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Loyalty Programs Among Hotels and Airlines Attract Travelers

by Lux Joseph 21. April 2015

 

Now we all know that hotels seek to give their customers the best in customer satisfaction. As one enjoys their visit and the services offered, one is more inclined to return to that hotel, even prioritize it over many others. Yet hotels strive for more than just excellent services in order to win over the hearts of their customers, such as hotel-loyalty plans. This actually ends up being extremely important, as it increases each customer’s experience and satisfaction with that brand. Thus, like all things, hotels seek to improve and strive to be the best they can be in this regard

 J.D Powers took a survey of the change in satisfaction with different Hotel Loyalty and Rewards and it turned out that Hilton HHonors and Delta Privileges ended up being a tie for highest ranked satisfaction in their programs. To start, this survey looks at many different part of these loyalty plans, such as how easy it is to redeem points, how easily can one earn points, customer service, and even the rewards themselves. After looking into all of this, J.D. Powers was able to find that the overall satisfaction with these programs had increased from 676 in 2014 to 701 in 2015, along a 1000 point scale. The satisfaction score for Delta and Hilton HHonors both ended up being 727.

As the study was going on, several observations were made. For one, it turned out that reviews, awards, and online ratings seemed to help drive the satisfaction of these programs for its members as opposed to just word of mouth. What also aided in the growth of members satisfaction was the ability to earn points from purchases of goods and services. Yet one big factor which even helped people decide which program to sign up with was the convenience of the location compared to where these members planned on going.

It’s not hard to see why Delta was tied for first in ultimate membership satisfaction. For simply being a member, one earns the benefits of priority check in and wait list, express checkout, and free high-speed internet access with one’s stay. Yet the benefits continue to grow as one’s membership increases, including getting up to $500 credit for platinum plus members to spend on guest rooms, events, meetings, and dining.

Hilton has its own set of rewards as well, which was ranked equal to Delta, including complimentary access to fitness and health centers, every fifth night free, having a second guest stay free (assuming you’re a diamond member), and much more.

The loyalty rewards program has certainly boosted the overall amount of satisfaction that hotel program members have toward the brand they are loyal to, so if you aren’t part of one of these, it may be a good idea to change that quite soon, so long as you do your homework in what works best for you. We recommend speaking with your travel agent to ensure you are enrolled in all the programs available to you as a traveler. Our escorts are constantly flying to different parts around the world and those mileage points on preferred carriers can add up to a complimentary ticket, gift cards, and other great perks that the travel partners use to keep you coming back to their hotel/airline for future travel.

 

Hotel Rewards Programs Sources:

http://www.hotelsmag.com/Industry/News/Details/57626

http://hhonors3.hilton.com/en/explore/benefits/index.html

https://www.deltahotels.com/Delta-Privilege/Member-Benefits

Delta Flight 1086 Skids Off Runway at LaGuardia Airport

by Lux Joseph 6. March 2015

On Thursday, March 5th, Delta Flight 1086, coming from Atlanta, attempted to land in LaGuardia Airport during heavy snow. After the plane touched ground, about halfway through the  7,000 foot long runway it began to slide off towards Flushing Bay, breaking through a fence and stopping on an embankment just short of the icy water.

LaGuardia Airport is known for it’s short runways in comparison to other airports and for it’s close location to the waterfront of Flushing Bay.  More so, being close to three other airports, pilots are forced to navigate through tight turns while preparing to land. Since other airports have more runway space, planes landing in them normally glide over part of the runway before landing. John M. Cox, a former US Airways Pilot, now CEO of consultancy Safety Operating Systems, told ABC news “You put the airplane on the ground and land it.”.

Should a plane accidentally overshoot the landing, the Federal Aviation Administration made it mandatory that at the end of each runway there should be an engineer materials arrestor system. This would act as a measure to be sure the plane stops, as it’s wheels would sink into the material, acting to slow the plane down. The issue was that the plane began to slide off the runway about halfway through, at 4,000 feet.

Because the runway extends onto a steel pier over the water this makes it easy for the runway to freeze over, which would make landing more difficult in very cold conditions. Steve Blazejewski told the New York times that he remembered “skidding forward but veering off to the left.”

