Accor has officially launched its new worldwide loyalty programme AClub, with members earning vouchers which can be used in more than 2,000 hotels worldwide.
As of September 15, guests can earn points for stays at Sofitel, Pullman, Novotel, Mercure, MGallery, Suitehotel, Ibis and All Seasons properties, as well as on expenditure on hotel services such as food and laundry. Unlike the group’s previous loyalty scheme (Compliments from Accor Hotels), AClub is free to join, but interestingly Accor’s budget brands – Motel 6, Formule 1 and Etap – have not been included.
Jean-Luc Chrétien, Executive Vice President, Hotel Distribution, Accor, commented on the decision: “The principal attraction [for these hotels] is the price. Economically it doesn’t fit with a low cost model. For low cost chains it adds a cost which they don’t need.”
The programme has been in the pipeline for three years, according to Chrétien, with plenty of research carried out to make it simple to use. “It’s easy to understand, very easy to enrol, and the fact that it’s online means it’s very easy to access information and the reservation system... People want simple things that they don’t have to be a rocket scientist to be able to understand.”
Accor has devised a simple voucher redemption system, with points being converted into cash vouchers which can then be used as payment in all Accor hotels. As a result there are no blackout periods, which means travellers can use their points at popular or busy times and there is no restriction on the use of points for promotional rates. Guests can pay for their stay with a mixture of AClub vouchers and cash or credit card.
Points can also be used with partners, such as Club Méditerranée and Europcar, or converted into miles with airlines, including Air France KLM, British Airways, Delta Airlines, Lufthansa, Singapore Airlines, Thai Airways, US Airways and Qantas. According to Chrétien, the programme will continue to develop over time, with more partners and ways of earning. Points earned have no expiry date, provided that members spend at least one night a year in a participating hotel.
To celebrate the launch of the new scheme, cardholders can earn double points for every Accor stay until December 31. You can join AClub after your first stay, or register online at a-club.com, where you can also check your points and download vouchers to spend. The minimum redemption level is 2,000 points, which earn members a €40 voucher.
Depending on the number of hotel nights or the number of points earned in a year, members will be upgraded, with the points earned increasing significantly with each upgrade.
AClub cardholders get two points for each €1 spent in a Sofitel, Pullman, MGallery, Novotel, Mercure or Suitehotel, and one point for each €1 spent in an Ibis or All Seasons hotel.
The AClub Silver card is awarded after at least 10 hotel nights or 2,500 points earned in a year. Silver cardholders earn three points for each €1 spent in a Sofitel, Pullman, MGallery, Novotel, Mercure or Suitehotel, and 1.5 points for each €1 spent in an Ibis or All Seasons hotel.
The AClub Gold card is awarded after at least 30 hotel nights or 10,000 points earned in a year. Gold cardholders earn 3.5 points for each €1 spent in a Sofitel, Pullman, MGallery, Novotel, Mercure or Suitehotel, and 1.75 points for each €1 spent in an Ibis or All Seasons hotel.
Finally the AClub Platinum card is awarded after at least 60 hotel nights or 25,000 points earned in a year. Platinum cardholders earn four points for each €1 spent in a Sofitel, Pullman, MGallery, Novotel, Mercure or Suitehotel, and two points for each €1 spent in an Ibis or All Seasons hotel.
For more information visit a-club.com.
Report by Sara Turner