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5 Benefits of Joining a Hotel Reward Program

Always5Star 5 Benefits Of Why You Should Join A Hotel Loyalty Program

When it comes to travel reward programs, many people find hotel loyalty/reward programs confusing and a bit overwhelming.  However, it is easy to join, and I will show you how easy it can be! Once you do, you will instantly begin enjoying the perks and benefits. 

Hyatt Carmel Highlands, Overlooking Big Sur Coast & Highlands Inn
Hyatt Carmel Highlands, Overlooking Big Sur Coast & Highlands Inn
Used my points with World of Hyatt program for a two-night stay at this luxury hotel!
Yes…this was the room we received that had a view of the California coastline. Always5Star!

Almost all hotel reward programs are complementary to join.  Think of this as a savings account.  The more you invest, the more dividends you will earn for enhancing your experiences!  

Typically, members of the loyalty program receive perks right away. However, the benefits really accumulate when you remain loyal to a hotel’s reward program for a period of time.

I am a member of several hotel reward programs.  There is no downside to joining more than one. However, the more you stay with the same hotel program, the more benefits you achieve with that one. Choose a hotel that you prefer or expect to stay more. Make sure to always give your rewards number when making your reservations and/or at check-in. And then verify after each stay to make sure you were given credit for your stays.

Always5Star Hotel Reward Programs
Always5Star Recommended Hotel Reward Programs

Since I travel extensively for Always5Star, I stay at a number of hotel chains.  I have been able to compare and determine which hotels I enjoy, and which programs offer the best benefits.  In the past, I have selected a new hotel and its program because my preferred rewards hotel(s) was sold out or the price was too high.  As it turned out, this presented an opportunity to try another hotel’s reward program.  Even if you do not travel as much as the average business traveler, the lowest status levels still receive some complimentary benefits!  What do you have to lose?!

InterContinental Miami
Because my preferred hotels (Hyatt and Marriott) were sold out, I was able to stay at the InterContinental Miami (IHG program) where I signed up for their rewards program and was upgraded to this room with a fabulous view that night!

Here are my 5StarTips๐ŸŒŸ on why you should join today to become a member of a hotel loyalty program:

Your Room Rate Could be Discounted

For starters, some hotel chains reward their loyalty-program members with discounted rates to book a room when joining their program. In many cases, they require only a small number of stays before you earn the lower price which is extended only to members. Sometimes, those who join the loyalty program receive it immediately. And you might find the price for program members is less than anything you can find on third-party discount travel sites. Hilton, for example, has a guaranteed member discount, regardless of what tier you’ve reached in their loyalty program.

Discounted Rates for Members
This example shows the discounted rate for Hilton Honors members.
As you can see that this is a savings of $98.

Members Might Get Free Cancellations

You might also want to join a hotel loyalty program if you find your travel plans frequently change post-booking. Securing a room through another discount site means you must adhere to their cancellation policies. And, sometimes, that means that you have to pay for a room even if you are delayed or your flight has been canceled due to unforeseen circumstances.

Flight Delayed
Was your flight canceled or delayed?
With some hotel rewards program and status, you need not worry about cancellation fees.

On the other hand, hotel loyalty members often can cancel their stays, even at the last minute, without repercussions. Also, if there is a fee, speaking to the hotel directly and mentioning your membership in the loyalty program will often get them to waive their fees.  I had this experience with my World of Hyatt membership.  I was very ill 24 hours before my hotel stay.  The policy for this hotel was 48 hours.  I called Hyatt directly and explained the situation, and they waived my cancellation fee because of my membership.

Park Hyatt Aviara Carlsbad
Though it is not guaranteed, I was able to change my reservation within 24 hours with no cancellation fee at the Park Hyatt Aviara in Carlsbad because of my loyalty status.

