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Is This The Dream Hotel Promotion?

by joeheg

Hotel loyalty program promotions started as a way for hotels to drive business during the slower months of the year. By targeting offers to those in the hotel’s loyalty program, a hotel chain hopes to build brand loyalty while keeping customers from looking at other options.

While these offers used to be seasonal, some hotel programs started to offer promotions year-round. The offers during the busier months weren’t as lucrative but they still kept customers engaged. After all, once you leave a brand for a competitor, there’s a chance you’ll never come back.

It’s now become commonplace for hotel chains to have some type of bonus throughout the year for loyalty program members. This means there’s a constant running faucet of information for bloggers to compare current offers in addition to complaining about how the current offer isn’t as good as previous promotions from the same chain.

What can I say? People who write about points and miles are hardly ever happy about what the large companies offer us for our loyalty. That’s why I’m not focused on being loyal to any travel brand.

After writing yet another post about a hotel promo, I started to daydream about what the Dream Hotel Promotion would look like. By that, I mean one almost universally applauded for rewarding all guests, with only minor nitpicking by those who are never satisfied. Here’s my idea of what this promotion would include if they launched it, post-pandemic, when most people felt comfortable traveling with little to no restrictions.

After each category, I give the reasoning for the offer in italics.

Hotel X – Once In A Lifetime Promotion

Hotel X loves our guests. So much so, that we wanted to pull out all of the stops for our first global promotion after COVID-19. We know that some of you have not traveled for a while and we’ve missed you. For our guests who kept visiting our properties, we’re thankful you’ve trusted us to care for you through these difficult times. To show our appreciation, we’re launching our “Once In A Lifetime Promotion” throughout our worldwide network of hotels.

Welcome Back (Reward All Members)

As a welcome back, we’re offering X points (enough for a free stay at a lower-tier property) to all members on their first stay. We’re glad you’re back and this is our way to say thanks.

Bonus Points For High Tier Members (Reward Most Loyal Guests)

If you’re a top-level member of our loyalty program, you probably have not been traveling as much as you used to. We’ve extended your status and now you can take advantage of that by earning X% more points for every stay.

Extra Points For More Stays (Get People to Move Stays)

Once you’ve stayed at one of our properties, we’re sure you’re going to want to keep coming back. That’s why we’re offering bonus points after staying 5 nights in our hotels and additional points for each additional 10 nights (Points rewarded after 5 nights, 15 nights, 25 nights.) This offer is good even if you booked your stay before the promotion. Bonus points are equal to 10% of the base points earned on qualifying stays (Nights 1-5, 6-15, 16-25)

Fast Track For Status (Gain New Top-Tier Loyalty Customers)

We know that for some of you, we previously weren’t your main hotel brand. That’s OK. Since you’ve spent so much time at home, we hope that you’ll give us another look. If you provide us a copy of your status from another chain, we’ll match it for your first two stays during the promotion period. We want you to be able to make an apples-to-apples comparison when staying at our hotels.  If you like what you experience, we’ll offer you a fast track to match your status.

Point Redemption Bonus (Promote Redemptions & Co-Brand Card)

If your point balance in our loyalty program has been collecting dust, it’s time to put those points to good use. If you book an award stay during the promotion period, we’ll rebate 15% of the points back to your account after the stay. Co-brand credit cardholders get an extra 10% back (25% total). (Note from Joe: I totally stole this one from Hyatt but it’s perfect as it is)

Once In A Lifetime

We’ve all gone through something that hopefully only happens once in our lifetime. Here at Hotel X, we felt that we needed to reward everyone in a way we’ve never done before. From our most loyal customers, occasional guests and those who didn’t stay with us before, you are important to us and we want to treat you like that. Best wishes and happy travels.

What do you think?

Would this hotel promo grab your attention? What would be in your dream hotel promo?

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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary

Cover Photo by Designecologist from Pexels


JULIUS ROSEN IMPORTS February 16, 2021 - 4:43 pm

Very similar to what I’ve said about airline loyalty programs. Most marketing programs are run by idiots. The only ones with any sense used to be the Las Vegas hotels where you’d see an email showing half price offers for the middle of the week. Why not give away five or ten rooms for 50% of the usual points once a month for up to a week as a vacation for loyal members why not have a restricted website where you can auction vacations, there’s a lot of very simple ideas and I’d like to go back 25 years when a major car rental company gave away a full set of luggage with a week’s rental. I was with the luggage company and it was a $4 million program so you know it was a hell of a bang for the buck. Airplane, hotel, and car rental companies will know that yesterday’s product is worthless today if it’s empty they should start selling their product at bargain reduced prices and also learn how to make travel and vacations fun again.

Christian February 16, 2021 - 7:32 pm

OMAAT brought up an amazing Hyatt promotion around a decade ago. I think it was called One Two Free or something similar. Basically after two stays of any length you got a free night at any Hyatt on the planet. As if that wasn’t good enough, bookings from outside companies like Priceline worked for this. Ben said that he’d sometimes book a $59 room through Priceline at the Hyatt in Tampa on a Sunday night. Since the club lounge was closed on Sundays, they gave him a nice chunk of points (standard Hyatt policy at the time) as compensation, either 1500 or 2500, I forget which. Then he’d earn elite nights as well as gaining points for the stay itself. Of course he redeemed the free nights at very expensive hotels. The only disadvantage was that the time frame to use the free nights was a bit limited, say a few months after earning. While I wasn’t in a position to use this myself, it was insanely valuable.


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