Impact Publications : MICEBTN-72
Page 32 • MICEBTN - March-April 2019 For more articles by Robyn Henderson, visit www. networkingtowin. com.au Seven reasons to support a loyalty program by Robyn Henderson NEXT time you see a road warrior you know, ask if you can look inside their wallet . You may see what look like a lot of credit cards, but are in fact airline and hotel loyalty cards. Yet the sad fact is, the more loyalty programs you belong to, the more you dilute your ability to earn points and maximise your loyalty benefits. Let’s look at seven reasons to stay loyal to one hotel or airline: • Depending on your schedule, late check outs can be a real ben- efit. Some hotel loyalty programs offera4pmor6pmlatecheckout. Not having to pack up your bags and IT gear early can be a blessing when you have a day filled with meetings. Room upgrades also are common- place for loyalty members. • Early check ins also are a valu- able gift for loyal hotel guests. My earliest check in to date was 8.30 am. As fate would have it, the next day I checked out at 5 am to make an early connection, leaving the room free for the next guest – may- be also an early arrival. • Being able to leave luggage at a regular hotel between trips is an- other bonus for loyal hotel guests. Storing luggage at a domestic airport is an alternative, but it can become costly. • Parking charges are generally cheaper for loyal hotel guests and most offer anything up to 50 per cent discount in their restaurants and bars (when an alcohol order is placed with a meal order). Hotel parking often is cheaper than park- ing stations in capital cities. • Airlines give preference to loyalty passengers. This might mean that your seats are closer to the front of the aircraft and/or you could find an empty seat beside you. • The higher up the airline loyalty ladder you progress, the more your baggage allowance increases. • When there are flight delays caused by bad weather or late con- nections, loyal customers may be given preference for available seats - and of course you can use your points to upgrade your seat . If you are unclear what your loyalty plans offer and which one is best for you, I suggest you check out hotel and airline on-line loyalty plans and compare them. At the end of the day, empty hotel rooms and vacant seats on flights cost the service provider. So it pays for them to support your loyalty. Why not ditch some of the loyalty cards that you have not used in the past 12 months and stick to those you have? Don’t be surprised if you get a bonus next time you use their ser- vices. Being loyal to service provid- ers will benefit you more than you think and in ways you won’t expect .