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The Best Western Rewards® Business MasterCard® from First National Bank of Omaha has changed its bonus structure.
Now, you can earn up to 80,000 bonus points in the first year of holding the card.
- 48,000 points when you spend $1,000 in the first 3 billing cycles
- 32,000 points when you spend at least $25,000 during each 12 billing cycle period
That’s a big increase over the old offer that got you a maximum of 20,000 points, and it still has no annual fee.
It compares to up to 70,000 points for holding the personal Best Western Rewards® Premium MasterCard®, which has a $59 annual fee(waived for the first year). The Best Western Rewards® Premium MasterCard® offers 50,000 points after you spend $1,000 in the first 3 billing cycles, and 20,000 points when you spend $5,000 during each 12 billing cycle period.
The Best Western Rewards® Business MasterCard® offers these benefits
- 3 points per $1 on business expenses
- 1 point per $1 everywhere else
- Automatic Platinum Elite status
- Gold Elite status for employees
- 10% discount on base Best Western room rates at Bwrcarddiscount.com
- No foreign transaction fees
Business expenses is a pretty broad category with this card…
- Telecommunication Equipment and Telephone Sales (MCC 4812)
- Special Telecom Merchants (MCC 4813)
- Telecommunication Services (MCC 4814)
- Computer Network/Information Services (MCC 4816)
- Cable and other pay television (MCC 4899)
- Electric, Gas, Sanitary and Water Utilities (MCC 4900)
- Office and Commercial Furniture (MCC 5021)
- Photographic, Photocopy, Microfilm Equipment and Supplied (MCC 5044)
- Computer and Computer Peripheral Equipment and Software (MCC 5045)
- Commercial Equipment (MCC 5046)
- Stationery, Office Supplies, Printing, and Writing Paper (MCC 5111)
- Stationery Stores, Office and School Supply Stores (MCC 5943)
- Advertising Services (MCC 7311)
- Computer Maintenance and Repair Services (MCC 7379)
- Management, Consulting, and Public Relations Services (MCC 7392)
Advertising Services and Office Supply stores are particularly lucrative categories where you can rack up points really fast.
What can you do with the points?
You can use your points to book free nights at thousands of Best Western hotels around the world.
Most are budget oriented properties, so don’t get these points expecting luxury beach resorts. Instead, they’re useful for road trips and hitting up European cities on a budget.
Best Western free night stays cost from 8,000 – 36,000 points per night, and according to the application page the average stay costs 16,000 points per night. So, 80,000 points can get you about 5 free nights.
There are 8 redemption levels, but the redemption level for a hotel can change based on the time of year, so hotels aren’t assigned to specific categories.
For example, the Best Western Grant Park in Chicago is available for 12,000 points in February, but goes up to 20,000 points in March, 24,000 in April, and 28,000 points in May.
Others like the Cartwright Hotel in San Francisco, one of Best Western’s luxury Premier Collection properties, is 36,000 points per night all year round.
Generally though you’ll get around half a cent per point in value with Best Western Rewards points. That 36,000 point per night Cartwright Hotel typically sells for about $200 per night, though can sometimes go as high as $400 a night.
You’re probably better off though avoiding the reward nights altogether and using points for a $50 Best Western gift card for 11,000 points, which is just about 0.5 cents per point in value.
So the 80,000 point bonus in the first year is worth about $400 in hotel savings, though only 48,000 of those points are from an actual introductory bonus.
You can also transfer points to airline mile programs – 80,000 Best Western points will get you 19,200 Southwest Rapid Rewards points at a conversion rate of 5,000 Best Western points for 1,200 Southwest points.
Don’t go out of your way to earn this, but if you like Best Western hotels, have at it. There’s no annual fee.