Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide

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Marriott’s rewards program, named “Marriott Bonvoy,” in my opinion offers better than average rewards for paid stays, a fair elite program, a huge selection of hotels that run from very low end to ultra-luxury, and credit cards that offer good value for their annual free nights but relatively poor value for credit card spend.  This post is designed to include everything you need to know.

This post has been updated with new information about free night certificates (we now have the ability to add up to 15,000 points per night), and we’ve removed mention of award charts now that Marriott prices awards dynamically.

Marriott Bonvoy overview

Bonvoy shares traits that are common to most hotel rewards programs:

  • Earn points from paid stays (but not when stays are booked through online travel agencies such as Expedia).
  • Use points to book free night awards.
  • Those who spend many nights at Marriott hotels booked either as free nights or paid stays (but not those booked through online travel agencies) earn elite status.
  • Elite status levels range from Silver to top-tier Ambassador.  The higher your status, the more perks you get.
  • Branded credit cards can be used to earn points and to help earn elite status.

Bonvoy also has a few traits that are unique:

  • Ability to transfer points to airline miles at a reasonable rate (not a great rate, but reasonable).
  • Marriott’s partnership with United Airlines means that high tier Marriott elites can get free United elite status, and vice-versa
  • Marriott allows many of their hotels to be exempt from offering certain elite benefits. This can be extremely frustrating for those expecting free breakfast or other perks.
  • Marriott allows members to book awards even if they don’t yet have enough points in their account. This feature is called “Points Advance.”  When booking in this way, you secure the award availability, but not the award price.  The award price can change at any time until you pay the required points.

Recent posts about Marriott Bonvoy

Dynamic Award Pricing

Marriott used to have an award chart that determined the point price of each hotel, but in March 2022 they jettisoned their charts and now price awards dynamically.  Award prices now are influenced by cash rates.  Higher priced stays are likely to cost more in points.

Award pricing things to know:

  • The primary award price is for standard rooms (each hotel defines “standard” differently).  Higher level rooms may show up in award searches, but either at a higher award price (the details will state that it is a points upgrade) or with a required cash co-pay for the upgrade.
  • You can customize a mix of paid nights with award nights and free night certificates in a single reservation. See this post or this video for more information.
  • For every 5 nights booked with points (but not free night certificates), you’ll get the cheapest night free.  People often refer to this as “Fifth Night Free,” (because it used to work that way) but it is officially known as “Stay for 5, Pay for 4.”
  • Homes & Villas by Marriott: Vacation rental properties can be booked with points at a fixed rate of 0.6 cents per point.  Stay for 5, Pay for 4 awards do not apply to Homes & Villas.

5th Night Free Awards (“Stay for 5, Pay for 4”)

Awards booked with points for 5 nights or longer are automatically priced with the cheapest night free.  For example, suppose you are looking to use points to book a five night stay that costs 40K for the first night, 32K for the second night and 45K for each of the remaining nights.  In that case, you wouldn’t pay for the 32K night (since that’s the cheapest) and would only pay 40K + 45K x 3 =   175,000 points for the stay.

This works with longer bookings too.  For example, with a 10 night stay, you wouldn’t have to pay for the two cheapest nights.  In some cases with 10+ night stays, you can save points by booking multiple reservations.  See this post for details.

It is possible to mix cash nights or free night certificate nights with a Stay for 5, Pay for 4 award, but only if you have at least 5 points nights in your stay.  For example, you can book a 7 night stay where you pay with cash for one night (ideally the cheapest night of the stay) and pay with a free night certificate for another night. That would leave 5 points-nights (which do not have to be contiguous) and so the cheapest point-night would be removed from the price.

Points Advance

If you don’t have enough points in your account to book an award, you can still book the award via Marriott’s Points Advance feature. Points Advance includes the following limitations:

  • You can have a maximum of 3 Points Advance reservations at once.
  • Points Advance award pricing is based on the award rate at the time you apply your points rather than the rate at the time you booked the award.  Marriott describes this as locking in the room not the rate.
  • You must book 30 days or more before your arrival date in order to use Points Advance.
  • Points Advance reservations are held for 60 days from the time of booking, or no later than 14 days prior to your arrival date, whichever is sooner.

When you find an award stay online, here’s how to invoke Points Advance:

Automatic Points Advance

When you select a room to book and you don’t have enough points in your account (and/or you don’t have enough free night certificates), Marriott will default to Points Advance as long as the stay is 30 days away, or longer.  They’ll also offer you the option to buy the required points (usually at a rate of 1.25 cents per point) so that you can lock in the award price right away.  Buying points usually only makes sense if the award price is particularly low compared to the cash rate.

