Travel Trends :: Rewards Programs

expedia loyalty program[trip style = any]

This week, launched a loyalty program, not surprisingly called Expedia Rewards, to award people who book travel {multiple times} via their website. The program's claim to fame: earn free travel in as few as 3 trips with no blackout dates, and no loyalty limitations to a single hotel brand or airline. No word yet on an program. With Expedia leading this time-tested travel trend, I wonder if Travelocity will follow suit?

Two, No Three Times Up until recently, if you booked with a travel service like this, you may have received rewards at your hotel if you had pre-joined their program, but now you conceivably get rewarded twice---actually 3 times if you use your travel credit card to pay for the transaction.

Canada's Go-To Travel Site For many people, Expedia is the go-to online travel booking service they use. Why? It's been around since the early days of web-enabled travel booking, it's dependable, and comes with a user-friendly layout and transaction experience. People in Canada like it so much that commands 13% of all Canadian Online Travel Agency visits---combine this with's visits and their share is 17%. To put this into perspective, is the next closest competitor at 4.85% of visits.

Trip Styler Tip Although I'm a huge evangelist for being loyal to 1-2 airline alliances and 1-2 hotel programs for collection and accumulation of points for free flights and stays, there is value in joining other travel loyalty programs along the way. Yes you'll have a bunch of logins to remember, but the benefits outweigh the drawbacks. Why? The added perks. For hotel stays it might be a one-off benefit like free wifi, a 'welcome' amenity or special check-in desk, but isn't that worth it for the 3-minutes it takes to create a profile and future earning potential towards free travel? For example, though my hotel loyalty is with Fairmont, my second choice is the Starwood Preferred Guest program because of the number and variety {W Hotels, Westin, Sheraton, St. Regis, Le Meridien, etc...} of properties worldwide. To put this into perspective, if you stay at a Fairmont once, and join their loyalty program before you get there, you get free wifi and a host of other benefits. Stay 10 nights or 5 stays and you also get free workout gear, use of golf clubs, dining and spa vouchers, etc...

Related Loyalty Pays The Wild Web of Airline Affiliations The Wild Web of Hotel Affiliations

[photo of Expedia Rewards graphic]