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One devaluation after another might make you rethink if collecting hotel rewards is still worth it. And now, with dynamic pricing as the norm, sometimes you need a hundred thousand point balance just for a weekend. A reserve of 25,000 points remaining in a solitaire account may seem like peanuts. Likewise, free night certificates with price caps may seem uninspiring.
While it’s true that five-star luxury hotels can cost a pretty penny, having a small balance in your accounts doesn’t mean you’re stuck with a mediocre freeway-side property in the middle of nowhere. It takes a bit of hunting to find the best hotel buyouts, but there are enticing properties even in the lower categories. These 11 hotels stand out with above-average locations or amenities without requiring a lifetime of savings.
Distrikt Hotel Pittsburgh, Curio Collection by Hilton
Price varies by date – rooms start at 28,000 Hilton Honors Points per night
Like much of Pittsburgh, the Distrikt Hotel does a fabulous job of blending the city’s history with a resurgent community today. A nearly century-old landmark, today’s hotel is home to an oyster and cocktail bar, terrace views, and bikes to borrow. From here, it’s no problem reaching the Andy Warhol Museum, Point State Park, and dozens of other Pittsburgh attractions.
Take your stay to the next level with Hilton Honors Diamond elite status. Members can enjoy benefits such as room upgrades and a 48-hour room guarantee. The Hilton Honors Aspire Card from American Express* The card comes with free Diamond status along with other fantastic benefits.
Hyatt Place Moab
Price varies by date – rooms start at 12,000 World of Hyatt points per night
For outdoor enthusiasts, the Hyatt Place Moab is a great place to stay. Just five minutes from Arches National Park, you can get in and out easily, perfect for watching the sunrise and sunset when the park is less crowded. Rooms come with small sitting areas and full work desks, in case you need to spread out, and there’s a pool and hot tub on-site.
The World of Hyatt credit card comes with 30,000 bonus points after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening. Plus, up to 30,000 additional bonus points by earning 2 total bonus points per dollar spent in the first 6 months from account opening on purchases that normally earn 1 bonus point, on up to 15 $000 spent, enough for five nights at the Hyatt Place Moab.
Hyatt Regency Tulsa Downtown
Prices vary by date – stays start at 3,500 World of Hyatt points per night
You can have a fun weekend using the Hyatt Regency Tulsa Downtown as your base. In the heart of a vibrant neighborhood, the property is next to the Tulsa Performing Arts Center as well as within walking distance of dozens of bars and restaurants. The rooms at this full-service hotel are well-appointed and there is an on-site restaurant and swimming pool.
The Tuxon Hotel
Prices vary by date – rooms start at 20,000 Marriott Bonvoy points per night
Go ahead, settle in — not only is the modernist Tuxon Hotel in Tucson’s desert reasonably priced (remember, your fifth night is free when redeeming points), it’s awfully inviting. This design-driven property features pieces by local artists, a cactus garden, and sparkling pools to take you away from home while keeping you in the center of a city known for the outdoors and fine dining.
Related: Which Marriott Card is Right for You?
Aloft Little Rock West
Prices vary by date – a room here starts at 5,000 Marriott Bonvoy points per night
Aloft Little Rock West’s trendy rooms, live music at the W XYZ bar, and outdoor pool make this hotel a fantastic place to stay while traveling in Arkansas. The location splits the difference between heading downtown or enjoying the trails at Pinnacle Mountain State Park, making it a welcome place to stay at an extraordinarily low rate.
Hotel Indigo Baltimore Downtown
Price varies by date with rooms starting at 14,000 IHG One Rewards points per night
The Hotel Indigo Baltimore Downtown takes its boutique hotel designation seriously, offering unique amenities to brighten your stay. Upon arrival, you’ll be greeted by the property’s dog, Xander, before heading to rooms decorated with literature-themed murals. There’s also a library on-site, to pay homage to hometown author Edgar Allan Poe, and one of the country’s quirkiest extras: three bee colonies are housed here, which you can see ( safely) before tasting their products at the hotel bar or restaurant.
IHG offers the IHG® Rewards Premier Credit Card*, which comes with 140,000 bonus points after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months of account opening. While the welcome offer is compelling on its own, the card also comes with a birthday night, redeemable at any property 40,000 points and below.
Kimpton Overland Hotel at Atlanta Airport
Price varies by date – rooms start at 19,000 IHG One Rewards points per night
A late arrival or an early departure from the Atlanta airport will not seem like a constraint when you stay at the Kimpton Overland. Along with the Kimpton amenities you already know and love, like free evening wine hours, you’ll also love the rooftop views. On one side you can look at the runway at Atlanta Hartsfield Jackson Airport. On the other, you’ll have a bird’s eye view of the handling course at the Porsche Experience Center.
Plantation on Crystal River, Ascend Hotel Collection
Rooms available from 20,000 Choice Privileges Rewards points per night
For the same price that other programs charge for a basic property, you can book a night at a resort on Florida’s Gulf Coast. Crystal River on the “Nature Coast” is home to hundreds of manatees that you can visit via responsible snorkeling tours. Or look for other wildlife at the Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge and other nearby state parks.
If you’re low on Choice Privilege points, check out the Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® card*. You’ll get 32,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases within the first 90 days of account opening, free Elite Gold status, and an additional 8,000 points per year when you spend $10,000.
Vino Bello Resort
Rooms available for 15,000 Wyndham Rewards points per night
Escape to wine country with a stay at Vino Bello Resort, known for its condominium-style accommodations. Trade-ins at this Napa hotel are in classic studio apartments, complete with kitchenettes, dining areas, and patios or balconies. Whether your goal is wine tasting, fine dining, or pampering yourself at the spa, this property puts you in a prime location.
Get a Wyndham Rewards® Earner℠ Plus Card* for your stay and enjoy complimentary Platinum Elite status, which gives you the flexibility to check in early or check out late.
Zermatt Utah Resort & Spa
Rooms available for 15,000 Wyndham Rewards points per night
Halfway Utah doesn’t have the prestige of Park City, but you get a lot more bang for your buck while still being close to ski resorts, state parks, and fly fishing. The resort itself is also well laid out. Join free yoga classes or send the kids on the carousel. There’s also a spa, two pools, mini-golf, tennis courts, life-size chess, and more.
Country Inn & Suites by Radisson, South Pigeon Forge, TN
Price varies by date – rooms start at 20,000 Radisson Rewards Americas points per night
Sharing the difference between Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg, this Country Inn & Suites puts you in a prime location for the area’s top attractions. You will be close to Dollywood, the Great Smoky Mountains and nightlife. Standard rooms come with a small refrigerator and microwave, as well as a free breakfast every morning to make getting around a little easier.
Cheap reward redemptions don’t necessarily mean interest-free stays. There are deals to be found all over the country, even when you’re on a budget. If you delayed booking a hotel swap because you thought you wouldn’t find anything worthwhile, here’s your reminder to start looking. These hotels, and many more, are hotels made for travelers who don’t want to part with a million points.