Here’s what you’ll see on the check-out screen when you don’t have enough points in your account:

Optional Points Advance

Marriott used to allow you to choose Points Advance even if you have enough points in your account.  Unfortunately, that’s no longer allowed.  One work-around is to make another award booking first in order to drain your points and then cancel that separate booking once you’ve secured the Points Advance booking.  Just make sure that the separate booking allows for free cancellations!

Securing your Points Advance reservation

Once you have enough points for your stay, you can log into your account and “View/Modify” your stay details and “Deduct your points now”.

If you don’t apply your points within 60 days from booking or 14 days of your stay, you may lose the reservation.

Free Night Award Certificates

Marriott issues Free Night Award Certificates (hereafter referred to as “free night certs”) as credit card perks, as a 75 night Choice Benefit selection, and as promotional awards (e.g. they’ll sometimes have a targeted promotion that offers a free night cert after 1 or 2 paid nights).

Free Night Award Certificate Point Value

Each free night cert has a maximum point value.  For example, a 35K free night cert can be used to pay for a hotel night that costs 35,000 points or less.  If you use the certificate for a cheaper stay, there is no residual value to the certificate.

To date, I’m aware of free night certs with max values of 25K, 35K, 40K, 50K, and 85K:

  • 25K: These are issued annually upon account renewal to Chase Bonvoy Premier cardholders. This card is no longer available to new cardholders.
  • 35K: These are the most common type of certificate issued as promotion awards. They are also issued annually upon account renewal for cardholders of the following cards: Bonvoy Amex, Chase Bonvoy Boundless, Amex Bonvoy Business, and Chase Bonvoy Premier Plus Business.
  • 40K: These are only available as a 75 night Choice Benefit
  • 50K: They are issued annually upon account renewal for cardholders of the following cards: Amex Bonvoy Brilliant, and Chase Ritz-Carlton.
  • 85K: These have been available now and then as part of signup offers for new Bonvoy cards.

Point Top-Offs (Up to 15K)

If a hotel costs more points than the max value of your free night certificate, it is possible to add up to 15,000 points to book your stay.  For example, suppose you want to book a hotel that costs 57,000 points but your certificate is worth only up to 50,000 points.  In that case, when you click on a room to book, the Marriott website will automatically see that you have a certificate that is within 15,000 points and give you the choice to book the room with the cert/point combo or with points alone.

No Prepaid Upgrades

Free night certs (with or without Top-Ups) do not work on rooms that include a cash or points upgrade.  In the image above, I show an overwater villa at Le Meridien Maldives which is available as a Redemption with Cash Upgrade ($50 + 50,000 points) or as a Redemption with Points Upgrade (10,000 + 50,000 points).  In either case, you cannot use a certificate to pay any part of the points component of the stay.

Elite status

Elite Status Level Requirements Per Year Key Benefits
Silver Elite 10 Nights Late checkout, 10% point bonus
Gold Elite 25 Nights 2PM late checkout; 25% point bonus; welcome gift (points only); room upgrade; enhanced internet
Platinum Elite 50 Nights 4PM late checkout; 50% point bonus; welcome gift w/ breakfast option; room upgrade includes suites; lounge access; Choice benefit (such as 5 suite night awards) when you achieve 50 nights.
Titanium Elite 75 Nights All of the above, plus: 75% point bonus; United Silver Premier status via RewardsPlus; Ritz-Carlton suite upgrades; Additional Choice Benefit (such as 40K free night certificate) when you achieve 75 nights.
Ambassador Elite 100 Nights + $20K Spend All of the above, plus: Ambassador Service (dedicated Marriott agent); Your24 (Choose the 24 hours of your stay. For example, choose to check in at 9am after an overnight flight).
 
Renaissance Phoenix Downtown Hotel Junior Suite.  Thanks to my Platinum status at the time, I was upgraded at check-in to this suite from a base level room booked with a free night certificate.

