Starwood introduces Crossover Rewards, offers elite benefits on Delta flights

You’ve gotta love when loyalty programs get creative, and I think Starwood and Delta deserve a big gold star for this one. Loyalty Lobby shares the details of Starwood’s new Crossover Rewards program, whereby Starwood elite members that link their Preferred Guest and SkyMiles account can get special benefits when flying Delta.

We’ve long seen airlines and hotels offer joint promotions, and that makes sense since for the most part they’re going after the same type of customer — business travelers. So this is merely an extension of those partnerships, into one that’s much more permanent and significant.

Anyway, the first benefit of the Crossover Rewards program is that Starwood elite members will earn one Starpoint per dollar spent on Delta tickets, not including taxes and fees. I assume this will be in addition to the SkyMiles you otherwise earn, though I haven’t seen that stated anywhere explicitly. Certain types of tickets won’t be eligible, while others will earn a flat 500 Starpoints. We’re still waiting for the details on that, really.

Beyond that Starwood Platinum members get their first bag free, zone one priority boarding, priority check-in, and day of departure upgrades on domestic Delta flights.

So if you’re already a Delta elite member the only benefit of this new program is that you can earn Starpoints for your Delta flights. Other than that it seems that Starwood Platinum members are more or less getting similar benefits to SkyMiles Silver members, so it really makes you wonder whether it’s worth going for low tier status with Delta anymore.

Anyway, kudos to Delta and Starwood on this partnership, and I’m looking forward to seeing the fine print of this.

Comments

  1. I like this. Bravo, Starwood and Delta. If Starwood (PR and IT) is in charge of implementation, expect miscommunication and multiple bungles and problems. But, I am still happy.

  2. And, if Delta is in charge of execution, expect it to be pulled at a moment’s notice with all benefits being revoked immediately even for previously purchased tickets.

  3. Why? How much is SPG paying delta? Or free overlays for their employees when possible? I can’t see that a SPG platinum would fly on Delta just because of these benefits.

  4. @ Zz — Ultimately I have no clue, though I wouldn’t be surprised if they’re paying nothing for this and it’s just another way of marketing their product.

  5. Oh great, now they are going to bundle those customers with AS elites who are already bundled with AF/KL FlyingBlue Elites. Oh, yes, AS elites do not receive priority and we all are on the same flooring as all of those other customers sorted by fare class.

  6. I don’t really get the point, if I have to fly Delta I would use it, but it’s not going to entice me. I’m guessing most SPG Platinum’s have some sort of Airline status and I don’t think you will be seeing many upgrades because of this status. Perhaps its a marketing experiment by Delta to see how much Starwood points move the dial, compared to their own pesos.

  7. I’m sure Hyatt is having the talk with United over dinner tonight:

    “you know I’ve enjoyed your company and we have a lot of fun together. But I want something more serious. You know, like SPG and Delta have”

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