Last week, Best Western hotels announced the 30th anniversary of its rewards program. The program has grown from 180,000 members to 32 million since its creation.
 
Dorothy Dowling, Chief Marketing Officer and Senior Vice President with Best Western, discussed the original concept behind the program.
 
“BWR was originally launched to bring extra value to travelers and developers. We imagined a program that really put the rewards into Best Western Rewards, giving customers the perks and benefits they expect and deserve today, instead of someday. We listen to our guests, which is at the core of who we are as a brand, and we understand what rewards matter most to them. We’ve gone above and beyond to provide real value in the areas that matter most to our customers such as expiration of points, ease of point redemption, book-direct rates, and low point redemption thresholds. In fact, a full one-third of travelers polled in a recent co-branded study with U.S. News & World Report stated expiring points is their biggest pet peeve in a loyalty program. In response, Best Western continues to be one of the only major brands that offers points that never expire. We also introduced a new tagline for BWR: Go.Get.Rewarded, which demonstrates our commitment to delivering an exceptional customer experience through a simplified, meaningful and rapid rewards program. We are committed to not only offering the rewards our customers want today, but to constantly enhancing and evolving the program year after year to ensure we are adding even more value.”
 
With points that never expire and access to promotions in the hotel industry, BWR has been frequently recognized within the industry, achieving a top five ranking in U.S. News & World Report’s 2017-2018 Best Hotel Rewards Programs and ranking one of the top three Best Hotel Rewards by WalletHub in 2017.
 
“Today’s Best Western Rewards (BWR), is a leader in the loyalty space, offering benefits that make it easier and faster for members to earn points that can be redeemed for free nights worldwide. It is one of the few loyalty programs that is truly international with more than 4,000 locations in more than 100 countries.”
 
In honor of the 30th anniversary of Best Western Rewards, Best Western Hotels & Resorts announced that it will gift lifetime Diamond Select Status to nearly 3,000 who have remained a loyal part of the program since its inaugural year. Diamond Select Status offers 50% bonus points per stay, a choice of a thank you gift or points upon arrival and guaranteed free night availability.
 
With technology improving and dividing consumer preferences, the Best Western Rewards program expects to shift within the next five to ten years as a result of the changing consumer demands.
 
“We will strive to continue the legacy of the Best Western brand by offering the richest rewards in the industry, which is the most meaningful way we can thank our guests for their continued brand loyalty. We are thrilled to be celebrating the 30th Anniversary of BWR this year with 33 million members globally, up nearly 14 percent year-over-year. Our numbers keep growing and the benefits will continue to do so as well. The loyalty study we conducted with U.S. News & World Report also found that for 74 percent of travelers, a brand’s loyalty program is the significant factor in determining where they stay. In addition, more than 70 percent of respondents rated Best Western Rewards as their preferred loyalty program in the industry.

With this knowledge, we look forward to providing guests with rewards they can redeem right now, introducing new experiences like our new Local Experiences program, an opportunity for guests to purchase from a wide selection of local destination experiences. We will continue to progress with instant gratification and feedback with the use of technology by introducing the BWR bot and improving website performance to be more intuitive and user-friendly when members go to redeem points. Our goal is to enhance the program each passing year to make our members feel valued and thanked with unbeatable rewards for their commitment and loyalty to the Best Western Hotels & Resorts brand. Our customers are the heart and soul of Today’s Best Western Rewards.”

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