São Paulo Diners Club Airport Van – coolest card benefit?

Update: as reported in the comments by Ernesto, this service is discontinued.

Ego and utility. The two aspects on which credit card benefits are judged.

The Diners Club portfolio is owned by Citi in Brazil, and Citi is big in private banking there. They have their own modest airport lounges at Rio’s Santos Dumont and São Paulo’s Congonhas and Guarulhos, which do not charge a guest fee for a companion, unlike most of their partner lounges. At Santos Dumont we stopped in the Diners lounge and I happened to flip through a brochure that had some English headings among the Portuguese text, “Van Service” catching my eye.

Brazil 326

The reception agent spoke English and explained that there is complementary shuttle service between São Paulo’s Guarulhos and Maksound Plaza in the city, and between Guarulhos and Congonhas (see details and schedule). Advance reservations are required, call (11) 2445-3070/3616. Spouse and children up to age 18, or a guest are allowed.

We took the shuttle on our departure from São Paulo, our hotel helped to call to make the booking. They had estimated a taxi to Guarulhos could cost as much as US$80, instead we had a short taxi to Maksoud Plaza and cruised in style to the airport. Maksound Plaza is a hotel with large parking area in front, there are no Diners Club signs but the hotel staff all know to direct people to the pickup point outside.

Perhaps the coolest credit card benefit I have enjoyed.

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Diners Club is currently not open to new US applicants. BMO bought the US portfolio from Citi last year but so far has not been marketing it.

Comments

  1. I will be in Sao Paulo next week…I take it you have to have a DC card and that Citi card’s don’t work?

  2. @Chris – I believe it is only Diners Club, and did not see anything for Citi generally. I suppose a call is worth a shot if you have access to a Portuguese speaker to help. Also, Amex has some airport lounges throughout South America for their premium cards, but I did not see any Amex shuttles.

  3. Prezados,
    lamentavelmente o Citybank ao comprar o Diners informou que descontinuará as salas vip e o van service… lamento informar que perderá a mim e certamente milhares de clientes até então muito satisfeitos com essa cortesia espetacular oferecida, vou para o American Expres, pois pelo menos a sala vip Centurion teremos em Guarulhos…
    Vamos multiplicar, se profissionais forem em observar o descontentamento da clientela que ganharam de presente ao comprar a empresa Diners, repensarão a decisão

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