NOT Getting Max Value from Hotel Free Night, Not Always A Bad Thing

free nightLucas and I recently returned from our third trip in 3 weeks. This time, we visited Indianapolis, Indiana.

Like with some of our other trips, the question came up- why are you going to Indianapolis? My quick response as usual is something like- why not? I haven’t been there before…

While planning the trip I wanted to keep the costs as low as possible. I also had a Club Carlson Free Night certificate expiring at the end of August. (When the Club Carlson credit card’s 2nd night free benefit went away, cardmembers were given a free night e-certificate to use at any property.)

My original plan was to try to get to Reykjavik to use our three free nights at the Radisson Blu 1919 Hotel. However with Kim grounded until Baby W Travels arrives, the ideas of a trip to Iceland had to be put on hold.

I had two Club Carlson e-certificates and Kim still has one, good until the end of 2016. I used one of my e-certs during Lucas and My first Father Son Trip to Poland. (If I paid for this stay, it would’ve cost $184.54.)

Since my other certificate was expiring at the end of the summer, I had a couple of options.

  1. I could use during one of my summer trips with Lucas.
  2. Use it for a one night stay and create another trip, driving somewhere not too far from NYC.

There weren’t really any great options, especially in terms of getting value unless we did an unnecessary stay at the Radisson Hotel Martinique. (BTW- I really do like the property though.)

Kim and I felt there was no need to create another getaway just to use the e-certificate so my best option was to use it during my third summer trip to Indianapolis.

Club Carlson has a few properties in the area. Sadly, none of them are located in the pricier downtown area, although if they were I bet that parking would’ve been a small fortune.

I decided to stay at the Country Inn & Suites Indianapolis Airport South for two nights. I booked one night with my e-certificate and the other with points. This property wasn’t pricey ($109 per night, $127.53 with tax or 15,000 points) but it definitely got the job done.

So did I get a good value from my e-certificate? That’s a tough question and something that’s in the eye of the beholder.

I felt that I did get value since I used the e-certificate for an actual need, a trip which was already being planned. It also didn’t create any added headaches. I’m sure many of you, like myself worry about losing a deal or accidentally letting one of these free nights expire. (No this never has actually happened to me.)

Could I have booked a room which was a better $ value- absolutely, but in the end I think I made a wise decision based on our current travel situation.

Did you get any Club Carlson e-certificates? If so, let us know how you used them.

2 thoughts on “NOT Getting Max Value from Hotel Free Night, Not Always A Bad Thing

  1. Rich- We really enjoyed the Martinique when we stayed there. It’s actually a surprisingly good location! Wish they’d bring back the stay 2 redemption benefit. I think we’ll all keep dreaming about that happening…

  2. Funny you should ask. We used our 2 End of Promo certificates at the Hotel Martinique for our annual trip to the “Big Apple” in May. It was our first stay there and enjoyed it. Sure do wish they’d bring back the “last night free” redemption —-

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