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Old Feb 22, 12, 1:09 pm   #1
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New Club Carlson Credit Card (now available)

3 varieties of the card are here:
http://www.clubcarlsonvisa.com/credit/welcome.do
And there is a no-fee version here:
http://www.clubcarlsonvisa.com/credit/visaCard.do
Also, there is a thread on this card in the Miles Buzz forum:
http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/miles...n-renewal.html

Last edited by onthego15; Dec 9, 12 at 4:25 pm Reason: new card offer
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Old Feb 22, 12, 5:18 pm   #2
  
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There have been rumors of a Club Carlson credit card for a while. I'll definitely be interested in what the card will offer as a sign up bonus and everyday earnings potential.
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Old Feb 22, 12, 6:46 pm   #3
  
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Waiting for the card.
Hope the card will carry annual free night like chase marriot and chase priority club cards.
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Old Feb 22, 12, 11:42 pm   #4
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Great!

This means we'll be seeing an increase to point-levels or an "upgauge" of hotel category levels at certain properties. When programs start churning out the points/miles for their affinity branded CC, it never ends up being good in the long run.
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Old Feb 24, 12, 11:47 am   #5
  
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I guess it is 25K sign up bonus which is very low
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Old Feb 24, 12, 2:00 pm   #6
  
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Where do you see 25k?

I'd like to get this card now that I'm basically using Carlson for most of my European stays...especially if there are a few decent perks.

I think they always get mad at me for using my PC Visa there even though I'm CC gold.....
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Old Aug 18, 12, 7:18 pm   #7
  
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Hoping for information about the new credit card soon! I hope it's still being launched as planned.
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Old Aug 22, 12, 9:51 am   #8
  
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Angry

God, I dread this.
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Old Aug 22, 12, 10:59 am   #9
  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Firewind View Post
God, I dread this.
Your such an optimist! Unless the sign up and earnings ratios are much better than what is out there I don't think this will be a mass obtained card. Sure some people on the lookout for Club Carlson points might sign up but I cannot see the average american rushing out to get a credit card from Club Carlson.

I'm interested to hear what they will offer but will not rush out to apply unless it is a good offer and I actually will have use for the points.

So why don't we hold off on the moaning until the details emerge and then everyone can complain that it's going to devalue their points and elite benefits...hey wait....what elite benefits?
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Old Aug 22, 12, 1:49 pm   #10
  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by christianj View Post
Your such an optimist! Unless the sign up and earnings ratios are much better than what is out there I don't think this will be a mass obtained card. Sure some people on the lookout for Club Carlson points might sign up but I cannot see the average american rushing out to get a credit card from Club Carlson.

I'm interested to hear what they will offer but will not rush out to apply unless it is a good offer and I actually will have use for the points.

So why don't we hold off on the moaning until the details emerge and then everyone can complain that it's going to devalue their points and elite benefits...hey wait....what elite benefits?
I disagree somewhat.

Club Carlson, in an effort to attract people to their brand, gives out points like candy. In addition to their recent promos, you can earn points for doing tasks as simple as booking your reservation online, a social norm for travel these days. At some point, the amount of paid stays is going to bottom out as people start cashing in their chips. This will lead to two things:

-Points devaluation
-Less points doled out

A credit card laced in incentives is going to expedite this theory. Itís a near certainty. Otherwise, CC would be taking a bath on any credit card deal.

Letís assume, for argument sake, that the sign-up bonus is 100,000 points and 5 point per dollar spent at CC properties. You also get perks such as Silver Elite status and a voucher for a free night at a Category 1-4 hotel. Iíd put the annual fee at $75.00 and not waived for the first year. This is pretty on par with the current hotel branded card incentives.

Now, the BNG promo comes out. Thatís 188,000 bonus points across all 4 brands. Plus, you get the points for the normal earnings, online booking bonus and credit card. On an average of $100.00 per room per night, that works out to 5,000 points per stay, or 20,000 across all 4 brands. (Silver Elite = 2,000 online booking bonus, 25 points per dollar spent normal earning and 5 points per dollar spent on the credit card)

So now we have 100,000 (sign-up bonus) + 188,000 (promo bonus points) + 20,000 points (stays) = 308,000 points.

