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Best Western Rewards Changes Are Encouraging

SmarterTravel

Less than a week ago, I characterized Best Western Rewards as a “conservative and underutilized loyalty program.”

Today, it’s still a conservative program. But with two just-announced changes, it’s a bit less so. And the very fact that the company has elected to focus on upgrading its rewards program may indicate a willingness to use it more aggressively in the future. More generous promotions, anyone?

The first change: Beginning next year, Rewards points will no longer expire, no matter where members reside. (Currently, the non-expiring-points policy is limited to members in North America and a few other regions.)

And secondly, also beginning next year, the program will be expanded to include a new elite tier, Diamond Select, awarded after completing 50 nights during a calendar year. The key benefit of Diamond Select is the 50 percent bonus earned for stays, although there’s also a vague reference made to other “exclusive benefits.”

None of the above is a game-changer. But again, the moves may be the beginning of a fresh emphasis on loyalty marketing by Best Western. And after a long run of decidedly mediocre promotions, that’s a change Best Western customers would welcome.

This article originally appeared on FrequentFlier.com.

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