Many of us are piling up the miles and hotel beds for business or pleasure. For instance, Dorothy McGrath is a young attorney for a large firm. She travels 50% of the time and stays in hotels all over the US and Europe. Dorothy is footloose and fancy free. She simply adores visiting inimitable cities, such as Rome and Paris. A people person, she seeks out new people and experiences. Dorothy embraces new cultures up close and personal. With free time, she is ready to hit the tarmac at a moment's notice, to visit exotic or historic destinations. For her, hotel rewards are a great travel plus. She can choose to use her rewards for a posh hotel or to fly off into the wild blue yonder.
To Die for Cities and Hotels
Business travelers and vacationers alike want a smart, commodious room with all the comforts that make their home away from home cozy. In a recent poll of business travelers we discovered they prefer to visit New York, Chicago, sexy, historic London (London gets my vote), our nation's capitol and undulating, foggy San Francisco. Fifty-nine percent of polled travelers stayed at the same hotel each time. Many were probably using a hotel rewards card to rack up valuable points. The business vagabonds where particularly thankful for perks such as a gratis breakfast, free Internet and points for each night, not just per stay. By the way, if you visit London you may prefer skip breakfast. Fitness enthusiasts enjoy a generously proportioned, sparkling pool and a well equipped exercise room.
What Travels Crave
According to a poll (from iht.com) of 1400 frequent travelers these are their nearest and dearest concerns:
- Limiting productivity loss
- Travel delays
- Access to e-mail
- Access to voice mail
- VIP check-ins
- Access to fitness club
- Sight seeing
Interestingly, the traveler's nationally influenced their hotel concerns. Japanese travelers strongly desire business facilities, whereas, Swedes must have a free breakfast. We all know there is no free lunch. We Americans cannot survive without an Internet connection within arm's reach.
Twenty-seven percent of polled business travelers said they go where the points are. Seventy eight percent are linked to a rewards program through a card or directly with the hotel of their choice. Many companies are feeling the financial crunch of a stalled economy. A moderate priced hotel may replace the posh hotels of yesterdayâ€™s economy. Savings from a hotel rewards plan may encourage a more generous hotel allowance. If you work for yourself, the final price tag for you travel will be an essential consideration.
Card Options and Offers
What should you expect to receive from a hotel rewards credit card? Some credit cards offer bonus points immediately after you sign up, and/or extra points for reaching a certain spending level and/or for staying a minimum number of consecutive days. You may want a card that offers a 0% introductory interest rate, no annual fee and a low annual interest rate. I enjoy greater peace of mind with a strong fraud protection plan. Compare the rewards programs, they are not created equal. If you have a favorite hotel at which you feel especially at home, check to determine if they offer a rewards credit card.
When you compare cards from our list, notice the acceptance criteria. Some cards were designed for companies or individuals with "excellent" credit. Other reward credit cards are suitable for the borrower with "good" credit. Notice the spending limits. Your card limit should be appropriate for your unique circumstances.
Business Dress to Impress
When you arrive at your hotel what will you be wearing? According to the experts, if you want to avoid business attire disasters carry cotton, dark colors and the new wrinkle free materials. When I travel I pack black and white separates. No matter what, everything will match beautifully. If you are a free spirit, throw in something in a conspicuous, dazzling red. An arresting, yet understated, brief case or luggage can speak volumes about your discerning taste. Leather always looks oh, so chic - especially aged leather. If your clothes are wrinkled or obviously clash, you will be seated next the new CEO. It happens every time.
Making Your Decision
Therefore, if you are a business traveler, a business owner or simply out to have a pleasurable jaunt, a hotel rewards credit card may make your life easier. Review the concept and the offers, compare available perks and if you decide to make a hotel rewards card your very own, apply on-line with complete confidence.