A word from Accor Plus

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Old Oct 15, 18, 7:03 am
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A word from Accor Plus

Hi all,

Following our discussions in two threads on Flyertalk (HERE and HERE), I decided to reach out to Accor Plus regarding the two issues that we had identified. So firstly, thank you to those who provided screenshots with booking errors, missing member rates and missing room types - @virtualaris , @jiunsoh , @gilbertaue - if I've missed anyone else, I apologise.

In these two threads (and probably other threads on this forum that have been buried), Flyertalk users have identified two issues that Accor Plus loyalty members can sometimes face when trying to book rooms:
1. Accor Members Rates sometimes not available for some members
2. Some room types being "hidden" from members in some instances

In our discussions in the threads (and again, probably other threads on this forum that have been buried), we believe we identified the key "prerequisites" for these issues to occur, namely:
1. The member must be an Accor Plus member - I don't think status tier matters here, and;
2. The Accor Plus member must have at least one Stay Plus benefit available to use

As I didn't feel comfortable sending a "thesis of an email" just to have it buried in the standard Accor Plus customer support inbox, I sent my email directly to Paul Stevens, CEO of Accor Plus. Paul is currently away on leave, and so I received a prompt reply back from Sonya Rossiter, Accor Plus VP of Marketing. In my email I provided all the screenshots that the members named above provided in the threads, so as to give Accor Plus as much information as possible to pass onto the IT department, and I requested that Paul look into this for the interests of the Accor Plus members, as it seems that Accor has been content to "take us for a ride", as they have been aware of this issue since at least June (as per Accor Concierge's last posts).

Sonya has given her blessing for me to post her email replies here on the forum:

Spoiler
Dear Maelstrom,
Thank you for your email. Paul has asked me to respond as he is currently on leave and I am more involved with the issue you have raised.
Initially, thank you for taking the time to write such a comprehensive email with such concrete examples of room and rate availability issues. We have been working with colleagues in Paris to address this technical issue and have shared any examples that we have come across. Unfortunately it has been identified that it is very complex as it sits within the core availability engine. We have been advised by IT that the fix will take place in December and we have regular progress updates.
I am however going to take the opportunity to share your email DIRECTLY with our global head of IT and our global head of Loyalty and Customer Care. I will also follow up on the reactivity of the Accor Concierge.
Maelstrom, we do appreciate your loyalty and as mentioned above, the fact that you have taken such significant time to communicate with us on these issues. Please do let me know if you have time for a call, however I am sensitive of your time.
Warm regards
Sonya


Spoiler
Dear Maelstrom,

Thank you for your prompt reply and your understanding. The digital world is certainly a wonderful thing but it has also brought with it a set of additional challenges. Please do share my response with those on the forum. I only wish I could say that the fix is sooner.

We believe it is very important to have representation on Flyer Talk to assist and moderate so we are somewhat surprised that this has stopped.

Please do keep in touch and reach out whenever needed or if you wish to share any feedback. It is welcomed.

Wishing you a wonderful week ahead.

Warm regards
Sonya



So, a fix (probably) is coming in December, and the Accor Concierge will (hopefully) be getting reactivated.

While, yes, these are "probably" and "hopefully" scenarios - as we all know what Accor IT is like - I just wanted to share Sonya's emails and responses with everyone on here, as I know that we have all been quite frustrated with these issues, and also a little concerned with the lack of representation on the forum from the currently-inactive Accor Concierge. I hope this post has been helpful.

And I have procrastinated long enough with my studies for these last couple of days, so I'd best get back to it.

Cheers,

Last edited by Maelstrom; Oct 15, 18 at 8:06 am
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Old Oct 15, 18, 7:57 am
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Thanks @Maelstrom. While you have reached out to Paul, I have reached out to my LCAH contact in APAC. So pushing this from both sides certainly doesn't harm.

I can say that this problem, in one way or another has been around since end of last year as I was comparing with my LCAH the availability in some properties and where he can see availability and I couldn't. I wasn't aware at that time though that the rates were probably off as well.
THOUGH until today, I still book rates directly with the Sofitel Singapore City Centre (since end last year) as I am unable to find the low rate that they tell me available!

Now to add extra pressure: how much have I paid extra out of pocket due to this error? Will we be compensated? How much was it and who will look into this?

