Starwood 2014 Annual Category Changes

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Update: Tomorrow is the last day to book hotels that are getting more expensive at the current lower rate.  Remember that hotels change local time, so if you want to book the S. Regis Rome you would have to lock that in before 6pm EST.
Don’t forget to call back on the 4th to get back points if you have booked a hotel that is getting cheaper.

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Originally posted on 02/20:

Related:
-Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express

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Starwood 2014 Complete List Of Annual Category Changes

Book stays before 03/04 local hotel time to lock in current rates for future stays.  Almost all hotel stays are cancellable for free until a certain amount of time before the stay (read the fine print).

Just over 20% of SPG hotels are changing category, of these 56% are moving down and 44% are moving up.

Most hotels chains reorganize their categories yearly to keep them current with the average rates that they charge.  The beauty of hotel points is that there are no blackout dates or capacity controls, if there is a room you can use points for it.  So even if a major event is in town and rates are quadruple what they normally are you can still use the regular amount of points as long as the hotel is not sold out of standard rooms.

This list is subject to change and other hotels can still be added to it.

Starwood’s standard award chart will not change:
If you stay 5 nights with points the 5th night is free.
Category 1 = 2,000 (weekend), 3,000 (weekday).
Category 2 = 3,000 (weekend), 4,000 (weekday).
Category 3 = 7,000
Category 4 = 10,000
Category 5 = 12,000 (Low Season), 16,000 (High Season).
Category 6 = 20,000 (Low Season), 25,000 (High Season).
Category 7 = 30,000 (Low Season), 35,000 (High Season).

The capacity controlled cash and points chart doesn’t change either:

 

Point transfers to airlines with a 25% bonus for 20K transfers remains unchanged as well.

Sample hotels going more expensive:
S. Regis Rome, was 6, now 7.
Sheraton Waikiki, Honolulu, Oahu, was 5, now 6.
Sheraton Maui, was 5, now 6.
Westin Maui, was 5, now 6.
W Westwood Los Angeles, was 5, now 6.
W S. Francisco, was 5, now 6.
W Austin, was 5, now 6.
S. Regis Atlanta, was 5, now 6.
Four Points by Sheraton Miami Beach, was 4, now 5.
The Nines, Luxury Collection, Portland, OR, was 4, now 5.
Hotel Ivy, Luxury Collection, Minneapolis, was 4, now 5.
Westin Hilton Head, SC, was 4, now 5.
Sheraton Suites Cuyahoga Falls, OH, was 3, now 4.
Sheraton Anchorage, was 3, now 4.
Westin Baltimore Airport, was 3, now 4.
Sheraton Edison, NJ, was 2, now 3.
Sheraton Garden Grove, Anaheim, CA, was 2, now 3.
Sheraton Pittsburgh Airport, was 2, now 3.
Aloft Chicago O Hare, was 2, now 3.
Sheraton Baltimore Airport, was 2, now 4.
Aloft Baltimore Airport, was 2, now 3.
Four Points by Sheraton Detroit Airport, was 1, now 2.

Sample hotels getting cheaper:
Le Parker Meridien Palm Springs, was 6, now 5.
W Minneapolis, was 5, now 4.
Aloft Arundel Mills Hanover Baltimore, was 3, now 2.
Four Points by Sheraton Toronto Airport, was 3, now 2.
Four Points by Sheraton Niagara Falls, NY, was 3, now 2.
Sheraton at the Falls, Niagara Falls, NY, was 3, now 2.
Sheraton Lake Buena Vista Orlando Resort, was 3, now 2.
Four Points by Sheraton Orlando Studio City, was 2, now 1.

S. Regis Beijing, was 6, now 5.
S. Regis Shenzhen, was 6, now 5.
Westin Tokyo, was 6, now 5.
Westin Panama, was 5, now 4.
Westin Bund Shanghai, was 5, now 4.
The Laguna, Luxury Collection, Bali, was 5, now 4.
Four Points by Sheraton Sydney, was 5, now 4.
Westin Puerto Vallarta Resort, was 3, now 2.
Four Points by Sheraton Punta Cana, was 2, now 1.

HT: chucksterace, via DDF

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30 Comments On "Starwood 2014 Annual Category Changes"

All opinions expressed below are user generated and the opinions aren’t provided, reviewed or endorsed by any advertiser or DansDeals.

