IHG announced earlier this week that it is changing the name of its loyalty program, and in 2014 members will not have to pay for Wi-Fi. About 70 members of IHG’s loyalty program will have free Wi-Fi. Why did IHG make this change? Well, a survey found that 43% of travelers would select another hotel if they have to pay for Wi-Fi. Duh! Oh and get this, loyalty program guests do not have to stay overnight to access the free Wi-Fi. They can stop into any IHG hotel at any time, and for any length of time, and reap the benefits. Maybe, there’ll be more conversations like this in the future:
Virtual Entrepreneur: Okay let’s meet.
Business Associate: Want to go to Starbucks?
Virtual Entrepreneur: Actually there’s a hotel near the airport where we can get together.
At least, that’s probably what IHG folks have in mind. The free Wi-Fi will begin for Elite members in July 2013, and in 2014 all of the members of IHG’s loyalty program will have access to free Wi-Fi at IHG-Properties. To break it down further, travelers and guests can shoot into hotels from any of these brands and use wireless internet for free:
InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts, Hotel Indigo®, Crowne Plaza® Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn® Hotels and Resorts, Holiday Inn Express®, Staybridge Suites®, Candlewood Suites®, EVEN™ Hotels and HUALUXE™ Hotels & Resorts.
And the loyalty program’s name is changing from Priority Club Rewards to IHG Rewards Club.