From Four Points to 20,000 Starwood Points (Plus a FREE Hotel Stay!)

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From Four Points to 20,000 Starwood Points (Plus a FREE Hotel Stay!)

KeithFrom Four Points to 20,000 Starwood Points (Plus a FREE Hotel Stay!)Million Mile Secrets Team

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Keith:   This is not your average story about complaining to get free hotel points.  Although I have quite a few of those! 😉

Last weekend, I was in Nashville for a friend’s bachelor party.  I arrived the night before the rest of the group got to town.  So I decided to book a cheap stay at an airport hotel.

After a few flight delays, I arrived in Nashville at 3:00 am.  I took a ~5 minute taxi ride to the Four Points by Sheraton Nashville Airport.  This is where the story gets good.  At check-in, I learned the hotel was oversold and my room had been given away.

From Four Points To 20000 Starwood Points Plus A FREE Hotel Stay
Who Knew a Four Points Airport Hotel Could Be In Such High Demand?

Most folks would understandably be upset in this situation.  But I knew this was an opportunity to walk away with a free hotel night and much more!

Starwood Elite Status

I’m a loyal Starwood guest with Platinum elite status.  I’ve worked hard to earn this perk by mostly booking Starwood branded hotels whenever my wife and I travel.

It’s nice to enjoy room upgrades and earn extra bonus points when we’re on vacation.  But there’s a benefit of Platinum status I would never have thought could come in handy:

Guaranteed room availability when your room is booked by 3:00 pm, 72+ hours prior to arrival.

Well, apparently this perk does not work as advertised.

A Free Night & 20,000 Starwood Points!

Here’s what I got for the inconvenience:

Yes, 20,000 Starwood points!  That’s enough to get me a free round-trip flight to Hawaii.  Or a free night at highly-rated hotels like The Phoenician, a Luxury Collection Resort, Scottsdale.

From Four Points To 20000 Starwood Points Plus A FREE Hotel Stay
This Is the Most Valuable Amount of Compensation I’ve Ever Received for a Travel Mishap

I’m planning to save these points until the Marriott and Starwood loyalty programs merge in August.  And I am super optimistic I’ll be able to get at least $750+ worth of free travel with these points.

Bottom Line

The main takeaway from my story is: do not settle.  I think many folks would take the free night at a nearby hotel and then curse Starwood for giving their room away.

I was grateful for the free hotel room.  But a quick walk over to the hotel the following day for a conversation with the manager got me 20,000 free Starwood points!

Does anyone else have an oversold hotel experience?  I’d love to hear how you handled it in the comments below!

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I was Hilton Gold last year. Attended church conf in northern Indiana last summer with my 9 year old and 6 year sons. Called earlier in the week to inquire about possible upgrade. Said maybe. Called morning of arrival to say coming in late. When arrived at 930pm with tired crabby kids, found out oversold hotel. Many others were arguing with front desk about same problem.

I stepped up next and said i want everything he got plus more as I have two young kids, called 2x to confirm and was gold elite. Ended up getting both nights comped, $70 voucher for lunch and 95,000 Hilton Honors points. (Did have to negotiate to get and prepped reading terms and conditions – became familiar with program stated compensation was while waiting to checkin)

Turned out quite a few of my other friends had intentionally booked at the alternate hotel. Was a great time. And now have a great story.

Hello Keith,

Did you ask for the 20,000 Starwood points or did they offer them? Did you negotiate the amount?


Hi Gerardo – I asked the manager if he would consider offering points for the inconvenience.
When I asked for 20,000, he said no problem.

3 weeks ago, I was at Aloft Perth. On 2nd night, as we turned the lights off and had almost fallen asleep, the lights came on and woke us up. We called the hotel who sent someone up immediately to fix it. It took 5 mins to fix and we were assured it won’t happen again. So we went back to bed and guess what happened 5 mins later. Yup, the room was lit-up again.

The night manager came up, apologied profusely and gave us an adjacent room to sleep. So we did that.

Day 3, when we came back to the hotel, we were told the problem has been looked at by experts and been permanently fixed.

So night no. 3, we are in bed, it’s dark everywhere and suddenly boom, all the lights came on yet again.

At this point, I was getting really upset. So besides a change of room, I also demanded a meeting with the hotel manager next morning, which I did get.

To cut the long story short, as this was a category 3 hotel (7,000 points/night), the manager offered to waive nights 2,3 and 4 also, to make up for our troubles.

But since I was on a double nights/stays member exclusive promo, i asked if he would consider compensating with points. He said he will call SPG to see if that was possible. 10 mins later he called me and confirmed they were able to do that.

So after 4 nights, which I booked at around $100/night, I walked away with 21,000 points for some minor inconvenience.

That, was my story .


Great move asking for points instead of waiving the nightly costs! Inconveniences are never fun while traveling, but free points can definitely make up for them!