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Tim

Will the value of the points go down ?

Four point Miami beach

Dan, if I use my points for Miami beach hotel stays which program beats serves me? I used to use spg and stay at 4 points but now it’s unaffordable

sb

so much for the cheap 4000 point sheraton edison . definitely not worth 7000. Lakewooders wont be happy about this

bob

sheraton tel aviv not touched. woohoo!

ABC

Horrible blood bath for cat 4 hotels going to cat5 during high season (60% increase!!!). Sadly my favorite summer vacation place is in that category.

Avi

Too bad about the Hawaii hotels. I’ve been hoping to save up to head out there but this nearly doubles the cost. Dan, does this change the ranking of your cards – is SPG still #1?

Miracle

Anything in Jerusalem?

Ash

Any word on SLS in Beverly Hills?

Dan

@Tim:
Why would they?
This is standard stuff.

@Four point Miami beach:
Priceline.

@bob:
Yup, good news there.

@Avi:
Hyatt is the way to go in Maui or Kauai anyway.

@Miracle:
Closest is Tel Aviv.

@Ash:
Remains a 6.

Levi

Anyone know what “capacity controlled cash and points” means? how is that different from a standard award?
TIA

Dan

@Levi:
Standard awards are not capacity controlled. If there is a standard room for sale you can book it with points.

Puppydogs

Yup the Sheraton Edison was a steal for 4k (3k for weekends).

Four Points Miami probably should not be moving up a level. Nice lobby but that’s probably where it ends.

bob

Four Points Miami should have been lowered. A true dump that only charges the rates they do because of the location. Anywhere else it would be a 2 at most.

YYZ

Westin Maui is nicer more modern but the hyatt pool area/ waterslide is better for kids. Anyway, just booked westin maui with the old rate last week.

milechazzer

@bob:

ditto!
That hotel has the worst reviews on TripAdvisor, and the poor responses from management only makes them look worse.

These are some of my personal favorite responses:

Response to comment that stay was a waste of points:
“We regret your disappointment. While we aren’t a Sheraton (maybe Sheraton’s little sister) disappointment is still disappointment.”

Response to comment that hotel is actually better than all the reviews indicate:
“Thank you for your kind review. Please remember that the reviews shown represent less than 1% of our guests from the past 15 years.”

TT

One point about Sheraton they always give u free toothbrush/paste and comb, I never had a compliant, its not Fairmont which is amazing CS, but for the price good chain.

Deal Guy

You missed his point. I have heard first hand from management, that they wanted to do more to improve, but Spg wouldn’t allow them. Spg doesn’t like four points to try to be like a Sheraton. Because imagine you stayed at a four points and were treated like a Sheraton, you would come to expect that from every four points, and works be disappointed when toy didn’t get it.

zvi321

@Deal Guy:
Thats lame

For all of the lakewooders, just booked a bunch of rooms now and cancel it if your not gonna use it

dan

What about the Weston Diplomat and the St Regis in Bal Harbour, did those go up or down?

sara

@bob I agree with u about 4 points Miami. Just stayed there this wk and was old and ugly. Location great but that’s it. Quite surprised they raising it.

Jeff

Several of these point hikes will affect me and my choices. It seems that they are trying to eliminate the possibility of finding great value for their points.

Super Speed

If I book a room with points and then want to add on a night after it goes up in category which rate will I pay? The rate I booked the 1st night on or the price at that time.

aron

edison going up they have been trying for a while

Rachel

Any recomandations for paris

Barbara

Westin paris is a great hotel. Great location and big rooms.

mo

its only 25,000 points. not 30,000

MaaYanky

@sb:
Brooklynites are affected as well!
I had to book my weekly 1 night family trip for the next 4 months in advance 😉

MaaYanky

Anyone know if the Four Points by Sheraton Plainview Long Island that is changing from a 3 to a 4 is worth the current 7k rate?
Is there a Cash and Points option at this hotel?

azhoopsfan

Is today also the last day before the 2015 “peak season” dates go into effect?

Not Happy Camper

Looks like 2 of the hotels I have been following have already increased their levels. Both are on the east coast and it’s more than 1/2 hour prior to mid night. Least to say I am not happy about this.

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