How do you stop Accor points expiring?
Accor has quite a strict policy for points expiration. Accor have some very nice hotels but many people only have occasional stays, partly because of the relatively uninteresting loyalty programme.
Accor Live Limitless lets you exchange 2000 points for a €40 discount off a stay, or you can convert them to airline miles.
Such revenue-based redemption doesn’t give any possibility for “outsized” redemptions, as is possible with IHG or Hilton etc. With IHG or Hilton there are loads of opportunities to use points for what would otherwise be very expensive hotel stays.
With Accor, it’s €40 and that’s that. It’s also relatively hard to earn status, and there are no UK credit cards offering instant status or points earning.
So, if you have a small number of points your options are limited.
When do Accor points expire and how do you stop Accor points expiring?
When do Accor points expire?
The Accor Live Limitless terms and conditions are quite clear:
If the Member does not stay at a participating hotel that allows to complete an Eligible Stay for 365 consecutive days, all the Rewards Points in his or her account, whatever their origin, will be lost without prior notice and without being able to restore or transfer these Rewards points
This means that 365 days after your last stay you lose all your points, even points earned from shopping, airline, car rental, or other partner earning options.
What you can’t do
There are some tricks that work with other schemes that will not help you stop Accor points expiring.
- You can’t buy Accor points
- You can’t transfer them to someone else’s account
- There are no rewards for less than 2000 points in the Accor shopping portal other than a fruit knife for 1606 points
- You can’t donate them. Accor does have some charitable programs including tree planting, but the smallest donation is 2000 points
- The Accor Experiences portal offers many sports and entertainment redemptions, but never any cheaper than 3000 points
You also can’t really top up your account by transferring in from elsewhere. You can transfer in miles from Air France, Oman Air, Finn Air and some others. If you had some orphaned points in one of those programmes and nowhere better to move them to, than you could transfer into Accor.
It’s almost certainly never the best thing you could do with a small number of miles and the exchange rates are poor. It would never make sense to buy miles in any of those programmes because it would cost you many times more than the €40 you’d be getting back out of Accor.
For example, it would cost you 4000 Flying Blue miles for 1000 Accor points.
How to avoid small Accor points balances
If you’re not going to stay often at Accor hotels then you’re better off not collecting points there.
It is possible to set your Accor account to automatically convert points to miles, but this still only happens when you reach the minimum transfer threshold of 2000 points.
Instead, a better option is to book Accor hotels through another miles earning scheme such as Rocketmiles or Hotels.com.
If booking direct, you could show your BA Executive Club card at check-in and collect Avios directly (and you won’t get Accor points), but Rocketmiles or Avios is likely to give a more valuable outcome. At most you will earn 1.25 Avios per € of spend at Accor.
You could earn more Accor miles using their shopping portal, but with earning rates of 1 point per £ spent, this is not a sensible approach.
Accor have a partnership with Air France Flying Blue and you can earn 1 point for every €2 spent on Air France flights. The Accor points are earned on top of your usual Flying Blue miles, so if you’re going to fly with Air France you should sign up and get these free Accor points.
If you’re reading this, it’s probably too late for any of those options to be any use.
What you could try
People have tried lots of things to stop Accor points expiring and there a few things that have sometimes worked for some people. If you’ve exhausted everything else, then you could try these.
Remember though that 2000 Accor points is worth €40 or some number of Avios or Flying Blue miles etc, so think carefully before spending any money to extract whatever small value is tied up in your expiring Accor points.
The official terms state that only a hotel stay will reset the 365 day expiry period. In practice, it is sometimes reported that other earning activity resets the clock. There are only a few options to earn points, and only a couple that are effectively free.
- Credit a car rental to Accor
- Credit a flight to Accor
- Use the Accor shopping portal when shopping at Waitrose, M&S, Boots, or Halfords
- Have a drink in one of the participating Accor hotels
Be warned – there is no guarantee any of these will work. Some people have said it worked for them, but the official terms and conditions say it won’t. Even if it did actually work once, it may not keep working.
Stop Accor points expiring by having a drink at the bar in an Accor hotel
The Accor dining programme means that you could earn points by having a meal or even just a drink in one of the participating hotels, but the list of participating locations in the UK is very small. There are just 6 hotels, which are in London, Liverpool, Oxfordshire, and York.
If you happen to be near the Ibis York Centre or the Ibis London Earls Court then you could try spending at least £1 and see if it resets your expiry date. You need to download the Accor app, add a credit card, and click “link card to earn reward points”. Then, use that card to pay at the hotel bar.
It will take 7 days to credit the points to your account, so if your expiry date is imminent don’t waste your time with this.
If you’ve done this and it worked, let us know in the comments.
The participating hotels are listed here.
Stop Accor points expiring by completing a survey
The last option, and one which is completely free except for the time it takes, is to join the Accor Club Opinions programme and complete a survey.
Sign up, answer a load of questions, and in theory you should get 250 bonus rewards points plus whatever points the survey gives you. Some surveys are 25 points, others are 50.
The survey platform may say “sorry no survey available”, but if you keep clicking into it and answering the profile questions, a survey will eventually pop up.
When you’ve done a survey, it will take around 5 days for the points to be automatically transferred to your Accor account. You’ll get an email saying it will take 4 to 6 weeks, but for me the points appeared in my account just over 24 hours later.
Again, this may or may not work. Some people say it worked for them, but that’s all. There’s no guarantee. If you’ve done this and it worked, let us know in the comments.
Does it really ever work? Yes.
I only stayed at Accor hotels once last year, at the very nice Pullman Brisbane Airport. With the anniversary fast approaching and no current travel plans that I could redirect to Accor, I registered for Club Opinions and completed a survey.
Just over a day later my Accor account showed an extra 25 points for doing the survey, and another 250 bonus points. As well as the increased points balance, my expiry date changed to 1 year from now.
Proof. Last stay 24th Jan 2019, which would mean an expiry date of 24th Jan 2020. Latest activity is Club Opinions points 13th Jan 2020. Expiry data 13th Jan 2021.
OK, so it’s only €10 worth of points, but I do usually stay in Accor hotels more often than I did in the past year and it took me about 5 minutes to register and do a survey.
PS, note how Accor mixes up date formats on the account home page. Developers love working with dates, honest.