Update 1/5/22: When Best Western launched their Pay With Points feature in 2021, it was only available at select properties in North America. They’ve now rolled the feature out as an option for all properties in North America.
Here’s the original post with an analysis of Best Western’s Pay With Points feature.
Best Western has launched a new Pay With Points feature which allows you to redeem points to reduce the cost of your stay by $5 for every 1,000 points redeemed.
In addition to redeeming your points in 1,000 point increments, there’s a minimum redemption requirement of 5,000 points to use the Pay With Points feature which means you’d be deducting at least $25 from the cost of your stay.
With every 1,000 points reducing the cost of your stay by $5, that means you’re getting a fixed value of 0.5cpp. Our Reasonable Redemption Value for Best Western Rewards is 0.58cpp, but note that that’s a reasonable redemption value which means you should be aiming for better than 0.58cpp. Still, knowing that you can always get a 0.5cpp redemption value is a good baseline to have, especially if Best Western devalues their program in the future by increasing the cost of award stays as I can’t imagine they’d change the redemption value of this Pay With Points feature in the near future seeing as they’ve just introduced it.
To Best Western’s credit, they’ve set up Pay With Points in a couple of ways which benefit members. The cash portion of your stay will still earn points, so if you redeem 5,000 points to get $25 off and have to pay a balance of $50, you’ll earn 500 points seeing as Best Western offers 10x points per dollar.
The other good aspect with the way that this has been set up is that Pay With Points reservations count towards Best Western’s promotions. For example, at the time of writing this post you can earn a $25 Best Western bonus card for every night of the first four nights you stay within the promo period. Pay With Points stays are eligible for promos such as those.
Something important to note is that Pay With Points is only available at a limited number of Best Western properties right now. There are 94 participating properties in the US and 11 in Canada, so hopefully they roll it out to more of their hotels in the future. Best Western has ~2,000 properties in the US, so this represents only 5% or so of their domestic locations.
Pay With Points could be particularly useful if you have 5,000 orphaned points that are just sitting around gathering dust. It’s worth bearing in mind though that Best Western Rewards points don’t expire, so if there’s the prospect that you’ll earn more points in the future, there’s no danger of your points expiring before you have a chance to do that and so there’s no urgent need to redeem your points in this way in the meantime.