Westin Premier - Westin Premier ending - stiffing the less than frequent stayer
Jul 28, 98, 8:13 am
Got a postcard in the mail yesterday telling me that Westin Premier ends January 31, 1999. ALL POINTS NOT USED BY THEN WILL BE FORFEITED. If you stay twice at a Westin before then, your points will be converted into the new program (no details given).
This is pretty lousy (to say the least). First, Westin and Sheraton offer a conversion deal that those with less than 20,000 Westin points can't take advantage of. Now they tell us that we have to make two stays over the next six months to keep the points we have! Another case of the airlines/hotels disregarding any business you gave them in the past. I pity those who moved all their points (including AMEX mile conversions) to Westin Premier and won't be able to use them by 12/31 as chances are (I'm speculating) they will be worth less than they were before. I can hardly wait till they tell us what they plan to do with the Sheraton program!
it is strange that yesterday they did still confirm new membership (of my wife):
Subject: Enrollment for Gisela Martel
Date: Mon, 27 Jul 1998 20:03:56 -0600
Good evening, We have enrolled you into the Westin Premier program and your account
number is .............. A new enrollee package along with a card will be sent to you. Please allow 4-6 weeks to receive. In addition, we do participate with 15 airline partners, so if you would like to add airline partners into your account, please advise back or call 1-800-521-2000. You would then receive 500 airline miles for every Westin hotel stay. Welcome to the Westin Premier program, and if there is anything else we can help you with, please let us know.
Regards, Kevin Busenbark/ Westin Hotels
Jul 28, 98, 11:19 am
I'm wondering why Westin is ending its
frequent guest program! I just transferred
8 thousand Sheraton points to Westin to boost
for a special award stay.
Will have the two stays by the end of the year to keep the points, but I'd like to know
what these changes are NOW!
Checking out their website and will e-mail
them with my concerns. CATMAN
Jul 28, 98, 12:34 pm
Addem to my previous message, I also wrote
Sheraton Club Int'l to express my disappointments and asking them what they are
doing with their program.
I'm anxious for an answer because I'll feel
better using my point (and moving up my
Hawaii trip by many months) so as not to see
my points go POOF! CATMAN
Jul 28, 98, 8:44 pm
This used to be a great program but it has been steadily detereorating over the last few years. I hope that Sheraton Club International does not follow the same path.
Date: Wed, 29 Jul 1998 21:46:10 -0600
..... and yes the Westin Premier program will be ending on January 31, 1999. Due to the merger with Sheraton hotels, they are creating a new frequent guest program which will act for both Westin and Sheraton hotels.
The information you receive will explain this in detail.
Regards, Kevin Busenbark/ Westin Hotels
psychological typic after a merger:
Kevin says "THEY are ....", not WE are ....
Jul 30, 98, 11:56 am
Let's see... Westin and Sheraton Merge programs, then Holiday Inn earlier combined
their Crown Plaza with Holiday inn Brand.
Next thing you know all the hotels will combine and combine again (and even the airlines?) then we'll ahve on frequent flyer
program and one Hotel program and one car
program all tied together and (my concern)
I like competition, and so far the only
combination that works for me is Marriott
having all those brands under rewards (and for the mileage people the Marriott miles program.)
Am I in the minority on this? Like my cats
even Marriott's policy isn't 100% clear. By far not all Ritz (only 5?) take part. And I like Ritz (when I can afford them ... on certain weekends ....).
I appreciate with Sheraton and Marriott that the give me the points (Sheraton: 3 per $ which I convert to 3 UA miles), or miles (Marriott Miles: 500 plus 2'500 per 5 stays) regardless of the paid-price. And both have the same policy world-wide. So their rules are simple.
Jul 31, 98, 6:05 pm
Westin responded to my inquiry late thursday
confirming your post MileKing (thanks for the
"warning") and telling me by combining with
SHeraton SCI we'll get the best of both programs.
I hope so. I like both programs separately
for different reasons.
Sheraton even responded to my inquiry.
I stay at both frequently so they told me I
should nto have to worry about points going
I will be concerned until I see in fine print
"Ok Catman, your points are fine, happy
Aug 1, 98, 4:36 pm
I got a letter from Westin Premier today. According to the letter the program will end on Jan 31 1999, and existing points will be converted accordingly to the new program. The membership tier status in the new program will be based on the qualifying tier status at the end of 1998.