Also, why the December time line? Why not end of this month or "as soon as possible"? What does December have to do with anything?
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Old Oct 15, 18, 8:08 am
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I did not book Sofitel Singapore CC because i could not find rates! A shame! Business given to Swissotel
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Old Oct 15, 18, 8:13 am
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thank you guys for taking time to reach out to higher level,

i tried to talk to my local accorplus office today, unfortunately (as expected) i was being bs away by their agents, telling me this is perfectly normal if we book room outside of asia because AccorPlus is intended for only asia, telling me they checked all types acc but everything appeared to be normal to them.

none of them taking this seriously.
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Old Oct 15, 18, 1:42 pm
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I am not an Accor Plus member, but guys, you have all my sympathy and support. This needs to be addressed very quickly. December seems way too long to me.
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Old Oct 15, 18, 5:19 pm
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Originally Posted by Goldorak View Post
I am not an Accor Plus member, but guys, you have all my sympathy and support. This needs to be addressed very quickly. December seems way too long to me.
I mean.. To put it REALLY bluntly: do we have to continue to be ripped off for another three months?!?
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Old Oct 15, 18, 7:18 pm
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I think their software engineers need the time to sort out the programming issues and do the necessary testing before rolling out the change. While it seems unreasonable to take such a long time, it is usual such a change required extensive testing. Changing the code to make Accor plus members (minority) get what we want might wreak havoc for non plus members including those from booking sites and LCAH members.
Being ripped off while being a paying member, we should at least be compensated with something in my opinion be it points or something else.
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Old Oct 15, 18, 10:12 pm
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Originally Posted by gilbertaue View Post
I mean.. To put it REALLY bluntly: do we have to continue to be ripped off for another three months?!?
Actually I did send an email to the CEO also because of my frustration with Sofitel So Bangkok. Sofitel So Bangkok claimed that for Breakfast they only offer 20% discount for member dinning alone (not the standard 25%).

In my email I wrote if every individual hotel is not following the program, then what the program for? That's led a call from the Singapore Program Manager. I had a long chat.

After that he asked the sales lady to contact me, as he confirmed that Sofitel So should give 25%. I really do not know what went wrong. At the end of my second stay with Sofitel So in Aug, I did met with the GM himself and he confirmed that Sofitel So is not fully participate.

So really do not know what kind of mess here. Accor plus did ask me to submit the invoices, which I think they will reimburse me. My point to them, the amount is only B50, but I really hate the incosistency.

I yet to received call from the sales lady this month as my membership will expire on 31Oct.

I guess I will not renewing my membership. For sure not from Singapore, as I was told the renewal rate is $400+ and it will increase again.

Thinking on how to temporary transfer my points to avoid the hiccups
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Old Oct 15, 18, 11:02 pm
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The one thing we know that AH lacks is disciplining properties, their management and their owners.
We have on the one hand properties that don't follow LCAH rules.

Then we have properties in APAC which chose what they want to give benefits for, and for how much.
Above is one example.
Then you have the case of the Pullman Thamrin where the owner decided not to honour any A+ discounts. According to AH, that's absolutely fine.

Then you have the Pullman KLCC which decided during the month of Ramadhan this year to remove any discount on dining, then re-introduce it again a week later as bookings fell.

You have the Sofitel Sentosa which during opening decided to play around with the benefits, until all of us made noise.

Then you have the Sofitel Damansara who during the month of Ramadhan decided to reduce the discount because "the ingredients used are of higher quality".
​​​​
So increase quality, increase membership fee, reduce discount levels. Good value proposition.

So honestly, I doubt Paul Stevens knows what to do and for sure it will continue as it has always been... A mess.
​​​​
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Old Oct 16, 18, 2:17 am
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I've had a couple of stays at hotels that havent given the full discount.

The Biscotti Italian restaurant at the Sofitel Jinan Silver Plaza - only a 20% discount for two people.
The Vancouver Grill at the Fairmont Nanjing - a 30% discount for two people, though they did a least tell us about this at the time we made our booking.

What can we even do in instances like this? Because the hotels and owners have the right to do this, right? At the very least, on the TablePlus/Accor Restaurants page, each restaurant should have the Accor Plus dining discount rates listed so that a member knows what to expect.

Though, we do know to expect a complete mess, as @gilbertaue stated
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Old Oct 16, 18, 2:23 am
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Another non Accor plus member feels for you. Thankfully they don't actively promote this when we stay at Asia Pacific hotels much otherwise it would be pretty annoying. I can see benefits but yeah my life is already too complicated and Accor is very complicated company.
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Old Oct 16, 18, 3:47 am
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Originally Posted by Maelstrom View Post
I've had a couple of stays at hotels that havent given the full discount.

