Southwest’s New Destinations – Where to Stay Using Points in Mexico

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Update: One or more card offers in this post are no longer available. Check our Hot Deals for the latest offers. Update:   Thanks to Million Mile Secrets readers for sharing their thoughts about hotels in Mexico.  Emily and I haven’t been to many of these destinations, so it’s helpful when our readers add their experiences!  We hope these guides can save folks time when searching for hotels, and that our readers continue sharing their feedback and advice.

In response to the news that Southwest will start flying to Belize, Million Mile Secrets reader Julianna commented:

Someone should do a post on points and rewards hotels in Belize…just sayin’.

I’m taking this a step further and checking out which hotels are available using points in all of Southwest’s new international destinations!

Let’s start by looking at Southwest’s new destinations in Mexico:

  • Cancun
  • Mexico City
  • San Jose del Cabo (Los Cabos)
  • Puerto Vallarta (starting June 2015)
Southwest's New Destinations Where To Stay Using Points In Mexico
Planning a Trip to Mexico on Southwest? I’ll Show You Where to Stay!

In some cities you’ll have lots of choices, and in others just a few.  I’ll explain!

Southwest’s New Destinations – Where to Stay Using Points Index

  • Part 1 – Mexico (Cancun, Los Cabos, Mexico City, and Puerto Vallarta)
  • Part 2 – The Caribbean (Aruba, The Bahamas, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, and Puerto Rico)
  • Part 3 – Central America (Costa Rica and Belize)

Southwest Flies to Mexico – Here’s Where to Stay!

Link:   Hotel Award Charts

I used AwardMapper to help quickly find hotels in each city.  It’s a great tool that shows most (not all) major chain hotels on a map, and the number of points required for an award night!

Southwest's New Destinations Where To Stay Using Points In Mexico
Award Mapper Is a Useful Tool for Finding Award Nights in Unfamiliar Cities
Note:   Some of these hotels are away from the main tourist areas, for example near the airport or downtown instead of the beach.  So check the location before you book!

1.   Cancun

Located on the Yucatan Peninsula, Cancun is known for its party atmosphere and white sand beaches.  It’s not far from the Mayan ruins at Chichen Itza and Tulum.

For folks looking for a more tranquil experience with cute shops, independent restaurants, and terrific snorkeling, take the ferry to Isla Mujeres.

Southwest's New Destinations Where To Stay Using Points In Mexico
Isla Mujeres: Snorkeling, Swimming, and Gigantic Iguanas!
Choice Hotels
Comfort Inn Cancun Aeropuerto – 8,000 points per night
Hyatt
Hyatt Zilara Cancun (All-Inclusive) – 25,000 points plus 12,500 points per additional person, per night Hyatt Playa del Carmen – 20,000 points per night
IHG
Intercontinental:  Presidente Cancun Resort – 25,000 points per night Holiday Inn Express:  Cancun Zona Hotelera – 15,000 points per night Holiday Inn:  Cancun Arenas (All-Inclusive) – 35,000 points per night
Southwest's New Destinations Where To Stay Using Points In Mexico
Relax by the Pool at the Holiday Inn Cancun Arenas
Holiday Inn Express Playa del Carmen – 15,000 points per night
Marriott / Ritz-Carlton
Courtyard Cancun Airport – 10,000 points per night The Ritz-Carlton, Cancun – 50,000 points per night JW Marriott Cancun Resort & Spa – 40,000 points per night CasaMagna Marriott Cancun Resort – 35,000 points per night
Starwood
The Westin Lagunamar Ocean Resort Villas & Spa, Cancun – from 10,000 points per night (Top Pick!)

I’d like to try this hotel because the villas are fully equipped, it’s a reasonable number of points, and it’s very highly rated on TripAdvisor!

