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SPG Points Extension
Dealing with points expiration policies is one of the things that everyone in this hobby must do. While every program has a different rule, normally you have to earn points in a program every so often in order to keep your points active. There are of course programs that are an exception like Choice which has a hard expiration date.
While most programs generally keep your points active for 2 years, some give you an even shorter period. Spirit for example only gives you 3 months and Starwood Preferred Guest sits somewhere in the middle. Their points expire after one year without activity. Thankfully Starwood is a little bit different since that time period is extended when you either earn or redeem points.
Testing the Rules
The other day I received an email from Award Wallet telling me that my tiny balance of Starpoints would be expiring. (My wife keeps the healthy Starpoints balance in the family.) Even though a little over 4,000 points isn’t a lot, I didn’t want to lose them. After all in SPG that is enough for a free night!
So I carefully looked at the rules and decided an award booking would fix this. Last year we stayed at the Four Points by Sheraton in Medellin and I know that property goes for only 3,000 points on the weekend, so I made a booking for next year. This booking can be cancelled at any point up until 1 day before. After making the booking I checked Award Wallet and was pleased to see this:
My little plan worked. Now my points are extended until 11/20/16! I may just wait awhile and see if I can make that Medellin trip happen. If not, I’ll cancel the booking at some point and then the point will be redposited. The best part of that is that it should start the 1 year all over again!
While points expiration policies can be frustrating, Starwood Preferred Guest makes it very very easy to keep your points alive. By simply earning or spending points you will be able to extend the life of your balance indefinitely! Now to plan my trip to Medellin. 😉
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