What is Priority Club playing at?

Today, as you’ve probably noticed, is January 1st.  Happy New Year to you!

It is also the day that Priority Club (the loyalty scheme for Holiday Inn, Crowne Plaza, InterContinental etc) makes a massive change to its loyalty scheme.

As I posted two weeks ago, Priority Club has changed their terms and conditions to show that, as of today, only base points earned in hotels will count towards the 60,000 point requirement for Platinum.  No elite bonus points, no promotional points – and that is where 90% of my earnings came from.

The only exceptions are credit card earnings and specific bonus point promotions run by the hotels directly.

Priority Club Gold card

This is a massive, massive change, which will probably cut the number of Platinum members by over 50%.  And yet there has been no official notification to members yet!

Thousands of people will be staying in Priority Club hotels tonight in the expectation that their stay will get them a lot nearer Platinum renewal than they think.  Hundreds of thousands will have made non-refundable bookings for the next few months for the same reason.  It is totally inexcusable.

What is even worse is that Priority Club has mailed a lot of members with targetted promotions for the first quarter.  I will recap these in a couple of days, but they are typically ‘stay 4 nights and get 10,000 bonus points’.  These points have always counted for status in the past and many bookings will have been made for this quarter assuming the same.  A lot of people are in for a big surprise.

(In fact, some people have already had a big surprise.  Priority Club has bungled its IT implementation of these new rules and they seem to have kicked in from December 29th.  Anyone who was desperate who has tried to top up their status in the last couple of days is now trapped in email limbo with the call centre.)

Of course, you cannot contact PC to complain about this, because their Philippines contact centre is pretty useless.  Of course, when you have 60 MILLION members – as Priority Club does – the logistics can easily overwhelm you.  But a quick email to everyone would not have been a strain.

I am also an InterContinental Ambassador member, and I haven’t heard anything via that channel either.  Truly pathetic.

(To see our complete list of all current hotel promotions for the major chains, click here to visit our ‘Hotel Promos’ page or use the link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)

Further to my Priority Club post yesterday ....
BAA WorldPoints goes Heathrow-only from today
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Comments

  1. marqoos_pl says:

    C’mon. They are trying so hard to send these customers to other Frequent Guest Programmes and that way seems to be working, lol. So, dear fellow Headforpointers friends – Happy New 2013 Year – last year we have Platinum with IHG!

  2. Quite agree, a shocking disregard for their customers. Mind you i still havent received official notification from Hilton about their changes either, but at least their website warns you when you login.

    Happy New Year :-)

  3. Thunderbirds says:

    Shocking public relations I agree and pobably an over reaction to the ease with which it was possible to earn Platinum status. In my opinion they should have left base points and the additional status bonus to count for the following years status. This would have rewarded long term loyalty and would have allowed people who do not stay 50 nights to leverage their way up over a couple of years. My account reset last night. Interesting wording though it says “50 nights to retain Platinum Ambassador for next year”. I’m not an Ambassador at the moment so is this a wording glitch or is Ambassador being thrown in this/next year?

  4. I’ve only got Platinum because of the credit card so was never likely to keep it but it does seem that the communication is less than other schemes.

    On a different note the bulk of my bonus point codes have now expired (as expected) and I have a couple of stays coming up in Jan as well as the £20.12 nights- if anyone can point me in the direction of current codes it would be appreciated.

  5. Have just checked into a crown plaza in last hour. Charmless welcome, mechanical process and no reference to platinum status. In my case gained through hotel stays in US and Asia. I have come to expect no recognition in the UK but in the USA they have the decency to mention it, even in HIX properties.

    Have 1 further stay next week in IC Prague then time to reevaluate where to put by 20 plus nights till August. Not a lot of stays but tend to spend on room, especially in Asia. To be fair as I have retained p,actinium for this year may be worth sticking with ihg just for the points this year then move on