Club Carlson Program Changes: A Basic Analysis

This bed in a room at the Radisson Blu Hotel Champs Elysees hotel property in Paris will soon cost you 20,000 additional Gold Points per night, as the hotel property increased one category from Category 6 to Category 7 — costing you 70,000 Gold Points per night. Photograph by FlyerTalk member christianj. Click on the photograph for additional photographs by christianj, as well as a discussion pertaining to this hotel property.

FlyerTalk member Club Carlson — also known as Rachael Marret, who is the senior vice president of customer engagement with the Club Carlson frequent guest loyalty program — announced changes to be effective as of March 15, 2014, which she outlined below:

“Members will now have a choice of room types for redemption, in addition to standard rooms. Hotel redemption categories will be updated, and a new tier added, as the Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group will soon be rolling out an expertly curated collection of luxury hotels, under the Quorvus Collection.

“Our members will continue to earn 20 points per dollar spent, with Award Nights still starting at 9,000 Gold Points. Beginning March 15, the rate at which Elite members earn bonus points will change to 15% for Silver and 35% for Gold. Concierge members will continue to receive rich rewards that include a 75% earning bonus. Members will now receive online booking bonuses on a promotional basis.

“Redeemed Award Nights will now be combined with qualifying paid nights to count toward Elite Status. And our members can now earn points on food and beverage purchases during Award Night stays. We have also added new retail gift card partners to the already extensive list with redemption starting at 7,000 points.”

FlyerTalk members expressed mixed reactions to the announcement — some lament the loss of the booking bonus and the decrease in bonus Gold Points for Silver and Gold elite members — but depending on which hotel properties you intend to redeem your Club Carlson frequent guest loyalty program points in the future, the overall announcement could either be good news or a perceived devaluation.

Blaming the credit card on what is being perceived as a devaluation, FlyerTalk member nsummy posted: “Now you can buy gold for $80 a year. Doesn’t seem surprising that they would devalue gold benefits. This program was pretty sweet 2 years ago. Of course for $10,000-$12,000 spend on their card you can stay 2 free nights at a very nice hotel. How many other credit cards can you say the same?”

FlyerTalk member Brendan portended with concern this past December that there would be a perceived devaluation announced for the Club Carlson frequent guest loyalty program — but at least the changes were announced almost two months in advance, unlike the change in the conversion of Gold Points to airline miles which was implemented quietly this past July with no advance announcement.

According to the charts — which, unlike the charts of changes in most other frequent guest loyalty programs, are rather clear with its information — of hotel properties which are expected to change categories as shown below, 114 hotel properties move up one category; while 67 hotel properties move down at least one hotel category. For your convenience, I coded the charts where an increase in category for a specific hotel property is colored in red; while a decrease in category for a specific hotel property is colored in green:

