Travel Bloggers

The Art of Travel with Marianne Rumantir

Marianne Rumantir sits with Liviani Putri to share about her journey as an avid traveler and aviation freak that led her to start a loyalty advisory and technology company

“The reason I like to travel is because I’m very curious and adventurous. It’s one of my greatest qualities. “Marianne Rumantir opens the conversation when we were sitting comfortably on a couch after a long photo shoot. “I also always try to try new things. It’s a way to get away from everyday life a little. It fulfills my need to take a break and I can spend time with the people I love, either friends, family, or even new people. “

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Marianne currently serves as the CEO and co-founder of Member.id, a loyalty consulting and technology company that helps brands and companies develop long-term loyalty solutions. To this end, Member.id uses four main approaches: Design, Build, Operate and Trade. The company recently partnered with a project called Travel Secrets and has now become TS Media.

It was no coincidence for Marianne to run a company that focuses on corporate loyalty solutions. It was based on her years of experience using the loyalty points she earned while running a concierge business in Los Angeles. “Most of us understand that our culture loves to impose on friends and family every time someone we know travels overseas. People will always ask, “Can you get me something?” Every time I came home, people would ask me to bring certain things. Then I thought, why not turn it into a business? And then NitipStore was born, ”she explains. “It started at home because I was just having my second child and needed to be able to do something that was very flexible and could be done from home. Most of the purchases were made online and it actually led me to another hobby, which was collecting points. Because I have earned a lot of points in one year by shopping for all these people. “She later discovered that these points are actually a currency in their own right. “It’s especially powerful in the United States because you can buy a lot of things with it,” says Marianne.

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In fact, she discovered that points are like golden tickets, for example when she wanted to take her family on vacation but didn’t have the budget and used her points instead. “I started doing research online and luckily there are a lot of travel bloggers out there and I guess what would be called a travel hacker based in the US and Europe. They share their experiences as well as their tips and tricks. “When Marianne found that she had accumulated so many points after years of buying from abroad, she became more active in looking for information. “I started reading all these blogs religiously every day,” she laughs. “It’s about consistency and consistency, wanting to travel without spending a lot. I booked my first return flight from LA to London and took business class seats for the whole family. We stayed in a five star luxury hotel with points. From then on I became addicted. And I think once you step into the luxury travel realm, it is difficult to go back. Especially when you know you’re paying a lot less than most people. “

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It goes without saying that Marianne received many questions from friends and family in both Indonesia and Australia. So she started sharing her experience online. “They say they couldn’t do what I did here, but I’ve found that it is actually possible. People just haven’t discovered the secrets of this type of travel. I then decided to go back to Indonesia and started Member.id. The first job of this company is to help other companies create good loyalty programs and of course to make sure customers understand how to use their loyalty points. That’s how it started. The main aim was to influence and change the loyalty landscape. In fact, business in Indonesia has been going on for quite some time, especially with banks and hotels. “Then Marianne adds:” But I think what we are missing here is market education and a lack of knowledge among consumers. Second, another challenge is to introduce this new type of customer support when designing and introducing the concept of customer rewards or loyalty programs. We always offer long-term value and ensure that the longer you stay with us, the better the reason to invest. “

“I booked my first return flight from LA to London and booked business class seats for the whole family. We stayed in a five-star luxury hotel and also earned points. “

The next chapter in Marianne’s journey is the media company, which again was no accident. “Travel Secrets started as a passion project that I worked on with my good friend Luna Maya. She was the one who came up with the idea of ​​creating a YouTube channel as we love to travel together but have never documented it. We started vlogging without thinking about who’s going to see it, but we’ve consistently produced content. In the middle of the path we thought that there must be an angle to this canal. We wanted to share the secrets of travel and then it grew. “They later realized that the best way to educate people is to share inspiring stories and real life experiences. “Then I realized that my company needs a media company to influence people’s behavior and change their perspective and habits.”

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Of course, no conversation with Marianne Rumantir would be complete without a discussion about her style of travel. “I’m actually an easy traveler,” she chuckles. “I think people would be surprised to hear that because I don’t really like to overcharge. I bring what I need and I don’t mind wearing the same thing over and over because I’m used to traveling to different places with transits in different cities. The lighter the better. Second, I’m more outdoors than in big cities or shopping, except in New York. But if I can choose, I wouldn’t be spending my money or budget on material things; I prefer experience. Sometimes I didn’t have a complete list of activities for certain goals. I just don’t want to do anything and just lie down by the pool or beach to rest and relax. “

Our conversation then turned to exactly what kind of experiences she was looking for when traveling. With a big smile, Marianne says: “I have always described myself as an aviation freak, someone who likes to fly and appreciates different planes and cabins. I have to admit that I love flying in premium cabins just because I figured out how to do it without paying full price. Because traveling is not about the destination, but about the journey. So I have to make sure I enjoy the trip from the moment I leave the house. I would try to make the time I spend on the plane unforgettable too. “She also mentions that she can be pretty picky about flying:” I like big planes. I always research the seats and cabin types as well. Because different premium cabins have different designs. Actually, I also like to try out new airlines. Later on I usually checked the transit cities and of course read other people’s reviews of the service as well. “

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It’s been a year since the COVID-19 pandemic rocked the travel and aviation industries, which an avid traveler like Marianne was sure to feel. “It was shocking at first because we started looking seriously at Travel Secrets in the first few months of last year. We managed to go to Europe, Turkey, in early March when it all happened. In the middle of it all, when we couldn’t really go anywhere, our first discovery was trekking in Sentul, Bogor. I think we were the first to share this idea. This whole situation made us want to be more creative. How can we travel and explore locally? Actually, I’m grateful because without this pandemic, we’d probably still be exploring international destinations. But with that we have discovered new places in our country and we also help local tourism. I managed to visit Lombok which I have never been to before. It was my first time visiting a few places in Central Java and I will be visiting some new places in eastern Indonesia over the next few weeks. I can’t wait to discover more. “

As we adjust to the new normal of doing things, including traveling, Marianne mentioned the importance of feeling comfortable and safe. “This situation affects people differently and everyone has their own choices and preferences. I don’t recommend going if people are unsure of their own conditions. Please make sure you are comfortable, healthy, and know what to do without risking yourself and others. Always get tested before and after a trip and adhere to health protocol compliance. Then I believe you will have a safe and enjoyable journey. “

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CREATIVE DIRECTOR BRAD HOMES / PHOTOGRAPHER ZAKY AKBAR / STYLING PETER ZEWET FORM RYAN OGILVY / HAIR RACHEL AYU / STYLING ASSISTANT LINTANG HUTAMI

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