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Stay Vancouver Promotion: Up to $125 Off Vancouver Hotels!

The lucrative Stay Vancouver promotion is back for another round, this time offering up to a $125 Visa prepaid gift card for staying at Vancouver hotels before June 15, 2021.

$125 Visa Prepaid Gift Card on Your First Night

Stay Vancouver is supported by Vancouver’s tourism council, incentivizing travellers to visit the city, stay with its hotels, and spend money locally to support the local tourism sector.

To that end, the promotion offers a Visa prepaid gift card of up to $125 on your first night’s stay at a participating hotel, followed by gift cards of $50 per night for each subsequent night, up to a maximum of five nights.

The full terms and conditions of the promotion are as below:

There are 38 participating hotels in the Downtown Vancouver area, and they’ll each offer gift cards of $50, $75, $100, or $125 for the first night’s stay, depending on the hotel’s underlying nightly rate.

These gift cards will be delivered upon check-in, and in my experience, the check-in staff will often ask whether you’d simply like to skip the physical gift card itself and simply use the amount to offset against your room charge, so you can think of the gift card as essentially a straight-up discount against the nightly rate.

Of course, you also have the option of keeping the Visa gift card for spending elsewhere along your travels, and paying for the full amount of your hotel bill using a co-branded credit card (such as the American Express Marriott Bonvoy Card) to maximize your points earnings.

Obviously, if you’re staying at a hotel that’s offering more than $50 for the first night, then you’ll get a better deal on the first night than on subsequent nights.

Some travellers may be incentivized to go “hotel-hopping” between various hotels to maximize their return – for this to work, you’ll actually need to pack up your belongings and move between hotels every day, as the terms above do state that “booking subsequent nights as separate reservations will be treated the same as a single reservation for multiple nights”.

The terms also do state that the promotion is limited to “three bookings maximum per person”; however, based on anecdotal evidence, this seems to be loosely enforced and only comes into play if a certain hotel receives an influx of bookings from the same customer and reports the situation to Stay Vancouver.

If you’re travelling as a couple, you can always make additional bookings in your partner’s name to be on the safe side.

The “stay by” date is June 15, 2021, although there is no published end date to the booking window itself, aside from the fact that “this offer is limited and may end at any time”.

Therefore, if you’re interested in the promotion, I’d recommend making some bookings as soon as possible – you can always cancel for no penalty up to 48 hours in advance.

Does Stay Vancouver Qualify for Hotel Loyalty Programs?

One key question among those of us who participate in hotel loyalty programs like Marriott Bonvoy is whether we’ll receive rewards points and elite night credits, as well as whether we’ll be able to enjoy our existing elite benefits, for our stays under the Stay Vancouver promotion.

After all, bookings at Marriott and other chain hotels made via third-party travel agencies are typically not entitled to participate in hotel loyalty programs.

The good news, however, is that Stay Vancouver (and the Stay Richmond sister promotion) typically doesn’t count as a third-party travel agency; instead, what they do is take bookings via their portal and then subsequently make bookings directly at the participating hotels on your behalf.

Once these bookings are complete, you can typically get in touch with the hotel via email and request to add your elite membership number to the file, after which the booking will show up in your “Upcoming Trips” section just like any booking you’ve made yourself. You’ll be able to earn points, earn elite qualifying nights, qualify for promotions, and enjoy your elite benefits during the stay all the same.

Maximize Stay Vancouver for Your Trips to Vancouver

Let’s discuss a few different ways to maximize this promotion, which should be interesting to folks all across Canada, whether you’re considering a visit to Vancouver or you’re local to the lower mainland.

Clearly, a Visa gift card of up to $125 for the first night followed by $50 gift cards for subsequent nights can make visits to Downtown Vancouver a lot more affordable. This will be true whether you typically like to patronize high-end luxury hotels or prefer to stay at more budget-friendly accommodations.

JW Marriott Parq Vancouver

For example, the JW Marriott Parq Vancouver is going for $304 after taxes on many dates.

That would be offset by a $125 gift card to result in a net cost of $179, which is a fantastic deal for such a nice hotel – especially if you have Marriott Platinum Elite status or above and can chance your way to a nice suite upgrade.

(Incidentally, I’m moving to Vancouver at the moment, and I’m staying at the JW Marriott as of the time of writing at this article as I prepare for our move. In case I need to extend my stay, I’ll definitely be hopping on the StayVancouver offer to secure such a competitive cash rate.) 

Other decent hotels in Downtown Vancouver can be brought down to an even lower net cost. The Hilton Vancouver Downtown, for example, can be booked for $179 after taxes, offset by a $100 gift card to a net cost of $79 (and it books directly into a suite!)