So the good news is that nobody will lose their points. The bad news is that more points will be needed for awards for reservations made after June 1999.
The letter I received is generously sprinkled with words like "unprecedented", "exciting", "enhanced benefits", "rewarding new program". I would prefer some less excitement in exchange for some guarantees that the award levels are not increasing and benefits are not being cut.
I think Westin may be stiffing some of their Premier members. Still waiting for my packet
of information about the award changes with the sprinking of adjectives that Pgupta11
It's nice I got the e-mail but if the award
levels are going up I may decide ot extend
my Maui business trip into a long weekend and
enjoy my Westin/Sheraton points now before
I have to work harder to get them.
Aug 2, 98, 8:48 pm
The letter I got from Westin Premier did not provide future award charts. It mentioned that there was no point increase for award reservations made until June 1999, but the clear implication was that for reservations made after that time the number of points would increase.
Aug 4, 98, 9:29 am
Westin must be dealing differently with each member of the Premier program. The postcard I mentioned in my initial post contains nothing about "exciting" changes that pgupta011 mentions. It does clearly state that if I don't put two stays in by the end of the year my points go poof!
As for raising reward levels, Westin levels are already too high. The restrictions seem a bit tight also. I only hope that if they do combine the programs (Westin and Sheraton), they don't destroy the good things about the Sheraton program.
Aug 4, 98, 10:18 am
I think that you are right MileKing. I received a letter (not a postcard). I am a Burgundy member and have had a few stays this year so the requirements may be different for me.
Over the past few years Westin has eliminated the breakfast allowance for Premier members, devalued by 50% the partner points with Membership Reward, Diners Club and Westin Visa, changed the point structure from one free night per 10 stays to a dollar based system which on the average requires more more stays to earn a free night. The latest changes are just a continuation of a pattern where benefits are constantly being eroded.
I am also concerned about the Sheraton program.
Aug 4, 98, 11:44 am
I got the letter (monday) announcing the end
of Premier and just saying details will be
mailed in NOVEMBER!
NOVEMBER? The good news is Westin told me
my account is fine and I should not lose points. But again I would like to know what
the award levels and other takeaways there
I'm Westin Burgendy (SP? -- I just came home
from a 12 hour workday sorry) and one of the
things I like is the breakfast coupons. It
helps to get a decent breakfast then board
a flight where all you get is a cookie (unless you get to first.)
Yes, I too am concerned about Sheraton.
Probably Inside FLyer will have all the answers before the hotels tell us. CATMAN
WESTIN SAYS (Westin homepage): "Transfer option valid April 15, 1998 - December 31, 1998. Members initiating transfers between Westin Premier® and Sheraton Club International accounts must adhere to all existing program rules. A minimum transfer of 20,000 Westin Premier® points or 4,000 ClubMiles is required. Transfers will occur at the rate of five Westin Premier® points equaling one Sheraton Club International ClubMile. Transfers may only be made between accounts belonging to the same individual, both accounts must be in good standing and members must be active in the program from which the points are being transferred. Active status in Westin Premier® requires two qualifying stays during any 12 month period. Please allow 48 hours for transfers to be complete. Additional restrictions may apply."
MY THINKING is:
I have only a few (6'000) Westin-points, but will have more than 4'000 Sheraton in October 98. I will have one Westin-stay in 98, so the Westin account should be activ.
I will probably transfer in november 98 2'801 Shearaton into Westin, to have a Westin-balance of 20'001 when their program ends (just for not loosing the 6'000 Westin-points). Westin will then transfer my 20'001 Westin-points into the new program.
I hope I am right.
Aug 5, 98, 2:59 pm
Rudi, I would hold off on the transfer. Having 20,000 points in your Westin account does not mean your account will remain active, at least as I read things. If you are only a "regular" member like myself (no status) I think you need two stays by the end of 1998 to keep your points. Adding more points will not help. I would wait til November and see what the details of the new program are.
thanks - I will have to stays in 1998 - but I will wait anyway till November with transfers.
thanks - I will have two stays in 1998 - but I will wait anyway till November with transfers.