If you’ve ever booked a flight, reserved a hotel room, or even ordered a cup of coffee, you were likely invited to take part in a loyalty program to earn free or discounted items from that brand. And if you’re like many consumers, you’ve probably joined at least one.
Needless to say, this tried-and-true method has been a marketing staple for decades, with deep roots in the travel industry. The early frequent flyer programs that major airlines launched in the 1970s were among the inspirations for other brands to design and develop similar initiatives—ultimately giving way to our modern concept of loyalty programs.
While it may seem like a minor detail, loyalty programs have a significant influence on how travelers plan and book trips. Especially as the line blurs between work and leisure time, questions about points accrual, use, and ownership are bound to make their way into your inbox. In this blog post, we’ll review the impact of loyalty points on your travel program and identify tools that could keep you and your travelers happy.
Why loyalty points matter to travel managers
An easy way for employees to earn points—for free—is to enable them to book their own work travel arrangements and submit the receipts for reimbursement.
While not every company has an open travel policy that allows for self-booking, points can still be a motivator that encourages travelers to adhere to the vendors and regulations set out within your travel program. Partnering with brands that have a global footprint and robust rewards programs can motivate travelers to make arrangements through those selected vendors, providing the perks they want while retaining or even raising compliance rates.
It’s important to note that corporate travel managers will need to clarify to whom these points belong. Making it clear that travelers can earn, keep, and spend the points as they wish is a simple, no-cost way to keep business travelers satisfied.
How can business travel managers adhere to their current policy while letting travelers reap the rewards that come with earning and spending points? Travel managers should take advantage of familiar tools that can support their program goals without sacrificing the loyalty points travelers want to earn and spend as they please.
Earn Uber Cash and points with Uber Rewards
Launched in April 2019, Uber Rewards allows travelers to earn points and redeem them for Uber Cash. Travelers can earn one point for every dollar spent on UberPool and Express Pool trips and on Uber Eats orders; double points on UberX, XL, WAV/Assist, and Select trips; and triple points on Uber Black and Uber Black SUV. All Uber riders in the US can register for free directly from the app.
Uber Rewards has 4 levels—Blue, Gold, Platinum, and Diamond—with unique perks and benefits at each level. Travelers unlock new benefits with each level, such as flexible cancellations, priority support, and price protection.*
Through Uber Rewards, business travelers can accumulate points from work trips to earn Uber Cash, then apply the earnings for personal use on the same account. And more earned equals more choice—that’s Uber Cash you can spend on Uber trips or Uber Eats deliveries.
Loyalty points and rewards programs present an excellent way for managers to incentivize travel programs while retaining high satisfaction rates among travelers. By partnering with well-known brands with loyalty programs, such as Uber for Business and Uber Rewards, companies can use valuable business tools without losing out on the rewards their travelers want.
Uber Rewards is available in all 50 US states, with global rollout expected later in 2019. Visit the Uber Rewards page for the most up-to-date information.
*Flexible cancellations are for Gold members and above. Cancellation fees are refunded when you rebook within 15 minutes (limited to 3 uses within 6 months). Location exclusions apply. Excludes UberPool trips. For priority support, Uber makes no guarantees about actual response times. Price protections are for Platinum members and above. You choose the 2 places you ride between the most. During busy hours, when prices may be higher, you’ll be protected above a certain amount on UberX trips on that chosen route. Learn more about benefits here.