France Hotels

Paris, France: Best Hotels for Free Using Points

Screen Shot 2014-03-01 at 7.27.41 PMThe goal: Find the best value luxury hotel in Paris using either Chase Ultimate Rewards or American Express Membership Rewards points.

AMEX Membership Rewards Options in Paris

AMEX Transfer Partner Options:

  • Choice Privileges (Comfort Inn, Sleep Inn, Clarion etc…) : 1:1 ratio
  • Hilton HHonors (Hilton, Waldorf Astoria, DoubleTree, Embassy Suites etc…): 1 Amex = 1.5 Hilton ratio
  • Trianon Palace Versailles, A Waldorf Astoria Hotel = 80k points or 189€ (~1) = 0.48 cents/point return.
  • Starwood Preferred Guest (W Hotels, Westin, Le Meridien, St.Screen Shot 2014-03-01 at 7.22.17 PM 20€ (~$857) or 0.95 cents/point return
    • Best Western: 1:1 ratio
    • Very few available on points but the (relative) nicest = 36k points or 189 (~$261) = 0.73 cents/point return
    • Destination Hotels & Resorts: 30k-40k points for 1-night certificate

    Seeing how terrible most of these values are on the transfer rates make it worthwhile to take a look at the fixed-value AMEX redemptions, gift cards:

    AMEX Fixed Value (Gift Card) Options:

    giphyBasically, AMEX has devalued the options here so that the max value you can extract is 0.83 cents/point– pretty pathetic.

    • Marriott: 60k points for a 0 giftcard = 0.83 cents/point
    • Mandarin Oriental: 120k points for a 00 giftcard = 0.83 cents/point
    • There’s only 1 Mandarin Oriental in Paris and a night will run you 849€ (~$1173)
  • Four Seasons: 120k points for a $1000 giftcard = 0.83 cents/point
      Four Seasons Hotel George V Paris nightly rate = 1150€ (~$1589)
  • AMEX Travel Options:

    So, this one is the worse deal yet: if you book through AMEX Travel, you’ll get a fixed return of 0.75 cents/point. For example, a sample booking of the Park Hyatt Paris-Vendome prices out to , 291.82 for a 1-night stay, AMEX would require 172, 243 points for this redemption.

    Screen Shot 2014-03-25 at 7.21.17 PM

    Please, PLEASE don’t use your AMEX points like this, unless you’ve got an unlimited supply and have this attitude:

    Chase Ultimate Rewards Options for Paris, France

    Chase Point Transfer Partners:

    • Hyatt Gold Passport (Park Hyatt, Grand Hyatt, Andaz etc…): 1:1 ratio
    • Park Hyatt Paris-Vendome = 30k points or 804€ (~$1111) = 3.70 cents/point
  • IHG Rewards Club (Crowne Plaza, Intercontinental, Holiday Inn etc…): 1:1 ratio
      InterContinental : Paris – Le Grand = 50k points or 328€ (~$453) = 0.91 cents/point
  • Marriott Rewards (JW Marriott, Renaissance, Autograph Collection etc…): 1:1 ratio
      Paris Marriott Hotel Champs-Elysees = 45k points or 469€ (~$648) = 1.44 cents/point
  • The Ritz-Carlton Rewards: 1:1 ratio
  • Chase Gift Card Options

    Chase has a few travel gift cards, as well– they’re all a better rate than AMEX: typically 10k points for a $100 gift card = 1 cent/point value for Chase gift card redemptions.

    Karen Brown's Guides, Inc. France Hotels
    eBooks (Karen Brown's Guides, Inc.)

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    FAQ

    yupgigirl
    Best Travel Guide to Paris? (or even France, in general)?

    I went to Paris last year and used the DK Eyewitness Travel Guide but was wondering if there's a more detailed one available, it's great for a short trip but I'm looking for one where I could plan a couple months for. Any good suggestions for travel guides??

    The Dorling Kindersley Eyewitness Guides have always been best for me for detail and practical information- I would recommend the DK France guide and the Frommer's France guide and Best Loved Driving Tours of France. I have found Frommer's in general has the best restaurant information, but I have been often been confused/lost by their street maps- DK's are easier for me to follow. Frommer's does have interesting historical information that I haven't found in other guides. The only advantage of the other guides I've read are that they contain actual admission prices (at the time of…

    saintee
    Travel to WW1/WW2 Battlefield sites....?

    Has anyone travelled privately and used local guides to visit these sites? Planning to travel in small family group, 3 males, and wonder if anyone can give advice, contacts etc.

    Get a car, a cross channel ticket, a map and a good guide book..thats what ive done in the past..Ive done the beaches of Normandy, The Dams of dambusting fame, Auschwitz , the channel islands , Colditz , the Ardene and whats left of the Somme...The best bit of advice i can give you, especially in France, is to talk to the locals..Most are only to happy to point you in the right direction and you will uncover things and stories(sometimes eyewitness accounts) that the books dont cover..Its amazing what you can discover just by accessing local knowledge

    Lola
    What to do in Paris, france ?

    Im a 17 year old girl im going to paris in summer for 3 weeks.. now i wanna know what can i do other than visiting all the tourisy places (which i will be visiting ofcourse) but i wanna experience life in paris as much as i can in these 3 weeks if theres any clubs,pubs,gatherings neighborhoods i should visit and check out please tell me about them cause id love to go to them :D and whats the drinking age there ?

    The legal age for buying alcohol is 18.

    You can just wander from place to place. Paris has many beautiful streets and parks and promenades. I suggest a good travel guide book for Paris - DK Eyewitness Travel Guides is a great publication, but there are many others available - and read it before you go.

    Also, learn a few phrases of French and be able to use them. Things like Hello, goodbye, please, thank you and Do you speak English? are very useful.

    Taylor
    Best guide book for Europe traveling?

    Going to Portugal, Spain, France, Ireland, Scotland, England, Netherlands, Norway, Finland, Sweden, Hungary, Slovakia, Switzerland, Italy, and a few others I forgot. What is a good book to have to tell you places to eat/visit in that town? Is there one big book that does it all? Thank you.

    Yes indeed, there is "one big book" that is good for traveling throughout Europe. Actually, there are two.

    The oldest and most trusted is "Let's Go: Europe." It is published by Harvard Student Agencies and is annually updated by teams of students who go roaming throughout Europe. It is renowned for its frank, candid descriptions and practical advice. In fact, it is so frank that during the Cold War years, it was frequently confiscated from travelers who crossed into the Soviet bloc.

    Another excellent guide for young travelers is Rick…

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