by. Tom Picciano
I was pleased recently to try a different brand in my favorite hotel company’s family. Less than a minute after getting to the front desk, I signed the register, and had a key. The smiling desk clerk handed me a warm chocolate chip cookie then pointed me in the direction of the elevator. I was in my room three minutes after walking in the hotel’s front entrance. I wonder is that how they treat all customers…or was it because I’m a silver-status cardholder?
My loyalty card offers a dozen brands to choose from, depending on where you visit or if you have a preferred hotel. The card didn’t cost me anything. I’ve earned enough points over the years for a number of free or reduced price rooms, including London! My frequent stays since January have upgraded my status for this…and next year. I earn more points as a result. Wondering where I’ll have a free stay in 2014?
Best of all I can connect to the brand website, with my ID and password. In seconds I can search hotels where I’m headed. With a couple of extra clicks it brings up all my information, plus credit card number and I’m booked. Reservations are easy, check-in is a breeze, and there’s no-stop check-out.
Call it loyalty…call it relationship pricing. Whatever name you put on it, it keeps customers coming back to the same hotels, stores, or airlines.