Back in May, I wrote an article looking at several tricks that allow you to earn rewards from Uber rides. The majority of that article is still current and very much usable, but I wanted to highlight one particular avenue that will be coming to an end.

At the time, I covered the partnership between Starwood and Uber that awarded Starpoints on all of your Uber trips. Given that I consider Starpoints to be my most valuable and flexible points currency, this was a great perk.

When this promotion was first launched in 2015, you could earn 1 Starpoint per £1 spent with Uber. This was unfortunately devalued in February of this year, as the earning rate was halved to 1 Starpoint per £2 spent.

Maybe we should have seen the writing on the wall.

Starwood sent out emails last week announcing that their partnership with Uber will be ending on 17th December 2017.

uber-spg ends.png

While it will be disappointing to see the back of the Starwood/Uber tie-up don’t forget you can still get a free trip after every 10 Uber journeys courtesy of Barclaycard.

Full details of that offer can be found here.


New IHG PointBreaks list released

It is widely accepted that IHG’s PointBreaks promotion is one of the best in the loyalty points business. Or at least the concept is.

Every 3-4 months, the group, that includes InterContinental, Crowne Plaza and Holiday Inn hotels, release a new list of participating properties worldwide that can all be booked for just 5,000 IHG points per night. The regular cost to book these same properties using points is between 10,000 and 60,000 points per night.

Unlike many other hotel sales that offer greatly reduced sale ‘pricing,’ these bookings are subject to the same regular booking conditions as other points bookings at that hotel – in other words, they are usually fully flexible and cancelable until a short while before the stay. 

Remember, you can pick up IHG points for under 0.45p a point year-round using the trick that I wrote about last week. That means a PointBreaks room for 5,000 points would cost you just north of £21 – a fantastic price!


What’s available this time?

As has been the case in recent times, the list is very US-focussed. Great if you can make it work, and were thinking of heading to some of the areas anyway, but not a huge amount to tempt you to travel based on the hotel alone. At least not in terms of aspirational properties.

There is a grand total of 3 UK hotels participating:

  • Crowne Plaza Belfast
  • Holiday Inn Birmingham North – Cannock
  • Holiday Inn Preston

If those are no longer showing, it means whatever limited availability there was has been snapped up.

A full list of the participating properties can be found on this page here – take a minute to scan through it, you might find something that catches your eye.


How to book

The key details you need are:

  • Book via this special PointBreaks promotion page.
  • Rooms bookable until 31st January 2018 (in practice hotels may limit the number of rooms available at the 5k price point so don’t delay booking if possible).
  • You can book as many nights as you wish per booking but are limited to 2 separate bookings per person per hotel at promotional rates.

Verdict

My expectations weren’t too high before this version of the list was released if I’m honest. There isn’t a great deal on there to get your blood racing.

That said, there is no doubt that the ability to book rooms at just 5,000 points a night remains an excellent deal and means PointBreaks remains one the best consistent hotel promotions around.

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