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Using Membership Rewards Points for Four Seasons Hotels

It’s well known that Four Seasons Hotels don’t have a frequent stay program, so many people assume that there’s no way to stay for free at a Four Seasons using points. Not true.

A not-too-often discussed benefit of Membership Rewards points is that they can be used to pay for nights at Four Seasons hotels. They will exchange 12,000 Membership Rewards points for $100 Four Seasons gift cards, which isn’t a particularly great deal.

However, they also offer free nights at Four Seasons Hotels directly in exchange for points. Lower level Four Seasons (if there is such a thing) are 40,000 points per night. These hotels are generally in the $300-$500/night range, making this award a better deal (in most cases) than the gift cards. The confusingly named Ritz Carlton Chicago (a Four Seasons Hotel) starts at $470/night but can be yours for 40,000 Membership Rewards Points, a pretty good deal if you’re someone who does not think a free night at the Westin is particularly appealing.

They have several levels of hotels, with the top ones going for a ridiculous 115,000 Points/night. This is especially appalling because the Four Seasons New York (which is one of those top level hotels) can be had for about $600/night, a terrible exchange rate for MR points.

That said, the lowest level hotels, where you get about $120 in hotel for every 10000 MR points is a decent redemption option for those who have their heart set on a Four Seasons.

(And if we’re being honest here, no matter how wonderful that suite is at a Hyatt, it’s not the Four Seasons. Sometimes it’s just worth the splurge – especially if you can use points to pay for it.)

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  1. True, but sometimes high end hotels aren’t “worth” more than nice mid-tier options. For a recent anniversary celebration we had the choice of using points to stay at a Hilton Garden Inn off Times Square or the Waldorf Astoria. Point values weren’t comparable, but within 10,000 I believe, and frankly, I didn’t care about point values or redemption ratios – I wanted a nice romantic weekend getaway. It may have been the better value, but I was somewhat concerned that the Waldorf would stick us in a broom closet with fancy drapes. The HGI was much closer to the theater and restaurant we were going to, and by telling the manager why we were coming, we got a beautiful upgraded corner room and a welcome package with complimentary champagne and snacks. Couldn’t have been happier with the hotel, location, service, or value.

  2. For several reasons, I’m glad I’m not married to you :)

    • Yeah, I know this isn’t the choice everyone would have made. But I knew nice and modern and a dramatically better location (we were going into the city by bus, and the HGI is just up the block from Port Authority) would beat old world charm for my wife. Next time we’ll do the Plaza or the Four Seasons etc. Just wanted to point out that relative redemption rate values are not always the sole decision point. It’s sort of the same idea as using miles to go to a family reunion in Cleveland rather than a trip to Europe. Sometimes you want to see the family without paying out of pocket for tickets. Not that I have any family in Cleveland. But you get the idea.

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