Starwood is apparently in the process of launching Crossover Rewards that we should learn more in the coming months. Remember, you heard it first on LoyaltyLobby.
Hotel programs, airlines, and car rental companies are living in a symbiosis; more air travel means more hotel nights and car rentals etc. Hotels are often doling out status on their respective programs to frequent fliers of various airlines trying win over their business.
Now, Starwood is likely going to have more formalized relationship perhaps with an airline and/or car rental for them to recognize some Starwood status and/or redeeming for flights/rentals. Starwood already has a partnership with number of airlines for converting Starpoints to airline miles.
This is nothing new really. United Airlines, Westin and Hertz used to be part of same company called Allegis back in the 1980’s. At the time, the CEO of United wanted to have a one stop shop for all travel needs from buying an airline ticket to renting a car.
It is interesting to see what exactly Starwood has in mind with these Crossover Rewards. Last yer, the Starwood made the announcement about “enhanced” program year benefits on January 31, 2012.