However, if you’re intending to visit Vancouver for a longer period and you’d rather not pack up your stuff every day to go hotel-hopping, perhaps one of the lower-end properties will be the right fit, given that you’ll get a $50 gift card to offset the cost for each of the first five nights.

A stay at the Days Inn Vancouver, for example, can be as low as $93 after taxes, which is offset by a $50 gift card to result in a net cost of only $43 per night, for up to five nights.

Sure, the room itself may not be the most luxurious and you won’t be earning any meaningful hotel rewards points, but in terms of a budget-friendly place to rest your head in an otherwise rather expensive locale, you really can’t beat that.

Days Inn Vancouver

No matter which hotel you choose, there appears to be plenty of availability throughout the promotion period, including during the peak travel period in early June. 

However, in previous Stay Vancouver promotions, the deals have some times sold out pretty quickly at certain hotels, so I’d recommend taking a look sooner rather than later!

Maximize Stay Vancouver for Mattress Running

The other possibility here is for “mattress running”, which refers to the practice of staying at hotels purely for the sake of earning elite qualifying nights.

If you’re a few nights away from the next status level with Marriott Bonvoy or another hotel loyalty program, or perhaps if you’re participating in a status challenge which requires paid stays, then the Stay Vancouver hotel can help you unlock extra nights for a minimal cost.

You’ll want to carefully search across different hotels and different dates to identify the cheapest mattress-running opportunity. At first glance, it appears the Residence Inn Vancouver offers some of the cheapest per-night costs out of all the Marriott-branded hotels at about $112 for the night, although there may be other pockets of dates where the underlying rate is even cheaper.

Don’t forget that you can currently stack these cheap nights with Marriott Bonvoy’s Double Points & Double Elite Nights promotion, allowing you to earn effectively two elite qualifying nights for as little as $112 – a fantastic deal if you’re aiming for Platinum or Titanium status through February 2023. 

Conclusion

The Stay Vancouver promotion has been a perennial favourite in the Canadian travel scene, whether you’re looking for a cheap stay in Downtown Vancouver for an upcoming trip or you’re a local resident who’s looking for a cheap mattress-running opportunity.

The current promotion results in some very generous nightly cash rates for the spring and summer travel season, regardless of whether you’d like to stay in the city’s leading luxury hotels or stick with more affordable properties, so I hope many of you can take advantage as you consider any upcoming trips to the West Coast. 

16 Comments
  1. Avatar
    Jimmy

    Any idea if I will lose the VISA promotion if I change my room/dates of stay on my Marriott Bonvoy account once the details are posted on my account?

    1. Avatar
      Steven

      This offer might end on 4/22 12AM PST
      (search Facebook: Vancouver Marriott Pinnacle Downtown Hotel)

      1. Ricky
        Ricky

        Thanks for the heads up Steven, very useful!

  2. Avatar
    Josh

    You mention Marriott Status through to the end of 2023, that should be February 2023, right? Or am I missing something

    1. Ricky
      Ricky

      Thanks for catching that, it should’ve been February 2023.

    2. Avatar
      Jay*

      Typo indeed.

  3. Avatar
    mechu

    Marriott property replied saying that they added my Marriott number to my stay Vancouver reservation but I don’t see the reservation on the app/website yet (been almost a day). Is there a lag in the update?

  4. Avatar
    Sophie

    I’ve been trying to book since you posted with three different credit cards (AMEX and visa) and I just keep getting “Sorry an error was encountered processing your booking. If you continue receiving this error please contact support.” Anyone encounter this or know how to go around it?

    1. Ricky
      Ricky

      Hi Sophie, are you still having issues? I just made a dummy booking and it worked fine. Maybe try a different browser?

      1. Avatar
        Sophie

        They might have blocked my IP or something, I tried with 3 different browsers but asked my friend to make the reservation for me and it went through!

  5. Avatar
    Andrew

    Sweet will be useful for my trip in late Nov, too bad there is no Hiltons in downtown Vancouver other then the Hampton inn that’s not included

    1. Ricky
      Ricky

      Hmm, that’s pretty surprising to me, but it looks like you’re right. Good chance to give another hotel brand a try for you then.

      1. Avatar
        Andrew

        this time around there is exactly that a Hilton Downtown Vancouver lol thanks to a reflag and its featured in the post

        1. Ricky
          Ricky

          Great news for Hilton loyalists – and such cheap rates, too!

  6. Avatar
    Brandon

    If I am a Hyatt Globalist, what are the chances of me getting upgraded through a StayVancouver booking at the Hyatt Regency Vancouver?

    1. Ricky
      Ricky

      If you email the hotel to attach your Hyatt membership number, I’d say odds are pretty good.

Ricky

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