Southwest's New Destinations Where To Stay Using Points In Mexico
The Villas at The Westin Lagunamar Include Kitchenettes, Dining Areas, and Washer / Dryers – Great for Families
Aloft Cancun – from 4,000 points per night The Westin Resort & Spa, Cancun – from 7,000 points per night Four Points by Sheraton Cancun Centro (Opening February 1, 2015) – from 4,000 points per night
Wyndham
Ramada Cancun City – 10,000 points per night

2.   Mexico City

Mexico City is the nation’s capital and the largest Spanish-speaking city in the world.  It’s a cultural and financial center, with museums, shopping, and Aztec ruins nearby at Teotihuacan.
Southwest's New Destinations Where To Stay Using Points In Mexico
Mexico City’s Zona Rosa Is Well-Known for Its Nightlife and Shopping
Best Western
Best Western Majestic – 20,000 points per night Best Western Estoril – 20,000 points per night Best Western Royal Zona Rosa – 16,000 points per night
Club Carlson
Radisson Hotel Flamingos – 15,000 points per night Radisson Paraiso Hotel Mexico City – 28,000 points per night
Choice Hotels
Comfort Inn Ciudad de Mexico Santa Fe – 20,000 points per night
Hilton
Hampton Inn & Suites Mexico City – 10,000 points per night Hilton Mexico City Reforma – 30,000 points per night Hilton Mexico City Airport – 50,000 points per night DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Mexico City Airport Area – 40,000 points per night Hilton Mexico City Santa Fe – 50,000 points per night
Southwest's New Destinations Where To Stay Using Points In Mexico
The Hilton Mexico City Santa Fe Has a Modern Rooftop Pool
Hyatt
Hyatt Regency Mexico City – 15,000 points per night
IHG
Holiday Inn Express:  Mexico Reforma – 25,000 points per night Holiday Inn:  Mexico Buenavista – 20,000 points per night Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites:  Mexico Zona Rosa – 15,000 points per night Holiday Inn:  Mexico Dali Airport – 20,000 points per night InterContinental:  Presidente Mexico City – 30,000 points per night Crowne Plaza:  Hotel de Mexico – 20,000 points per night Holiday Inn Express & Suites:  Mexico City at the WTC – 20,000 points per night Holiday Inn:  Mexico City – Plaza Universidad – 20,000 points per night Holiday Inn:  Ciudad de Mexico – Trade Center – 10,000 points per night Holiday Inn:  Mexico Coyoacan – 15,000 points per night Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites:  Mexico Media Sur – 20,000 points per night Crowne Plaza:  Mexico Norte Tlalnepantla – 20,000 points per night Holiday Inn Express:  Mexico Santa Fe – 20,000 points per night InterContinental:  Presidente Santa Fe Mexico – 25,000 points per night Holiday Inn:  Ciudad de Mexico Perinorte – 10,000 points per night
Southwest's New Destinations Where To Stay Using Points In Mexico
The Crowne Plaza Hotel de Mexico is Located Next to Mexico City’s World Trade Center
Marriott / Ritz-Carlton
Mexico City Marriott Reforma Hotel – 20,000 points per night JW Marriott Hotel Mexico City – 30,000 points per night (Top Pick!)

Another top-rated hotel on TripAdvisor, the JW Marriott Mexico City is centrally located in a very safe area.

Southwest's New Destinations Where To Stay Using Points In Mexico
TripAdvisor Reviewers Like the JW Marriott for Its Safe, Convenient Location
Courtyard Mexico City Airport – 10,000 points per night JW Marriott Hotel Mexico City Santa Fe – 10,000 points per night
Starwood
Le Meridien Mexico City – from 10,000 points per night Four Points by Sheraton Mexico City, Colonia Roma – from 4,000 points per night Sheraton Maria Isabel Hotel and Towers – from 7,000 points per night The St. Regis Mexico City – from 20,000 points per night W Mexico City – from 12,000 points per night The Westin Santa Fe, Mexico City – from 10,000 points per night Sheraton Santa Fe, Mexico City – from 10,000 points per night
Wyndham
Wyndham Garden Mexico City Polanco – 16,000 points per night Ramada Reforma Mexico City – 10,000 points per night Ramada Aeropuerto Mexico – 16,000 points per night

3.   Puerto Vallarta (Starting June 2015)

Southwest will begin flights to Puerto Vallarta in June, 2015.  It’s a well-known vacation spot for Mexicans and tourists from the US and Canadian West coast.

