Marriott International announced today that it is piloting a revolutionary travel card in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. Called the Marriott Travel Card, the new scheme will enable travelers to pre-pay their hotel stays before leaving home for all of the company’s lodging brands except Ritz-Carlton and Ramada International.
“We’re excited about our new card and to be the first travel company to offer this safe and flexible pre-payment solution,” said Samir Daqqaq addressing media at a press lunch at the JW Marriott Dubai.
“We see the card as the perfect travel solution. It enables consumers to pay for their Marriott stay before they leave home, whether they’re traveling on business or pleasure. It’s a win-win for our customers, travel agents and our hotels,” Mr. Daqqaq added.
Mr. Daqqaq said that the Marriott Travel Card is available through the company’s Global Sales Offices in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.
Milestone 500,000 rooms
Ed Fuller, President and Managing Director of International Lodging, Marriott International, also announced at the press conference, that the company’s global lodging portfolio will reach its 500,000-room milestone this summer.
“This growth is remarkable in the face of the enormous challenges our industry has faced over the past three years. At some point in the next month, we will reach our 500,000-room milestone and with 50,000 rooms in our development pipeline or under construction, we expect to add another 175 hotels this year.”
In the Middle East, Marriott recently introduced its mid-priced Courtyard brand with the 306-room Courtyard by Marriott Kuwait City. A second Courtyard property will open later this year in Dubai. The 164-room Courtyard by Marriott Green Community Dubai is scheduled to open in October.
“With a portfolio of 25 luxury and upscale resorts in the Middle East, we are now expanding our lodging product in the region by introducing our Courtyard brand, thus giving travelers more options of where to stay. This pattern supports our development strategy of establishing a strong presence in major cities and recognized resort destination and then following up with our mid-tier lodging brand,” added Mr. Fuller.