Get Rich & Famous

A year-and-a-half after rolling out its agent education program, Fairmont Hotels & Resorts unveiled an enhanced version of its Fairmont FAmous program. The improved program, which was designed around the company's FA chain code, now has an accredited educational component and easier ways to earn free night rewards.

"We conducted surveys, collected feedback, and met with agents," says Brian Richardson, Fairmont's vice president of brand marketing and communications. "The program needed to be adapted to better meet their needs. As a result, we placed more emphasis on agent rewards and recognition." Fairmont FAmous agents will learn about Fairmont Gold, the chain's "hotel within a hotel" concept.

Agents can now earn credits on all room categories booked. One credit will be issued for Moderate, Fairmont and Deluxe room categories, while 1.5 credits will be issued for Signature and higher room categories. To redeem room nights, members need 50 credits for a Fairmont room in a city center hotel; 75 credits for a resort. Junior suites require 75 credits for a city center hotel and 125 for a resort.

You can learn about many aspects of the brand through the program; e.g., the Willow Stream spas and Fairmont Gold levels. Members who complete Fairmont FAmous will earn two Continuing Education Units from the Travel Institute. "The modules let agents enhance their knowledge of Fairmont Hotels & Resorts," says Nicole Bellefleur, supervisor of Fairmont's marketing. "This will help strengthen the loyalty agents enjoy with their clients." Other benefits include a monthly electronic newsletter highlighting offers, properties and services.

Fairmont encourages graduates to visit properties using its discounted agent rates. FAmous rates are only $10 to $40 higher than employee travel rates, and agents who take advantage of them will get a guided hotel tour. You can take advantage of the rate by booking through the Fairmont FAmous Web site. Fairmont Tip of the Month

Approximately 6,500 agents have enrolled in Fairmont FAmous, and the company is looking to significantly grow that number. "We have always understood the key role travel intermediaries have played in Fairmont's evolution into one of North America's leading luxury brands," says Bellefleur, "so we went to great lengths to fine-tune the Fairmont FAmous program."

New members can receive 10 bonus credits when they input their first reservation in the program's booking tracker through March 31. The top room producer of the month will also win a Willow Stream spa gift certificate.