Be Wary of Starwood’s “If Only” Starpoint Earnings Totals

What do you have to do to earn 21 million Starwood Preferred Guest Starpoints in one year?

You could make a hell of a lot of purchases on your Starwood credit card. Or, if you are a meeting planner, all you have to do is book 1,000 or so meetings.

Then again, maybe all you have to do to “earn” this many points is book and cancel a ton of reservations at Starwood hotels.

SPG says I earned 227k in SPG this year. There’s NO WAY that is accurate. I only have ~150k and have only redeemed about 50k + I was not negative last year…


What I think counts as “earning” is the booking/canceling of award nights. I redeemed and canceled quite a few stays (speculatively because we kept changing dates/locations for our travels) and I think that’s what made my “earning” so high. ~edekba

No one is claiming this is how the 21-million-point-member earned his/her point fortune, but others agree that Starwood does seem to be padding earning calculations a bit:

I was surprised at my amount as well. I was in the 150k range but I don’t think I ever earned that much ~Sammich

I did not even earn half of what SPG says. Also my wife’s and my amount is almost identical. NOT POSSIBLE. I think this is nothing short than a SPG self promotion. ~Thomask

If true, this would seem to me to be an odd promotional tactic, as it would likely lead to more confusion and ill will with members than serve any real benefit. What member is going to feel good about having “earned” 225K points in a given year, only to later find out he/she only really has about 100k in the account?

Starwood: Look at how much you would have earned if you hadn’t canceled all those reservations.
Disgruntled member: Yeah, thanks for showing me that. Wish I would have known what that number meant before I planned the family summer vacation.

If you are a Starwood member, go take a look at your point earnings for the year and please report back in the comments section below as to whether it’s accurate. It would be interesting to know if this is a ploy, a glitch, or perhaps just confusion on the part of a few Starwood and Milepoint members.

And while you are clicking around, be sure to read the thread in its entirety: 21 million Starpoints in one year

Triple AmEx Bonus Round!” by Eric Mueller. CC BY-SA 2.0.


  1. We planned our wedding at a Westin and got the Starwood card for the sole purpose to get points for our 5X bonus points for him having Gold status, but we only got 2x since they claim that you don’t get the bonus on catering, just the rooms. I looked at all the online terms and can’t seem to find that caveat. Really sucks since we got the card because we were told we would get the bonus!

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