Executive Summary -
A hotel affinity card that has thrusted itself into the elite category with it's features. In our opinion, it now ranks among the top "elite" affinity cards in the market.
For the longest time, Ritz Carlton did not have an affinity card. In fact, they did not have frequent guest program until 20101. This all changes in June 20112, when they announced a partnership with JP Morgan Chase to launched their affinity card. And since they are the high end "brand" of the Marriott chain of hotels, the card certainly qualifies as an elite card. Frequent guest members will be pleased about the launch of this card, but also the various travel related features that will come in extremely handy.
How Do You Earn Points? - This will be the first question that crosses everyone's mind. Let us start with the base rate. For regular spending on the card, you can earn one point for every $1 that you spend. When you use the card to pay for any Ritz Carlton stays, you will earn 5 Ritz-Carlton Rewards points per $1. You will earn earn 2 Ritz-Carlton Rewards points per $1 spent on qualifying airfare, car rentals and dining.
- I would consider this card as an elite card since it charges a $395 annual fee. What does it have "elite" features? It certainly does. Here is a list of it's key features.
Club Level Upgrade - Card members are able to upgrade their stay to Club Level for stays of up to seven days. You can do this up to three times a year. For those who are not familiar, Club Level is normally located at the upper floors and is consider by Ritz-Carlton to be a hotel within a hotel3. The rooms are mostly deluxe and suites. The lounge is the main focal area and there is a dedicated concierge to help you with your needs like restaurant bookings, checking flight confirmations. You can also have breakfast at their lounges in the morning. Many of their hotels club level offer hot breakfast, afternoon sandwiches and cocktails in the evening. The upgrade to Club Level will obviously be subject to availability when you check in.
$100 Hotel Credit - When you stay for two nights or more at any Ritz-Carlton hotel, you will be given a $100 hotel credit which you can use for dining, spa and other hotel amenities.
Complementary Gold Elite Status - Card members will also get complimentary Gold Elite Status for the first year. In subsequent years, an annual spending of $10,000 or more will qualify you for the Gold status as well.
Chill Out At Airport Lounges - One of interesting perks of this card is that you get complimentary lounge access with a membership in the Lounge Club (we'll explain in more detail later). Furthermore, you will be reimbursed up to $200 on incidental billed to your card from any airline (like meals bought on the air plane, baggage fees etc).
Now that we have covered the key features, let's take a closer look at certain perks, starting with the airport lounge access and other travel related travel features.
Ritz Carlton launches World Class Affinity Program
Ritz Carlton and JP Morgan Launches Affinity credit card
Ritz Carlton Club Level Explanation
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