Shangri-La Circle has added a new feature called Family Membership, which allows Diamond members to share elite benefits with family, even when the Diamond member is not staying.
|Shangri-La Family Membership|
If this sounds familiar, it’s because World of Hyatt has a similar benefit called Guest of Honour. However, unlike Guest of Honour, Family Membership is much more limited in scope- when they say family, they really mean it.
Shangri-La Circle Family Privileges
Shangri-La Circle Diamond members can nominate up to five family members to enjoy Family Privileges. Family members are defined as:
The list of nominees can be changed a maximum of five times per calendar year, and each nominee will undergo a review process. Shangri-La Circle reserves the right to request supporting documents to verify the relationship with the Diamond member.
Once a nominee has been confirmed, he/she will be able to enjoy Diamond benefits on award stays booked by the Diamond member. Diamond benefits include:
- Early check-in from 8 a.m (subject to availability)
- Late check-out from 6 p.m (subject to availability)
- Daily breakfast for nominee + roommate
- Upgrade to next room type (within the same category, whatever that means)
- Priority check-in and check-out
- Access to Club Lounge for nominee + roommate + 1 additional guest
There is no limit to the number of times Family Membership benefits can be used.
For avoidance of doubt, all redemptions must be made by the Diamond member. A nominee will not enjoy Diamond benefits when he/she books stays using his/her own Circle account.
How does this compare to Guest of Honour?
Shangri-La Circle’s Family Membership is roughly analogous to World of Hyatt’s Guest of Honour benefit, with some key differences.
|Family Membership||Guest of Honour|
|Eligible Users||Up to five family nominees||Anyone|
|Maximum Uses||No limit||No limit|
|Valid For||Award nights||Award nights|
One difference is that Guest of Honour bookings can be made for anyone. So long as you know a Globalist member who’s willing to do it, no proof of familial ties needs to be provided. In contrast, Shangri-La Circle seems quite sticky about nominees, with a review process and a limited number of changes each year.
The other difference is that World of Hyatt allows members to combine points for a redemption. So if Friend A is helping you make a Guest of Honour booking, you’d typically transfer points to him to fund the redemption (unless Friend A is truly a friend with benefits, in more ways than one).
Shangri-La Circle does not allow the pooling of points with other members, but then again, Family Benefits are meant for family. There’s no keeping accounts among family, is there?
Shangri-La Circle Diamond members can now nominate up to five family members to share their benefits with during award stays.
While the mechanism is more restrictive than World of Hyatt’s Guest of Honour benefit, I suppose that could be a feature not a bug, insofar as it keeps the Diamond experience exclusive.
Have you tried the family membership feature with Shangri-La yet?