Thatís good for 6 nights at the Radisson Blu Paris Opera (300,000 points) and 1 night at the Radisson Blu CDG for the flight home. (Free night voucher) On average, the RBPO is $380.00 per night and the RBCDG is $140.00 per night, so weíre looking at $2,420.00 worth of value.

But, as we all know, we tend to bring our spouses on the journey with us. So we can add another 308,000 points into the fray. Iím going to covert 300,000 of those point into 56,000 AA miles. Using our cost of room formula above, that works out to $0.007 per mile ($400.00/56,000). So, we are essentially saving $0.02 per mile on a good ROI putting our value at $1,120.00. ($.02 X 56,000)

That leaves us with $3,540.00 of value, all for a cost of $950.00 across 2 cards...assuming that you personally subsidized your stays instead of your employer. Then there's the issue of churning the cards to repeat, or enhance, the process. Club Carlson canít afford to sustain that business model. So that leaves them no choice but to curb points, eliminate overly-generous promos and raise redemption values.

Letís face it, the people getting the CC card will fall into the scenario above much more than they will as business travelers loyal to the CC brand. I canít think of one person I know that prefers a CC hotel over a Hilton, Hyatt, Starwood, etc. property. They certainly don't appeal to the average vacationer either, unless they are priced low and fit a particular need. (Location, family room, free breakfast, etc.) CC will be doling out the points until they realize what their market really is: A bunch of "free-loaders" using their card and promos as a hefty coupon to finance luxury vacations.
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Old Aug 22, 12, 8:39 pm   #11
  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by christianj View Post
Your such an optimist! Unless the sign up and earnings ratios are much better than what is out there I don't think this will be a mass obtained card. Sure some people on the lookout for Club Carlson points might sign up but I cannot see the average american rushing out to get a credit card from Club Carlson.

I'm interested to hear what they will offer but will not rush out to apply unless it is a good offer and I actually will have use for the points.

So why don't we hold off on the moaning until the details emerge and then everyone can complain that it's going to devalue their points and elite benefits...hey wait....what elite benefits?
A little homework in the meantime:

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/hyatt...ard-chase.html

The FT sages' prophecies re the Gold Passport program have come true. (See GUWonder.) And the second big Club Carlson promo hit its participation mark.
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Old Aug 23, 12, 2:44 am   #12
  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Firewind View Post
God, I dread this.
Agree. There is nothing good to come of this, despite what a few Hyatt Homers will tell you.
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Old Aug 23, 12, 6:38 am   #13
  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Firewind View Post
A little homework in the meantime:

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/hyatt...ard-chase.html

The FT sages' prophecies re the Gold Passport program have come true. (See GUWonder.) And the second big Club Carlson promo hit its participation mark.
I'm familiar with this thread and the Hyatt card. I didn't go back and read the entire thread since I have looked at the thread numerous times in the past but if I remember correctly there has NOT been a massive devaluation of Hyatt points since they introduced the credit card. Did they shuffle some hotel from one category to the next category....yes....but that happens with all programs. I think the Cat. 6 group was added in 2010 prior to the card being introduced but I'm sure you will tell me if that is correct or not.

Anyone that has been playing the credit card game and also the hotel and airline points game knows that devaluations are a given over time. I can't think of a hotel or airline that hasn't devalued their program in some way in the last couple of years. Even programs like IC Priority Club that gave away points to get Hilton Honors members that were pissed about the devaluation to jump ship ended up devaluating their own program a couple of years later. (their Marketing Genius probably got the boot)

Blame it on rising costs to the operator or the credit cards if you like. I like everyone else am not happy when there is a devaluation but we all know that it will happen some time.

