All the travel product providers, be they airlines, hotels, car hire companies and even the credit card companies have a loyalty program so it is only a natural logical progression that the guys who aggregate it all and handle all the bookings should launch their own loyalty program. As innovative as it sounds, the Expedia Rewards Program has actually been around for the past 5 years since its launch in 2011.
The Launch of Expedia+
In July 2014, Expedia revamped its rewards programs by launching the Expedia+ program that enables you to earn up to 2 points for every dollar that you spend on booking your travel be they flights, hotels or holiday packages. The Expedia Reward points can subsequently be redeemed for booking non blackout date travels or for some unique redemption promos offered via the platform.
How Does the Expedia Rewards Program Work?
The Expedia Rewards Programs works very simply. You will earn Expedia Reward points whenever you book your travel products through the website.
What Does the Expedia+ Rewards Entail?
The Expedia+ includes a tiered membership for its rewards program, similar to what many leading airlines and hotels offer their frequent buyers. The three membership tiers include the following:-
Money Savings: The +Blue status is what you get with a free membership and includes fewer perks such as an Extended Hotel Price Guarantee and a Price Pledge and you will also be able to get double your points whenever you redeem your points via a +VIP Access hotel.
Rewards: With the +blue membership, you earn 2 points for every dollar that you spend on hotels and on packages that include a hotel, cars, activities and cruises. For every $5 that you spend on flights you will earn a point and frequent flyer miles. You can also earn 1 point for every single dollar that you spend on flights plus car hire packages. With the +blue membership, you can still redeem your Expedia travel without worrying about the blackout dates. With 3500 Expedia+ points, you will be able to earn a $25 discount on your next hotel booking.
Service Benefits: Some of the serviced-based benefits that you get with the blue+ membership program include earning a single point for every dollar that you spend on flights plus packages on the Expedia platform. You do not have to grapple with blackout dates when it comes to redeeming your Expedia points for travels. Lastly, you can earn yourself a $25 discount on your next hotel bookings if you have Expedia reward points as low as 3500.
With the Expedia+ silver+ status, you get all the membership rewards available in the blue+ status plus additional perks as follows:-
Money saving benefits: On top of the blue+ rewards such as price guarantees and double points when you redeem at a VIP+ Access Hotel, you will also access free amenities such as free drinks and spa discounts when you book at VIP+ Access Hotels.
Rewards: In addition to the blue+ membership rewards listed above, you also get additional benefits such as exclusive Expedia travel offers, get 250 bonus points whenever you make VIP+ Access hotel bookings. The silver package also qualifies for a 10% bonus points accelerator for the eligible bookings.
Service benefits: Get all the blue+ service benefits in addition to perks and benefits such as priority customer service, and exclusive concierge services at top 5 locations. This benefit is, however, subject to availability. Other service-based benefits that you will get with the +silver status include exclusive travel offers, 250 bonus points when you book your hotels at VIP+ Access hotels as well as a 10% bonus accelerator.
With the +gold status, you get all the benefits in the +silver and +blue membership plans plus room upgrades and a more flexible check-in and check out on the VIP+ Access hotels
How to Maximize Your Expedia Reward Points
While earning a single point for every dollar spent may not appeal to many seasoned points travellers, the Expedia+ points actually get more appealing if you begin buying diverse travel products, particularly the travel packages. You are also going to maximize on your Expedia+ rewards by going for the higher tier memberships: +silver and +gold where you will be able to unlock more savings, rewards and services.
For example, as a +gold member, you will be able to unlock room upgrades as well as flexible check ins and check outs at the +VIP access hotels. This privilege is not available in the blue and silver membership tiers. Some of the privileges in the +silver tiers are also not available in the +blue membership tier.
Here is a look at other ways in which you can maximize on your Expedia+ rewards:-
Sign In and Shop as Expedia+ Member: When you sign in to Expedia and shop as an Expedia+ member, you will be able to view some of the exclusive and surreal deals and bonuses on the platform. These are not available to non-members. With package deals, you can save as much as 100% on your bookings.
Price Pledge: As a signed-in Expedia+ member, you can have access to the most exclusive Hotel Price Guarantees up to midnight on the night of stay. You can bundle this with the Expedia Price Pledge where you will earn $50 in case you find a cheaper rate on the internet within 24 hours after you have made your booking.
Exclusive Deals For You: Expedia+ members get exclusive personalized deals to the best special offers on the platform. There is the Expedia+ Marketplace which offer a variety of bonuses, promotions and deals with which you can save a lot of money.
Earn three times the benefits: Membership in the Expedia+ program, there is the possibility of a triple reward where you can earn the airline frequent flyer miles, Expedia+ points as well as the credit card reward points on the relevant bookings.
No Blackout Dates: As an Expedia+ member, you can easily earn points your way with no inconvenience of blackout dates.
+VIP Access Hotel Benefit: This is available for the +silver and +gold memberships. There are thousands of +VIP Access hotels that are available in some 200 locations around the world. With + gold and + silver membership, you can earn perks such as free spa and breakfast credits. With the +gold membership, you can get free room upgrades based on availability.
Maximizing on Expedia+ Redemption
Spending your miles is the best part about any mile or point program. Miles are like currency so it is best to sign with an OTA loyalty program that makes it easier to spend and transfer your points from one form to another.
With the Expedia+ Rewards, you will convert your loyalty points into coupons. The value of the coupons varies, generally anywhere from $25 to $1000. For you to earn a $100 Expedia coupon, you must have accumulated 10,000 Expedia+ points. With 50,000 Expedia+ points, you will be able to earn an Expedia coupon that is worth $1000.
The best part of about the Expedia rewards is that you can use in all the hotels on Expedia with no blackout rates to grapple them. That gives you access to more than 70,000 hotels globally that you can book via the Expedia platform.
The table below shows how you can make the most of your Expedia points to earn highly discounted hotel coupons:-
|REWARD POINTS||COUPON VALUE||COUPON VALUE PER REWARDS POINT|
From the table above, you can see that the value per reward increases if you cash in more Expedia+ rewards at once. Someone who cashes in 50,000 points gets three times the value of someone who cashes in 3500 miles.
You can use the table above to optimize your rewards and earn more per reward. From the table above, you can see that redeeming 14,000 points offers you the same value per reward as redeeming 22,000 points. The next hurdle in the table is hitting the next milestone of 29,000 miles or 32,000. So instead of rushing to redeem 22,000 for $250, you can add 10,000 miles and redeem 32,000 for $400. Likewise, instead of redeeming at 38,000 miles at $400, you can add only 2000 miles and redeem 40,000 at $550 which is incredible value for very few points. That is like redeeming $150 for only 2000 points!
With Expedia rewards, it is always better to save your points than redeem them at every opportunity. The more your points accrue, the more they are worth. So to fully make the most of the rewards, note the reward points indicated in the table above and then save your rewards towards the next high value range.
How to Redeem Your Points for Airline Miles
The Expedia+ reward points can be redeemed in over 140 airlines. It is even easier because almost every airline is listed on the platform. However, the reward points that you need to redeem a flight depends on the individual airline that you are planning to book.
Triple Dipping or Double Dipping: How to Really Score in the Rewards Game
Having an Expedia+ rewards membership does not prevent you from earning points or miles offered by your credit card company, airline frequent flyer program or the hotel loyalty program. Those experienced in travel hacking generally collect double or triple points or miles from a single booking. This is one of the most efficient ways to collect points or miles and you are the ultimate winner.