In general Rocketmiles has the biggest mileage offers, but they also have the fewest hotels and are in a limited – but growing – number of cities. Booking through Rocketmiles will not entitle you to earn points and elite stay credit through a hotel loyalty program. (Some hotel chains like Marriott and Hyatt will honor elite benefits on third party bookings, while Starwood and Hilton’s policy is not to do so.)
PointsHound has more hotels in more locations, a subset of which are referred to as ‘DoubleUp’ hotels where you earn miles and can still earn hotel points and elite stay credit.
As a result I’ve found PointsHound to fit my own travel patterns better, but both sites are extremely welcome entrants into the hotel booking toolbox.
PointsHound’s mileage accrual partners:
You can choose to earn points in any of the following programs:
Key Things to Know About PointsHound
- It pays to compare rates — in the past I have noticed occasional outliers where the site winds up more expensive than booking directly, but that hasn’t been frequent in the searches I’ve done. Always check prices against other sources.
- They offer some prepaid rates, usually giving you more miles, but those likely will not earn elite stay credit or points in the hotel program of the property you’re staying at. They also offer “Double Up” rates which do earn points and elite status credits. Know which you are booking.
I would book the former when I’m staying as a one-off with chains I don’t usually participate in points programs with, and the latter with my regular chains — although Hyatt and Marriott will honor elite stay benefits (just one give points and credit towards earning status) on prepaid rates.
Since I’ve already requalified or Hyatt Diamond stats through February 2015, I would consider a higher points-earning prepaid rate at a Hyatt (and still get my status benefits).
How “DoubleUp” Hotel Bookings Work
There are no special tricks to the double points offer, it show up reliably on its own on the PointsHound site.
Here’s what a hotel result looks like, flagging the double points and also the icon to show you it is eligible for “Double Up” earning and elite credit through the hotel’s loyalty program as well:
Here’s a close-up on the DoubleUp icon:
PointsHound Has Added Club Carlson and Wyndham Hotels to Their DoubleUp Porgram
I received an email this afternoon from PointsHound’s CEO to share details on the expansion of their DoubleUp rates to two new chains:
Quick note to let you know we recently expanded our Double-Up program to include eligible rates from hotel brands participating in the Club Carlson and Wyndham Rewards frequent guest programs. This amounts to another 5,000 Double-Up rates at hotels in U.S. destinations. …
One other update is that, Checkmate (our concierge partner), is now fulfilling the Double-Up product. As we scale-up the program, we’re leveraging Checkmate’s hotel check-in platform to ensure accurate frequent guest program account information is included on eligible reservations, so points credit and status benefits are properly applied.
All PointsHound users who book Double-Up eligible rates will receive an email prior to check-in asking to confirm frequent guest program info and room preferences. Confirming info in this mail (via mobile for users already in-transit) allows us to ensure proper credit is quickly applied to eligible stays.
1000 Point First-Time Booking Bonus
PointsHound usually offers 250 miles extra for your first booking when you’re referred by an existing member.
But through the end of the year my link gets you 1000 miles as the first time bonus.
Usually I invite folks to post their own referral link, but in this case mine provides a 4x better bonus.