To add on to what happened, Jared Faellaci stated, “The wheel felt like they didn’t take, we were going so fast.” He goes on to say “One or two seconds later we skidded off to the left side of the runway.  We skidded for about 20 seconds, and you could feel that we had gone off the pavement. It wasn’t a smooth surface anymore, it was very bumpy.”

According to Patrick Foye, the executive director of the port authority, the runway had been plowed minutes before the incident. He stated that other pilots who had landed earlier “reported good braking action. ”

As the plane approached the river, it was stopped by the bern, which was used to stop the bay from flooding onto the airport runways. Foye said, “The plane did not make contact with the water.” While there was a minor fuel leak, it was quickly dealt with. The passengers made it off the plane safely, using the right wing to get down because the chutes did not deploy.

Jared Kaufman, one of the passengers, told ABC news “As we walked across the runway, it was covered with so much snow that I was wondering: who decided it was safe to land here?”

The airport was closed for several hours after the incident. At around 2:30, LaGuardia airport reopened one of its runways. It was initially reported that the runway would be closed until 6:00pm however all appropriate parties handled the situation very efficiently.

This isn’t the first incident LaGuardia Airport has had during the winter season. On March 2, 1994 Continental Airlines flight 705 began to skid during it’s take off, and found itself on the berm. Around 30 injuries were reported then.

There was an earlier incident on March 23, 1992, where a plane, holding 51 passengers, was trying to take off during a snowstorm and ended up crashing into Flushing Bay, killing 27 passengers.

At Commercial Medical Escorts, safety is a number one priority for our patients, nurses, physicians, and their families. Our dedicated safety committee in collaboration with our operations team, constantly are reviewing and analyzing our transports to ensure safety protocols are being met. It is important that we look at this from all angles to ensure we deliver our patients with a smiling face and peace of mind for every transport.

Marriott International Continues to Expand Across North America

by Lux Joseph 28. January 2015

Commercial Medical Escorts has entered into its Caribbean and Canadian travel season. While we transport patients worldwide throughout the year, we definitely can identify and see trends in the different destinations throughout the year. It is very common for our office to move several patients a week back to different parts of Canada including Ontario, Albert, Quebec, and British Colombia.  When our escorts typically overnight in Canada one of the major hotel brands that is commonly use is the Delta hotels. However, a recent agreement with a major US hotel chain means changes among upscale hotels in Canada.

 

Throughout Canada, the Delta brand has a total of 38 hotels. Marriott International saw Canada as a breakthrough in a market which they do not 100% dominate. When individuals stay at hotels throughout Canada, Marriott International is not the first hotel that comes to mind. However Delta, is a brand that is recognized throughout the Canadian market and Marriott saw that as an opportunity for brand success.    This major acquisition will increase Marriott International hotel count to 120 in all of Canada. Delta Hotels currently has approximately 10,000 rooms. This acquisition will make Marriott International the largest full-service hotel company in the country.

 

Throughout the last decade we have observed a variety of large acquisitions within the hospitality industry. The airline industry being one of the biggest players in acquisition has demonstrated the positive and negative effects that it has on consumers.  Marriott has been aggressively seeking acquisitions to improve its expansion throughout the world. Many companies that expand too quickly find themselves unable to meet their demand, but that doesn’t seem like the future for Marriott. Marriott International has been expanding aggressively so that they can maintain a strong presence in attractive regions throughout the world. Other recent acquisitions include acquiring Protea Hospitality Holdings in Africa and Moxy Hotels in Italy.

 

When selecting hotels for our escorts to stay in, we consider a variety of things similar to things consumers should consider when making their own hotel reservations. The Internet has become a great resource for individuals, but it isn’t always the most accurate. With today’s technology, hotel pictures can also be deceiving or embellished to look better than they really are. We strongly encourage you to utilize Trip Advisor to read up to date reviews or consult a travel advisor. Marriott is a well-known brand, but as you enter into different countries American brand hotels are not always available. Be smart, research your destination and ensure the hotel meets your needs, but is also in a safe area.



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