parasola/Getty Images

Not all hotel reward programs are created equal. 

December 12, 2016

If your New Year’s resolution has anything to do with maximizing rewards points, you should consider WalletHub’s rankings of hotel rewards programs.

For the second year in the row, WalletHub selected Wyndham Rewards as the best hotel loyalty program for travelers at every price point.

This year, the company evaluated 12 of the largest U.S. hotel chains based on 21 metrics, including point expiration policies, the average value of a point, and availability of hotel properties.

Of all the major hotel loyalty programs, La Quinta offers travelers as much as $14.17 in rewards for every $100 spent—the most of all other brands in the survey. And Best Western’s loyalty program is the only one where points do not expire due to inactivity.

But in addition to a strong overall score, Wyndham Rewards—which serves light travelers as well as it does frequent jetsetters—is the only program where hotel reward points aren’t purchased at a mark-up. In fact, purchasing hotel reward points are marked down 10.91 percent.

Other things to love about Wyndham’s recently revamped rewards program: Its simplified 10 points per dollar formula, with a 1,000-point minimum built in to every stay. There’s also no sliding scale for redemption, so travelers staying at Wyndham hotels or any of the group’s other brands including TRYP and Wyndham Grand resorts. We recommend accruing points on affordable stays and reaping the rewards at Wyndham Grand or Dolce properties.

Not sure if that fits your travel modus operandi? The WalletHub report features a custom calculator allowing you to select the best hotel rewards program based on your annual budget for hotel stays.

And if you're still not ready to commit to a single brand, check out Stash, a relatively new loyalty program designed specifically for independent lodgings.

You May Like