Marriott Bonvoy Member Status Benefits

  • Requires 0-9 nights per year
  • Complimentary in-room internet access
  • Member rates
  • Mobile check-in/services

Marriott Bonvoy Silver Elite Status Benefits

  • Requires 10-24 nights per year
  • Same benefits as Member status, plus:
  • Ultimate Reservation Guarantee
  • 10% points bonus
  • Late checkout

Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite Status Benefits

  • Requires 25-49 nights per year
  • Same benefits as Silver elite status, plus:
  • Complimentary enhanced internet
  • 25% points bonus
  • 2pm late checkout
  • In hotel welcome gift
    • Bonus points
  • Enhanced room upgrade based on availability

Marriott Bonvoy Platinum Elite Status Benefits

  • Requires 50-74 nights per year
  • Same benefits as Gold elite status, plus:
  • 50% points bonus
  • 4pm late checkout
  • Dedicated elite support
  • In hotel welcome gift; choice of:
    • Bonus points
    • Breakfast offering
    • Other amenity
  • Enhanced room upgrade including select suites
  • Lounge access
  • Guaranteed room type
  • Annual Choice Benefit (see Choice Benefits here)

Marriott Bonvoy Titanium Elite Status Benefits

  • Requires 75-99 nights per year
  • Same benefits as Platinum elite status, plus:
  • 75% points bonus
  • Second Annual Choice Benefit (different selection of benefits to those offered with Platinum status – see Choice Benefits here)
  • 48 hour guarantee

Marriott Bonvoy Ambassador Elite Status Benefits

  • Requires 100+ nights per year plus $20,000 in annual qualifying spend
  • Same benefits as Titanium elite status, plus:
  • Ambassador service
  • Your24 (permits an eligible Member to request a specific check-in time for any upcoming stay at any Participating Property. If the requested check-in time is confirmed, the check-out time will be set for the same time on the day of departure)

Marriott Bonvoy Lifetime Elite Status

Lifetime Silver Elite

  • Requires 250 lifetime nights + 5 years of elite status

Lifetime Gold Elite

  • Requires 400 lifetime nights + 7 years of Gold elite status or higher

Lifetime Platinum Elite

  • Requires 600 lifetime nights + 10 years of Platinum elite status or higher

Elite status things to know:

  • Lifetime Platinum status does not include Choice Benefits.  You must earn 50 elite nights within a calendar year to receive Choice Benefits.
  • Elite nights are earned with either cash or award stays.  When booking a four night award, it makes sense to book 5 nights instead (thanks to 5th Night Free pricing) just so that you can get an extra elite night. Make sure not to check out after the fourth night.
  • Elite nights are not earned with online travel agency bookings.  For example, if you book through Expedia, you will not earn elite night credit (or points) for your stay.  You also might not receive elite benefits during your stay, but some hotels have been known to offer them anyway as long as you add your Bonvoy membership number to the reservation.
  • Via Marriott’s partnership with United Airlines, RewardsPlus, high level Marriott elites can get United elite status, and high level United elite members can get free Marriott elite status.
  • In addition to actual stays, elite nights can also be earned from credit cards, timeshares, and more (jump to shortcuts to elite status for more info)
  • Inconsistent benefits.  Marriott does a spectacularly poor job of enforcing consistent benefits across their hotels.
  • Guaranteed benefits. Elite members may collect points or cash compensation when certain elite benefits are not met.  See this post for details.
  • Missing stay: If a stay was not properly credited to your account, you can fill out a missing stay request online: www.marriott.com/loyalty/myAccount/missingStayRequest.mi
  • If you book multiple rooms for the same dates, you’ll earn elite night credits for only one room.  That said, you will earn points from up to three rooms.

Elite perks: What and where?

There is a great deal of inconsistency in the delivery of perks across Marriott hotels:

  • Hotel brands are often exempt from offering certain elite perks.  For example, the following brands are not required to provide free breakfast to Platinum members: Design Hotels, EDITION, Gaylord, Ritz-Carlton, Marriott Executive Apartments, Marriott Vacation Club.
  • Hotels are often exempt from offering certain elite perks.  The best way to find out is to browse to Marriott Bonvoy Terms & Conditions and use your browser’s “find in page” feature to search for the hotel you plan to visit.
  • Hotels sometimes opt out of providing perks even if the terms & conditions indicate that they are supposed to provide those perks.  I don’t know of any good way to find this out.

