Starwood is bringing out a new global partnership with Uber that allows members to link their Starwood and Uber accounts and earn Starpoints for the Uber rides they take (last name and email addresses on both accounts must match).
Starwood adds Uber to its stable of points-earning partners which includes Crossover Rewards (Delta), Your World Rewards (Emirates), and Caesars. Sadly the Uber partnership doesn’t come with upgrades or elite qualfying benefits. But it means more points and without taking anything away from members so positive all around.
- All members earn at least 1 Starpoint per dollar spent on Uber.
- If you’re staying with Starwood when you Uber you’ll earn based on your program tier: 2 points for general members, 3 for Golds and Platinums, 4 for 75 night Platinums and above.
Unlike some of the other partnerships, this one benefits all Starwood members and not just elites.
And since this is based on linking accounts, and independent of payment method, this points-earning will be stackable with credit card earning (including American Express Membership Rewards and Chase Ultimate Rewards category bonuses). That means a 75 night Platinum, staying at a Starwood property, could earn 4 Starpoints and two Chase points per dollar spent on Uber.
The enhanced earning during stays is based on transaction dates, not check-in and check-out times. This means that you get the higher earning levels on the days of your stay, including check-in day and check-out day, rather than somehow being based on the time of day you’re actually registered in-house with a property. That makes good sense both technologically, and because it rewards you from Ubering to and from the airport.
The two caveats:
- You have to have had a stay in the current calendar year to be eligible to earn points with Uber. So regardless of elite status, a member who doesn’t stay at a Starwood property until February in a given year won’t be earning points with Uber in January of that year. But they’ll earn points from the time they stay through the rest of that calendar year.
- Points-earning is cap at $10,000 per year in Uber spend. That’s not a meaningful limitation for most people who won’t come close to that amount.
I spoke to Chris Holdren, Senior Vice President for Starwood Preferred Guest and digital, who tells me that they’ll “continue to enhance the platform,” suggesting that they’re working on more things they can do with Uber going forward. Starwood more than any other hotel chain for instance seems tied to member experiences outside their hotels, such as concert and event access, and Uber has experimented playing in that space as well. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Starwood’s experiential offerings include an Uber component going forward.
Starwood does have a history of growing these partnerships, such as bringing Delta upgrades for Starwood Platinum members into the Crossover Rewards program six months in.
So should you link your Starwood and Uber accounts right away? If you use Uber and have had a Starwood stay this year or will soon it makes good sense to. Better to ‘set it and forget it’ so you don’t miss out on earning.
If you don’t have Starwood stays planned, and you aren’t a frequent Uber customer, it could pay to wait. I’m not predicting any rewards for linking accounts, but I held off linking my own Starwood and Delta accounts and a year ago was targeted with a 5000 Starpoint offer to make the link.
For more on what Uber is all about, see:
- Why Taxis Suck and What You Can Do About It
- Uber’s New Plus Option Helps Explain Their Business Model and Where the Company is Going
- Uber’s Surge Pricing is Great Here’s Why You Should Love It