Accor is scrapping Le Club – new loyalty scheme and new benefits coming soon

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Accor announced initial details on Thursday morning of a plan to scrap Le Club AccorHotels and replace it with a new loyalty programme from 2020.

The new programme will be called ‘Accor Live Limitless’ (oh dear) although that does have the catchy acronym of ALL.  Here is the logo:

Accor Live Limitless announced

This is what we know so far from the Accor press release this morning and the relatively word-less website which is here:

A new elite tier will be introduced above the current Platinum level – but we don’t know what the benefits will be

Elite benefits will be improved at all levels

There will be a strong focus on ‘experiences’ redemptions – Accor has signed partnerships with entertainment organiser giants AEG and IMG to get access to their concerts and events.  Over 60,000 tickets (per year?) will be available, some in private boxes, across Europe, Asia and Latin America. 

Accor has signed a shirt sponsorship deal for Accor Live Limitless with Paris St Germain football club, replacing Emirates.

As part of the deal, Accor Live Limitless will sponsor the Taste of London food festival in 2020 as well as the versions in Paris, Sao Paulo, Hong Kong and Toronto

The programme will include 30 brands including recent acquisitions such as Orient Express, Banyan Tree, Raffles, Delano, Angsana, SLS, OneFineStay, Mondrian, Movenpick, Fairmont and Swissotel as well as legacy brands such as Ibis, Novotel, Mercure and Pullman

The full press release is here (PDF) but isn’t hugely helpful, containing lines such as:

“Accor announces today a disruptive and dramatic shift of its loyalty program into a fully integrated global platform integrating rewards, services, and experiences across our entire ecosystem to bring value everyday life whether you work, live or play.”

Accor is investing €225m into Accor Live Limitless so it will be interesting to see what they get for their money.  That said, Emirates was paying €25m-€30m per year for the Paris St Germain shirt sponsorship and reportedly walked when asked for €80m per season to renew.

There is also a new corporate logo, which looks like this:

New Accor logo

But will Accor Live Limitless solve Accor’s fundamental problem?

The problem with Le Club AccorHotels today isn’t the lack of access to restaurant festivals or pop concerts.

It is the fact that the loyalty programme has revenue-based redemptions.  

1 Accor point gets you 2 Eurocents off your next Accor hotel booking.  You can transfer them to airline miles, but with a few exceptions (luckily Iberia Avios is one of them) the conversion rate is 2:1 so you are ‘paying’ a ludicrous 4 Eurocents per airline mile.

There is no incentive to build up your Accor points by doing more stays.  Whether you have 2,000 or 2 million, they are only worth 2 Eurocents each.

There are no high profile redemption opportunities.  If a room is €500 on a peak night, you will need a 25,000 points to book it (2 Eurocents per point) whilst when the same hotel is €100 you pay just 5,000 points.  You never get that feeling you get with other programmes when you realise that you can make a huge saving on a peak night stay with just a handful of points.

For the new programme to be a success, Accor needs to:

offer aspirational redemptions at sensible points prices

give members a reason to build up their balance, since at present there is no logic to keeping more than the minimum 2,000 points in your account that is needed for a €40 hotel voucher

improve their elite benefits and make them GUARANTEED, not at the discretion of the hotel

If Accor does move away from fixed value redemptions, it would also open the door to offering transfers from American Express Membership Rewards or similar programmes.

You can find out more in the press release here and on the new ALL website here.

(Want to earn more hotel points?  Click here to see our complete list of promotions from the major hotel chains or use the ‘Hotel Promos’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)

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Comments

  1. All I really want is the status to come back bundled with the Amex Plat.

    • +1

      and bring back cathay pacific status while your at it.

    • Same here. Platinum was good, now I’ve soft-landed to Silver, I’m not even sure if it gives you anything (kind of has a BA Bronze feeling…)

      • Got a nice free drink at the Ibis Brisbane Airport (spent in the Pullman next door) as Silver 🙂

  2. This sounds totally rubbish. I miss Accor Plat, had really good recognition with it previously. These experiences sound pretty uninteresting, especially if it’s more bloody football offerings!

