FoundersCard is poised to hit Europe – But are the deals worth it?

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Top executives often get perks just because of who they are, like freebies and travel upgrades. The American Express’ Centurion Card for instance is also known as “the black card” for this reason. Eric Kuhn started FoundersCard in 2009, deciding to bring the same rewards specifically to entrepreneurs and founders who put their neck on the line to take ricks and create value.

FoundersCard is now a membership community that boasts over 5,000 members who pay up to $495 annually to get discounts and deals from a lot of businesses like phone deals, car hire, “Silver access” on Virgin Atlantic amongst others. In total it has about 96 companies offering benefits. We gather it can sometimes work in US hotels.

They recently told TechCrunch that about 55 percent of their members are in technology, 16 percent in entertainment, 6 percent in fashion, 9 percent in finance, and the rest “other”. That’s a lot of tech founders.

We’ve heard they are looking at expanding internationally, and has started supporting and catering to their international members. That almost certainly means Europe. But is it really that good a deal?

A Founders Card holder I know recently tried getting a quote at Hertz.com without logging in to the Founders Club #1 Gold Club (they signed up via FC) and without typing in any codes.

Then, they repeated with the exact same specifications at Hertz.com while logging into the #1 Gold Club and using Founder Card’s “one car class upgrade, promo code 150533 in the “Promotional Coupon” field.”

The result was surprising. There was a $500 difference – in the wrong direction – going via the Founders Club route (the example in this case was hiring a Toyota Corolla, see screenshots below).

So the question is whether the quotes available to Founders Card partners vs. the quotes done via FC membership are in fact as advantageous as they are made out to be.

I asked Founders Club about this.

A spokesperson told me:

“Overall, our Hertz partnership has been very successful and in fact was recently expanded. It includes both preferred pricing as well as access to Hertz’s premier loyalty program. Without having specific details, it’s hard to speak to the particular issue someone encountered but I can say that something seems wrong. I do know that the one-class upgrade code was associated with last year’s partnership and has since been replaced with the newly expanded one, so perhaps that caused inaccurate pricing.”

As Founders Card expands internationally it would be well to ask them exactly what you are getting.