How To Status Match with Hotels (October 2019 Update)
GoodMoneyAdvice promotes you getting ahead in all aspects of your financial life, to include when you travel. Whether for business or leisure, having some sort of status at the finest hotels in town comes in handy. With status, you often get incredible perks like complimentary nights, free breakfast, free parking, lounge access, complimentary upgrades, late check-out, and more. Here is a detailed overview of how to hotel status match to perfection.
Step One: Sign up for the rewards programs
If you are not yet, you should look to sign up for the following hotel programs:
For the purpose of this article, I will focus on Hilton, as I have been a member of their HHonors program for nearly a decade. If you are unfamiliar with Hilton, the Honors program is divided into four tiers:
Blue, Silver, Gold, and Diamond.
Blue members are essentially new members with zero stays, and if you are just signing up, you likely will be designated here. Once you complete four stays (or ten nights) in a calendar year, you will be upgraded to Silver. You secure Gold status with 20 stays or 40 nights, or 75,000 base Honors points. Finally, there is Diamond, which you can obtain at 30 stays, 60 nights, or 120,000 base Honors points.
While we will focus solely on how to hotel status match in this article, if you obtain a Hilton credit card backed by American Express, that will allow you to be bumped up to Gold or Diamond automatically.
I was a Hilton Honors Gold member thanks to my American Express Platinum card, so I reached out to Marriott Rewards via their customer service number, and signed up for a Bonvoy rewards account. With the Amex Platinum, you are automatically listed as Gold status with Marriott, which is a key first step in this status match play.
Signing up took just a few minutes, and soon I had downloaded the Bonvoy App on my phone, and it reflected within the hour I was a Honors Gold member. Once I did that, I headed over to Wyndham Rewards, where they have a link dedicated to matching status. I submitted the status match form, and within three days I was a Diamond member there. One thing to note, I know of many people who have done this who never stayed at a Wyndham property before, however obtaining Diamond status there allows you to complete the last leg of this hotel status matching play, which is with Caesars Rewards.
Caesars Rewards was formerly Total Rewards, however when they re-branded, their status match program also received a reboot, which sets them apart from rivals like MGM. As a newly minted Wyndham Diamond member, I reached out to Caesars Rewards about the status match, and within 20 minutes I had completed signing up for an account, I provided my Wyndham Rewards member information, and 2 days later I received email confirmation that my status had been updated to Diamond.
Now you may be asking yourself, why jump through all those hoops to obtain Diamond Status at Caesars? Here are the benefits of a Diamond member of Caesars Rewards as of October 2019:
- Gift up to 5,000 Reward Credits to a friend (limit of two transfers per year).
- 15% off best available advertised rate on rooms and suites.
- No resort fees on any hotel stay.
- Guaranteed Room with 72 hours notice in Atlantic City and Las Vegas.
- Complimentary valet & self-parking at many destinations, including Las Vegas and Atlantic City.
- $100 Celebration Dinner.
- Gain access to Diamond Lounges***
- Priority lines at hotel check-in, restaurants, casino cages and the Total Rewards Center.
- Access to the VIP Reservations Hotline.
- Complimentary stay at Atlantis, Paradise Island in The Bahamas.
- 20% discounts on select Norwegian Cruise Line vacation.
- New in 2019: Free Nights in Vegas, Atlantic City and Dubai
If you like to visit Las Vegas, Atlantic City, or any of the other Caesars locations throughout the world, you know resort fees are a pain to pay. As a Diamond member, they are a thing of the past. The complimentary valet and self-parking also saves you a ton, and the $100 Celebration Dinner is one of the best kept secrets of any rewards program. Once your Caesars Rewards account reflects you being a Diamond member, on your next visit to a Caesars owned property, stop by the Rewards desk, pick up your new Diamond card, and the agent there can confirm the restaurants available at that time for the $100 Celebration Dinner. When you arrive at the restaurant, simply let your waiter know you are using your dinner, they will swipe your Rewards card, and the first $100 is on the house. I was able to enjoy a wonderful dinner over the summer at Ruth’s Chris inside Harrah’s essentially for free. That food is always outstanding, but it tastes so much better when it’s free.
The priority line check-in at any of the Caesars properties will make you feel like a VIP as soon as you arrive, as you will have no wait to check-in. You also have priority lines at restaurants and casino cages. If you want to see a show, there is a VIP Reservations line for Diamond members, and if you wanted to plan a special vacation out of the States, Caesars Diamond members receive a complimentary stay at Atlantis, Paradise Island in the Bahamas, as well as two free nights in Dubai at a Caesars property.
Now that you are sold on the hotel status match, there are a few things we should recap.
- First, in my particular scenario, I obtained Gold Status with both Hilton and Marriott via my American Express Platinum card. There are a host of benefits of owning that card, but in the quest for hotel status matching, it is the most painless way to the top.
- I signed up for Marriott Bonvoy, Wyndham Rewards, and Caesars Rewards accounts first, and then later that day submitted status match requests. Do you have to do it that way? I doubt it, however I make a point to share the method to my madness in this process.
- Once my Caesars Rewards Diamond status showed up on my account, I then booked hotel room stay for my trip this past summer. Pricing was lower and all of the benefits listed above were available and more.
Going on a nice vacation, whether to a destination like Vegas or Atlantic City, or a dream vacation like Dubai or Atlantis, does not have to be costly. With a little legwork, you can be treated like royalty no matter where you stay, and save quite a bit of money in the process.