Wyndham Rewards is a large hotel loyalty program with about 9,200 participating properties in 80 countries and includes well-known brands, such as Ramada Inn, La Quinta, Hawthorn Suites, Days Inn, Super 8 and, of course, Wyndham Hotels and Resorts. Plus, there are lots more you don’t expect (more on that below). The program is also extremely well-regarded: In October, Wyndham Rewards won the USA Today 10Best Readers’ Choice Award for best hotel loyalty program for the second year in a row.
What does this mean for you? It means you have lots of chances to earn rewards in a broad and highly ranked loyalty program, and just as many chances to redeem the points you earn staying at Wyndham properties. Here’s your guide to booking a free night with Wyndham points.
» Learn More: Wyndham Rewards: The complete guide
Sign up or log in
If you don’t yet have a Wyndham Rewards account, and even if you don’t stay there often, it’s a good idea to sign up. It’s free, and from there on out you’ll earn 10 Wyndham Rewards points for each dollar you spend on a qualifying stay.
» Learn More: The complete guide to earning Wyndham points
Know the lingo
There are two types of room redemptions in the Wyndham Rewards program: Go Free and Go Fast. Go Free is just their way of saying you can use points to book a room, and Go Fast is a combination of points and cash.
Of course, as with any hotel rewards program, you should be leery of the word “free.” Some properties carry a resort fee that you pay with real money at checkout, even if you paid for your room with points. So always look at the true bottom line before rejoicing over a “free” night.
» Learn More: The complete guide to redeeming Wyndham points
Expect the unexpected
If you’re dreaming of a Vegas escape in a blingy resort with a fabulous casino and a sprawling, luxurious pool complex, a hotel program associated with Super 8 and Days Inn probably doesn’t spring to mind. But this is why you should never assume: Caesars Entertainment properties participate in Wyndham Rewards, meaning you can redeem your points for a night at any number of Caesars properties, including the world-famous Caesars Palace, home of the Garden of the Gods pool complex made up of seven separate pools, with amenities like swim-up blackjack, full bars and poolside spa services.
Lots of condo properties also participate in Wyndham Rewards, meaning that depending on your destination, you could have a choice of accommodations that goes well beyond the Ramada Inn and Super 8.
Check redemption rates
To discover all the properties available for your points, enter your destination and dates on the main page of the Wyndham Rewards website. Next to each available property, you’ll see your Go Free and Go Fast options for booking your room. Rooms start at just 7,500 points per night with Wyndham’s three-tiered awards chart, which also has tiers at 15,000 and 30,000 points per night.
» Learn More: Your guide to the Wyndham Rewards chart
Check cash prices with travel discounters
The very idea of paying for a room with points can be exciting. But before you book, it’s better to get an idea of how much value you’re really getting — and whether there’s anything better out there. Check your dates and destination at your favorite travel booking website, like Expedia, Travelocity or Hotels.com. Maybe there’s a steal out there that will make you want to save your Wyndham points for a future trip. Maybe not. Either way, you’ll have a better sense of just how much value you’re getting for your redemption.