Travel and Hotel Loyalty Programmes

We have loyalty programmes to two hotel chains which cover a wide range of brands and star levels which we have used for many years within Australia where we do our own bookings. No complaints there.

So when travelling to Europe we gave a preference to our travel agent for 2 hotel bookings before and after our river cruise. Provided our loyalty numbers BUT apparently any booking via a “3rd party” i.e. a travel agent does not qualify you for any points on your booking.

Why on earth would you book a trip via a travel agent then opt out to do your own booking for a hotel? Has anyone else experienced this. Oh also goes for car rental, don’t receive your discount on any loyalty programme if booked via a third party, seems a bit unfair to me.


Thanks for raising this topic @barbarashorton. The rationalisation hotels and travel services use is that it typically costs more to accept third-party bookings. Plus, they would prefer you only book direct (in theory, less chance of finding a competitor’s deal that way). However, from a consumer’s point of view, I agree that things don’t add up. Not being able to claim your points doesn’t exactly build loyalty for a start!

Sometimes following up with the travel agent, the hotel or the travel program can get your points recognised, but generally you’ll have to follow their rules and book directly if you want to be part of the program. If a third party allows you to find a better deal, then it’s probably a better option, but it comes down to individual preferences as well.

If other Community members have thoughts on this issue, we’d like to hear them.


We travel 6/7 months a year, mainly overseas, and despite this we have found these"loyalty" to be a bit of a waste of time chasing.
Different deals are available from different places regularly and the points you gain can be counteracted by a cheaper deal elsewhere.We also tend to look for the smaller boutique style inner city/town hotels where one is in the centre of the action rather than miles away and have to rely on transport. These do not normally have loyalty anyway.

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