Hilton’s New Lifestyle Brand Tru Will Have Reduced Points-Earning

Marriott has tried to make sense of 30 brands after acquiring Starwood. They don’t want to get rid of or consolidate brands because different brands mean more hotels and more hotels mean more management fees.

They think they can have so many brands because people will choose hotels based on the loyalty program even if they can’t keep track of what the different offerings mean. If customers book on Marriott’s website it won’t matter if customers can’t keep track of which brands are even part of the program.

Hilton as their own new brands — Tru by Hilton and Tapestry Collection by Hilton — and noting they talk about them as by Hilton which is a great reminder.

Hilton describes both as having “a hotel experience that is vibrant, affordable and young at heart with style and personality unique from our existing portfolio.”

Is it odd this reminds me of aloft hotels, ‘a vision of W hotels’ and comes after a legal settlement no longer prevents Hilton ‘from creating any hotel brand that would compete “in the lifestyle hotel or branded boutique space'” resulting from a corporate espionage case?

And of course these brands add to sort of hipster Canopy.

We learn today that Tapestry Collection hotels will offer full points-earning which means 10 base points per dollar on both room rate and eligible charges.

Currently Hilton has three brands with more limited points-earning:

  • Home2 Suites earns 5 base points per dollar on room rate only
  • Hampton Inns and Homewood Suites earn 10 base points per dollar on room rate only

Limited-service hotels, of course, don’t offer as significant ancillary spend opportunities as full service properties do.

And like Home2 Suites the new Tru by Hilton will earn just 5 base points per dollar on room rate only.

Since Hilton’s elite status is easiest to earn by credit card, and Diamond still doesn’t have strongly defined benefits beyond Gold (and is itself easiest to earn via credit card), it doesn’t make sense to me to earn Hilton status based on stays. And 5 points per dollar hardly seems like enough incentive to shift wallet share.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. @Gary continues to claim, oblivious to the fact that HH Diamond is the only top elite status that remains rewarding and STANDING: “[HH] Diamond still doesn’t have strongly defined benefits beyond Gold”

    Will you quit peddling that bogus canard?

    SPG and HGP DID not (past tense) offer their top elites benefits that were significantly better than those that Hilton Honors Golds get. Have you ever stopped to think about that? Moreover, it is ludicrous to keep harping on the purported lack of benefit differences between HH Diamonds and Golds, while ignoring the very real fact that the only reason there was a difference between SPG Plats and HGP Diamonds (now WOH! Globalists) and their next respective lower-tier elites was that the latter had no benefits to speak of! What did HGP Plats or SPG Golds get? See?

    Top SPG and HGP levels WERE, at best, similar to HH Golds, which is why you believe that HH Gold is not different from HH Diamond. I am glad, to Hilton Honors’ credit, you love HH Gold so much, but it is not close in benefits to HH Diamond at all, which means that HH Diamond has always above them all. Really.


  2. The main reason I don’t stay at Candlewood, Hampton and others is the reduced earnings. I travel mostly for business and only care about earning as much as I can to use for nice vacation trips later. I get why the extended stay type properties do this but I really don’t understand why hotels like Hampton or this new TRU type hotels want to cheapen themselves. Hampton can get by with it because sometimes it’s in a rural area with no other choices around but these trendy hipster hotels are often in cit center or urban areas where there are many other choices.

  3. I have found Hilton Diamond (at least the kind earned from credit card spend) to be a bit of a disappointment as far as treatment goes. Maybe those staying the actual nights to get Diamond get better treatment but based on my experiences I would say it’s a notch below Starwood Platinum or even Marriott Platinum. It’s basically Hilton gold with some extra points.

  4. Apparently DCS isn’t aware of SPG Golds getting:
    – free premium internet
    – GUARANTEED 4pm check-out
    – 50% points bonus
    – welcome amenity
    – identical upgrade language to Hilton Diamond (let alone Gold)

    All not bad for a status level you can easily get in 10 nights

    But hey, he does peddle in alternative facts and all…

  5. ..and to claim that SPG / Hyatt top tiers were, “at best, equal to HH Gold” is about as intellectually dishonest as one can get

  6. @Nick sez: “I have found Hilton Diamond (at least the kind earned from credit card spend) to be a bit of a disappointment as far as treatment goes. Maybe those staying the actual nights to get Diamond get better treatment …”

    It makes no difference how one gets the HHonors Diamond status. The difference is simply in the fact that Diamonds who actually stay at Hilton properties to earn status do become intimately familiar with the program and thus know how to take advantage of their status. That is really the “secret sauce” in why people tend to generally like programs that they actively patronize, even if they might have picked their program randomly at the beginning. It’s also why travel bloggers, being overwhelmingly HGP and SPG loyalists, placed two mediocre and unstable programs on pedestals that have now toppled and crashed, leaving standing tall Hilton Honors and MR Rewards, programs that were always stronger ad mature despite being much maligned by the same self-anointed “travel gurus”.

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