How about a free upgrade without having to jump through hoops?
One Mile at a Time reported earlier today that the Mandarin Oriental will be launching a loyalty program called "Fans of MO." Unlike typical hotel loyalty programs, this program doesn't follow a tiered status structure, but is simply a way to confer some benefits to those willing to sell their email address for a free night or spa credit.
Meaning, I'm totally OK with it.
Much like Marriott Rewards, simply signing up automatically confers some goodies even if there's no status involved. All Fans of MO members will receive free Wi-Fi, a "special" amenity, a personalized experience (the last two 'perks' made me 😴), and the ability to choose two specific perks when booking through the Mandarin Oriental website.
(Mandarin Oriental does price match rack rates. In fact, not only will they price match it, they will apply a 10% discount on top of it to boot. Score!)
Members also get some cool package options for booking, including one that includes a complimentary night. But let's get it out of the way: That free night seems to be contingent on booking a paid night.
Either way, in the past, I've found that even if there are no immediate plans where the benefits would immediately apply, it doesn't mean there won't be future opportunities to capitalize on them later, and almost no one thinks "hey, I'm staying at a Mandarin Oriental, let me sign up for that program now!" Everyone invariably forgets. There doesn't seem to be any expiration date to the program.
Members are also able to pick two additional benefits, ranging from (the perks differ by location):
- Early check-in
- Late check-out
- Room upgrade
- Streaming Wi-Fi 1
- Daily breakfast 2
- Celebratory treat 3
- Dining or spa credit4
- Pressing services 5
Let's be honest. Liam Neeson is a fan.
- Basically, upgraded Wi-Fi. There are better perks to select from on the list. ↩
- There is evidence to suggest this will come from the buffet, not from in-room dining. In some cases, two breakfasts count as two perks. ↩
- Like, if you're celebrating an anniversary, and want the concierge to deliver premium booze to the husband. Or want to order a chocolate cake for yourself for no absolute good reason. ↩
- In the example selected, a 45 EUR dining or spa credit was offered, based off a 405 EUR rack rate. ↩
- To keep those clothes sharp. The last reason why I want to be at a Mandarin Oriental. ↩