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Miles & Points: The Week’s Best Frequent-Flyer Deals (Week of March 9, 2015)

SmarterTravel

Following is our regular summary of the latest travel news and best frequent traveler promotions reviewed during the past week.

If it was a good deal—or a notably bad deal—from an airline, hotel, or car rental loyalty program, you can read all about it here, and plan your travel accordingly.

New from United: Redeem Miles for Cruises

Members of United’s MileagePlus program who live in the U.S. may now redeem their miles, alone or in combination with cash, for cruises with more than two dozen cruise lines.

Hilton’s Free Wi-Fi Comes with Strings

Following the lead of Marriott and Starwood, Hilton will offer free Wi-Fi only to loyalty-program members whose bookings are made direct with Hilton.

New Starwood Award Prices Are a Mixed Bag

Although almost as many Starwood hotels will raise prices for award stays as will lower them, the ratio of increases to decreases is much higher for U.S. properties.

United to Upgrade Its Airport Lounges

United today announced that it will be “transforming the customer experience” at its 49 airport lounges, introducing new menu items, renovating facilities, and retraining staff.

Marriott Raises Award Prices at 1,000+ Hotels

Beginning on March 19, Marriott will require more points when redeeming for free nights at an eye-popping 27 percent of its network hotels. Ouch!

Alaska Discounts Award Flights Up to 60%

As it has been doing with refreshing regularity, Alaska Airlines is again discounting award flights, for 60% fewer miles in some cases.

Earn Up to 6X American Miles for Hertz Rentals

Through August 31, AAdvantage members can earn up to six times the normal mileage payout for qualifying Hertz rentals.

Alaska Air Offers Double Miles on 27 Routes

Through May 15, Mileage Plan members can earn double miles on a host of Alaska Airlines flights to and from Seattle and Salt Lake City.

Win a 9-Day Trip to Ireland for Two

Enter the Guinness “Ultimate Irish Adventure” sweepstakes by March 31 for a chance to win a nine-day trip to Ireland for two, including air, hotels, a cooking class, city tours.

Somebody has to win, right? Might as well be you.

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