Cendant Hotels — the force behind such well-known brands as Howard Johnson’s, Ramada, Super 8, Travelodge and Wingate Inns — has finally launched its cross-brand loyalty program, TripRewards.
As we reported in December of 2002, the hotel group has for some time been developing TripRewards, a mid-scale program actively targeted at the leisure traveler.
Originally scheduled to launch in March, then April, the program has clearly encountered some delays, undoubtedly due to the wide variety of franchisers. The launch began in September with Cendant’s Wingate Inns, and has now spread to Howard Johnson hotels. By December, AmeriHost Inns, Days Inns, Knights Inn, Ramada, Super 8, Travelodge and Villager hotels should be on board.
The program will offer free hotel stays, free airline tickets, resort vacations, gift certificates from a variety of retailers and restaurants, merchandise such as electronics, home appliances and sporting goods, and movie and theme-park tickets. Earning partners are already lined up — members can earn points by renting cars, getting vehicles serviced, sending flowers and gifts, and having taxes prepared.
Though essentially a points-based system, TripRewards will also offer miles or rail points for hotel stays.
Members will be able to monitor their balances and redeem points online, and hotel stay awards are not subject to blackout dates.