Property — Americas Country or State 2013 Category 2014 Category Gold Points Required for Award Night
Radisson Hotel, Sao Paulo Faria Lima Brazil 5 6 50,000
Radisson Hotel, Alphaville Brazil 5 6 50,000
Radisson Hotel, Maiorana Belem Brazil 5 4 38,000
Park Suites, Manaus Brazil 4 3 28,000
Radisson Hotel & Suites, Fort McMurray Canada 5 6 50,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Calgary-Airport, AB Canada 5 4 38,000
Radisson, Petra Concepcion Chile 5 3 28,000
Park Inn by Radisson, San Jose Costa Rica 4 3 28,000
Radisson Hotel And Suites, Guatemala City Guatemala 2 3 28,000
Radisson Hotel Hacienda, Cancun Mexico 1 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Panama Canal Panama 4 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Homewood US-Alabama 3 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, El Dorado US-Arkansas 3 4 38,000
Radisson Hotel, Phoenix Airport US-Arizona 3 4 38,000
Radisson Hotel, Phoenix-Chandler US-Arizona 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Deer Valley US-Arizona 3 2 15,000
Radisson Hotel, Fisherman’s Wharf US-California 5 6 50,000
Radisson Hotel, San Francisco Airport Bay Front US-California 4 5 44,000
Radisson Suites Hotel, Buena Park US-California 3 4 38,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Ventura US-California 4 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Barstow US-California 4 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Greeley US-Colorado 3 4 38,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Bradenton at I-75 US-Florida 3 4 38,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Orlando Universal US-Florida 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Orlando Airport US-Florida 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Port Charlotte US-Florida 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Vero Beach-I-95 US-Florida 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Ocala US-Florida 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Jacksonville West US-Florida 1 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Helen US-Georgia 3 4 38,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Atlanta Airport North US-Georgia 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Conyers US-Georgia 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Calhoun US-Georgia 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Smyrna US-Georgia 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Newnan US-Georgia 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Cartersville US-Georgia 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, LaGrange US-Georgia 1 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Norcross US-Georgia 1 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Savannah Airport US-Georgia 3 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Atlanta at Buckhead US-Georgia 3 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Columbus US-Georgia 3 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Atlanta Airport South US-Georgia 2 1 9,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Council Bluffs US-Iowa 3 4 38,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Des Moines West US-Iowa 3 4 38,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Mason City US-Iowa 3 4 38,000
Country Inn By Carlson, Grinnell US-Iowa 3 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Boise West US-Idaho 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Decatur US-Illinois 3 4 38,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Rock Falls US-Illinois 3 4 38,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, O’Fallon US-Illinois 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Bloomington-Normal West US-Illinois 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Freeport US-Illinois 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Chicago O’Hare Northwest US-Illinois 3 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Merrillville US-Indiana 4 3 28,000
Radisson Hotel, Indianapolis Airport US-Indiana 1 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Cincinnati Airport US-Kentucky 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Covington US-Louisiana 3 4 38,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Traverse City US-Michigan 4 5 44,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Grand Rapids Airport US-Michigan 3 2 15,000
Radisson Blu, Mall of America US-Minnesota 6 5 44,000
Radisson Hotel, Duluth Harborview US-Minnesota 3 4 38,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Chanhassen US-Minnesota 3 4 38,000
Park Plaza, Bloomington US-Minnesota 3 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Wilmington Airport at Market Street (Convention Center) US-North Carolina 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Concord (Kannapolis) US-North Carolina 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Charlotte University Place US-North Carolina 3 2 15,000
Country Suites By Carlson, Bismarck US-North Dakota 5 4 38,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Minot US-North Dakota 5 4 38,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Lincoln Airport US-Nebraska 2 3 28,000
Radisson Hotel, Piscataway-Somerset US-New Jersey 3 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Ithaca US-New York 4 5 44,000
Radisson Hotel, Rochester Airport US-New York 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Columbus Airport US-Ohio 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Toledo US-Ohio 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Dayton South US-Ohio 3 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Oklahoma City at Northwest Expressway US-Oklahoma 2 3 28,000
Radisson Plaza-Warwick Hotel, Philadelphia US-Pennsylvania 5 6 50,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, York US-Pennsylvania 3 4 38,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Wyomissing (Reading) US-Pennsylvania 3 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Florence US-South Carolina 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Columbia at Harbison US-South Carolina 3 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Watertown US-South Dakota 2 3 28,000
Radisson Hotel, Nashville Airport US-Tennessee 2 3 28,000
Radisson Hotel, Corpus Christi Beach US-Texas 4 5 44,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Fort Worth US-Texas 3 4 38,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Galveston Beach US-Texas 5 4 38,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Lewisville US-Texas 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Tyler South US-Texas 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Lubbock US-Texas 4 3 28,000
Park Inn by Radisson, Dallas-Love Field US-Texas 1 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Dallas-Love Field (Medical Center) US-Texas 3 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Houston Intercontinental Airport East US-Texas 3 2 15,000
Radisson Hotel, Reagan National Airport US-Virginia 5 4 38,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Newport News South US-Virginia 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Winchester US-Virginia 2 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Eau Claire US-Wisconsin 3 4 38,000
Radisson Hotel, Milwaukee West US-Wisconsin 3 4 38,000
Radisson Hotel, Menomonee Falls US-Wisconsin 4 3 28,000

Of the 98 hotel properties in the Americas region listed in the chart above, almost double the hotel properties move up to a higher category than those which move down to a lower category: 65 hotel properties move up one category; while 32 hotel properties move down one category. A bonus if you intend to redeem your Gold Points at the Radisson, Petra Concepcion in Chile is that that hotel property moves down two categories from Catergory 5 to Category 3. That is a savings of 16,000 Gold Points per night.

