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Marriott to Roll Out Unified Loyalty Program

Marriott International will introduce one set of unified benefits across the Marriott Rewards, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) loyalty programs in August 2018, the hotel company announced Monday. Beginning this summer, members will be able to combine their separate Marriott Rewards, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards and SPG accounts into a single account. However,…

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Marriott International will introduce one set of unified benefits across the Marriott Rewards, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) loyalty programs in August 2018, the hotel company announced Monday.

Beginning this summer, members will be able to combine their separate Marriott Rewards, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards and SPG accounts into a single account. However, the individual program names will continue to live on under the new set of unified benefits until a new name is introduced sometime next year.

Members will also be able to book stays across the entire portfolio of 29 global brands for the first time on Marriott.com, SPG.com and the Marriott and SPG apps or by contacting customer engagement centers beginning in August.

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Under the new combined program, members will earn an average of 20 percent more points for every dollar spent and will have the ability to achieve elite status faster. For instance, members will be able to earn Silver elite status after just ten nights and Gold elite status after just 25 nights across all three programs. Marriott Rewards and The Ritz-Carlton Rewards will match SPG’s current offering so that members can obtain Platinum elite status after 50 nights and Platinum Premier elite status after 75 nights.

A single points currency will be introduced under the unified benefits. Beginning in August, SPG members will see their points balance triple and SPG, Marriott Rewards and The Ritz-Carlton Rewards members will all earn ten points for every dollar spent at all brands except for Residence Inn, TownePlace Suites, and Element. The aforementioned brands will be five points per every dollar spent.

Also, starting in August, members will begin earning points for food and beverage and qualifying incidentals on their folio, rather than just the hotel room rate, Marriott announced.

Redeeming points will also be easier since all hotels throughout the loyalty portfolio will have no blackout dates for points redemptions. Meanwhile, all hotels will adopt a Free Night Award chart with peak, standard, and off-peak pricing. The chart will launch with standard pricing in August and add off-peak and peak pricing in 2019.

Marriott also announced it will expand the Moments experiential platform with more than 110,000 experiences in 1,000 destinations.

The unified program is welcome news for travel agents who can focus on a single program regardless of whether their client is enrolled in Marriott Rewards, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards or SPG.

“We listened to the travel aspirations of our members and set our sights on unlocking the full potential of our loyalty programs,” said David Flueck, Senior Vice President of Global Loyalty, Marriott International, in a statement. “We are excited to announce that this August, our members can enjoy one set of benefits across our extraordinary portfolio of hotels from iconic full and select service, to extended stay, to unique boutiques and luxury brands.”

“We hope to inspire our members whatever their travel passion, whether it is resorts featuring overwater bungalows, peaceful secluded island settings, ski-in/ski-out mountain resorts, towering hotels with picture-worthy views or even former palaces converted into hotels,” Flueck added.

Marriott completed its acquisition of Starwood Hotels & Resorts in 2016 and has been working toward a combined loyalty program in the years since. The merger recently affected how travel agents earn Starpoints for client bookings.

Monday’s announcement comes nearly three months after Marriott announced it would cut commissions paid to group and meetings intermediaries from 10 percent to seven percent.

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Couples Resorts Implements Relief Plan for Employees

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Couples Resorts has implemented its official employee relief plan during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

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The company, which owns and operates a collection of four all-inclusive properties in Jamaica, has announced that each employee will be entitled to paid vacation, all of their benefits and a portion of their salary during the resorts’ closure due to the global impact of COVID-19.

“This brand recognizes the important roles each essential employee brings to the brand’s success and aims to help prioritize their health and safety during these challenging times,” the company said in a statement.

Couples Resorts also confirmed that its non-profit organization, The Issa Trust Foundation, has donated more than $238,000 of critical medical equipment and supplies such as ventilators, x-ray machines, hand sanitizer, beds and stretchers to assist Jamaica’s hospitals.

Couples Resorts is just one example of Caribbean resorts’ ongoing efforts to support the fight against COVID-19.

This post was published by our news partner: TravelPulse.com | Article Source

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