I still stand by my believe that the Club Carlson CC will not be a mass obtained card by the average person. Most of them probably have never even heard of Club Carlson and if you say to them that they can use their points at a Radisson they likely are not to get overly excited by the new card. (we know differently especially if we have stayed at some Radisson Blu properties) Recently I had a conversation with someone about credit cards and they said they had never even heard of the Hyatt Visa or the Starwood AMEX....they even went as far as to say they had never even heard of Starwood. We all know that the Starwood AMEX is a great card and there probably isn't a FT member that doesn't carry the card. I have had numerous conversations with my coworkers about why they continue to use their Marriott CC for all purchases. I have given them examples that for everyday spend they will need to spend $40-50k to get a high end Marriott redemption when with the SPG AMEX they would only need to spend $20k but they just don't get it and these are people that travel alot and have rewards cards.

There are people that just don't get too involved in the points game and we were probably all part of that group at some point or another. These people feel good about the fact that they are getting a reward point for using their credit card but they don't realize that they are not maximizing their return. (think of all the people that use points for gift cards, merchadise, low end hotels and economy class tickets that you can buy for under $250!) Those people also will NOT travel the country or change their travel plans to earn the maximum number of points under the BNG promo. We all try to do that but I just can't see the guy next door driving 45 miles to check into a hotel room just to get 44k points at a $60 a night Country Inn & Suites.

Last edited by christianj; Aug 23, 12 at 6:52 am
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Old Aug 23, 12, 8:16 am   #14
  
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You are comparing apples to oranges though. Receiving points with Hyatt takes a lot of work, or a lot of spending on their credit card, to accomplish. Therefore there isn’t a huge need for devaluation of points as they take actual work and loyalty to the brand/card to achieve an award. Hyatt is, and has been, a well-known established brand with nice to luxurious hotels. They don’t need to market themselves to the general public as a viable option as they have a good base of loyalty as it is. Club Carlson is giving my wife and I 4,000+ points for looking at an online photo album of their properties. The only thing missing from their buffet is a chocolate fountain and unlimited cotton candy. It’s great while it lasts, but it will be virtually extinct in the future. As CC is still trying to build up their credibility as a brand, promos will still exist but not anywhere near the level we saw pre-credit card. I wouldn’t be surprised if the next BNG promo required a multi-night stay for the full allotment of points and tweaks requiring you to pay the full rack rate to be eligible. (I.E. No Cash + Points, BRG, discount codes, etc.) Or, perhaps more likely, it will become an offer only available to those that have the credit card.

I agree that most of America will not obtain the CC card. But, that’s not the point. As stated above, the people most likely to obtain the card are on this very board. The reason for most here to do this is to maximize their points earning potential, cancel the card and rinse/repeat when the next cycle starts. The general consensus that I’ve gotten from people is that Carlson is a viable option, but only if their preferred chains are not available, too high in price or not located in their destination. So I have to believe that the ocean of points, not a sense of loyalty, is what drives one to apply for the card. I am going to stay at a Hyatt regardless of whether or not they have a credit card. The fact that they do is the pushing point for me when there are other viable options in an area as I can further maximize value to enrich my personal travel plans. The same could be said for Starwood, and to a lesser degree, Hilton and Marriott. We've already seen one devaluation from CC this year, which occured after last year's BNG promo, so it's logical to assume that another one will occur once this year is in the books. The credit card will most likely be the third domino to fall.

When CC realizes that their gifts, not their brand itself, are what drives the bus they will have no option but to stop being so generous. We’ve been courted by CC and the credit card is the marriage. It’s all downhill from there

Last edited by spankytoes; Aug 23, 12 at 8:25 am
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Old Aug 23, 12, 9:13 am   #15
  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spankytoes View Post
You are comparing apples to oranges though.
I agree that it is not a fair comparison! It was another poster that referenced the Hyatt example for the evident downfall of a program that introduced a credit card.

I agree with several points you made and there probably will be a devaluation or annual category adjustments to come (just like with all programs). I however do not believe that a Club Carlson credit card will be the downfall of the program since IMHO it will not be a mass used credit card. We have to remember that we live in our own little Flyertalk world and most people don't even pay that much attention to sign up bonuses, points and earnings and redemption ratios like we crazzies do.

We should all remember to "earn and burn" and not hang on to our points because sooner or later they will be devalued regardless of which program you look at. Sadly I don't seem to practice the "earn and burn" as often as I should.
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