Is Time Right for MasterCard World Elite?

In a time when consumer confidence continues to be low, and really, with fewer of us seeing any kind of good news, much less solid changes, on the horizon, is the time right for credit card companies to introduce super-elite card offers? MasterCard is touting its World Elite card and with it come “world elite luxury travel benefits”. Here’s more on this credit card that fewer consumers can even begin to afford these days.

Part of its tag is that it’s “more than just a card”. It offers personal service designed to “help you experience life’s most memorable moments.” And it says it can help you do that anywhere around the world or anytime – day or night.

Luxury Travel Benefits

With this exclusive credit card, members enjoy an around the clock personal travel advisor, luxury benefits at every step and amenities that would make Donald Trump jealous. It also promises a “global VIP recognition” along with exclusive access to secret promotions. So how does MasterCard deliver all of these wonderful lifestyle luxuries?

It’s teamed with what it calls a “suite of world class travel servicers” who are a “select group of best in class providers”. The amenities, it promises, are spectacular.

In its Priceless New York promo, travelers are promised a trip of lifetime, all courtesy of the World Elite card when enables these amazing experiences due to the preferred access the card delivers. A personal concierge everywhere yo go, which the company says is more like a personal assistant. If you’re looking for that special gift that can only be found in New York, let your personal assistant, er, personal concierge, do the heavy lifting for you. The phone number to that personal concierge is listed on the back of every MasterCard World Elite.

Impressive Hotels

There’s also a hotels and resorts portfolio that gives card members first chance at spectacular hotels and resorts with pricing that is sure to impress. Room upgrades, early check ins, late checkouts, complimentary breakfasts – these are all part of what you get as a world elite member. It promises to be your ticket to luxurious living.

The World Elite Air Program works the same way – just at 30,000 feet. The best part of this aspect is you’re not limited to just one airline, instead, dozens of airlines are part of this promotion. International, domestic – you name it, it’s yours. You’ll enjoy exclusive pricing opportunities, too. If cruise is more to your liking, the MasterCard World Elite is right there with you. Imagine being able to choose from more than 750 of the world’s most refined cruise lines. Floating resorts, five star treatment, river cruises – it’s all part of the MasterCard program and the prices are quite impressive, too – especially considering you can use shipboard credits of up to $250 per person in your party. Keep in mind, though, this is for 2012. New dynamics associated with offers, credits and limits will be announced in the coming weeks.

Dream Big

So this all sounds exciting. It’s the kind of daydreams most of us have about living the good life. It’s what we see when we close our eyes and allow ourselves to imagine the luxury of world cruises and shopping sprees that don’t include a calculator keeping a running total in our minds, complete with alarms that tell us if we spend any more on our credit card, we won’t be able to pay the balance at the end of the month. The problem is, at least for MasterCard, is that there’s a growing number of “us”; those who, even if credit permits approval, our budgets don’t have room for such extraordinary luxury. We’re coming out of a recession and for far too many of Americans, they’re still living as though the recession is alive and well. According to some analysts, the recession is anything but over.

Bottom line is it is one of MasterCard’s most extravagant credit card promotions and it’s sure to be a success. After all, MasterCard is known for its powerful marketing campaigns. The question is will the credit card giant realize it’s limited the potential target audience because of the extravagance? We’re not sure, but we do know how so many Americans are doing their best to cover school supplies for their first graders. And we know the divorce rate is ticking up yet again, which is putting single parents front and center – and in fact, many of us are single parents and we know full well the frustrations of not being able to cover those ever-growing supply lists for school age children. One of five Americans used food stamps in June. Gas prices continue to climb. Construction’s down (a sign that the economy isn’t improving and in fact, taking a step back).

Most of us love the idea of “World Elite Air Programs”, “World Elite Chauffeur Services” and complimentary fee coverage of canceled flights – all part of the new MasterCard credit card offer. Until American families are able to pick up the pieces, it’s not likely those chauffeurs will appear anywhere but in those daydreams most still allow themselves.

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