Stash Hotel Rewards, the nation’s largest point-based loyalty program for independent hotels, recently announced that it has partnered with another seven hotels in New England, growing its overall presence in the six-state region to 22 independent hotels, and more than 150 one-of-a-kind properties across the country.
Consumers can now stay at New England’s finest historical inns, B&Bs, and other unique luxury hotels while still earning valuable points that they can redeem for free nights at any of the other properties in Stash. What’s more, Stash also allows these smaller (and more colorful) properties to band together and offer the same rewards points that travelers would receive at large chain hotels.
Loyalty360 caught up with Stash Hotel Rewards CEO Jeff Low, who answered some questions about this exciting new development.
How will these newly added New England hotel partners help Stash spread its loyalty program and impact customer engagement, customer experience, and customer loyalty?
Every single property we add to the Stash network of more than 150 hotels across North America gives our members another beautiful, one-of-a-kind hotel to visit. For example, now people traveling to Tyngsboro, Massachusetts, can stay at Stonehedge Inn & Spa and enjoy a glass of wine from one of New England’s largest wine cellars. Stash members can now visit 22 unique properties all over the region and rack up points for their next adventure.
What makes your program unique?
Stash was created for people who believe that travel can be one of life’s great pleasures. With Stash, travel can be an opportunity to learn about and connect with a place—no one wants to travel to the coast of Maine and stay at the same old Hilton hotel. People want to experience the character and history the destination has to offer. They want to kick their feet up in front of a fireplace in Vermont or eat the day’s catch at a Rhode Island inn. Stash helps people who care passionately about travel to find and stay at these unique, independent hotels, while still racking up loyalty points toward free stays.
What trends do you see in this space as they relate to customer engagement/customer experience/customer loyalty?
Chains are highly regulated businesses that require each hotel under the umbrella to adhere to rigid rules and standards. But just as people are starting to stray from supermarkets and instead buy their produce at the local farmers’ market, travelers are starting to gravitate toward hotels that offer local, cultural experiences. The overall trend is that people are moving away from big brand loyalty and instead choosing authenticity. Travel is no exception.