Hotel chains and the airline partner together to earn and use the reward points and so the frequent flyers get reward points when they book their stay with the peer to peer rental property site, Airbnb using their portal.
The Australian carrier, Qantas on October 4th, 2016 announced that their traditional flyers or the frequent passengers can earn reward points for their stay in the rental property if they book through the carrier website because it has recently linked to the home sharing network. Virgin America has a reward program for the frequent travelers called the Elevate and it has partnered with Airbnb. According to the plan, the traveler gets one point for every one dollar spent by them on the official website of the airline. And if the traveler signs with the carrier website as a host and completes 5 night hosting, then Virgin America gives twenty thousand points for them.
The rental portal does not have its own customized loyalty program, but with the cozying up of the airlines, the airlines become a virtual reward program for the online marketplace. In July, Lufthansa used Airbnb to experiment the ‘share room’ in its transatlantic flight from New York to Frankfurt. However, the Australian airline has some limitations in their plans. Hence, the members of the frequent flyer program will earn one point in their account for every one Australian dollar spent by them. The traveler must have a frequent flyer account with the airlines and they must also be a frequent user of the rental property website or else they have to find other options to get more points. A person has to earn forty five points so that they can avail a free one way trip from Sydney to San Francisco.
Partnership between the carrier and the home stay company
The new partnership between the carrier and the rental platform can drive more travelers to join the reward program and at the same time it will boost the user base for the rental site and thereby making it the leading company in the private rental business. With June 30th, 2016 the completion of one year was over for the frequent flyer project and the revenue received by the company from the program and the membership fees shoots up to ten percent YoY, and the overall revenue is six hundred and ninety four dollars.
The company has sixty million users with two million listings across the globe. The partnership is advantageous for the airline because of the existing popularity of the rental property and they are expecting that the new business relationship will boost the existing member list in the reward program. With the increase in the membership, the airline company might even offer a variety of deals and offers for the passengers to encourage more participants and to retain the existing crowd and competing against many travel agencies like Priceline and Expedia.
The spirit of Australia – Qantas
Qantas is the Australia’s flag carrier airline is largest of its fleet size and is the third oldest carrier in the world. Qantas is the acronym for Queensland and Northern Territory Aerial Service and has a nickname called the ‘Flying Kangaroo’. The carrier has its base in Mascot, Sydney and the main hub is at the Sydney Airport. It was founded in November 1920 and the international passenger flight was started in May 1935. According to the report released in March 2014, the airline company has sixty five shares in the domestic share market in Australia and has carried fifteen percent of the passengers from and to the country. Under the QantasLink banner many subsidiary airlines operate on the trunk routes and the regional centers. Jetconnect, its subsidiary operates between New Zealand and Australia under the carrier brand name. It also has a low cost airline called the Jetstar Airways that operates both the domestic and international services within New Zealand and Australia and holds many stakes under the Jetstar brand.
The reward program – Frequent Flyer Program
The new reward program was started to encourage the traditional and regular passengers with reward points and deals. The points are dependent on many factors like the distance travelled by the passenger, along with the bonuses that differ according to the travel class. They can even earn points through the Oneworld airlines and non airline partners. The earned points can be used for upgrades on flights or redeemed for the flights that are operated by the Oneworld airlines, Qantas or other partners. The other partners are the car rental companies, hotels, credit cards and others.
The passengers in New Zealand and Australia must pay a onetime joining fee to be a part of the program and they become the Bronze frequent Flyer. The passengers from the other countries can also join the program; however they need not pay the joining fee. The accounts are considered to be active, if the there is a point activity taking place every 18 months. Passengers who have Qantas with other partner cards, and then they receive a status card; a Silver card for those who have the Oneworld Ruby, Gold card for those with Oneworld Sapphire, Platinum card and Platinum one status card for those with Oneworld Emerald. There were certain issues faced by the carrier regarding the availability of seats for the members in the loyalty plan, in 2008 the analyst in Qantas suggested that the reward program is worth two billion Australian dollars.
On July 1st, 2016 even more new features were included in the program like the ‘Any seat reward’ and ‘point plus pay’. In the ‘any seat reward’, the customers can redeem any place in the airplane rather than specific seats and in ‘Point plus pay’ allows the users to combine of cash and points to redeem the award. Later, the reward program was expanded to include more services and products.
The online rental platform
Airbnb was founded in 2008 and has its headquarters at San Francisco. The peer to peer online rental platform allows the travelers to book the rental properties for a cheaper price than the hotels and the property owners can list their property in the online platform so that the travelers can book the property for a temporary stay. The company has two million listings in one hundred and ninety one countries in thirty four cities. This home stay network collects the service charge from both the hosts and the guests under this platform. Initially this was started for the business travelers who found it difficult to book rooms in the hotels because of the highly saturated market. Later the company expanded the business for commercial purpose of sharing the properties that include the private apartments, condos, tree houses, igloos, tipis, castles, boats private islands manors, entire house and other properties.
As the rental property website grows, people in the industry expect that the peer to peer rental property website will move towards the online travel agency model, which offers more than the P2P lodging, with its higher user base, carriers with an online presence fails to contact the potential passengers, because the booking drops worldwide. It is true because thirty six travelers those who stay in the peer to peer lodging were once traditional customers for the hotels and other accommodation centers.