Credit Cards

How Many Choice Privileges Points For A Free Night

By David Krug David Krug is the CEO & President of Bankovia. He's a lifelong expat who has lived in the Philippines, Mexico, Thailand, and Colombia. When he's not reading about cryptocurrencies, he's researching the latest personal finance software. 6 minute read

In the case of the Choice Privileges® Visa Signature® Card, a hotel credit card, there is no annual charge. More than 6,000 Choice Hotels accept Barclaycard, and cardholders may earn points on paid stays and other transactions at any of those hotels.

Choice Hotels’ brands include Econolodge, Sleep Inn, Comfort Inn, and Cambria Inn & Suites. When you sign up for your card, you’ll be instantly registered in the Choice Privileges reward program and upgraded to Elite Gold Status at no extra cost.

The rewards program associated with the Choice Privileges Visa Signature card is quite advantageous to frequent visitors of Choice Hotels. By using the card, you may earn 5 Choice Privileges points for every $1 spent on qualifying Choice Hotels transactions, including paid, completed stays booked directly with the hotel or through the hotel’s website. 

If you are a member of Choice Privileges, you may earn 10 bonus points for every dollar spent at Choice Hotels or on other qualified purchases. Moreover, this card offers a 10% point bonus for stays at Choice Hotels. The total number of points earned for every dollar spent is 16.5 for hotel stays and 15 for everything else purchased from Choice Hotels.

The rewards on this card are not limited to dining and entertainment purchases. You’ll earn an infinite 5 points for every $1 you spend on more Choice Privileges points and Choice Hotels gift cards, both of which are not considered hotel expenditures for the purposes of this card, and 2 points for every $1 you spend on anything else. Choice Privileges points can be redeemed for free stays at over 6,000 Choice Hotels hotels, general goods, gift cards at over 80 restaurants and stores, airline reward miles, and more, regardless of how they were earned.

Choice Privileges Visa Signature is a great option if you frequently travel and want a hotel credit card that gives you access to a wide variety of brands and a wide range of useful benefits.

Important Characteristics

Sign-up Bonus

Upon account creation, you are eligible to get 32,000 bonus Choice Privileges points after making a minimum purchase of $1,000 during the first three months. You may get up to four free nights with this benefit, as you’ll need at least 8,000 points to book a free stay at a lower-tier property with Choice Privileges.

Points for Choice Privileges

All Choice Privileges members get 10 base points for $1 spent on paid, completed stays and other qualified Choice Hotels properties; however, cardholders of the Choice Privileges Visa Signature card earn an additional 5 points per $1 spent.

If you book a paid stay at a Choice Hotel, you’ll earn an extra 10% in Choice Privileges points, bringing your total points earned per dollar spent to 16.5.

You may earn an infinite number of bonus points at a rate of 5 for every dollar spent on additional Choice Privileges points and gift cards (both of which are sold online). Two points are awarded for every dollar spent on anything else, forever.

Redeeming Choice Privileges Points

There are almost 6,000 Choice Hotels across the world that accept Choice Privileges points for free stays. For lower-tier establishments (like Rodeway Inn and Econolodge), which normally cost less than $100 per night, the redemption minimum begins at 8,000 points per night.

Point requirements rise as one moves up the quality scale; for example, a night at a Sleep Inn costs 12,000 points, a night at a Comfort Inn costs 20,000 points, and a night at a Cambria or Ascend property (where a room might easily cost $300 or more) can cost 30,000 points, and so on.

In addition to hotels, Choice Privileges members may redeem their points for stays in a variety of vacation rentals, including homes, condos, and villas. There is a broad range of point minimums and minimum nightly requirements for redeeming stays in vacation rentals.

The financial value of the room for which points are redeemed is one factor in how much a point is worth, although in general, one point is worth $0.01 or less.

With the Points + Cash option, you may quickly earn a “free” night by combining 6,000 Choice Privileges points with an additional amount of cash (more for higher-tier resorts). 

While the exact amount of cash you’ll need to pay isn’t known until you choose your hotel, dates, and room type, it’s usually equal to the cash value of your Choice Privileges points ($0.01 each or fewer) less the cash rate at your preferred hotel.

With Choice Privileges’ FlexRewards program, you may take advantage of cheaper redemption rates at about 1,500 locations during low demand periods and further minimize the amount of points you need to redeem (usually during the week).

There are a dozen or so transfer partners, usually airlines, that you may use your points with if you’d rather not redeem for hotel stays. Unfortunately, the transfer rate isn’t great: 5 or 6 Choice Privileges points for 1 airline mile, depending on the carrier, which makes them less valuable than the free night redemption option.

Finally, you may trade in your points for gift cards to participating restaurants and stores, general items, and magazine subscriptions, all for less than $0.01 per point.

Annual Spending Bonus

With a minimum purchase of $10,000 made within the 12-month period commencing on your account anniversary date, you will receive 8,000 bonus points.

Automatic Elite Gold Status

Your initial account activation will get you Elite Gold Status inside Choice Privileges, the program’s second-highest loyalty tier. You get to retain it for as long as your account is active and in good standing.

Members with Elite Gold Status get access to an expedited booking system (up to 50 days in advance as opposed to the standard 30 days), a dedicated booking and customer support hotline, and a unique welcome gift upon arrival.

APR

For the first 15 billing cycles, you won’t pay any interest on any balance transfers made with this card. No interest will be charged on balance transfers made during the first 45 days after account establishment. This promotion is valid for the first 15 billing cycles.

Regular APR

APRs for balance transfers will increase to 16.74%, 21.49%, or 26.49% once the promotional period ends, depending on your creditworthiness and market conditions. There is a consistent range of the annual percentage rate (APR) for purchases beginning on the day your account is opened. No penalty APR is included in the cash advance APR of 25.49%.

Charges

There is no yearly charge with this card. There is a 3% charge for all transactions involving a foreign currency. Cash advances cost $10 or 5% of the amount borrowed, while balance transfers cost $5 or 3%. There is a $37 fee for late or rejected payments.

Personalized Concierge Service

With this card, you may take use of free, round-the-clock concierge assistance. Make dinner reservations at trendy eateries, get front-row seats to a sold-out performance, or just ask for advice on what to do in a new city—your concierge is at your service.

Credit is required.

Good credit is needed for this card. Your application will most likely be denied if there are any major red flags in your credit report.

Pros

  1. There is no annual fee.
  2. Solid Introductory Balance Transfer Promotion
  3. Automatic Elite Gold Status upon Sign-up 10% Point Bonus on All Choice Hotels
  4. There are several hotel and rental options.
  5. Excellent Incentive to Purchase More Choice Privileges Points

Cons

  1. Few Luxury Properties Have Low Point Values
  2. Poor to Average Options for Airline Transfers
  3. There’s a Foreign Transaction Fee

Bottom Line

It’s common to find two types of credit cards that provide travel rewards. Some have the logo of a specific loyalty program and serve as an incentive to shop at the parent firm of that program. Some are more generalized, rewarding consumers for spending in broad areas like travel, transportation, and restaurants rather than with a single retailer.

In this regard, Choice Privileges Visa Signature unquestionably qualifies as a member of the former category. It’s a no-brainer that having a credit card that can be used to pay for stays anywhere in the Choice Hotels network is a fantastic convenience, provided that you pay off your monthly account in full and no interest is charged.

But it isn’t ideal for day-to-day use because of the low point values and subpar earning rates on regular transactions. If you decide to apply, you should keep the card in your wallet until you need to use it to pay for a hotel at a Choice Hotels property, and then put it back where it belongs. It will be waiting for you when you make your next reservation with Choice Hotels, and there is no yearly charge.

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