Reader Success Story: Hotel-Hopping in Cancun


Our latest reader success story is close to my heart as Lysandra and her family hotel-hopped in Cancun, Mexico.  Here is her report:

I wanted to give a review of our recent points trip to Cancun as a family of 5 for winter break 2023. Our girls are 7 and 10, and our son is about to turn 13. We originally booked flights with points on Southwest from Washington DCA with a stop in Fort Lauderdale.

We booked Wanna Get Away fares for 12,118 miles per person each way, transferred from Chase. Two days before our flight we got a weather alert. I was able to call and change to a nonstop flight from BWI (Baltimore/Washington International) one day earlier without paying the increased fare. They also changed our return flight to get us back to BWI.


Hotel Stays in Cancun Using Credit Card Points and Miles

Aloft Cancun

Since we were arriving a day early, I quickly booked two rooms at the Aloft Cancun for 19,500 Marriott points each. The hotel is right in the party zone and it shows! The lobby is like a nightclub and the common areas are kinda gross, but the rooms were clean and the kids liked the rooftop pool. We also got free drinks from 11 am to 11 pm, and my kids each ordered about 10 virgin piña coladas!


Intercontinental Presidente

We then stayed three nights at the Intercontinental Presidente. We used two annual free night certificates from our IHG Chase cards, and booked a third night with 40,000 IHG points. I had chatted to confirm we could have five people in a room when booking, and followed up with two emails to the manager, but never got a response.

At arrival, we had a slightly awkward interaction about having three kids in the room, but in the end it was fine and they brought in a rollaway bed. The hotel is not all-inclusive. We were able to pay $75/night to upgrade to a club room, which gave us free breakfast and evening happy hour from 6pm-8pm. This hotel is definitely a luxury property with a beautiful beach. The food was astronomically expensive, and my daughters didn’t eat more than two bites of anything we ordered. We spent about $600 on lunch and snacks for our three nights there, but walked to the Subway and gas station across the street for dinner every night.


Beach at the Intercontinental Cancun.

Beach at the Intercontinental Cancun.

Dreams Sands

After this, we moved to the Dreams Sands Cancun (just a few buildings down) for our last two nights. It’s an all-inclusive, and I booked two rooms completely with points instead of paying cash for the kids. I transferred Chase points to Hyatt to book.

The room for two was 23,000 points/night, and the room for three was 34,500 points/night. There was some confusion at check-in about whether one room was for three people, so I’m glad I had my laptop to access confirmations from the website as the Hyatt app doesn’t show the number of people per room. My kids loved this hotel!



Beach at Dreams Sands.


The staff were all warm and kind. The food was just OK, but there was so much variety that my kids actually found things they wanted and ate well. Free ice cream all day definitely helped!

The beach is beautiful, and we were in connecting, renovated rooms that were more than nice enough, with a balcony on one. It was really nice to spread out across two rooms, have two bathrooms, and not worry about the cost of food and drinks for a few days. It may not be 5 stars like the Intercontinental, but this is the place my kids want to come back to.


Family at beach at sunset

This was the favorite resort for Lysandra’s children!

We’ve made several trips on points, but this was a really great family vacation. We loved getting some sun and relaxation for the first week of winter break.


Bottom Line

Thanks, Lysandra, for sharing your reader success story about hotel-hopping in Cancun! We love that your children’s favorite stay was not the most expensive or luxurious. Save those more expensive stays for when you and your hubby vacation together!

White sand, palm trees and blue water

Share this post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Want to know the most popular card for beginners? 

click here

Affiliate Disclosure: Travel Mom Squad uses affiliate links. We may receive compensation if you use our links when applying for a credit card at no extra cost to you. This compensation does not impact how or where products appear on this site. We have not reviewed all available credit card offers on this site. Thank you so much if you use our links!

Editorial Note: The editorial content on this site is not provided by credit card issuer. All opinions, reviews, and recommendations are expressed by the author, not the credit card issuer.