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With Southwest check in to your next hotel stay…
Did you know that you can book hotels on the Southwest Airlines website? Not only that, but you can earn bonus Rapid Rewards points, too! In partnership with Booking.com, when you add your Rapid Rewards number to your reservation, you can book a hotel stay on Southwest and earn up to 10,000 points per night.
Why use Southwest check in for hotels?
In addition to earning bonus points, with Southwest Hotels you never pay booking fees and they offer a price match in case you find something cheaper. Rapid Rewards members get access to ‘Secret Deals’ and there’s over a million properties worldwide for you to book. You can book your room now but you only pay when you stay and you can cancel most rooms in advance if needed.
We wanted to compare booking a stay on Southwest Hotels to get the bonus points with using an alternative OTA, to see if it’s worth booking the former just for the points. Booking.com is owned by The Priceline Group so we compared rates by checking the cost of booking the same stay on Orbitz, which is owned by Priceline’s competitor Expedia.
How to use Southwest check in for hotels…
Simply search for your stay on Southwest Hotels. We chose Denver on January 10th, 2017, for a one-night stay for two adults; the Holiday Inn Denver Cherry Creek came up at $144 before taxes and fees – $165.38 to pay and 3,000 bonus Rapid Rewards earned:
Booking the same stay on Orbitz came up at the same price of $144 before taxes and fees – $165.67 to pay – but this is non-refundable. You earn $4.97 in Orbucks for this stay, which is worth that amount off a future stay with Orbitz:
What else do I need to know about Southwest check in for hotels?
We also checked the cost of this stay when booking directly on IHG. You’ll earn IHG rewards Club points booking this way, which may be better for you. For non-members, the cost was, again, the same as Southwest Hotels and Orbitz – $144 – or 5% off for IHG Rewards members, so $139.68 before taxes and fees; the final estimated total was $160.28 for members:
IHG members earn 1,000 points per qualifying stay, so it may be worth it more for you to pay $160.28 for this stay on IHG to get 1,000 IHG Rewards Club points, or it may well be better for you to book on Southwest Hotels to pay $5.10 more and earn 3,000 Rapid Rewards instead. In this instance, it’s likely that either is worth more than $4.97 in Orbucks, but that depends, of course, on which points you prefer to collect and how much they are personally worth to you.
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About the author: Torsten is a serial entrepreneur who started almost a dozen ventures on four continents. Torsten's love for travel has brought him to 130+ countries and travel with most of the world's airlines. You can reach Torsten at [email protected]
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