Got a lot of hotel points in multiple accounts and unsure which program offers the best value for any particular redemption? Wouldn’t it be great to compare multiple chains side-by-side on the same screen, including inventory and reward rates? Oh, and comparing those numbers to paid rates, too, of course. Welcome to “Hotel Hustle” (name subject to change), my latest random tool designed to make this game just a little bit easier to play.
The concept of Hotel Hustle is similar to that of most hotel OTAs: Put in a location and dates then press the magic button and see what it manages to come up with for you.
In this case I actually put a bit of effort into the UI to make it look a bit nicer than most of my tools. It includes a map with each brand in a different color:
And also a table showing all the properties available along with the paid and points rates. I even do the math for you to determine the cents per point. Click on the column headers and you can sort the entries. Or type in the box atop the grid to filter by hotel name.
Of course, maybe you don’t have a lot of points in one of the programs included so you would rather exclude those hotels from the search results. Just click on the program name under the map to add or remove those properties from the display.
And, of course, clicking a icon on the map will pop up details about that specific hotel:
Most importantly, the links are all live straight to the hotel site so you can book direct with the program; you’ll get your points (if on a paid rate) and status benefits because it is a direct booking.
Currently there are five programs (more than 19,000 properties!) included in the tool:
- Club Carlson
- IHG Rewards Club
- Marriott Rewards
- Starwood Preferred Guest
- Wyndham Rewards
I’m hoping to get Hilton HHonors & Hyatt Gold Passport integrated soon. Le Club Accor, Best Western and Choice are further down the priority list.
I also plan on adding a per-program valuation assessment. The reality is that points are not all the same value so getting 1cpp in Program A might actually be a better value than 1.2cpp in Program B. I’ll start with some average numbers and eventually add an option allowing each user to customize the program valuations if desired.
So, what do you think? Any suggestions for improvements I haven’t already outlined above? Is the name Hotel Hustle even remotely reasonable or just plain ridiculous? There’s a chance I’ll split it off from the main Wandering Aramean Travel Tools site, hence the different name. But I’m not sure I need to go down that path quite yet.
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