Many hotels chains offer loyalty programs with a general aim of winning your repeat business. Generally, there are two styles of Loyalty program, one being programs that offer points based on your expediture at the hotel. These points can then be redeemed for free nights, or in some cases other merchanised. A second style of program revolves around the subscription programs. These programs have an annual fee, and in return offer such enticements as discounted accomodation or food and beverage. In some cases, the subscription programs operate as an extention to the more traditional points program.
Hotel loyalty programs generally provide a combination of status perks and rewards. Different programs offer a different combination of these two, and all programs are different.
On the reward side of the equation, programs allow you to accrue points through stays and redeem them for free rooms. There are almost as many ways of calculating points earned as there are programs, which makes a direct comparison difficult. Most programs base their calculations on how much is spent on the room rate, and other charges to the room during your stay. Having said that, there are programs that offer a flat number of points per stay, regardless of how much you spend.
As with Airline programs, many hotel programs offer elite status. It is with elite status that programs work out which perks they may want to offer. Perks of programs include room upgrades, executive lounge access, late checkout, welcome drinks, or even free breakfasts.
Programs that are available include
|Accor||Le Club AccorHotels||Sofitel, Pullman, Novotel, Mercure, Ibis|
|Hilton||Hilton HHonors||Conrad, Hilton, Doubletree|
|IHG||IHG Rewards||Intercontinental, Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn|
|Starwood||Starwood Preferred Guest||Sheraton, Le Meridien, Four Points|
The subscription program is fairly common in the Asia Pacific market. There is generally an annual fee to be a member of these programs, and benefits that they may include are:
- Accommodation based benefits including free or discounted rooms,
- Dining Benefits which usually provides a discount on meal purchases, sometimes including the beverage component,
- Linkage to the ‘free’ loyalty program, such as a status boost,
- Other marketing engagements, such as member only activities.
There are a range of subscription programs available in Australia. These include:
- Accor Plus (Accor)
- Ambassador (IHG)
- Senators Club (Stamford)
- Star Privilege Pacific (Starwood)
- IHG Dining Rewards (IHG) (Discontinued)