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We knew it was coming. The day that Wyndham Hotels moved to the “one size fits all” model for award stays, charging 15,000 points per night, no matter the property, we knew its days were numbered. When the Super 8 across town costs the same as a condo property in Orlando, you know which one I’m spending my points on: neither.

Because it’s Orlando and I’d rather be in Charleston enjoying The Mills House. Didn’t expect that, did ya? 🙂

Wyndham moves to three award tiers

As of this week, Wyndham has moved to the following award tiers:

  • Lowest – 7,500 points per night, roughly
  • Middle – 15,000 points per night,
  • Highest – 30,000 points per night, ~200 properties.

This literally doubled the cost of some of the best awards overnight. And Wyndham didn’t let us in on which properties would be changing, although you could take an educated guess that they would be almost all of the best. Here is one that I am glad I locked in:

Here are two that I am bummed I didn’t book speculatively, as they would have been an excellent value:

No trips are planned to either, but we could have made a weekend of it in either, using the great short-haul awards to fly United for only 15,000 LifeMiles round-trip (SEE: 3 reasons why I am SUPER excited for the LifeMiles short-haul awards). Or maybe things would have gone off the rails if we did (SEE: My epic battle with LifeMiles). I’m also sad that The Mills House in Charleston is now among the 30,000 points-per-night properties.

But wait, some gems remain!

Not all is lost. There are fortunately still some pretty good options available at the “old” price. Here are 10 Wyndham properties for which you can still redeem 15,000 points per night, in screenshots:

Then there is the stupidity

Wyndham also introduced some head-scratchers with their new chart, such as this one:

I mean…most of the properties in NYC now cost 30,000 points. But seriously? It’s a La Quinta. C’mon. Another awesome redemption option:

Seriously? Fresno? Not sure what the loyalty folks are thinking with these. At least they kept better properties from being on the list of ~200 that got massacred?

Conclusion

In short, you can still visit San Francisco, Napa (just not the Vino Bello), Switzerland, San Diego (just not the Bayside), Boca Raton, San Antonio or Hawaii. Just avoid NYC now, as everything in/near Manhattan is pretty much now 30,000 points per night.

Sure, these aren’t some of the true creme de la creme properties available before, such as the all-inclusive resorts. But there are a good number that offer exceptional value, including those in San Francisco and Switzerland. I’d still be very happy burning points at any of those. I used to try to get 1.2 cents per point out of my Wyndham points, but I’ll probably settle for 1.0. The jury is out on whether I’ll renew my Wyndham Visa card come fall, but I’m leaning toward no.

What do you think of Wyndham’s changes? 


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