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Hotel loyalty programmes updates 2021: How many nights do you need to clock to earn or keep your status?

Hilton Honors, Marriott Bonvoy, World of Hyatt, Accor ALL: See which programmes have reduced their normal requirements and which have yet to announce anything

Hilton Honors

50% reduction in requirements, lower milestone bonuses

Hilton Honors members will be pleased to know that they will only need to achieve 50% of the usual qualification requirements in 2021 to earn or keep their status.

The requirements for 2021 are:

  • Silver: 5 nights / 2 stays / 12,500 base points
  • Gold: 20 nights / 10 stays / 37,000 base points
  • Diamond: 30 nights / 15 stays / 60,000 base points

This means that you will earn Silver status for as little as two stays in 2021, although that is hardly worth anything, given that the real perks kick in only when you reach Gold when you hit 10 stays or 20 nights.

If you recall, Hilton will also be rolling over all the nights earned in 2020 to 2021, counting towards the reduced number of nights required to earn status. Note that only nights will roll over, and not stays or points value.

On top of the reduced status qualification requirements, Hilton Honors will also be reducing the milestone bonus requirements, and the number of nights you need to hit before gifting a status to someone else.

World of Hyatt

Hyatt has similarly reduced earning requirements by 50% for 2021:

  • Discoverist: 5 tier-qualifying nights / 12,500 base points
  • Explorist: 15 tier-qualifying nights / 25,000 base points
  • Globalist: 30 tier-qualifying nights / 50,000 base points

Note that any status earned or retained in 2021 will be valid until 28 Feb 2023. 

If you usually earn your status through organising meetings, note that the requirements for the status have also halved, although I don’t see meetings resuming in a big way similar to pre-pandemic levels.

On top of this, World of Hyatt has also extended its Award Rebate programme to 28 Feb 2021 (registration required), giving World of Hyatt a 15% rebate on the points used for an award stay.

World of Hyatt is also running a Bonus Journeys promotion (registration required) where members earn 3x points on every qualifying stay. Elite nights will also count twice: once when they’re earned, and another time in 2021 towards status and Milestone Rewards.

Accor ALL

Accor has announced some really interesting changes to its 2021 programme requirements.

Firstly, the all status points and status nights earned between 1 Jul 2020 and 31 Dec 2020 will be credited to your 2021 count by end of January 2021.

In addition, all status points and status nights earned in 2021 will be doubled. “Twice the points, twice the fun”, they said.

With these two measures this means:

  1. If you have earned/requalified your Accor ALL status through stays between July and December 2020, all of the nights/points will automatically roll over to 2021, which means you have effectively qualified for the same status through end 2023.
  2. If you have not, you will effectively need only half the spending or nights in 2021 to qualify for your desired status, as follow:
  • Silver: Effectively 5 nights or 960 status points (€400 spend)
  • Gold: Effectively 15 nights or 3,500 status points (€1,400 spend)
  • Platinum: Effectively 30 nights or 7,000 status points (€2,800 spend)
  • Diamond: Effectively 13,125 status points (€5,200 spend)

Note that the status points you earn depends on the brand you stay with, with budget brands such as ibis, ibis styles and some others earning much lower status points per dollar spent. To find out exactly how many status and reward points you will earn, you can use the calculator here.

Previously, Accor has extended the duration of those who earned status in 2019 by one year, to expire in December 2021.

IHG Rewards Club

IHG Rewards Club has not announced any reductions in earning requirements in the 2021 programme year.

Earlier in 2020, all members’ programme status has been automatically extended through January 2022, allowing members to enjoy all the benefits of the status they earned during 2019.

IHG elite members’ points never expire so an extension wasn’t necessary, however, entry-level Club members will have their points extended till 30 Jun 2021.

Marriott Bonvoy

Marriott has not announced any form of status earning reductions for 2021 to-date.

Earlier in 2020, Marriott has extended all elite members’ status to expire only in February 2022, so anyone who earned their status in 2019 will have them all the way through February 2022.

In addition, Marriott also gave a one-time 50% Elite Nights Credit in June 2020 to all elite members according to their status. At the top, Ambassador Elite members get 50 elite nights, while the entry tier Silver members get 5 nights, all of which will also count towards lifetime statuses.

Final thoughts

It’s rather baffling that Marriott and IHG have yet to announce any changes to earning requirements for 2021, but this could be a case of “let’s wait and see” on the part of the programme managers.

With the Covid-19 vaccine rolling out in countries around the world, it may still take a while before international travel gradually resume, and that means that tourism and related industries such as hotels will definitely take some time to recover. As such, my guess is that both loyalty programmes will definitely announce updated measures in due time.

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