Five years ago most Wyndham properties could be booked for a maximum of 16,000 points. They jacked up award prices to as much as 40,000 points (after pricing some properties as high as 45,000 and 50,000 points).
And then they introduced a new flat redemption rate of 15,000 points per night in 2015. This was hailed as a big decrease in pricing for their best properties, when really is was reverting to what pricing had been just two years earlier — and a big increase in prices for lower-end hotels.
Wyndham Grand Rio Mar, Puerto Rico
While there’s a limited inventory of nice hotels in the Wyndham portfolio, being able to access those at 15,000 points per night has been key to the value proposition of the program. Being able to redeem for luxury homes at 15,000 points per bedroom per night has been a truly unique offering. It’s what made me regret not getting the Wyndham Visa, where cardmembers that had the old card earning 2 points per dollar spent were grandfathered at that earn ratio.
There were reports yesterday that Wyndham plans to move away from their core value proposition of charging 15,000 points per night regardless of hotel and move to a tiered system, specifically:
- 7500 points
- 15,000 points
- 30,000 points
That would be a doubling in price for their best redemptions.
While Wyndham says they do not comment on rumors, I asked whether they would re-affirm their commitment to flat 15,000 point per night redemption pricing and they have not responded. I will happily provide an update if they choose to.
Wyndham’s raising prices in order to say they’re lowering them may be where Marriott got the idea, and Marriott’s move to lower them and then raise them again may be where Wyndham got the idea.