In-Room Perks

Checking into any hotel as a member of its loyalty program means you get a few bonuses to enjoy. For instance, if you typically have to pay for Wi-Fi, some hotels provide free access to their members. In addition, they might offer you a free drink, free breakfast, or another gift upon check-in. Typically there are perks most often at the beginning of program status tiers. However, as you move up in status, the perks and benefits grow and get better!   One of my favorite benefits is a late check-out, sometimes even until 4 p.m.  I often use this because of business appointments in the middle of the day and evening flights.  I have found this to be an exceptional benefit for me.

Enjoying sparkling wine and chocolate dipped strawberries
My hubby and I were offered this fabulous amenity at the St. Regis Washington D.C. because of our loyalty status with the Marriott Bonvoy Reward Program

Some brands take things a step further. For instance, at the Mandarin Oriental, members get to choose two additional perks during their visit (see chart below of benefits). Some of their options include late check-out, free breakfast, complimentary clothes pressing and even a spa or dining credit. If you travel regularly, such benefits make stays even that much more comfortable and enjoyable.

Enjoying a complimentary Champagne
Enjoying a complimentary glass of champagne at the Mandarin Oriental in Washington DC thanks to the “Fans of MO” rewards program! Cheers!

Below are my top Always5Star recommends of top hotel loyalty reward programs to join and some of the benefits you can expect to receive:


World Of Hyatt Rewards Program
World Of Hyatt Rewards Program
Click on chart to enlarge image


Marriott Bonvoy Rewards Program
Marriott Bonvoy Rewards Program
Click on chart to enlarge image


Mandarin Oriental Fans Of MO Program
Mandarin Oriental Fans Of MO Program
Click on chart to enlarge image


Le Club Accor Reward Program
Le Club Accor Reward Program
Click on chart to enlarge image


IHG Member Benefits
IHG Member Benefits
Click on chart to enlarge image


Hilton Honors Program
Hilton Honors Program
Click on chart to enlarge image

5StarTip๐ŸŒŸ:  The Four Seasons luxury hotel does not currently offer a Reward Loyalty Program so they were not included in the above list. However, since I love this luxury hotel, I use the American Express Platinum Card “Fine Hotels and Resorts” to book stays here and receive fantastic benefits. For more information click the link below:

Earn Points for Free Stays

Typically, joining a loyalty program tends to pay the bigger dividends the more often you stay. Most give you points for every stay and/or money spent at the hotel, and you can use these points to get a discounted rate, pay for a stay, or upgrade your room. These benefits are compounded and add up quickly if you choose to sign up for a hotel brand’s credit card as well. With the Marriot Bonvoy program, for example, you get points regardless of whether or not you have a credit card. But if you do sign up for their credit card program, you get points on all of your purchases. Can anyone say “Always5Star vacation for free”?

Ritz Carlton Half Moon Bay
My hubby and I were able to enjoy a two-night stay at the Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay in California for our anniversary using points for our entire stay!

Upgrades to achieve your Always5Star rooms!

Finally, but importantly, if you enjoy upgrading to a suite or luxury room, there is also an opportunity to use either your points or your status for a complimentary upgrade.  This to me is where the program benefits really shine!  With my top-level status with Hyatt and Marriott Bonvoy, I am frequently upgraded to suites.  If you have not yet reached a higher status, you can also use your points to purchase an upgraded room.  Saving up points for those special occasions can turn a vacation into life long memory!   

Grand Hyatt Baha Mar | Luxury Oceanfront Bahamas Resort
I was able to upgrade to an Ocean Front Suite with the Grand Hyatt Baha Mar Luxury Oceanfront Bahamas Resort using my Globalist Status with the World of Hyatt Program.

Final Thoughts:

In short, you have everything to gain by joining hotel rewards programs. You get perks that make your stay more enjoyable and comfortable. And, down the line, you can earn free nights or an Always5Star upgrade from all the points you’ve accumulated. So sign up today!  You will begin a very beneficial relationship with your favorite hotel chain.  Cheers to enhancing all your hotel visits to an Alway5Star level! ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ

Always5Star 5 Benefits Of Joining A Hotel Program Today
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About Pamela Rossi

Pamela Rossi

I am passionate about travel and taking each moment and making it a five star experience. My goal is to create those experiences for YOU!


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