This deal with the delivery of IHG Rewards Club Ambassador kits is starting to sound like a broken record and I have covered it here on LoyaltyLobby several times (read more here, here, here and here).
I really don’t have use for the membership card (I cannot remember time when I would have been asked to show it) or luggage tags (always throw them away), but the package is required for the bonus points code and the free weekend night voucher.
You can access IHG Ambassador program website here.
You can get IHG Rewards Club to deposit points for your account due to the inconvenience of not getting the package (offset the bonus points code basically) and I covered my case previously here.
I had a new problem. I had made a reservation for InterContinental Montreal for Friday and Saturday nights already months ago using the Ambassador free weekend night cert rate plan (read how to do it here).
When I received an email reply from the Ambassador service center after I had requested them to work with the property to have the voucher honored, I wasn’t the happiest camper:
Thank you for taking the time to contact the InterContinental Ambassador Service Center.
Foremost, please accept our apologies for the delay in the delivery of your Ambassador portfolio.
We would like to inform you that we have sent an email communication to you last 14 May 2016 asking your reservation details if you want to utilized your Weekend Night Certificate. This is for us to seek approval from the hotel, if they can honor the reservations even without the physical certificate. Regrettably, we still cannot guarantee that this will be approved by the hotel.
In this regard, please be advised that we are unable to accommodate your request since the check-in date of your reservation is today (27 May 2016).
I have dealt with the Ambassador service enough over the years to know that getting shutdown by email is not the end. I decided to place a call to the Ambassador service center’s phone number in the UK that is answered in the Philippines.
The agent read the notes on the account and placed a call to the property. The duty manager was not available but she promised to call back after having a word with the person and I gave her a number where she could reach me (Marriott hotel). Half an hour later the issue was resolved with the property and I received a call back.
It shouldn’t be this difficult to work with the loyalty programs, but sometimes it is worthwhile picking up the phone to place the call and get the issue resolved. It is far easier to shutdown someone over impersonal email compared to when the person is on the other end.
I really don’t believe that I will ever see the Spire Royal Ambassador kit that I have been waiting for since August last year. There is a chance that perhaps they get the new kit out when I requalify late summer/early fall.
It seems that the Ambassador service center ended up emailing a copy of the certificate to the property because I saw a color version attached to the reservation at the time of checking in. Not sure why they even needed it considering that properties don’t get reimbursed for their usage.