Choice Privileges: Earn Points, Great Perks, and Elite Status

Joining the free Choice Privileges program is a great (and simple) way to earn points for discounted hotel stays at over 7,000 properties.
11/8/19 | By Christy Rakoczy
Family enjoying hotel stay

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Choice Privileges is a hotel loyalty program that rewards frequent customers, especially those who often stay in mid-range and low price hotels. Some luxury properties have been added recently, and members can also earn loyalty points from staying at eligible vacation rentals, transferring points from other programs, or using partner credit cards.

With more than 7,000 different locations where you can earn points in the Choice Privileges program, it's worth joining for free if you travel anywhere. And if you spend enough or stay often enough to earn Elite status, you'll not only benefit from the chance to redeem points for free rooms but you'll also get exclusive perks like preferred parking and early or late check-in. And who doesn't love that convenience and flexibility?

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What is the Choice Hotels Privileges program?

Many hotels have banded together to offer loyalty programs, and Choice Privileges is one of these. There are 10 different hotels that participate in this program. It also offers Vacation Rentals by Choice for travelers who don't want to stay in a traditional hotel environment.

Joining the Choice Hotels loyalty program is free and can be done online in minutes. After becoming a member, you can earn up to 10 points for each dollar spent at any participating hotel. You can also earn points faster by becoming a Choice Privileges Visa Signature cardmember.

As you earn points, you can qualify for free nights at partner hotels — plus, you'll get as much as a 15% discount on hotel stays when you book at least seven days in advance. You can also save on rental cars with Avis and Budget. And if you earn enough points in a year to earn a special status within the Choice Hotels Privileges program, you get additional benefits as well.

The Choice Hotel Privileges program is very similar to other hotel loyalty programs, but because its partner brands include lower-priced hotels such as Econolodge, it is an especially good program for price-conscious consumers.

How to earn Choice Hotels Privileges program points

To start earning points with the Choice Hotels Privileges program, you'll first need to sign up online. After you've become a member, you can earn:

  • 10 points for each dollar spent at one of the 6,800 participating hotel locations worldwide.
  • Between 5 and 10 points per dollar spent on vacation rentals, including condos and cabins, that participate with the Choice Vacation Rental program.
  • Points for booking a Bluegreen Resorts vacation getaway or for sailing on one of more than 20 different cruise ships. The number of points you can earn varies based on the cruise line or resort. For example, you'll get up to 25,000 points for a Bluegreen Explorer Getaway, which is a seven-night vacation at specific destinations including Orlando's Sunshine Resort in Florida or Wilderness Club at Big Cedar in the Ozark Mountains.
  • 1,000 Privileges points for renting a car with Avis or Budget if you provide your Choice Privileges number when you book a rental vehicle or pick up your rented car.

It is also possible to earn points by spending on the Choice Privileges Visa Signature Card, which offers 15 points per dollar charged at Choice Hotels; five points per dollar spent buying Choice Privileges points or gift cards for Choice hotels; and two points per dollar spent on all other purchases.

Finally, you can also transfer loyalty points from other rewards programs to the Choice Privileges Program. Transferable points can be earned through Amtrak Guest Rewards, United MileagePlus, AAdvantage and more.

The value of your transferred points varies by program. For example, you can turn 3,000 FrequentFlyer points from Qantas into 20,000 Choice Privileges points or 5,000 Amtrak Guest Rewards points into 32,000 Choice Privileges points.

How to redeem your Choice Hotels Privileges program points

Choice Hotels Privileges points can be redeemed in a number of different ways including free nights at participating hotels. Participating hotels include:

  • Comfort
  • Sleep Inn
  • Quality Inn
  • Clarion
  • Clarion Pointe
  • MainStay Suites
  • WoodSpring Suites
  • Suburban Extended Stay Hotel
  • EconoLodge
  • Rodeway Inn

Points can also be redeemed at Vacation Rentals by Choice, for resort vacations, and at Preferred Hotels and Luxury Resorts.

The cost of a free night varies by property and location. Reward nights at Choice Hotels start at just 8,000 points while vacations at resort destinations start at 16,000 points. Free nights at Preferred Hotels & Resorts start at 25,000 points.

To redeem your points, sign into your account at ChoiceHotels.com, then choose your destination; check-in and check-out dates; and select the number of rooms as well as the number of adults and children. This will give you a list of hotel options in your area along with the number of points you'd need to score a free room.

Choice Hotels Privileges program tiers, explained

The Choice Hotel Privileges program also offers other perks if you qualify for Elite membership status. Gold, Platinum, and Diamond Elite members each get their own unique benefits. For example:

  • Qualify for Gold Elite membership after staying 10 nights at participating hotels to get a 10% point bonus; early and late checkout; access to a dedicated customer hotline; and a welcome gift.
  • Qualify for Platinum Elite membership after staying 20 nights at participating hotels to get a 25% point bonus and access to Avis Preferred Plus, along with all of the other perks Gold members get.
  • Qualify for Diamond Elite status by staying 40 or more nights at participating hotels in a calendar year to get all of the benefits of Platinum Elite Membership plus a 50% bonus on rewards points instead of just 25% or 10% bonus.

Cardholders who sign up for the Choice Privileges Visa Signature Card, which has no annual fee, automatically qualify for Elite Gold Status. They’ll get all of these perks right away even before staying at participating hotels for 10 or more nights.

Common questions about the Choice Hotels Privileges program

Is there a fee to join the Choice Privileges program?

There is no fee to join the Choice Privileges program, and it’s easy to join. Simply visit the website and sign up.

How many points do you need for a free night at Choice Hotels?

You can redeem free nights at some participating Choice Hotels with as little as 8,000 points. However, the amount of points you need in order to redeem varies by property, time of year, and type of room.

For example, while you could get a free night at the Clarion Inn Lake Buena Vista, A Rosen Hotel in Orlando for just 8,000 points if you visit from January 6, 2020 to January 10, 2020, you would need 12,000 points for a free night at the Sleep Inn & Suites Orlando International Airport during that same time period.

Do Choice Privileges points expire?

p>Choice Privileges points will not expire if you remain an active member. This means you must have a qualifying activity every 18 months to keep your points. Qualifying activities can include referring friends, buying points, redeeming points, using your Choice Privileges Visa, or staying at a partner hotel.

Can I buy Choice Privileges points?

You are allowed to purchase up to 120,000 Choice Privileges points per calendar year. Points can cost anywhere from .69 cents per point to 1.21 cents per point, depending on if you take advantage of discounts and promotions offered throughout the year.

How to sign up for the Choice Hotels Privileges program

To sign up for the Choice Hotels Privileges program:

  • Visit Choice Hotels.com and select "Sign in or Join."
  • Choose the option to "Join Free Now"
  • Select "I want to join Choice Privileges" if you're a new member. Or if you've already become a member when visiting a partner hotel but don't yet have online access, select "I'm a member, but I need a username and password."
  • Provide your personal information including your full name, address, language preference, and phone number
  • Create a username and password you'll use to log into your account
  • Specify if you want to opt into text notifications and select your preference for what types of notifications you'll receive

When you become a Choice Hotels Privileges Member, you'll receive a member number to use when booking hotels or rental cars through Budget or Avis. You'll also get a username and password you can use to access your account online and book travel or track or redeem points.

The final word on the Choice Hotel Privileges program

The Choice Hotel Privileges program lets you earn some valuable perks. It's definitely worth signing up, even if you aren’t a frequent traveler. And if you want to amass lots of points to redeem for discounted travel, you may want to consider transferring other loyalty points to the program. Happy travels!

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