Skift Take

Premium Rewards isn't going to change the world as a loyalty program, but it is going to entice business from a new set of travelers. And that might be exactly what Silvercar needs right now.

Series: Business of Loyalty

Travel Loyalty News

The Skift Business of Loyalty covers the world of hotel, airline, and other consumer loyalty programs in the travel industry. Read more coverage of loyalty here.

Seven years after its foundation as a luxury alternative to the legacy car rental companies, Silvercar has finally launched a loyalty program. Called Premium Rewards, the new program gives travelers one point per dollar spent on the rental of a vehicle; later, those points can be used to partially or fully pay for another booking.

The launch of Premium Rewards comes at a time in which Silvercar seems to be exploring new avenues for customer acquisition. After aggressive growth in its early years, Silvercar’s expansion to new airports has tapered. The launch of this new loyalty program as well as new incentives for those who purchase new Audi vehicles may help expand the company into new territory.

The move will also help Silvercar compete with Avis, Hertz, and National, its legacy rivals that all have thriving loyalty programs. And while Premium Rewards may still not be able to compete with the blockbuster promotions found at Avis Preferred, Emerald Club, or Gold Circle, it’s a good start at wooing the points junkies out there.

— Grant Martin, Business of Loyalty Editor 

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Audi’s Silvercar Launches New Car Rental Loyalty Program: Silvercar, the premium car rental service that only rents Audis, is formally launching a loyalty program. Until now, the car rental service, founded in 2012 and operated out of around two dozen airports, hasn’t used any sort of loyalty program to retain customers.

Skift Global Forum Preview: Marriott’s Loyalty Program Key to Competing With Airbnb and All-Inclusive Players: Marriott International has had a very busy 2019. After completing a challenging integration of its Starwood Hotels & Resorts acquisition, made three years ago, the hotel chain has launched a new home rental business to compete with the likes of Airbnb and committed itself to bringing more all-inclusive hotels to guests in Latin America and the Caribbean. Marriott has been quick to point out both offerings are intended to make its loyalty program, Marriott Bonvoy, stickier for guests.

Hotels Embrace Role as Curators of Niche Products: The rise of direct-to-consumer brands and steady growth in entrepreneurship mean that it’s harder than ever to stand out. One must only look at the rising costs of advertising on Instagram to see the demand for brand building. And a lot of these tasks are being carried out online.

Best Western’s Newest Acquisition Points to Long-Term Reservations Strategy: Best Western Hotels & Resorts has acquired property management software company AutoClerk in a move to combine the startup’s technology stack with its own central reservation system.

Why American Airlines Is Being Trounced by Its Rivals: When American Airlines Group Inc. exited bankruptcy in 2013, its new boss vowed to trounce rivals within a few years. These days, those competitors are delivering the beating.

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Marriott Marketing Chief Karin Timpone to Step Down at Year’s End: Karin Timpone, Marriott’s global marketing officer, is stepping down at the end of 2019 to “pursue new opportunities,” the company announced.

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Grant Martin [[email protected]] curates the Skift Business of Loyalty newsletter. He is also a director of product marketing at TripActions. Skift emails the newsletter every Monday.


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Tags: loyalty, silvercar

Photo credit: An Audi A4, the workhorse of Silvercar's rental fleet. Audi

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