Free Breakfast / Lounge Access

The following chart shows my current understanding of the specific breakfast benefit to expect at each brand:

Hotel Chain Daily Breakfast Benefit How to Qualify
Design Hotels, EDITION, Gaylord, Ritz-Carlton, Marriott Executive Apartments, Marriott Vacation Club None N/A
AC Hotels, Moxy Hotels outside of U.S., Canada, or Europe $10 Food & Beverage Credit Per Night Platinum Elite Welcome Gift choice
AC Hotels, Moxy Hotels within U.S., Canada, or Europe $10 Food & Beverage Credit Per Night for member + 1 guest (e.g. $20 total per night) Platinum Elite Welcome Gift choice
Courtyard $10 Food & Beverage Credit Per Night for member + 1 guest (e.g. $20 total per night) Platinum Elite Welcome Gift choice
Courtyard w/ lounge
Lounge Access (or daily breakfast for 2 if lounge is closed)
Platinum Elite benefit
JW Marriott, Marriott Hotels, Delta Hotels, Autograph Collection, and Renaissance Hotels Hotels (Not Resorts):
Lounge Access (or daily breakfast* for 2 if lounge is closed)
Lounge Access is a Platinum Elite benefit
Resorts:
Breakfast in restaurant per night of Stay for Member +1
Restaurant breakfast is a Platinum Elite Welcome Gift choice
St. Regis, The Luxury Collection, W Hotels, Tribute Portfolio, Four Points, Aloft, Protea Hotels Breakfast in restaurant per night of Stay for Member +1 Platinum Elite Welcome Gift choice
Sheraton, Le Méridien, Westin Lounge Access + Breakfast in restaurant per night of Stay for Member +1 Lounge Access is a Platinum Elite benefit.  Restaurant breakfast is a Platinum Elite Welcome Gift choice
Element, Fairfield, Residence Inn, SpringHill Suites, TownePlace Suites Breakfast Buffet Free for all guests

* In the U.S. and Canada, when the lounge is closed, you are entitled to continental breakfast for you plus one guest.  In Europe, there is no “continental” restriction.  It’s unclear what happens outside of the U.S., Canada, and Europe when the lounge is closed.  

Elite benefits guarantee

Some elite benefits are backed up with guarantees.  If these benefits are not fulfilled, you may be entitled to compensation in the form of points, cash back, or both:

Silver Elite (and higher):

  • Ultimate Reservation Guarantee: “If for some reason we’re unable to honor your reservation, we’ll pay for your accommodations that night at a nearby hotel and compensate you for the inconvenience. To be eligible, you must provide your member number when making a reservation. Compensation varies by hotel brand.”

Platinum Elite (and higher):

  • Guaranteed Platinum Elite/Titanium Elite Welcome Gift: “Check out this when you check in: As a Platinum or Titanium Elite member, you’ll receive a special gift upon arrival at participating hotels, with a choice of an amenity gift or points. If guarantee is not met, guest compensation applies.”
  • Guaranteed Room Type: “When making a reservation, be sure to note your Member number and room/bed preferences. We’ll always honor your bed type request at our locations throughout the U.S. and Canada. Everywhere else, smoking/non-smoking preferences are honored based on availability; exact bed sizes may vary, and only Titanium Elite members will have guaranteed priority for their requested type of bed and room. If guarantee is not met, guest compensation applies.”
  • Guaranteed Lounge Access: “Access to lounge for member plus one guest. This benefit only applies to the guest room that the Platinum Elite/Titanium Elite member is staying in.”

Titanium Elite and Ambassador Elite:

  • 48-Hour Guaranteed Availability:  “Traveling on short notice? We guarantee you’ll always have a room for any paid stay. Just make your reservation 48 hours before arrival at any of our participating hotels, excluding Resorts, Marriott Vacation Club, participating Vistana properties, and Design Hotels.  48-Hour Guaranteed Availability: Limited to Titanium Elite and Ambassador Elite Member’s personal guest room. Guaranteed room availability for reservations booked at least 48 hours prior to arrival. 48-Hour Guaranteed Availability may not be available on certain limited dates (e.g., special events). Benefit cannot be used in conjunction with award usage or any type of promotional or discounted rates. For Residence Inn and TownePlace Suites, 48-Hour Guaranteed Availability applies to studio rooms only.”Greg’s explanation: If you want to stay at a particular Marriott hotel, but it is sold out for your desired stay, they’ll let you book the stay anyway, but at standard rack rates.  This benefit doesn’t include compensation if it is not met.

More details about Marriott’s elite benefit guarantees can be found here.

Shortcuts to elite status

There are two types of shortcuts to elite status.  One type of shortcut offers a way to get elite nights more quickly or easily.  Elite night shortcuts are stackable.  That is, you can mix and match these shortcuts in order to earn whatever level of status you want.  Plus, the elite night shortcuts will qualify you for Choice Benefits when you reach 50 nights and again at 75 nights. The all-at-once shortcuts are not stackable and do not help you earn Choice Benefits.

Elite Night Shortcuts

The following shortcuts are stackable.  You can earn elite nights from one or more of these options in order to add them up to reach the level of status you are shooting for (e.g. 50 nights for Platinum status, 75 nights for Titanium).

