This post is brought to you by Orbitz. While this was a sponsored opportunity, all content and opinions expressed here are my own.
I’ve always been a boutique hotel girl, through and through. There’s something about the intimate environment and attention to detail of boutique hotels that makes me feel more like I’m living in the place that I’m visiting rather than just playing tourist.
While big hotel chains can definitely offer particular amenities for business travelers that the smaller boutique hotels cannot, I always recommend booking a boutique hotel if you’re looking for a more unique experience that feels representative of your destination and more like an integration into the culture rather than a business trip.
In this post, I wanted to share how you can earn rewards on your boutique hotel bookings, because these more locally run businesses aren’t often set up to have their own loyalty programs. Good thing there’s a way around that.
Keep reading to learn more about my strategy that helps me stay in the hotels I want without having to sacrifice on my rewards earnings!
A Few Reasons Why I Love Boutique Hotels
- Fewer guests = more personal attention
- Changes and updates can be made quicker because they don’t have to be pushed through a corporate structure
- You’re supporting smaller, local businesses
- High quality boutique hotels typically have more thoughtful and well-executed design
- Rooms often vary in style and design, so you can return to the same place over and over and feel like you’re getting a unique experience each time
- Boutique hotels are often an experience unto themselves and feel like they add to the overall value of the trip rather than just providing a place to rest your head at night
But here’s the catch.
Being a lover of boutique hotels makes it harder to earn rewards towards future bookings as these properties don’t belong to bigger hotel chains with organized loyalty programs. Which is why I’ve been using the Orbitz rewards program lately to be able to earn points even when I book boutique hotels.
How Orbucks Works
When you sign up for an Orbitz account and make a booking, you will automatically accrue points through the Orbitz rewards program called Orbucks. When you book a hotel through Orbitz, you’ll receive a percentage of your purchase back in Orbucks (5% if you book on the mobile app and 3% if you book on desktop). Flight and vacation package bookings earn you 1% back.
Some other bonuses of the Orbucks program:
- You earn points the moment you book
- $1 Orbuck = $1 USD
- Orbucks can be redeemed for over 350,000 hotels worldwide including boutique hotels
- Orbucks can be used any time with no blackout dates
- They are always running special promotions that can help you amplify your rewards
How I Earned Points on My Recent Trip to Palm Springs
I recently visited Palm Springs and had my eyes set on the Sparrows Lodge, a small 20-room boutique property that offers a rustic but chic summer-camp style vibe. Since it’s not part of one of the big hotel loyalty programs that I’m a member of, I booked the trip through Orbitz to be able to earn Orbucks rewards to go towards my next stay.
Since I booked through Orbitz on desktop, I earned 3% back on my hotel booking that I can use towards future hotel stays, flights or travel packages. If you want to earn even more, make sure to download the Orbitz app and book via the app to get 5% back in rewards.
Orbitz Rewards Benefits Tiers
As you make more bookings through your Orbitz account, you’ll have the opportunity to rise up the ranks in their loyalty program tiers. As you progress through the tiers you get even more benefits as you can see from the chart below.
Some of them are pretty awesome — like access to a free TSA pre-check application and complimentary upgrades at VIP hotels.
The Stay at Sparrows Lodge
We had an incredible stay at Sparrows Lodge which is in the heart of Palm Springs and features beautifully designed rustic rooms with modern accents. Our room opened up right onto the pool deck and the rain shower in the open air bathroom was literally the best shower I’ve ever used — for a moment I felt like I was standing under a waterfall in Hawaii! No joke.
Our room also featured a deep soaking tub, private patio and AC to combat those hot Palm Springs temps. If you’re looking for a stay out in the desert that’s a bit different from the typical Mid-Century Modern style of Palm Springs, I can’t recommend Sparrows Lodge enough. Book your stay with Sparrows Lodge here.
If you’re interested in earning rewards on your next boutique hotel booking, make sure to sign up for the Orbitz rewards program here.