Last fall, Wyndham shook up the travel reward space by eliminating tiered redemptions and offering Wyndham Rewards members the opportunity to redeem for free nights at any of its hotel brands - from its upscale Wyndham Grand properties to its micro-budget Super 8 motels - for a flat 15,000 points. Now Wyndham continues its programme reinvention with the launch of a new teired benefit structure focused on delivering experiential rewards. Now "elite" experiences won't be limited to road warriors and the one percent.
Through four distinct levels - Blue, Gold, Platinum and Diamond - Wyndham Rewards members can now take advantage of a host of new benefits that increase by level, from free Wi-Fi and rollover nights to annual point bonuses and more. And, when members redeem their points for a stay in one of the programme's top 25 destinations, they now automatically receive an additional enhancement to their award night for no additional points, helping them take advantage of local experiences near their destination, from indoor skydiving in Orlando to cooking classes in Shanghai. Money quote from Josh Lesnick, executive vice president and chief marketing officer at Wyndham Hotel Group:
"Devaluation is too common a trend in today's loyalty game - it reflects everything that's wrong with industry rewards programmes and continues to be the driving force behind why Wyndham Rewards is once again breaking the mold. While other loyalty programmes find new ways to restrict their most loyal guests when they redeem, we're doing the exact opposite and giving our members the very best: our best hotels in our best locations with the best local experiences - 365 days a year for just 15,000 points."
Every time members redeem points in one of Wyndham Rewards' top 25 global destinations, the programme will now enhance the redemption experience by offering special discounts and savings, called "PLUS awards," on local experiences curated by a Wyndham Rewards' "Adventure Agent."
PLUS awards come with no blackout dates or restrictions. The value of these PLUS awards ranges from $5 per award night when redeemed by members at the Blue level all the way up to free experiences valued at up to $150 per award night when redeemed by members who have earned the Diamond level. Complementing PLUS awards are other member perks including free Wi-Fi, late check-out, early check-in, room upgrades, welcome amenities and more.
Member Levels benefits go live on May 18th; however, current Wyndham Rewards members can check their status today by logging into their account via the Wyndham Rewards mobile app or website.
The Bullet Point: $5 off a select few local experiences for lower-tier members may not seem like much, but Wyndham is betting that it's the thought that counts. Diamond members, on the other hand, will experience real, targeted generosity in the form of $150 off unique local experiences. Business travelers may be too busy to available themselves of such rewards, but well-heeled vacationers will find a lot to like. Kudos to Wyndham for thinking outside the free night.