Skift Take

In this video from Skift Global Forum East 2023, Chris Hartley highlights GHA's record-breaking year, shedding light on the evolving landscape of the hospitality industry, especially in the context of loyalty programs and the diverse recovery patterns of global travel markets post-pandemic.

This sponsored content was created in collaboration with a Skift partner.

In this video:

  • A look at the effectiveness of Global Hotel Alliance’s collaborative model for independent and privately owned hotels across 100 countries.
  • Discussion around the concept of “positive uncertainty” in travel, the surge in leisure travel, and varying recovery rates in different global markets.
  • An exploration of the dynamics of loyalty programs, emphasizing the shift toward an ecosystem of brand loyalty, as opposed to single-brand loyalty.

Global Hotel Alliance (GHA) has seen remarkable success in 2023, marking its best year since it was founded 19 years ago. At its core, GHA leverages a loyalty program that allows independent and privately owned hotels to compete with larger chains.

In this video from Skift Global Forum East 2023, Chris Hartley, chief executive officer of GHA, in conversation with Carolyn Kremins, president of Skift, explains the idea of “positive uncertainty” to describe the current state of the travel industry. Despite the optimism for continued growth, there’s an element of uncertainty about how this growth will manifest across different markets and segments. Notably, the U.S. market for GHA tripled in international stays in 2023 compared to 2019. However, there’s a question of sustainability with these recovery rates, especially considering geopolitical tensions and varying rates in markets like China and India.

The conversation also explored the intricacies of loyalty programs. Hartley emphasized that customers are inherently loyal to themselves and seek rewards and recognition from these programs. To address this, GHA has created an ecosystem where loyalty extends across multiple brands. This approach is a strategic response to the evolving nature of consumer behavior in the travel industry, where the traditional concept of brand loyalty is expanding to encompass a broader range of experiences and affiliations.

This content was created collaboratively by Global Hotel Alliance and Skift’s branded content studio, SkiftX.

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Tags: Global Hotel Alliance, hotels, leisure travel, loyalty, loyalty programs, tourism, Travel Trends

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