Confirmed: FoundersCard Members Can STILL Get 4 Nights in the Bahamas (I Just Booked It!)

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Oof. It’s been a rough ride for Caesar’s Total Rewards fans this year. In particular, they slaughtered their Diamond elite tierno more lounge access for starters, unless you have a certain number of tier credits.

total rewards atlantis

I’m coming back for more, Atlantis

One of the best perks about Total Rewards Diamond elite status has been 4 free nights in the Bahamas each year (I took them up on it in December 2016). And that’s changed, too.

I’m Diamond with Total Rewards because of FoundersCard. That perk was renewed through the end of January 2019.

I’m NOT a high roller but still got 4 free nights in the Bahamas

And great news: you can still get 4 nights at the Atlantis Paradise Island (a Marriott Autograph property). I had no trouble booking it over the phone with next to 0 tier credits today.

But now, you have to pay resort fees for the stay, and they’re ~$54 per night. Which is still a great deal. Just not as good a deal as before.

Looks like I’ll be going back to Nassau in May! I’m thinking of staying only 3 nights and spending the last one at the new Grand Hyatt Baha Mar that isn’t even 1 year old yet!

Total Rewards Atlantis Information

About the Atlantis benefit. According to the official website, Diamond members with less than 15,000 tier credits can get:

Literally the same thing except for the Special Casino Rate but that’s moot

It looks to be the nearly the same as when I booked it before – here’s the complete breakdown of my previous stay.

The biggest difference is resort fees are NOT waived this time this time around. They say:

Guests of Atlantis, The Cove Atlantis and The Reef Atlantis (but not Harborside Resort) will be required to pay a resort fee of $49.95 plus a $3.75 VAT charge per room per night, totaling $53.70 per room per night. The resort fee will include the following services:

  • Wi-Fi in guest rooms and lobby areas for up four (4) devices
  • Access to Aquaventure, a one-of-a-kind 141 acre waterscape
  • Access to the Fitness Center: Up to 2 persons per day per room
  • Fitness center access entitles guests to complimentary use of the cardio studio, universal and free weights only. Tennis, fitness classes and personal training sessions are not included.
  • Two (2) 12 oz. bottles of water daily per room.
  • Unlimited local phone calls
  • Access to the Atlantis Movie Theater
  • Resort Shuttle Service
  • In-Room Coffee and Tea
  • Casino Lessons

By the numbers

~$216 in resort fees for a 4-night stay basically means you can stay in at the Atlantis for $54 per night.

Is that worth it? I still think it’s a great deal, especially considering the room rate is nearly $1,500 for the dates I selected.

The resort fees suck, but I’ll still save well over $1,000

If you split it with someone, it’s an even better deal at around $27 per night, per person (which is what I’m gonna do). Plus, I found award flights on American and the taxes to fly round-trip in coach are ~$116. These flights would be ~$524 if I paid cash!

25,000 American miles and ~$116 gets me a ticket to the Bahamas

So the price comes to:

  • $108 ($216 / 2 is my half of the resort fees) – regular cash price is $1,473
  • $116 for the flights – regular cash price is $524

In the end, I’ll pay $224 for a trip to the Bahamas worth $1,997. That’s a huge discount and still a great deal!

What else comes with it?

You also get:

  • $100 free slot play
  • Atlantis Casino Experience Pass
  • Access to Aquaventure, a one-of-a-kind 141-acre waterscape with 20 swimming areas and 11 pools

Atlantis Casino Experience Pass Inclusions: Shallow Water Dolphin Interaction for One, Round of Golf for One, Sushi and Sake Sampler Platter at Nobu, Two Cocktails at Olives, Two Cocktails at Seafire Steakhouse.

I loved the Casino Experience Pass!

The Casino Experience Pass was the exact same before.

The dolphin encounter is actually super cool

The dolphin interaction would’ve been over $100 (only good for 1 person). Same for the round of golf (we didn’t play though, it only includes 1 player).

The Nobu sampler was heavenly. The 2 cocktails are easily worth $30+. Here’s the menu:

I got the Sky Juice martini – highly recommend

Same for the other cocktails, although we ended up getting a nice red wine instead.

So it’s easily worth $300 if you use everything. And this time you get $100 to play at the slots too, which is fun. We didn’t choose that option before (you could choose to waive the resort fees instead).

The extras, in this case, actually add a lot of fun and value to the experience.

Other things to note

This time, you have to choose between peak and off-peak. Peak times, you’ll get the Beach Tower, which is where I stayed before. And off-peak, you get the Royal Tower, which is super nice.

