Priority Club has just announced a rebranding of their loyalty program:
This year, IHG celebrates 10 years of hosting travelers in its family of hotels around the world. We are one of the world’s largest hotel companies and have been rewarding our guests through the world’s first and largest loyalty program, Priority Club® Rewards.
In this anniversary year, we have improved and renamed our loyalty program to IHG® Rewards Club. It will offer members the opportunity to earn and enjoy great new benefits as they stay across our 4,600 hotels in nearly 100 countries.
More important than any name change are the benefits. And there is actually some meat along with this change, and not just lipstick. Some of the new changes include the following:
- Free internet worldwide for all members in 2014, starting with Gold Elite and Platinum Elite members in July 2013. This is HUGE, given that previously not even Platinum members received free internet as a published benefit.
- Fast track to elite status when you stay in more than two of their brands. I’m not sure what exactly this means, though I suspect we’ll hear more on this soon.
- Reward nights now count towards elite membership status. If this means elite members get elite benefits on award stays as well, this is HUGE and long overdue. It was always a slap in the face to be an elite member redeeming points and be put in a base room simply because it was a reward booking.
- Nights earned beyond what’s needed for elite membership status will count towards Platinum status the next year. This is a nice benefit, though I sure hope most people aren’t earning Priority Club Platinum status by staying 50 nights. If you’re in the US, just having their credit card gives it to you for free.
Anyway, these are some exciting changes, and unfortunately the only details available as of now. It’ll be interesting to see what else they have in store for us. My hope is that they also merge the Priority Club Rewards and Ambassador program into one, as it’s lame to have a separate loyalty program for InterContinental hotels, and not honor elite benefits from the rest of the chain there.
(Tip of the hat to Jeff)