If there is one thing about these frequent traveler programs we’re always on the lookout for, it’s a sense of humor. Which is why we love Priority Club Rewards’ new “Point Psychology” survey.
Point Psychology is a first-of-its-kind member study that has identified six distinct behavior patterns of people playing the loyalty game: Swinger, Shepherd, Stasher, Snob, Sherlock and Slacker (what, no mileage junkie). The Stasher hoards her free travel points for a “rainy day.” The Swinger plays both sides — points and miles — for the total vacation package. And, the Snob? He pines for special perks and privileges. This fun new way of “member profiling” ultimately helps members identify which loyalty program features they find most important.
Priority Club reviewed thousands of members’ point accumulation and redemption patterns, then categorized members according to what drives their practices and aspirations — dreams, deals and even diva-expectations. Whether using airline, hotel, phone or retail frequency programs, players who understand their behavioral tendencies can choose travel programs that offer exactly what it takes for them to realize their rewards faster.
Dr. William G. Emener, Ph.D., a Licensed Psychologist and author of 14 books on relationships, echoes the findings of Priority Club.
“Point Psychology reveals behavioral tendencies that surface not only in point collection, but in every day situations,” said Emener. “The inherent trigger that makes the Sherlock search six different stores for the best deal on a new suit, also prompts him to check the Web sites of each major hotel program for the best point promotion before his next trip.”
So what type of member are you? Following are the definitions of each category.
Swinger: You’ve got it figured out; you’re quite savvy. You play both sides — points and miles — to the best advantage. Nights, flights, gift certificates, DVD players … why buy it when you can get it for free?
Bottom Line: Travel connoisseur
Tip: Join programs offering everything from air to merchandise — and features like the ability to transfer points and instantly redeem your points.
Shepherd: Miles are your mania. You funnel everything — hotel, rental car, credit card points — to fuel your free flight fixation.
Bottom Line: Mileage junkie
Tip: Choose hotel programs that offer collection in miles with a large selection of airline partners particularly with a favorite airline.
Stasher: You’re obsessed. You match every point and mile on your statements against hotel receipts and boarding passes. You’re piling up for that dream vacation.
Bottom Line: Meticulous point-mounter
Tip: Pick programs with no point expiration. Some wipe out points after 18 months.
Snob: You deserve recognition. A room with a view, first-class seats, you’re different from the common “riff raff” traveler. Points? Miles? You pile and save merely as a necessity to be treated like royalty.
Bottom Line: Elitist
Tip: Opt for programs that count points toward elite, not just nights or stays.
Sherlock: You’re the shrewdest game player. Seeking the best bonus, you want the biggest bang for your buck. Spend a dime without earning points and miles? A waste of time.
Bottom Line: Bargain-hunter
Tip: Concentrate hotel stays to programs with a large number of hotel locations, frequent “bonuses” and multiple partners.
Slacker: Points, schmoints; you don’t care. Getting a free in-room movie for signing up makes the program worth it.
Bottom Line: Lazybones
Tip: Select a program with “immediate” perks like extended check-out.
To discover your profile type and get additional tips on choosing the best loyalty program, visit http://www.priorityclub.com/pop, click on the “A Stasher, a Snob…Who Are You?” quiz, and let the Point Psychologists at Priority Club Rewards analyze your point-earning practice.