Property — Europe, Middle East and Africa Country 2013 Category 2014 Category Gold Points Required for Award Night
Radisson Royal Hotel, Dubai United Arab Emirates 6 7 70,000
Park Inn by Radisson Uno City, Vienna Austria 3 4 38,000
Park Inn By Radisson, Ostrava Czech Republic 3 2 15,000
Radisson Blu Badischer Hof Hotel, Baden-Baden Germany 4 5 44,000
Park Inn by Radisson, Mainz Germany 2 3 28,000
art’otel Park Plaza, Berlin City Center West Germany 4 3 28,000
Radisson Blu Hotel, Cottbus Germany 1 2 15,000
Park Inn by Radisson, Heppenheim Germany 1 2 15,000
Radisson Blu Hotel, Neubrandenburg Germany 1 2 15,000
Radisson Blu Furst Leopold Hotel, Dessau Germany 1 2 15,000
Radisson Blu Papirfabrikken Hotel, Silkeborg Denmark 5 4 38,000
Park Inn By Radisson, Central Tallinn Estonia 1 2 15,000
Radisson Blu Le Dokhan’s Hotel, Paris Trocadero France 6 7 70,000
Radisson Blu 1835 Hotel & Thalasso, Cannes France 6 7 70,000
Radisson Blu Le Metropolitan Hotel, Paris Eiffel France 6 7 70,000
Radisson Blu Hotel Champs Elysees, Paris France 6 7 70,000
Radisson Blu Resort, Arc 1950 France 5 6 50,000
Park Inn By Radisson, Orange France 3 4 38,000
The May Fair Great Britain 6 7 70,000
Plaza on the River, London Great Britain 6 7 70,000
Radisson Blu Hotel, Edinburgh Great Britain 5 6 50,000
Radisson Blu Hotel Manchester, Airport Great Britain 4 5 44,000
Park Plaza Riverbank, London Great Britain 6 5 44,000
Park Inn By Radisson, Telford Great Britain 2 3 28,000
Park Inn By Radisson, Doncaster Great Britain 1 2 15,000
Park Inn London, Watford Great Britain 3 2 15,000
Park Inn By Radisson, Harlow Great Britain 2 1 9,000
Radisson Blu Resort, Split Croatia 5 6 50,000
Park Plaza Verudela, Pula Croatia 4 5 44,000
Park Inn By Radisson, Sarvar Resort & Spa Hungary 2 3 28,000
Radisson Blu Beke Hotel, Budapest Hungary 1 2 15,000
Radisson Blu St. Helens Hotel, Dublin Ireland 4 5 44,000
Radisson Blu Hotel, Athlone Ireland 3 4 38,000
Radisson Blu Hotel & Spa, Sligo Ireland 2 3 28,000
Park Inn by Radisson, Luxembourg City Luxembourg 4 5 44,000
Radisson Blu Hotel Latvija, Riga Latvia 3 4 38,000
Radisson Blu Ridzene Hotel, Riga Latvia 3 4 38,000
Al Mahary Radisson Blu Hotel, Tripoli Libya 5 6 50,000
Radisson Blu Resort, Malta St. Julian’s Malta 4 5 44,000
Radisson Blu Resort & Spa, Malta Golden Sands Malta 4 5 44,000
Radisson Blu Hotel, Maputo Mozambique 5 6 50,000
Park Inn, Tete Mozambique 5 4 38,000
art’otel, Amsterdam Netherlands 6 7 70,000
Park Plaza Victoria, Amsterdam Netherlands 6 5 44,000
Radisson Blu Hotel Norge, Bergen Norway 5 6 50,000
Radisson Blu Resort, Trysil Norway 5 6 50,000
Radisson Blu Hotel, Krakow Poland 4 5 44,000
Radisson Blu Hotel, Bucharest Romania 5 4 38,000
Radisson Royal Hotel, Moscow Russia 6 7 70,000
Radisson Royal Hotel, St. Petersburg Russia 5 6 50,000
Park Inn by Radisson, Poliarnie Zori Murmansk Russia 4 5 44,000
Radisson Blu Resort & Congress Centre, Sochi Russia 6 5 44,000
Radisson Hotel, Rosa Khutor Russia 5 4 38,000
Radisson Blu Carlton Hotel, Bratislava Slovakia 4 3 28,000
Radisson Blu Resort, Bukovel Ukraine 4 5 44,000
Park Inn by Radisson, Donetsk Ukraine 3 2 15,000
Park Inn, Sandton South Africa 2 3 28,000
Park Inn by Radisson, Cape Town Foreshore South Africa 2 3 28,000

