How does being a loyal member of IHG’s Priority Club Rewards program help you score a stay at Hilton and Marriott hotels? That would be through Hotels Anywhere – a new concept under which Priority Club members will be able to redeem points for stays even at hotels not run by IHG.
Don Berg, vice president, Loyalty Programs, IHG, explains the concept - “Even with more than 4,400 IHG hotels worldwide, we know we can’t be everywhere. Hotels Anywhere gives our members the freedom and convenience to instantly book at tens of thousands of hotels worldwide using their Priority Club points; that’s more hotel choices than all of our major competitors’ hotel portfolios combined.”
In other words, just because IHG has little or no presence in places like Las Vegas and Hawaii, they don’t want to lose members who would otherwise be forced to join a rival loyalty program to collect points for a stay in Hawaii or Vegas.
It does have a certain warped logic, but it’s going to test the loyalty of Priority Club members. What happens if IHG’s 48 million loyal members prefer to stay with competitors even in locations where IHG properties are available?
That’s not likely to happen often, though, since members won’t earn points for a booking made via Hotels Anywhere, thus ensuring that they use it only as a last resort if no suitable IHG properties are available.
The striking thing is that they’re listing competitors’ hotels with price, photos and virtual tours. You can search for a hotel by price, star rating or amenities. The point cost for a room on Hotels Anywhere is variable, based on the US dollar amount that the hotel in question is currently charging for the room you want to book.
Given that the basic function of a loyalty program is to keep the flock from wandering over to a competitor, do you think Hotels Anywhere is going to work? Will Marriott, Hilton and other hotel companies respond in kind, or is this just a passing fancy? One thing that can’t be denied is that it gives the consumer more choice.
More info:- http://www.priorityclub.com/hotelsanywhere