EXPIRED This article relates to an offer or promotion which has now expired.
Earlier this month hotel booking site Kaligo ran a four-day double points promotion, and it’s already back, this time as a “Black Friday sale”. You’ll be entitled to double the usual number of miles or points from any number of hotel bookings made for stays between now and the end of June 2020. This can be a useful way of topping up your balance in over 40 airline loyalty programmes, provided you find a good deal.
Black Friday Sale
Unlike the recent promotion in early November, the terms and conditions for this one state that you’ll have to register for this offer to be eligible.
That doesn’t seem to be necessary though (or even possible), so like before simply book through the dedicated link for the promotion to take effect: kaligo.com/black-friday-sale
This will then trigger double points / miles in the search results, broken down into a regular earn rate and a bonus amount at the payment stage.
The double miles rates will not appear if you search from the main Kaligo homepage, so do use the dedicated promotion link.
In the following example you can see you’ll earn 8,020 KrisFlyer miles for this stay, double the usual 4,010 points.
All frequent flyer programmes are included in the offer, however bank credit card loyalty programmes are excluded. That means you’ll still get a fixed 10 miles per dollar spent using cards like your Citi PremierMiles or DBS Altitude.
Although the promotion is advertised as ending on Monday, in fact it is running in UTC (GMT) time until 3rd December 2019 at 8am, which is 4pm on Tuesday 3rd December 2019 in Singapore.
That means you’ll have until 4pm on Tuesday next week to make your booking. The promotion is valid for stays between now and 30th June 2020.
Choose your FFP wisely
If we told you Kaligo would award you 8,020 KrisFlyer miles for a stay, or 14,346 British Airways Avios points for that identical stay, which would you choose to credit to?
Well we’re sure the first thing you might say is that you have no use for Avios points, so even with an 80% ‘additional bonus’ isn’t worth it.
Remember though that Kaligo lets you credit to over 40 airline loyalty programs, some of which are more ‘exotic’ than others and can be difficult to earn miles in with everyday spend or through credit card transfers in Singapore.
You might well already hold balances in these schemes, so it often makes more sense to credit to those rather than KrisFlyer, which has always awarded miles through Kaligo “on the stingy side” compared to others.
Take a look at these examples for a 2-night refundable weekend stay at the Mandarin Oriental in Singapore next month, with the accrual rates a few other FFPs shown.
Note: You cannot display these results side-by-side as we have done here. You’ll have to search a new FFP each time to reveal the award rate through the Kaligo site.
To us this would be a no-brainer. Provided the price represents a good deal for this hotel, over 15 Avios points per S$1 spent (14,346 for a S$940 booking) is the obvious choice, worth over S$270 ‘value back’ against a future redemption based on our typical use of Avios for oneworld First and Business Class awards.
With such a large disparity, it really pays to check out every programme you hold a points balance with before deciding what works for you.
Remember that you will also earn your usual credit card points for the booking itself, so choose the right card to collect even more miles.
This beats the 50% KrisFlyer bonus
As with the previous offer, this four day sale beats the ongoing 50% bonus on KrisFlyer miles with Kaligo offer, running until 30th November 2019 for stays completed by the end of March 2020.
The KrisFlyer 50% bonus offer is pretty much dead now, since it cannot be stacked, ends tomorrow anyway, and the double miles (100% bonus) through the Black Friday link clearly beats it.
It’s not always a good deal
Kaligo works by sharing some of the commission it receives for each hotel booking with you in the form of miles. Since a ‘middle man’ is involved, it often means paying more than the best available rate for the stay.
It also means some bookings will earn you more miles or points per dollar spent than others (where the commission Kaligo receives is a greater percentage).
That’s not to say it is always more expensive though, we have found hotels on Kaligo that are actually the same rate and sometimes even cheaper than booking direct.
The important thing to do is shop around first, then consider whether Kaligo is giving you a good rate for the hotel of your choice.
Status at chain hotels
Remember if you’re booking a chain hotel you won’t get any points or status credits in the hotel loyalty scheme for your Kaligo booking. Effectively you are sacrificing those for the frequent flyer miles (or other loyalty points) instead.
This makes Kaligo more useful if you’re staying at an independent property, or at a chain you don’t bother collecting points / status with.
Some hotels will still recognise and award your status benefits during your stay, even if you book via an OTA like Kaligo. In our experience Marriott and Ritz-Carlton hotels will usually honour your status perks in these examples, some Hyatts do and some don’t, ex-SPG properties and Hilton’s usually won’t.
Arguably if you have already secured the status level you desire with a particular hotel chain, Kaligo may make more sense for your booking if the miles deal works out much better than the hotel points, provided the hotel will still honour your status perks during your stay, or if you’re booking a club room or suite anyway, in which case you’ll get most of the benefits regardless.
Credit card points can still be better
If you have read our full article on Kaligo from December 2017, you’ll recall there’s normally a better way to earn more miles or points when booking through the service by crediting your miles to your credit card, provided you hold one of the following Singapore-issued cards:
When loyalty points from these cards are subsequently transferred to KrisFlyer, or another frequent flyer scheme like Asia Miles or Avios, each of them will result in a fixed 10 miles per S$1 spent at Kaligo (including taxes).
That can still be a higher miles or points total level than the ‘double rate’ on offer here, since the latter is variable rate based on commission while the credit card points rates are fixed.
Don’t forget to check these credit card options if they are applicable to you as although they are not included in the double points promotion they can still come out on top for lower commission properties.
Kaligo’s double miles offers never include their (already generous) credit card points rates, but they can be a great deal if you don’t hold one of the included credit cards and can even exceed them in value even if you do.
As always, calculate the cost per mile versus the best available rate you can secure elsewhere to ensure you’re not paying over the odds. Some Kaligo rates just aren’t worth considering if you’re ‘buying’ miles at high rates.
It’s definitely worth playing around with different frequent flyer programmes when you make your searches too. Crediting to the likes of Asia Miles, Alaska Miles or Avios typically comes in at a higher rate than to KrisFlyer, sometimes close to twice as generous, assuming you value the points equally.
(Cover Photo: AccorHotels)