If you complain when something goes wrong, you should give credit when something goes right.
The SPG Elite Thank You Certificates are available for 2016. I believe both Gold and Platinum members are eligible for these, but do correct me if I’m wrong. These are a great way to thank any member of a Starwood property who has given you exceptional service.
In 2015 you were able to get them to mail you physical copies of these coupons. This year that appears to have been changed and you’ll need to print out physical copies yourself. Simply login here.
What happens when a Starwood associate gets one? They go to a special portal (open to Starwood employees only, before anyone gets wise ideas about redeeming them for themselves), type in the code and get 500 starpoints. I got 8 coupons as a Platinum.
There are those who say that such a gesture is meaningless, even a bit insulting, in that some people who work in these roles may not be able to afford to travel overseas to use those points. I can understand where such criticism is coming from, but I think if nothing else it still counts as a positive mark on their performance record which will be taken into account when doing promotions/raise evaluations.
Now, I certainly don’t think these should take the place of a tip, especially in countries where that sort of thing is expected (full disclosure, at the Sheraton Tribeca in NY I once gave the bellboy $2 and 2 of these certs when he helped me carry up a particularly heavy package. He seemed more excited about the $2). But if you’re in a place where tipping is not the norm, by all means break these out.
Remember that if you’ve got an upcoming series of business trips now might be a good time to register for an SPG status challenge, or to claim your SPG Gold status with a single stay at any Starwood Asia Pacific property.
Go download your certs and start recognising good service today!