Starwood boosts loyalty programme benefits
Washington, February 2, 2012
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, a leading hotel and leisure company with operations in 100 countries, has announced new benefits to members of its award winning loyalty programme Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG).
The more SPG members stay, the more choices are available and the more personalised the benefits become with standouts like lifetime status, first-of-its-kind 24-hour check-in and a dedicated Starwood ambassador who provides one-on-one service to uniquely tailor the guest experience.
“With globalization trends, there are more mega travelers than ever before going to more places around the world,” said Frits van Paasschen, president and CEO of Starwood.
“The opportunity to cultivate what we call ‘loyalty beyond reason’ with the world’s most frequent travelers has never been greater. These are sophisticated consumers who have become jaded by generic points and perks. This is why we’ve invested in distinct new and personal benefits to truly reward those who reward us with a disproportionate amount of their business.”
According to van Paasschen, just two per cent of travelers drive 30 per cent of Starwood’s profits.
With that in mind, the company spent the last three years quietly piloting a highly personal one-on-one ambassador service to better understand the needs and desires of these very powerful guests.
“What we heard loud and clear from travelers was that they wanted more choice, more control and more personal service,” said Mark Vondrasek, senior vice president, Distribution, Loyalty & Partnership Marketing.
“Today, through high touch and high tech, we have a newfound ability to better understand our guests, their preferences and even the nature of each unique trip. By delivering a whole new definition of choice and personal services, we’re moving beyond a purely points arms race to instead build loyalty for life.”
Starwood is for the first time ever abolishing the industry’s long-standing 3pm check-in time and giving its most frequent travelers control of their own arrival and departure time.
Its Your24 lets members choose their own 24 hour check-in and checkout time.
The Your24 programme is offered to SPG Members who spend 75+ nights at Starwood hotels annually.
Now, all members who stay 100 nights annually are invited to participate in a unique service designed to provide tailored experiences across all 1100+ Starwood hotels.
Starwood’s ambassadors work one-on-one with guests to understand their preferences and what matters to them on each trip to deliver a customised experience on property.
Ambassadors also provide services beyond the hotel and are even empowered to assist guests when they’re not traveling.
Starwood Preferred Guest is introducing SPG Lifetime status. Now members who have stayed 250 nights total and maintained elite status for at least five years are awarded SPG Lifetime Gold status.
Members with 500 total nights and 10 years of Platinum SPG status (consecutive or not) will enjoy their top tier status for life.
“Our goal is to make SPG so rich that it’s impossible for mega travelers not to choose Starwood,” said Vondrasek.
“We also want to make the program wildly aspirational for all frequent travelers. And because we know that many of our members are also members of other hotel loyalty programs, we believe these upgrades give travelers a compelling reason to consolidate their travel with us. With this in mind, we have enriched all of our elite offerings, ratcheting up the proposition as members stay more.”
All benefits begin March 1, a statement said. – TradeArabia News Service