Southwest's New Destinations Where To Stay Using Points In Mexico
Old Puerto Vallarta Has a Quaint, Rustic Feel
Best Western
Best Western Plus Suites Puerto Vallarta – 16,000 points per night
Choice Hotels
Comfort Inn Puerto Vallarta – 12,000 points per night
Hilton
Hilton Puerto Vallarta Resort – 50,000 points per night
Hyatt
Hyatt Ziva Puerto Vallarta (All-Inclusive) – 20,000 points plus 10,000 points per additional person, per night (Top Pick!)

One of Hyatt’s newest resorts, the Hyatt Ziva Puerto Vallarta may cost more points than other hotels (it’s all-inclusive), but you get what you pay for!  Folks say they love the private beach, views, and excellent food.

Southwest's New Destinations Where To Stay Using Points In Mexico
Treat Yourself to an All-Inclusive Stay at the Hyatt Ziva Puerto Vallarta
IHG
Holiday Inn Resort:  Puerto Vallarta – 30,000 points per night Holiday Inn Express:  Puerto Vallarta – 20,000 points per night
Marriott / Ritz-Carlton
CasaMagna Marriott Puerto Vallarta Resort & Spa – 30,000 points per night
Starwood
Sheraton Buganvilias Resort and Convention Center – from 10,000 points per night The Westin Resort & Spa, Puerto Vallarta – from 7,000 points per night The St. Regis Punta Mita Resort – from 20,000 points per night

4.   San Jose del Cabo (Los Cabos)

Southwest flies to San Jose del Cabo, but the area known as Los Cabos is actually 2 towns – San Jose del Cabo and Cabo San Lucas.  On the Baja California peninsula, Los Cabos is popular for eco-tourism, sport fishing, and scuba diving.

Note:   Los Cabos was hit by Hurricane Odile in September and some resorts remain closed due to damage.  So your choices are more limited.
Southwest's New Destinations Where To Stay Using Points In Mexico
Visit El Arco, a Famous Rock Formation at the Tip of the Baja Peninsula
Best Western
Best Western Aeropuerto – 24,000 points per night
Hilton
Hilton Los Cabos Beach & Golf Resort – 40,000 to 70,000 points per night (not accepting reservations until June 1, 2015)
Hyatt
Hyatt Place Los Cabos – 8,000 points per night (re-opening April 1, 2015) Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos (All-Inclusive) – 20,000 points plus 10,000 points per additional person, per night (re-opening April 30, 2015)
IHG
Holiday Inn Resort:  Los Cabos All-Inclusive – 35,000 points per night (maximum 3 people per room) (Top Pick!)

Three people can stay all-inclusive for 35,000 points per night at the Holiday Inn Resort:  Los Cabos All-Inclusive.  It did get damaged during the hurricane but it’s back up and running, and folks like that it’s located right on the beach.

Southwest's New Destinations Where To Stay Using Points In Mexico
For 35,000 Points You Could Enjoy an All-Inclusive Night at the Holiday Inn Resort Los Cabos
Holiday Inn Express:  Cabo San Lucas – 20,000 points per night
Marriott / Ritz-Carlton
Fairfield Inn Los Cabos – 7,500 points per night
Starwood
The Westin Resort & Spa, Los Cabos – from 10,000 points per night (closed until June 2015) Sheraton Hacienda del Mar Golf & Spa Resort, Los Cabos – from 10,000 points per night
Wyndham
Wyndham Cabo San Lucas Resort – 16,000 points per night

Collecting Points for These Hotels

If you don’t have enough points, here are some ways to quickly increase your point balances!

Best Western

Club Carlson

Choice Hotels

Hilton

Southwest's New Destinations Where To Stay Using Points In Mexico
There Are Lots of Credit Cards That Earn Hilton Points!

Hyatt

IHG

Marriott / Ritz-Carlton

Starwood

Wyndham

Bottom Line

Southwest now flies to Mexico, including Cancun, Los Cabos, Mexico City, and Puerto Vallarta (beginning June 2015).

You’ve got plenty of choices from most of the large hotel chains if you want to use points for award nights in these cities.  Including several all-inclusive resorts!

Keep in mind that Los Cabos sustained a lot of damage from the hurricane in September, 2014.  So many resorts and hotels remain closed.

Stay tuned for hotel options in Southwest’s other international destinations!

Have you used points for award stays in Mexico?  Which hotel is your favorite?

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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