The Biscotti Italian restaurant at the Sofitel Jinan Silver Plaza - only a 20% discount for two people.
The Vancouver Grill at the Fairmont Nanjing - a 30% discount for two people, though they did a least tell us about this at the time we made our booking.

What can we even do in instances like this? Because the hotels and owners have the right to do this, right? At the very least, on the TablePlus/Accor Restaurants page, each restaurant should have the Accor Plus dining discount rates listed so that a member knows what to expect.

Though, we do know to expect a complete mess, as @gilbertaue stated
being a+ member for years, i already become very cautious, will always ask about dining benefit before i consume anything, but still being trapped by hotel own way of making policy now and then

last year when i was dining alone at sofitel singapore city center, staff confirmed 25%, but when asked the bill they told me discount not applicable because i did not consume any MAIN course, dessert and sides not applicable for discount~!
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Old Oct 17, 18, 1:23 am
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Originally Posted by jiunsoh View Post
being a+ member for years, i already become very cautious, will always ask about dining benefit before i consume anything, but still being trapped by hotel own way of making policy now and then

last year when i was dining alone at sofitel singapore city center, staff confirmed 25%, but when asked the bill they told me discount not applicable because i did not consume any MAIN course, dessert and sides not applicable for discount~!
I don't think it is mentioned anywhere that we need to order a main course! What happened in the end? Did they still give you the 25%? Anyway it is good that you did not wreak your palate with their main courses. I found the food to be over seasoned and had to keep reaching for my drink.
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Old Oct 17, 18, 1:52 am
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Originally Posted by gilbertaue View Post
The one thing we know that AH lacks is disciplining properties, their management and their owners.
We have on the one hand properties that don't follow LCAH rules.

Then we have properties in APAC which chose what they want to give benefits for, and for how much.
Above is one example.
Then you have the case of the Pullman Thamrin where the owner decided not to honour any A+ discounts. According to AH, that's absolutely fine.
​​​​
I brought up this point also. The person I spoke to said this should be one off event.


Originally Posted by gilbertaue View Post
Then you have the Pullman KLCC which decided during the month of Ramadhan this year to remove any discount on dining, then re-introduce it again a week later as bookings fell.
​​​​
Yes, this is again the issue I raised. They cannot "suka suka" do what they want. If they want to list it on exception during Ramadhan no discount, although I don;t like it, I can still tolerate.

I told him, if there is an exception there should be clearly documented and easily referenced. I told him, if it is simply too many exception then how to keep track? If your Support staff cannot easily find it then it is too many already and how you expect us as member to find it out..

Originally Posted by gilbertaue View Post

You have the Sofitel Sentosa which during opening decided to play around with the benefits, until all of us made noise.

Then you have the Sofitel Damansara who during the month of Ramadhan decided to reduce the discount because "the ingredients used are of higher quality".
​​​​
So increase quality, increase membership fee, reduce discount levels. Good value proposition.

So honestly, I doubt Paul Stevens knows what to do and for sure it will continue as it has always been... A mess.
​​​​
Well this is beyond Paul Stevens. This is why although I have more than 1 hour talking to the guy, I personally did not expect anything to change.

My friend used to work for one of the hotel that belong to Accor but does not have the standard brand....... Owner can negotiate with Accor and he told me Accor is very flexible

For Pullman Thamrin, I think the owner twisted Accor until it agrees that hotel does not need to participate on Accor Plus.
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Old Oct 17, 18, 1:56 am
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Originally Posted by Maelstrom View Post
I've had a couple of stays at hotels that havent given the full discount.

The Biscotti Italian restaurant at the Sofitel Jinan Silver Plaza - only a 20% discount for two people.
The Vancouver Grill at the Fairmont Nanjing - a 30% discount for two people, though they did a least tell us about this at the time we made our booking.

What can we even do in instances like this? Because the hotels and owners have the right to do this, right? At the very least, on the TablePlus/Accor Restaurants page, each restaurant should have the Accor Plus dining discount rates listed so that a member knows what to expect.

Though, we do know to expect a complete mess, as @gilbertaue stated
Have you check on the Accor Plus website if they are in exception?

Send email to Customer Service. ask them to confirm why they are not following the normal program and/or ask them where you can find such info.

In general, if they offer special price (set lunch or something), they are not obligate to give you "standard" discount, which I found rubbish.

Another point that I raise, this program is becoming more like Dining program. At least that I felt, as they keep increasing the price in Singapore as there is more dining option here. I told him, the reason I bought AccorPlus 13 years ago because this card is not a dining card like other hotels.
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