When I and my fellow editors at SmarterTravel picked InterContinental's Priority Club Rewards as the best hotel loyalty program, we made special mention of the program's PointBreaks feature.
PointBreaks is a list of InterContinental family hotels offering free nights for just 5,000 points.
Participating hotels change every quarter, and InterContinental has just released the list of PointBreaks properties for the fourth quarter of 2010.
Through December 30, Priority Club Rewards members can book room nights for 5,000 points at around 125 hotels—77 in the U.S., the remainder scattered elsewhere throughout the world. The complete list is here.
Participating hotels only make a limited number of room nights available for booking at the discounted PointBreaks price, so it's first-come-first-served. In the past, discounted rooms at more desirable hotels have sold out early in the quarter, so it's best to book as soon as possible.
Deal or No Deal
Naturally, the highest-demand hotels don't participate in PointBreaks at all—the discount applies to less than three percent of the group's network of around 4,400 hotels. And the limited number of PointBreaks rooms makes snagging a deal at one of the few participating properties a snooze-you-lose affair.
But there are plenty of serviceable Crowne Plaza hotels on the list, and even several tony InterContinentals (Houston, Budapest, Saigon, Mumbai, and Murcia, Spain).
And with normal award night pricing ranging from 10,000 to 40,000 points, the PointBreaks rate of 5,000 points represents a huge savings.
So if you have reason to visit a location where there's a suitable PointBreaks hotel, this is a terrific opportunity to save some points.
The deal is so good, in fact, that it's worth perusing the PointBreaks list and planning a trip around a participating hotel, specifically to take advantage of the savings.
Reader Reality Check
If you've taken advantage of PointBreaks stays in the past, please share your story.
This article originally appeared on FrequentFlier.com.