Friends and Family program has been offline for a while (for good reason)

Discussion in 'Fairmont | President's Club' started by aviators99, Feb 4, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. aviators99
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    aviators99 Silver Member

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    Since all of the Friends and Family employees who give out discounts at Fairmont are based in Egypt, they have not had Internet for a while. I imagine that even though they have Internet back now, they won't be rushing to deal with this stuff any time soon.

    So, if like me, you were wondering what's going on, this seems to be the answer!
     
  2. lili
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    lili Gold Member

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    Very interesting. This is one of my favorite programs. Hope they are all okay.
     
  3. Westsox
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    Westsox Gold Member

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    I received F&F from an employee in Canada for a stay @ The Plaza in NYC.
     
  4. kokinos

    kokinos Silver Member

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    I noticed yesterday they are replying with quotes quick now so hopefully things are getting more stable for them.
     
  5. Coathanger
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    Coathanger Silver Member

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    The F&F rate is great and I managed to use it back when it was bookable online. Fairmont have some beautiful hotels and hopefully I have the opportunity to try more out soon.

    With Mubarak having stepped down it hopefully means conflict has been avoided.
     
  6. lili
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    lili Gold Member

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    Egypt is amazing. Hope they can sustain the spirit for the long haul.
     
  7. THREEA4ME
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    THREEA4ME Silver Member

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    Does anyone have any links so I can acquire the Friends & Family link? Trying to book the Savoy on Feb 25 and 26
     
  8. Jasper2009
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    Jasper2009 Silver Member

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    The FAF rate needs to be booked through the internal employee system, no link/code where you can book the rate yourself.

    There´s a long thread on FT (1st page in the Hotel Deals forum) where a FTer advertises joining his facebook page to get access to the FAF rates (you can´t miss it), apparently he currently knows one Fairmont employee who´s willing to book the rate for any "Facebook friend".

    I´m not a huge friend of this concept for several reasons, but it seems to be working for most FTers who joined the facebook page and don´t mind handing their personal info (incl. CC info) to their new "Facebook friend".
     
  9. THREEA4ME
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    THREEA4ME Silver Member

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    You have offered solid, reasoned advice and I really appreciate it. You seem to know what I don't know, so can you advise on the best way to secure a hotel in london for two nights next weekend? Orbitz? Expedia? Using AA miles (with 20 percent explat discount)? etc
     
  10. Jasper2009
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    Jasper2009 Silver Member

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    Thank´s! I do try to be helpful every now and then.[​IMG]

    I just asked an employee friend regarding the FAF rate at the Savoy and the discount isn´t significant anyway for your dates (<25%), the regular rate is pretty low for your dates (275GBP), I´d recommend booking the Savoy through a Virtuoso travel agent (rate identical or lower than BAR, but includes comp. full breakfast, 1-category upgrade, welcome amenity, and F&B credit)
    There´s also a special promo for the Savoy at the moment only available through some TAs (I´ve sent you the details via PM) with rates up to 40% cheaper than BAR.

    Apart from that London is pretty expensive, redemption rates can be quite ridiculous with some programs, I generally recommend:

    - using goldpointsplus points for the Radisson Hotel London (which is a pretty decent deal) or
    - using Priority Club points for the Intercontinental hotel (or Crowne Plaza / Holiday Inn, if IC is unavailable or budget is limited). IC London is 40k points/night which can be generated for $240USD using cash+points, IMO an excellent deal for London.

    Expedia/Orbitz/etc. can be an option for 2*/3* hotels, but I´ve very rarely seen a good deal for high-end hotels. You could try bidding for a 5* hotel on Priceline/Hotwire, but no personal experience with that and not an attractive option to me as you don´t know what you´ll get and Elite benefits don´t apply/you don´t earn any points.

    Hope this helps...
     
  11. THREEA4ME
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    THREEA4ME Silver Member

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    great advice!
     
  12. Can't anyone internal to Fairmont offer the F&F rate? That is, you don't necessarily need to book from someone in Egypt. I try to get to know at least 1 staff member per property I visit. From there, there are 2 or 3 people that I could contact for F&F rates as these are the people I'm comfortable sharing my personal info with (e.g., credit card).
     
  13. Jasper2009
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    Jasper2009 Silver Member

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    Yes, pretty much any Fairmont employee can book the FAF rate (I believe there are some exceptions for seasonal/part-time employees and possibly housekeeping staff, but can´t remember exactly)

    I fully agree that I wouldn´t be comfortable sharing my personal info with some stranger located in Egypt who happens to runa Facebook page, but I guess it´s a personal choice, some people will do just about anything to save some money.

    While I do happen to know a few employees and have been booking the FAF rate regularly through a friend of mine, I probably wouldn´t ask a random employee because:

    a) it puts the employee in an awkward position (hard to say "no" to a loyal guest at the hotel), also the employee is responsible for the guest´s behaviour to a certain extend and has to pay the bill if the guest doesn´t show up / provided wrong CC info
    b) there is quite a lot of debate going on among Fairmont employees whether extending the rate to just about anyone is legit (e.g. by operating a facebook page and booking hundreds of rooms for random strangers). While this was certainly intended in 2009, many argue that the "manual booking" requirement suggests that the FAF should only be booked for "real" friends/family (especially those friends/family who have been booking the rate for many years are somewhat unhappy with the new development as availability has decreased and rates have increased drastically at some properties)
     

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