Off-peak stays get the Royal Tower

Off-peak months are:

  • May
  • June
  • September
  • October
  • January

You CAN cancel the stay if you need to. The policy is:

Guests must cancel their room 7 days or more prior to their arrival date and receive a cancellation number in order to avoid a cancellation penalty. If guest cancels their room 6 days or less prior to their arrival date, guest is subject to a cancellation charge of the first night’s room rate.

That seems totally fair. I might switch my dates depending on flights. So that’s nice to know.

The hotel also puts a $250 security hold on your credit card when you check-in. You’ll get it back when you check-out (it’s never charged, just a hold). This is common at most hotels, just nice to know what the number is ahead of time.

Worth it to get FoundersCard?

I’ve had my FoundersCard membership for 4 years and still love it! I’ll do a 2018 update shortly.

Love this little guy

If you want to join, you can use my promotion code “FCHARLAN818“ to lock-in the $395 a year price for life – that’s my referral code. You can preview the benefits here. I’ve also written about many of them.

You still get Diamond elite status at Total Rewards, which gets you waived resort fees, private lines, and a $100 yearly Celebration dinner (I had mine in New Orleans last year). That benefit alone can be worth the price of entry if you’ll use it a lot.

Bottom line

There was some question as to whether Diamond elites from FoundersCard could still book 4 nights at the Atlantis Paradise Island. The answer is yes! There are just a few tweaks to the deal this year.

There’s no doubt the Total Rewards-Atlantis partnership devalued for Diamond elite members with under 15,000 tier credits. Instead of having a free option, you’re now stuck paying ~$216 in resort fees for the 4-night stay.

It’s still a good deal for 4 nights in the Bahamas, especially if you can go off-peak and stay at the super nice Royal Tower, which wasn’t an option before.

It’s also worthwhile if you can score award flights. I’ll spend $224 for a trip worth nearly $2,000. It’s similar to what I paid in December 2016.

The $100 in slot plays, Casino Experience Pass (worth $300+ if you use it all), and access to Aquaventure add to the value.

I’ve done this booking twice now and stayed there about 15 months ago. Let me know if you have any questions, I’m happy to answer them!

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About Harlan

Just a dude living in Dallas.

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Comments

  1. I am just a bit confused as this seems to be too good to be true. Do you mean that just by having this credit card, you pay the annual fee, and you get this?

    • It’s not a credit card, it’s a membership you pay for. And yes, you pay it, get Caesar’s Diamond elite status for free, then you can book this stay in the Bahamas! I did it before and it works as advertised.

  2. Is this similar to a benefit with the Wyndham card? Is there a section of the hotel that’s not terribly nice?

  3. How strict are they with the whole ‘you need to be an entrepreneur’ enforcement? Do you know if anyone’s been turned down recently?

    • I think if you demonstrate you can use the perks and are willing to send business to their partners, that should be enough. Most people who apply are accepted. Ultimately it’s a business and everyone wants to make money.

      Also, there’s absolutely no risk to apply. Worst thing they can say is no. I’d give it a try and see what happens!

  4. How much would you say you spent on food for your previous four night stay back in 2016? Did you (or will you for your upcoming trip) buy a dining plan?

    • I only had one meal at the hotel. We walked to Margaritaville or to the restaurant right outside the grounds (next to the Dunkin’ Donuts). We also took a taxi into town 2 of the days and ate there.

      Breakfast was $10/day. Lunch was $15. Dinner – maybe $25? Normal prices for eating while traveling.

      We cut some costs by eating from the food carts and making the most of the Casino Experience Pass.

      I did not even consider the dining plan – looks way too overpriced.

  5. Hi Harlan! I understand the membership fee is annual. Is the opportunity to stay at Atlantis for 4 nights an annual benefit? Or is this a one-off? Thanks!

    • It’s offered by Caesar’s, so it has nothing to do with FoundersCard. It’s been around the past few years, but there’s no guarantee it will return year after year. So get it while you can!

  6. Hi did you mention somewhere that if you dont accept the pass and 100 slot credit to play you can get the resort fees waived?

    • Hi Vivian! I don’t think they let you make that swap any more – unless you’ve heard differently recently, I don’t think it’s an option these days.

  7. Hello, I am planning to apply for the Founders card since the AF is $395 until July 31. Is it still a guarantee that you will get Diamond with Total Rewards and can book 4 free nights at the Atlantis. How to know what towel is available at a certain time. We are going to be there on Thanksgiving. And for a family of three with a 9 year old girl, what towel do you think would suit us the most? Thank you.

    • November is a peak time, so you’ll get the Beach Tower. This good is good through the end of 2018! You have to call to reserve your stay once your Total Rewards status is activated (usually a week or so after you activate the benefit via FoundersCard). Hope that helps!

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