ITT SHERATON ANNOUNCES SIMPLER, RICHER FREQUENT GUEST PROGRAM
BOSTON, July 20 /PRNewswire/ -- ITT Sheraton Corporation, the company that last year introduced simplified and value-based pricing to the hotel industry, today announced a dramatic overhaul that simplifies and enriches its already-preferred frequent guest program. In addition to a new awards chart, ITT Sheraton Club International will introduce two levels of membership, effective September 1. Both levels will offer ClubMiles, the free way to earn airline mileage, cruise awards and property stays at more than 400 ITT Sheraton properties in more than 50 countries. The company expects to quadruple its current 700,000 membership base over the next two years. "ITT Sheraton Club International's new awards structure will give members the opportunity to reach award levels faster than any other hotel program with the new two-level program, ITT Sheraton Club International and ITT Sheraton Club International 'Gold.' The new program lets us truly distinguish our most frequent guests with richer rewards and grow the program's member base significantly," said John Kapioltas, chairman and chief executive officer, ITT Sheraton Corporation. "Airline miles are the common 'currency' of frequent travelers worldwide, and ITT Sheraton Club International's global scope enables us to simplify for members what they receive and how easily they can redeem for travel virtually anywhere in the world," said Edward L. Stahl, vice president, ITT Sheraton Corporation and director of advertising and marketing programs. All guests at ITT Sheraton's more than 400 participating Sheraton Club International properties worldwide will be offered free ITT Sheraton Club International membership upon enrollment. They will receive a blue membership card and will earn, beginning with that stay, two ClubMiles per eligible dollar spent which can be redeemed for ITT Sheraton stays or be converted 1:1 to American Airlines AAdvantage, United Airlines Mileage Plus or Thai Airlines miles. Members who accumulate four stays at participating ITT Sheraton properties within a year will be enrolled in ITT Sheraton Club International "Gold" for free for the first year. ITT Sheraton Club International "Gold" members will receive two ClubMiles per eligible dollar spent plus a 50 percent bonus on their base ClubMiles for every stay -- resulting in three ClubMiles per eligible dollar spent. Current members of ITT Sheraton Club International will automatically become ITT Sheraton Club International "Gold" members. ITT Sheraton Club International "Gold" members will continue to receive current SCI in-property benefits including: -- Complimentary room upgrades based upon availability (In North America and Asia-Pacific Divisions, these include Towers and Club Levels. In all other areas members are automatically upgraded to the next-best room available.) -- Guaranteed 4 p.m. late check-out. -- Weekday newspaper. -- ExpressPass, which virtually eliminates check-in and check-out at more than 160 properties. -- "A Suite Guarantee" which allows members to upgrade to a suite for $25 by calling toll-free within two days of their arrival. -- Coupons for ITT Sheraton discounts and upgrades when enrolling or renewing.
ClubMiles, as the currency for ITT Sheraton Club International's award structure, will allow members the potential to reach award levels faster than other hotel programs. ITT Sheraton Club International's ClubMiles are redeemable at more than 400 ITT Sheraton luxury and upscale hotels, resorts, all-suites and mid-priced inns in 50 countries. Members can check their earned ClubMiles' value on a simple awards chart, identifying their options in three property categories. "It's easy; ClubMiles translate 1:1 for American and United Airlines frequent travel miles, and travel to preferred destinations and property types around the world can be quickly found on a simple chart," said Stahl. Another beneficial component of ITT Sheraton Club International is the participation of ITT Sheraton's worldwide marketing partners: American Airlines, American Express Travel Related Services, Inc., AVIS Rental Car and United Airlines. Each provides special benefits and offers for ITT Sheraton Club International members, as well as the opportunity for faster mileage accrual. Stahl said that ITT Sheraton will announce a new marketing relationship with American Express in the near future. Members of the frequent traveler programs of Air Canada, American Airlines, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, Thai Airlines or United Airlines may continue to elect to have their stays credited for miles in their programs rather than through the ITT Sheraton Club International program.
Responding to Extensive Consumer Research
"This is one of the most extensively researched marketing decisions in the company's history," said Stahl. He added that focus groups were conducted in Australia, Europe and North America and gathered input from customers, ITT Sheraton Club International members, employees and travelers who are non-ITT Sheraton guests. "Research revealed that travelers want a simpler program, and changing our currency to miles gives members the ability to enhance their airline frequent travel rewards and apply ClubMiles for free hotel rooms as well," Stahl said. Boston-based ITT Sheraton Corporation, a subsidiary of ITT Corporation (NYSE: ITT), is a worldwide network of more than 400 owned, leased, managed and franchised properties, including 293 upscale and luxury hotels, resorts and all-suites and 131 mid-priced inns in 61 countries. -0- 7/20/93 /CONTACT: Dolores Sanchez of ITT Sheraton, 617-367-5481/
CO: ITT Sheraton ST: Massachusetts IN: LEI SU: PDT
CM-DJ -- NE013 -- 6771 07/20/93 11:44 EDT
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|Date:||Jul 20, 1993|
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