Of the 58 hotel properties in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region listed in the chart above, almost 3.5 times the hotel properties move up to a higher category than those which move down to a lower category: 45 hotel properties move up one category; while 13 hotel properties move down one category.

Property — Asia Pacific Country 2013 Category 2014 Category Gold Points Required for Award Night
Radisson Blu Hotel, Chennai City Centre India 5 4 38,000
Radisson Blu Suites, Gurgaon India 5 4 38,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Gurgaon Sector 29 India 4 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Mysore India 4 3 28,000
Park Plaza, Chandigarh India 4 3 28,000
Park Plaza, Kolkata Ballygunge India 4 3 28,000
Radisson Blu Hotel, Amritsar India 4 3 28,000
Radisson Blu Hotel, Haridwar India 4 3 28,000
Radisson Blu Hotel, New Delhi Paschim Vihar India 4 3 28,000
Radisson Blu Resort, Goa Cavelossim Beach India 4 3 28,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Ahmedabad India 1 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Navi Mumbai India 3 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Sahibabad Distt Ghaziabad (U.P.) India 3 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Jaipur India 3 2 15,000
Park Plaza, Delhi CBD Shahdara India 3 2 15,000
Radisson Hotel, Kandla India 3 2 15,000
Radisson, Jalandhar India 3 2 15,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Goa Panjim India 2 1 9,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Gurgaon Sector 12 India 2 1 9,000
Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Goa Candolim India 2 1 9,000
Park Plaza, Faridabad India 2 1 9,000
Radisson Hotel, Narita Japan 4 3 28,000
Radisson Plaza Resort, Tahiti French Polynesia 4 5 44,000
Park Inn by Radisson, Davao Philippines 1 2 15,000
Radisson Blu Hotel, Cebu Philippines 3 4 38,000

Of the 25 hotel properties in the Asia Pacific region listed in the chart above — as a refreshing change — greater than quintuple the hotel properties move down to a lower category than those which move up to a higher category: 4 hotel properties move up one category; while 21 hotel properties move down one category.

However, changes in categories are not even across the board with regard to the redemption of Gold Points: “The cat 2 to cat 3 diff had always been huge”, posted FlyerTalk member hobo13. “It almost doubles right there. And (not coincidentally?) that’s where the biggest number of props going up a cat are. Really sucks.”

To summarize the changes announced for the Club Carlson frequent guest loyalty program:

  • The reduction of the percentage of bonus Gold Points for Gold elite members from 50 percent to 35 percent and Silver elite members from 25 percent to 15 percent: negative
  • Award nights now count towards elite status: positive
  • The discontinuation effective as of March 1, 2014 of Global Concierge Service 24 hours per day, seven days per week: negative
  • Earning Gold Points on food and beverages purchased during award nights: positive
  • Category changes of 181 hotel properties: more negative than positive, as 114 hotel properties move up one category — nine of which move up to the new Category 7 award level at 70,000 Gold Points per night — while 67 hotel properties move down at least one hotel category

 

How will these changes announced for the Club Carlson frequent guest loyalty program affect you, if at all?

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