    • +1

      What earthly benefit to members is a football sponsorship deal. It’s advertising.

  3. OT: does anyone know if there are any plans for BA/HAL to increase lounge floor space at LHR T5? The two Galleries lounges at the A gates are usually completely jammed all day and it’s not always practical to go over to the lounge at T5B.

    • the_real_a says:

      Apparently the area to right of the first lounge – its landscaped with shingle above the mezzanine – was designated for future lounge expansion.

    • There are some plans and there is space allocated in one of the lounges. Whether it will happen is a different question.

      • Probably around the same time as 1-2-1 seating being available in club world across the fleet. That’s scheduled for the 12th of never

  4. Hmm, this is interesting. Accor is a chain that I was introduced to via amex plat. I maintain platinum status via spend because they have fantastic hotels in asia so it is easy spending with them (anyone.else experience the entertainment on the top floor club at the swisshotel in Singapore 😉

    I’m curious how much more one needs to spend to get the new top tier.. And whether that gets you a private performance haha..

  5. Chains are moving away from fixed point prices… and balancing toward revenue based (look at Hilton,,,, it only makes sense at high-end properties). IHG will be next.

    However, Accor is very transparent: 2 eurocent per point. Full stop. You take it or you leave it. The philosophy is more balanced toward stay in Sofitel, redeem in Ibis.

    Despite this, sometimes there are actual experience bargains available. Last year, for NYE you could have staid in the Novotel in NY, two nights with breakfast, with NY eve ball, for two people, for a total of 20.000 points.

  6. So is it:-

    Live as in Living Room
    or
    Live as in “via satellite”

  7. Here’s hoping they address the absolutely woeful Customer Service at the same time.

    The minute anything goes wrong at Accor it is beyond challenging to get a resolution

  8. David Dunphy says:

    Emirates not renewing sponsorship with Paris Saint Germain has everything to do with the club being owned by Qatar Sports Investments, and the monetary value being talked about is a way to make it sound different. Once the deal was due to end after the blockade of Qatar was made by other nations in the Middle East, this deal was always expected to be ended.

  9. the_real_a says:

    I mean the fact that there are less than 10 comments on this article says it all… Its a totally boring uninspiring scheme that few people care about (even the ultra points geeks!).

    • Chrisasaurus says:

      Well that and it wasn’t emailed…

      But having fallen from Plat to whatever the entry level is in however many years that takes, making no more than half a dozen stays in that time, I am with the who cares crowd.

      Lost plat when it became super hard to maintain, and as top tier on IHG and HH why would I seek out mediocre Mercure properties only to fall.short of requalification?

      • Add 13,100 emails tomorrow and things may change. No doubt, however, that articles on Accor and Hyatt are generally ignored.

        • Chrisasaurus says:

          And yet they’re at the opposite ends of the hotel group spectrum in terms of size so it clearly isn’t accors size letting it down

          But the fact my lcah points expire tomorrow through inactivity says it all – 80 odd stays last year and not one in accor.

          Ironically two nights next week in an ibis but only because it’s the only option in town

        • Hmm, Hyatt and Accor are my favorite brands, it’s hard to earn status in them though from the UK (impossible). That is true.

          To support a comment below: with Hyatt you earn at cheap hotels (that are still good) and redeem at grand hyatts. With Accor you earn at nice hotels and redeem at cheap ones. That is how it seems to work best.

    • You forgot to mention the support team that revel in being unhelpful and the promotions that exclude previous bookings.

      • Lady London says:

        +2, at the moment. I contacted them about 2 issues with one hotel in October. After describing the issues I was told I would have to write in. The customer service person was not empowered to raise a ticket based on the 2 issues I precisely described.

