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Say, if an academic program has already registered for my hotel stay and paid for it.

Then can I count the nights I've spent in the hotel for a hotel awards program?

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Depends... What hotel? What frequent stay program? Did the conference negotiate a special rate, or did they just pay the regular "rack" rate? –  Gagravarr Jul 9 '12 at 14:11
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up vote 5 down vote accepted

In almost all cases the answer is "Yes".

It doesn't matter who makes the booking, or who pays for it - as long as your "number" is attached to the booking (which you can do at check-in if it hasn't already been done) then you will get points/miles/etc.

However, there are exceptions. Although most rates do earn points - even corporate rates - occasionally hotels will have specific deals that explicitly exclude earning points for a specific rate. For example, most (all?) of the "Family and Friends" rates that are available with some hotels do not earn points. Stays paid for with points (rather than money) generally do not earn additional points.

The best plan is just to make sure that your number is attached to the booking at check-in, and then keep an eye on your point balance. If you get the points - great! If you don't, you can follow-up with them and find out why - and if they tell you that it was a non-earning rate then you'll have your answer!

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