Lots of folks love the Starwood Preferred Guest program, even if they never set foot in one of the associated hotels. The points are quite valuable when transferred to airline programs as well. And if you’re looking for a “stretch” hotel stay in a more expensive part of the world the value there is pretty good, too.
One of the other benefits that the program used to offer was relatively free transfer of points between members of the same household. If you had the same address such transfers were free. Needless to say, this flexibility was also quite easy to abuse. But not any more.
As of this past Monday the program has initiated a new internal transfers auditing group that will investigate such transfer requests to ensure that they are legitimate. In other words, folks who used to sell or barter the points are much less likely to be able to do so successfully going forward.
It is hard to be too upset with them for simply enforcing the rules as they are written, though I’m sure folks will try. Just another loophole in the system closed up.
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