As a Club Carlson Premier Rewards Visa Signature® Card holder (one of the hotel credit cards that’s never leaving my wallet), one of the most-valuable perks is this: a free night when you redeem points for 2 or more consecutive nights at a Club Carlson property.
Especially with the cold weather creeping in, it’s always nice to know that inexpensive getaways to warm and sunny destinations can be booked for almost-nothing using points and miles.
One sweet-spot redemption is the Radisson Aruba. This year, my family and I have taken two trips there already, and we’re thinking of returning again soon.
I say this is a sweet-spot redemption because room-rates are usually $550+ a night during peek season, but if you’re using points (and if you have status with Club Carlson on top of it), it’s a steal.
At 50,000 Club Carlson points per night, being a Club Carlson Premier Rewards Visa Signature® Card makes it 25,000 points a night. Did I mention how easy earning Club Carlson points are?
With the card, you get 50,000 points with your first purchase (two nights right there), and an additional 35,000 points after you spend $2,000 within 90-days of account opening. The card comes with a $75 annual fee, but it’s so worth it because you receive an additional 40,000 points each year you pay it. With the “BOGO” award redemptions, I can’t think of a scenario where I would cancel the card anytime soon.
If you have status with Club Carlson (gold status is also a perk of being a card member), you’ll get an upgraded room on the club lounge floor (I got lounge access for free breakfasts, snacks, and drinks as a Club Carlson concierge member… not sure if that’s a perk of golds or not as well).
With hot foods being served in the lounge around the clock, our out-of-pocket food expenses were kept to a bare minimum, though we did dine outside of the resort on several occasions since there are plenty of lively restaurants and bars across the street and nearby.
The strategy I would recommend is to book this resort for an even number of nights (2, 4, 6…) to get the best value using your points.
Even better is if your spouse or traveling companion also is a cardholder so you can break it up into “two-night stays” split between the two of you.
For instance, if we are staying for 4 nights, I’ll book the first two under my name, and then my husband will book the next two nights. When we check in for the first time, we’ll mention that we have two separate reservations, and that we’d like to stay in the same room for the duration of our time at the resort. They are usually very accommodating :).
The resort is in what I consider the best location in Aruba. The beach is beautiful, the grounds are nice, it’s family-friendly, and walkable to tons of other hotels and nearby stores, restaurants, and bars.
It’s nice knowing that there’s a nice escape from the cold winter that won’t break the bank.
Have you visited this resort before?