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This Is the Best Hotel-Loyalty Program

The best hotel loyalty program? According to the inaugural J.D. Power 2014 Hotel Loyalty/Rewards Program Satisfaction Report, it’s the Marriott Rewards program.

The J.D. Powers study ranks programs on their performance in five areas, which are importance-weighted as follows: account maintenance/management (23 percent); ease of redeeming points/miles (22 percent); ease of earning points/miles (18 percent); reward program terms (16 percent); and customer service (5 percent).

Those weightings are likely to give some travelers pause. Is account maintenance really more important than ease of redeeming and earning points? That’s debatable, to put it politely.

With that caveat, the scores, from highest to lowest (on the J.D. Powers 1,000-point scale), are as follows:

  • 707 – Marriott Rewards
  • 704 – IHG Rewards
  • 703 – Delta Privilege
  • 686 – La Quinta Returns
  • 685 – Drury Gold Key Club
  • 684 – Hilton HHonors
  • 684 – Choice Privileges
  • 658 – Club Carlson
  • 657 – Fairmont President’s Club
  • 651 – Starwood Preferred Guest
  • 648 – Omni Select Guest
  • 645 – Wyndham Rewards
  • 639 – Red Roof Redicard
  • 638 – Hyatt Gold Passport
  • 635 – Best Western Rewards

Unfortunately, the summary of the report published on J.D. Powers’ website only includes the overall results, not the underlying data. It would be interesting to see how much the rankings would change if account maintenance were given a significantly lower weighting and the scores recomputed.

Reader Reality Check

When evaluating a hotel program, what are the most important factors to you?

This article originally appeared on

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