Club Carlson Launches A “Members Only Rate” – But Is It Any Good?

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Club Carlson, the loyalty program for the Carlson Rezidor Hotel group which includes the likes of Radisson Blu and Park Plaza Hotels, has announced that it has launched a “Members Only” room rate across all of the brands under the Carlson umbrella.

Club Carlson Members Only Rate

The Members Only Room Rate is bookable immediately and offers Club Carlson members up to 10% off the Best Available Rate at participating properties when booking directly through Carlson Rezidor websites, apps or reservations agents….but it does come with some terms and conditions:

  • Available for individual bookings only
  • Not valid for existing reservations
  • Blackout dates may apply
  • Participating hotels are subject to change at any time
  • The number of rooms available under this rate may be limited

This is what Club Carlson has to say:

We want to save our members the hassle of spending time searching around for the best deal at our hotels and know that by booking directly through our sites and apps they will be receiving our very best rate

Starting today, members can take advantage of the exclusive rate at more than 1,000 participating Carlson Rezidor hotels worldwide including: Quorvus Collection, Radisson Blu®, Radisson®, Radisson RED, Park Plaza®, Park Inn® by Radisson and Country Inns & Suites By CarlsonSM. In addition to the brand websites and apps, members can book the rate through the convenient Club Carlson mobile app, offering express booking, reservation management, points tracking and Apple Wallet integration for iPhone®.



I have mixed feelings about this announcement.

It’s nice to have a new discount offered and, as I found by searching a few hotels, the discounts are real and worth having…..


…..but only if you’re prepared to book a non-refundable rate.

As you can see from the screenshot above, the advanced purchase rate with the member discount is $30/night cheaper than the cheapest advance purchase rate on offer to non-members – all good so far – but things aren’t so great when you check the refundable rates.

The best refundable/flexible rate with the member discount is $173.47 but look what you can get if you apply a AAA discount….


…or a Senior/AARP discount:


Suddenly the “Member Only Rate” isn’t the best rate at all – why?

There’s another issue.

While I had little problem finding a Member Only Rate in Helsinki in October I didn’t have as much luck when searching in a more premium location like London.

For the same weekend that I found members only rates in Helsinki not one of the 10 London hotels that I checked had a members only rate. Yes, there were discounted rates on offer but all of them were just regular discounts and had nothing to do with the member only rate.

Bottom Line

For travelers who don’t need a flexible reservation and who can find a property that’s offering the new member only rate this will be a money saver…so that’s a positive to this announcement. For everyone else this is pretty much a non-event.

Club Carlson isn’t the only hotel chain where this is the case as most hotel chains now offer some sort of member discount and most hotel chains’ member rates share the same flaws – they’re not much use if you need a flexible reservation.