Right now, I have saved enough Marriott hotel points to get a 44 inch plasma flat-screen TV –OR– enough to take my wife to
This got me thinking: It didn’t take very long to earn those points, so why don’t I save enough for BOTH?! I can take her to
“How,” you might ask, “did Ken earn 300,000 points in only six months??” He read his junk mail, that’s how.
That’s right, whether it’s a frequent flier program, a hotel points program, rental car incentive, whatever, I take the time to scan for gold in the lode-stone of junk that they send me.
For example, my company recently jumped into bed with Marriott and the Hyatt hotel chains. “Big discounts for corporate travelers, blah, blah blah…” Not long after this deal was announced, I received another of the bi-weekly “Great new offers” e-mails from Marriott. Resisting the urge to delete-with-extreme-prejudice, I glanced through it. Near the bottom of the message was a small paragraph in ten-point font that announced a Double night promotion bonus for corporate travelers, certain restrictions apply. I clicked the link and discovered that my company was listed as one of the new chosen few! I fit the fairly slim profile detailed for these particular qualified Marriott Rewards members. I clicked the link, spent eight seconds to register, and instantly received DOUBLE my nights stayed in Marriott Hotels from March to July 31st of this year. That was 32 nights for me! I went from Silver to Gold instantly, and was Platinum three weeks later.
The madness didn’t stop there, no sir. Next, I called the Hyatt Regency’s Gold Passport customer service line and mentioned who I worked for and the promotion that Marriott had offered. Guess what? Hyatt was offering the same deal!
Now, I’m not saying that every piece of junk mail has such delicious promotions hidden in the text, but I’ve found enough nice trinkets here and there to make reading it worth my while. Northwest airlines offered a crazy deal to their frequent fliers a month or so ago, direct round trip to
So, pay attention! When NWA needs to fill some flights to help promote a new route, or a hotel wants to skim the cream of the corporate travelers off the top, they may not wish to alert the competition with a front page add in the newspaper; but they’ll certainly make an offer to their faithful flock. Read the fine print!