        Three months after I sent the email Accor finally contacted me. They wanted me to call them. When I called them I had to repeat the whole thing. They keep sending an email every two weeks asking me to call them. I’ve called twice now in answer to these emails from someone in their call centre. Those I speak to understand the issue with the hotel and agree it’s unacceptable but it never gets anywhere. They really do a good job to represent Accor……..not

        • Similar blunder with Accor CS. Received no points for one of my stays. Contacted CS. They dragged it for over six month. After which they said it’s over six month and points can no longer be credited. And after which I moved my further custom to other chains and kept it that way since.

  10. T5 Sofitel is almost my only interest in LCAH, even then lastminute.com top secret deals reduce it further

    • TGLoyalty says:

      I just stick with hotels.com if I’m booking an Accor hotel.

      • I booked the Pullman Berlin last Friday via hotels.com – I was arriving late, leaving early, I needed 2 credits to unlock my free night (and we needed 2 rooms) and wasn’t going to benefit from the free drink voucher I gave up.

        • TGLoyalty says:

          I just don’t see the value in collecting points for €0.02 off my next stay, or in reality them going to Iberia before they expire because 12 months is a joke. Let alone the hassle of getting too tier status.

          Considering it’s a massive hotel group it shows how poor the loyalty scheme actually is.

  11. I’ve got about 20K points carried over from the good ol Happy Monday stacking days. Cant ever bring myself to spend them on leisure trips due to competing chain offers/redemptions. Can anyone recommend Accor properties in Singapore or HK? Might have to force myself to spend these points on next trip before Accor’s dramatic disruption…..

    • TokyoFan says:

      I thoroughly enjoyed my stay at the Pullman Park Lane Hotel in Hong Kong. Great exec lounge on the top floor, fab harbour views from many of the rooms, and well situated in Causeway Bay.

    • Just stayed in Ibis Bencoolen (Singapore) – they treated me fantastically along with a 7pm checkout

    • So sofitel in Singapore was very nice. Standard rooms are very small though so if planning to spend time in room you may want to go for a bigger room. Hotel is right opposite the famous lau pa sat food market. I liked the location,could walk to lots of places

    • Novotels in Wan Chai and Clarke Quay have pretty reasonable lounges,. Wan Chai has complimentary bus to/from Airport Station

    • We recently stayed at the swissotel Stamford rooms are refurbished and they all have balconies with great views. It’s a huge hotel though so breakfast is pretty crowded and the pool is freezing!

  12. Somebody complained in the other article about not being able to use IHG points for Club access etc – at least Accor points CAN be used to book higher categories.

  13. Sussex Bantam says:

    I have to say I quite like LeClub.

    With a young family I’m often trying to book something different to “standard room” which makes redemption opportunities difficult or expensive. With LeClub I can at least always use the points for something meaningful.

    Plus – I always get a free drink which is definitely appreciated!

    • Scallder says:

      SB – Whilst I haven’t done this since my daughter was born, I have used points to book a standard room somewhere and then paid cash to upgrade the room – this was at the Westin Whistler three years ago to go from a studio to a 1 bed suite. So you might be able to take this approach moving forward – I’ll certainly be doing that moving forward (assuming hotel allows it obviously!)

    • I have stayed in a few Accor hotels and enjoyed most of them. The problem I tend to find is that there is rarely availability for a family room when you have a teenager in tow so we end up booking with a different chain.

  14. Hmmm…yet another points scheme from Accor (the rebrand to leclub from A|Club which itself only began in 2008!).

  15. Nick Burch says:

    Every so often, Accor email me a special redemption offer which does offer excellent value. There was one over Valentines weekend that included Standard Premier tickets on Eurostar, with special gin tasting on board, 3 nights at a nice Paris hotel, and a bunch of events on the weekend, for IIRC about €250 worth of points. There have been some other tempting ones too

    They also have some fixed price offers under “Dream Stays” – https://www.accorhotels.com/gb/leclub/use/dream-stays.shtml

    So, some reasons to build up a balance, but not nearly as many or as easy to explain as Hilton or IHG or similar! Plus the lack of decent elite benefits unless you’re Plat at a Sofitel with a lounge…

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