Wyndham Worldwide hotels is the largest hotel group in the world with more than 8,000 hotels in 72 countries. With mostly budget hotels in the US, it does not get a lot of attention from travel bloggers – but with growth abroad and in the mid- and upscale segments, as well as a revamped rewards program that was rated the best hotel rewards program, it’s worth paying attention to. Find out more about the brands, regions and price categories and how Wyndham compares to the other chains!
Regions: Wyndham is heavily concentrated on the Americas with 77% of their properties there. But Asia and Europe are growing much faster and also have on average larger hotels – only 70% of the total rooms are in the Americas. And with 1,406 hotels (17.5%) in Asia and 409 hotels (5.1%) in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, there are still a lot of options in those regions – certainly more than their budget competitor Choice Hotels (only 700 hotels outside the Americas)!
Brands: It is no surprise that with its huge size, Wyndham group has a large number of brands, a total of 15! The two budget brands, Super 8 (Average Daily Rate (ADR) $48) and Days Inn (ADR $68) make up almost 60% of all hotels! Microtel (ADR $69), another budget brand, is the only all built-new brand and highly reviewed by guests. They are the most consistent of their budget brands, giving you a chance at a new room in good condition. The other budget brands Travelodge, Knights Inn and Baymont are focused on the US and Canada and have a mix of properties with widely varying standards. A well managed Super 8 can be much nicer than an old, poorly managed Howard Johnson that is theoretically positioned above! I’d expect some of these brands to slowly shrink away!
Wyndham acquired Dazzler and Splendor last year, two small Latin American brands last year, expanding their mid-scale footprint. Ramada (ADR $74), with 11% of the properties, is the largest mid-scale brand and is also the only brand with more hotels in Europe and Asia than America! Tryp (focused on Europe), Wingate and extended-stay brand Hawthorne Suites (both Americas only) are positioned at the upper end of Wyndham’s mid-scale portfolio.
The flagship Wyndham brand (ADR $105) consists of the upscale Wyndham Grand and Wyndham hotels, as well as the mid-scale Wyndham Garden properties.The top brand in the Wyndham group is Dolce with a small collection of 22 upscale hotels in America and Europe.
Price: Off all the chains I have reviewed so far, Wyndham is by far the most budget focused hotel group, with 76% of the properties. They are growing the midscale segment (now at 21%) and upscale segment (now 3.3%), but are still far behind all other large hotel groups, including their close competitor Choice! For comparison, IHG’s limited-service Holiday Inn Express brand has a higher ADR at $112 than any of the Wyndham brand, except Dolce!
That leaves you with few aspirational properties to spend a dream vacation at – which explains the lack of interest from US business travelers and bloggers, who are planning a luxurious getaway to Bora Bora or the Maldives.
Bottomline: Wyndham Hotels is the largest hotel group in the world, managing a staggering number of brands and properties around the world, focusing on the budget segments. They are expanding globally, moving upmarket and are making significant investments into their rewards program, Wyndham Rewards, providing good reasons to give them another look. While I wouldn’t make them my go-to hotel group or book any of their hotels blindly trusting the brand due to the huge quality variance in the different brands, there is a growing number of interesting properties, especially in Europe and Asia for value-oriented travelers worth considering. I will pay close attention to the changes at Wyndham and will keep you posted!