I’m heading up to the Freddie Awards later today, with a slight deviation to last year, a couple of early Freddie Awards winners were announced ahead of the actual event.
Some facts about the Freddie Awards
The Freddie, as I noted in my post urging folks to vote, is the opportunity for frequent travelers to vote for their favorite loyalty programs–both airline and hotel. This year there were 4,203,657 visits, which accounted for 25,064,593 total ballots. To put a finer point on that, over 4.2 million frequent travelers voted for their favorite loyalty programs. Interestingly enough, only 43.2% of the voters were from the US, which I think makes the non-Americas awards even more interesting.
Early Freddie Awards Winners
This year, the 210 Awards were announced early. Here’s a brief description of what the 210 Awards are:
The 210 Awards are awards given to the highest-rated program/best average ranking among programs ranked by fewer than 10% of the voters—sort of an “up and coming” award. These winners are programs to watch as they gain more awareness from members—voters who know about them give them extremely high marks. These awards are determined by an equation whereas other Freddie Awards are all decided upon a ‘value vote’. None of the awards are decided by popularity which makes the Freddie Awards unique in that the winners are all well deserved—not always the largest or most popular.
The winners announced were:
Airline: Avianca LifeMiles
Hotel: Le Club Accorhotels
Airline: TAP Victoria
Hotel: Choice Privileges
Airline: ANA Mileage Club
Hotel: Trident Hotels Trident Privilege
I’m not terribly surprised to see Avianca LifeMiles – they continue to be an emerging powerhouse for Star Alliance awards. I remember the first time I saw an Avianca aircraft, I commented to my wife “Wow, they really are an airline!” having previously had the feeling that they were primarily a loyalty program. Interestingly enough, Avianca had won the 210 award last year.
I’m more surprised by the rest of the winners. Le Club Accorhotels at first surprised me, but I’m wondering in hindsight (because I just couldn’t remember) if Fairmont fell under Accorhotels given they acquired Fairmont, Raffles, and Swissohotels at the end of 2015.
I really don’t have much to make of TAP, Choice, ANA or Trident Hotels. I’ll definitely be digging into those programs more in the future!
What do you think? Are any of these up and coming programs known to you?