1.60 - that's 4.17 Miles per S$1!
After completing a successful round of Accelerate offers from IHG last quarter, I am thrilled to share with everyone that the next round (01 June 2016 to 31 August 2016) is back! While most people in Asia-Pacific should not have any issues signing up for the promotion, it appears that some US accounts have not been targeted this time round which is rather peculiar. Anyhow, you should definitely check out the following link and sign-in your account to check your set of offers.
The UOB PRVI Miles American Express card will soon get contactless payment enabled - could this be a step towards the whole Apple Pay movement? If you are an existing cardholder, you should definitely request for the new card (via SMS) as you will be able to earn 10 Miles per S$5 (2 miles per dollar) spent via contactless payment at participating supermarkets between 01 June 2016 to 30 November 2016.
I've written about the opportunity to get Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) Gold Status with just one stay instead of 20 nights on multiple occasions. All you have to do is to simply register here with an eligible World MasterCard that is issued in Asia-Pacific (excluding Japan) and then make one eligible stay at any property in the region - you will then earn instant Gold Preferred Guest status for a year. This amazing deal has now been extended until 14 July 2017 but do note that this upgrade offer is a one-time upgrade per member.
While I was out in town over the weekends, I noticed that Citi Rewards Cardholders are able to earn 20X Rewards points between 01 May 2016 to 31 July 2016 at selected merchants. 20X Rewards points is essentially equivalent to 8 miles per S$1 so that's actually a great deal if you have been thinking about giving your wardrobe a refresh.