Free GHA Discovery Platinum status, valid at 500 hotels, with Business Traveller subscription

Business Traveller magazine has an interesting perk on offer if you take out a subscription – Platinum-tier membership of the Global Hotel Alliance programme, GHA Discovery.  If you are planning a stay at any hotel in the GHA grouping, it may be worth signing up just to benefit from the status (although Business Traveller is also a decent read as well!).

There are a couple of stories in the comments below from people who used this deal after I wrote about it in the past with great success.

GHA Discovery is a loyalty scheme used by 33 upmarket hotel brands with a total of 500 combined properties.  Kempinski is the biggest one you might be familiar with.

According to statusmatcher.com, GHA does not match your status with other chains so there is no way of gaining status via that route.

GHA Discovery

The list of members includes:

  • Alila
  • Anantara
  • Art Series
  • Atura
  • Avani
  • Corinthia
  • Doyle Collection
  • First
  • GLO
  • Grace
  • Individual Collection
  • Kempinski
  • Leela
  • Lungarno Collection
  • Marco Polo
  • Meritage
  • Meydan
  • Mokara
  • Omni
  • Pan Pacific
  • PARKROYAL
  • Per AQUUM
  • QT Hotels
  • Rixos
  • Rydges
  • Shaza
  • Tangram
  • Thon
  • Tivoli
  • Ultratravel
  • Viceroy

In general, these are strong national chains in their respective heartlands which have not – with the exception of Kempinski – made the jump to being a pan-continental brand.

Platinum is their mid-tier status and normally requires you to stay 10 nights in a year.

Simply signing up as a GHA member at the free Gold level gets you free internet, free bottled water and a free newspaper.  Platinum gives you extra benefits on top – an upgrade to the next room category, 3pm late check-out and a local amenity.

The cheapest Business Traveller subscription offer I can find is here – £27.49 for a UK ‘digital only’ subscription. The paper magazine is £34 via this link which includes 400 Avios.

Once your subscription is confirmed, you can sign up for Business Traveller Plus VIP membership here and claim your GHA Platinum status as well as other benefits.

(Want to earn more hotel points?  To see our complete list of promotions from 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.)

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Comments

  1. Thanks to this deal I’ve had some very nice upgrades from the most basic category rooms, including to a suite. Best £21 I’ve ever spent on travel.

  2. I took this out on your recommendation previously and ended up saving around £1k on a booking at Anantara. We were going for a suite, but instead got a room and used our status/room upgrade benefit to guarantee the room upgrade pre arrival.

    Alila and Per Aquum (Maldives) are fantastic hotel groups too.

    • Dannyrado says:

      They guarantee your upgrade before travel you say??

      • I asked in advance of booking and they did indeed guarantee it. I wouldn’t bet on it always working, but I’ll certainly be trying it every time going forward at one of these hotels.

    • This is a similar situation I have coming up. I need a 2 bed suite to accom 4 adults, this is one level up from the usual 1 bed rooms. So if I book a room I am gambling they will upgrade me, I will probably email hotel and enquire about the upgrades. The alternative is I book the 2 bed suite and get upgraded to the bigger(er) 2 bed suite.

  3. OT – sorry – but Amex have released some new deals, including House of Fraser, Gap etc.

  4. Are benefits applicable to bookings made through agents/third party sites?

    I can only see reference to Qualifying Nights in the T&Cs

  5. Yes, we got an upgrade to a suite with Tivoli in Villamoura. Dropped them an email in advance.

  6. And that was an avios points booking!

  7. Nick Burch says:

    I’ve done this quite recently. The business traveller bit was great – you need to email them to get the GHA Platinum once your subscription is confirmed, and I did saying I had a stay quite soon after, and it was all sorted shortly after!

    The hotel side of it less so – I was staying at the Corinthia Budapest and only some of their staff seemed to actually know anything about the program. No upgrade, no water until I complained, they claimed to have no idea about any local amenity until I showed them the GHA website on my ipad and the manager then came over to explain to the reception staff what it was, and no newspaper… I did get a late checkout on the last day of 3pm when some non-GHA friends only got 1pm. Hardly earth-shattering though!

    • Hi Nick – how many days did it take in total from BT signup to Platinum confirmation? thx

      • Nick Burch says:

        In a rush you ought to be able to do it in 2, but a week is probably more what they’d like as I think they might batch up the requests. Subscription is pretty much instant, then you should get access to the page that details how to request the GHA Platinum. Follow the instructions there, fire off the email with everything they ask for PLUS your new subscription details so they can easily find you, let them know how soon until your stay if it’s coming up shortly, and you should be good. I found BT to be brilliant at replying to emails.

    • Hi Nick, can I ask which email address you used to contact them? The one from the email bounced for me? Thanks!

  8. What a coincedence. I signed up to BT PLus last week using the previous article.

    TIP – Just to note I did have some problems with getting my email address to activate. Once I emailed them it was sorted very quickly, and following another email to them with my GHA number they were very quick to upgrade to Platinum.

    I’ve got a stay booked (where I won a luxury travel diary auction) for a night/day in Palm Springs next Feb, but seeing as I’m taking our two kids I’d be very interested to see if they can upgrade me to a bigger room (we will pay for an extra two nights).

    Q. Do they honour status for stays booked through third party websites, as I’m looking to book for a couple of nights in Copenhagen/Malmo (taking advantage of ex CPH – LAX airfares)

    • Raffles replied earlier to this question. Basically “don’t bank on it”, but seemingly other commenters have had experience of hotels honouring status through third-party bookings.

    • Danksy – how long in total did it take from date of your online signup to getting the Platinum confirmed? Be useful to know how long in advance I should do this, since I only want to do so shortly before a likely stay. thx

      • It took 2 days! One day to sign up and get the BT+ email address manually verified, then a day after that to have plat status confirmed (I had to email BT+ to get them to do this).

        • Apologies for going very OT: Does anyone know if transferring Heathrow Rewards points between accounts can only be done over the phone or can be requested by email as well-which I know works fine for retro-crediting points..?

        • I’ve done it before via email without a problem – I find the Heathrow Rewards CS team one of the best around!

        • Thanks Alan, will give it a go.

        • Hi Danksy

          May I ask, what email did you use to get Platinum status confirmed? Thanks!

  9. When is the right time to apply for BT subscription, just that the GHA website states that renwal for platinum status is in Feb, so does the upgrade with BT plus last till Feb 2017? And can you use this promotion again in the future if your status is down-graded to gold?
    I.E Does it make a difference when you apply if you have no stays coming up and should you do it just nearer the time or best in advance?

    • 3.5. Subject to Section 3.2 above, DISCOVERY Platinum Membership or DISCOVERY Black Membership benefits will commence when a Member meets the applicable minimum Qualifying Nights requirement in any calendar year, and will continue through the remainder of such qualifying year and the next succeeding calendar year.

      Best to apply on 01/01/16?

  10. I stay at the Corinthia Budapest 3x a year, but would never hit 30 days per year so Black looks impossible (well maybe for 1yr it is realistic with this deal). The Platinum looks interesting as it offers the guaranteed upgrade, but Corinthia (on their web site) already say that by booking direct there is a guaranteed upgrade. So does Platinum loyalty status mean a DOUBLE upgrade?