How to Redeem Best Western Rewards Points

Free nights at Best Western is probably the most common redemption, but you have other options as well.
June Casagrande
By June Casagrande 
Edited by Mary M. Flory

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Best Western Rewards points are redeemable for hotel nights in nearly 100 countries at properties spread across more than a dozen different brands. These range from Best Western brands including the budget-friendly, namesake Best Western hotels to WorldHotels Luxury properties. But the redemption opportunities don’t end there. You can redeem Best Western points for gift cards, merchandise, airline miles, charitable donations and more.

Best Western Rewards points are pretty easy to accumulate because they never expire. This means you can build your point balance at your own pace without having to worry about losing them. Best Western Rewards members earn at least 10 points per $1 spent on hotel stays — and even more with elite status.

With these earning rates and a generous no-expiration policy, even the most infrequent traveler can eventually accumulate a pile of Best Western Rewards points.

So assuming you've earned Best Western Rewards points, here are the best ways to redeem Best Western Rewards.

Free nights at Best Western Hotels

Using your Best Western Rewards points for stays at actual Best Western hotels is almost always the best way to redeem them. Free night awards start at just 5,000 points per night, but we've seen them go as high as 70,000 points per night for the fanciest properties.

That said, finding redemption rates for specific properties can be hard to find on Best Western’s website given that the company does not operate a standard, public-facing award chart. Alas, the best way to get an approximate redemption rate is to log in and “Redeem Points” under “My account.”

Once there, enter your desired date and destination by browsing the booking tool and selecting "reward points" in the dropdown of rates.

For example, you might find stays in New York City for the weekend of Christmas 2022 going for between 40,000 points per night for lower-tier properties like the Plaza Hotel or Herald Square. Or, pay 70,000 points per night to stay at the Hospitality House.

If you're curious whether to pay with points versus cash, use NerdWallet's Best Western points calculator to understand whether it's a better deal to pay the cash rate if you don't mind sitting on points for longer. Sometimes you'll find the points are a better deal, and sometimes cash is. Typically, if you're getting a value of 0.8 cent or more per point, then it's better to book on points.

There are no blackout dates to redeem points on Best Western hotels — anytime rooms are available for cash, they’re available for points, too. But understand that points rates typically fluctuate with cash rates. What's more, redemption rates can change at any time and hotels can fill up, so remember that the rates you see when you’re looking around might change — especially if you wait to book.

As far as the absolute best Best Western hotel redemptions? These Best Western sweet spots offer especially good value.

Purchase Best Western gift cards

Purchasing Best Western gift cards is typically not as good of a value as using your points to book rooms outright, but it can make sense in situations such as wanting to gift a room to someone else. Booking their room on your points can be complicated. It might make sense to turn your points into a gift card that your loved one can spend at their convenience. Plus, they're on the hook for managing their own reservation.

A $10 gift card will cost you 2,000 Best Western points. NerdWallet values a Best Western point at 0.8 cent, effectively costing you $16 in points for just a $10 gift card. So, while we don't always recommend this option, it can make sense in some scenarios.

Convert your points to airline miles

Best Western Rewards partners with about a dozen airlines to let you convert your points to miles. Those airline loyalty program partners include Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan, Southwest Rapid Rewards and British Airways Executive Club.

However, converting points to miles can be a losing proposition. For example, it takes 5,000 Best Western Rewards points to get 1,000 Alaska miles. Going back to NerdWallet's valuation of Best Western points at 0.8 cent coupled with the value of Alaska miles at 1.2 cents, that's a bad deal. After all, you're effectively exchanging about $40 in Best Western value for just $12 in Alaska value.

But transferring your points can still be worthwhile, depending on your situation. If you need to top off your Alaska Airlines mileage balance for an upcoming trip or if you just don't see yourself using your Best Western points anytime soon, this could be a good move for you.

Make a charitable donation

With as few as 500 points, you can make a donation to Best Western’s partner charities. Partners occasionally change, but they’ve included American Red Cross, Make-A-Wish Foundation, The National Children’s Cancer Society and others.

Every 500 points you give translates to $2 for that charity (though NerdWallet usually values 500 points at about $4 when redeemed for hotels). Thus, this isn’t the best use of your points from a financial sense, but can be a delightful feel-good use of points.

How to maximize your rewards

You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2023, including those best for:

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