Cards From the Same Deck

Okay, now they've got us. The cruise line and the hotel. It's not so much that they want to be in our deck of loyalty cards, it's that they want to be there together.

Royal Caribbean, naturally, has a loyalty program for those of us who enjoy frequenting cruise ships. That doesn't make Royal unique. What does is its affiliation with MGM, which has loyalty cards for gamblers…er, patrons of its hotels and casinos.

We have cards for both.

This doesn't mean that we'll be one card short of a full deck — although there may be people who have thought that anyway — because it's not going to be a one-card-fits-all partnership. The new relationship just means that Royal Caribbean cruisers will get benefits at MGM hotels (and casinos), and vice-versa.

What benefits?

Offers. Probably lots of them. Over the years, Las Vegas hotels have become famous for offers of free accommodation, although now they are tied to how much you lose…er, play in the casino.

Now MGM will have access to email lists of Royal Caribbean customers, and vice versa. M life members will find out what fun they can have cruising on Royal Caribbean ships…and Crown & Anchor members will be encouraged to visit MGM resorts, even if they're not in Vegas, although the promise of concert tickets, title fights and room upgrades does sound rather Nevada-ian, doesn't it?

What both companies call it is a strategic alliance.

But really, it's all about the cards.


Crown Princess
7 nights
January 12, 2013
Galveston (return): Cozumel, Roatan, Belize
Inside: $499
Cost per day: $71
www.princess.com
 

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