Is it our status, our points, our longevity in a loyalty system that really defines us? I sure hope it does not define me.
For some folks the ability to tag themselves with accumulated material things is their raison d'etre, and while it matters somewhat, in the larger scheme of things it does not.
I know that everyone on Insiders will pile on and tell me of the value of points, but I have been thinking that the points are just that and nothing more. I used to be a points and miles junkie, back in my full-time working days, but no more. Yes I still enjoy a nice larger hotel room, a rental car upgrade, a resort with amenities, sitting in a better airline seat, etc., but the points are almost irrelevant to my enjoyment.
Yes I know that those points eventually can become free stays and that is good. So yes to loyalty programs, but it is far from the core of who I am and why I travel. But as I have posted before, I see a corrosive effect to chasing points. Just me, that's all.
Just bloviating on a Tuesday nothing more.
By corrosive effect, are you referring to the phenomenon by which we become unhappy with our experience because we have somehow adopted a misconceived idea that we should be receiving "more" (whatever your "more" is) and if we don't receive "more," somehow our experience has become diminished? (ie. an otherwise spectacular trip becomes somehow riddled by the disappointment that one didn't get upgraded to first class or to that suite or ocean view, or preferential treatment or other hoped for freebies.) So in other words, we become robbed by our own unmet and perhaps even unrealistic expectations? If so, I agree. Bloviate some more, please.
I've got a weird thing going on right now... I've got more gift cards and points that I can possibly use in the next couple of years. It just happened to turn out that way at a time of life when I'm unavailable to use them. We are presently and for the next two years consumed by traveling to visit parents, kids and grandkids at this time in our lives (grandchild #3 is on it's way, this time in a northern state), plus I am still working (limited time for travel) and also I've been fortunate to have had family living in some great places, which has saved on lodging. I guess I'm just simply undeservedly fortunate. (One of the fortunate little people.) So my far away travels (other than what's already been committed to) will be put on hold for a while in the not too distant future, and I consider myself just plain blessed to have had the opportunity to have accomplished what travel I've done thus far (and traveling brings me great joy, I must confess), but if something happens that I cannot resume my leisure/tourist travel ever again, I will still be ever grateful for what has been. And while on the grateful wagon, it is thanks to Marriott for my wonderful and unexpected trip to our nation's capital last month, compliments of a gift card that I won right here on Insiders (and there's still some shekels on that card, thanks to some great Insider tips here re: low rates!)
I hope what defines me at the end of the day, when the tongue stops wagging, the fingers stop keyboarding and reflection kicks in, is simply that attitude of gratitude. It is really a game changer.
well said Pluto and my sentiments exactly. I would never have dreamed 20 years ago that I would travel outside the US let alone all of the travels I have been able to achieve due to "points", "rewards", "e-certificates", etc. from those work related travels.
Wow what a blessing! Thank you to my company I work for and to my mother who always encouraged me to pursue whatever my little heart desired and it could be possible! Life is great and I'm lovin' it
I have to say there is some peace of mind when checking into a SpringHill where essentially all the rooms are the same (that way I can focus on getting first round draft pick on waffles). It's good to remember (and we often do on this forum, as well as remind each other) like nuhusker says, we've all had enough rough spots in our lives not to let a few thousand points determine our mood. The mere participation in the Insiders travel playground is a reminder to me how fortunate we all are just to have the luxury of even noticing these issues.
Amen! (And why do I not have a set of 6 pack abs, for all of the laughter that erc has generated? You are one ridiculously funny guy, brothah!)
While I have been lucky to enjoy the perks of high end elite status with hotels and airlines due to a busy work travel schedule the last 10 years I worked then combining that with many pleasure trip,s I don't want to miss/forgot the special things I have gotten to experience just because an upgrade room wasn't available or the last seat in first class wasn't mine when I believe it should have been as that would be corrosive covering me up. While I will voice my displeasure and gripe with the best of them over things such as devalued points, lack of upgrades, no more arrival gifts, crowded CL etc., I would like to think I am grateful for the programs that have allowed me those points to take advantage of free travel or upgraded seats/rooms. As someone once wrote on MI recently, but the points are almost irrelevant to my enjoyment." and that is so very true for myself as well.
I've been so very blessed in every way, from wonderful traveling destinations to a great friends, a wife that puts up with my childish mentality and beautiful retired life while still in excellent health. To be able to travel and do all the things we love to do on trips is a bonus and one not to be taken lightly.
If a happy smiling face and being a good listener allows one less fortunate than I to enjoy a brighter moment during their day, then I would like for that to define me.
Congratulations and I am with you on all points as well! Agree with all here, as I sit at a FF in KCMO, I am looking for enjoyment, not points! Had a great day on a train across Mo. to relax tonight and do it all over again tomorrow on my way back!
Contrary to Pluto, I will be able to, and will use all of my gift cards and points in the near future. They aren't going to help in "The last limo ride"!
It may make a great posting to actually comment on "Why" we do this? Job? Points? Habit? Comfort? For me the "Rationale" has changed much, over the years!