  1. Credit Card 15 elite nights x 2.  This is by far the simplest option. Almost all Marriott and credit cards (as well as the Ritz card) offer 15 elite nights per year simply by being a card member.  You can find a complete list of cards here. Having more than 1 consumer Marriott card or more than one business card won’t give you more than 15 elite nights.  That said, you can get up to 30 elite nights by holding both a personal Marriott card and a business Marriott card.
  2. 1 Elite Night Per $3K Spend.  Three legacy Marriott cards offer 1 elite night per $3K spend.  Of the three legacy cards that have this feature, readers are most likely to have the Chase Bonvoy Premier Credit Card, but only if they turned down upgrade offers to the Plus version of this card.  Unfortunately each of the cards that offer this feature only give cardholders 1 point per dollar spent (except in certain categories of spend), whereas all other Marriott cards offer a minimum of 2 points per dollar.  This means that this spend is costly in that you lose the ability to earn more points for your spend.
  3. Book award nights.  Award stays count towards elite status.
  4. Book Stay for 5, Pay for 4 Awards (even if staying 4 nights).  For example, if you can find a Marriott that is priced at 5,000 points per night, you can book 5 nights for a total of 20,000 points.  After your stay, you’ll receive 5 elite nights.  Note that you do have to check into the hotel to get credit.  If you don’t plan to stay all 5 nights, I recommend that you discuss your plan with the hotel manager since they may check you out early if they see that you’re not there.
  5. Book Marriott Homes & Villas paid stays.  Homes & Villas are rental properties that are bookable through Marriott.  While they sometimes charge much more through Marriott than through other channels, that’s not always the case.  For details, see: Marriott Homes & Villas. A great path to elite status?
  6. Choice Benefit: 5 Elite Night Credits.  This is a weird one.  You won’t have access to this Choice Benefit until you’ve earned 50 elite nights, and the 5 elite nights can only be applied to the same calendar year in which you earned the Choice Benefit selection.  Therefore, the only good uses for this option are to help you get to Titanium Elite or Ambassador Elite status, or to increase your lifetime elite night count.  Learn more about Choice Benefits here.

Once you earn elite status this year, your status will be good for the rest of this year, all of the next, and through February of the year after that.

Advantages to elite night shortcuts (as opposed to “other shortcuts” below):

All-At-Once Shortcuts

The following shortcuts will get you to a specific elite level, but you can’t stack them with elite nights to get higher status and you will not earn Choice Benefits:

  1. Credit card Gold status.  The Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card and the Ritz-Carlton Card (no longer available to new applicants) both offer automatic Marriott Gold status.  Similarly Amex Platinum and Business Platinum cards offer free Gold status (you must enroll).
  2. Spend $75K for Platinum. The Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card and the Ritz-Carlton Card (no longer available to new applicants) offer Platinum Elite status with $75K spend within a calendar year.
  3. Marriott Platinum Elite Challenge.  Earn Platinum status by completing 16 paid nights at Marriott properties within 90 days of enrolling in the challenge.  Please note that award nights do not count.  Call Marriott Bonvoy to ask if this or a similar challenge is available.  If so, enroll via phone.  You cannot enroll in the Platinum challenge if you already have Platinum status or higher.
  4. Timeshare Ownership: Marriott Vacation Club and Vistana are timeshare ownership programs affiliated with Marriott, and each offers elite status under certain conditions.
  5. United MileagePlus Premier Gold or higher status: Via RewardsPlus, United elite’s with Gold status or higher get Marriott Gold.

Disadvantages to all-at-once shortcuts:

  • Earning one level of status doesn’t help you get to the next. For example, if your Amex Platinum credit card gives you Gold status, you’re just as far from earning Platinum status as someone with no status at all.
  • You won’t earn Choice Benefits.
  • You won’t make progress towards lifetime status elite nights (but you will add lifetime elite years).

Point earnings from stays

The chart above shows point earnings for stays.  The middle column shows the number of points earned per dollar at most brands.  The next column shows the points earned per dollar at long-stay brands that don’t follow the same formula: Residence Inn, TownePlace Suites, Homes & Villas by Marriott, and Element.

Points are not earned with online travel agency bookings.  For example, if you book through Expedia, you will not earn points for your room charge.  You also might not receive elite benefits during your stay, but some hotels have been known to offer them anyway as long as you add your Bonvoy membership number to the reservation.

You can earn points on up to three rooms at once.  If you book two or three rooms under the same Marriott account number, you’ll earn points on all of the rooms but you’ll earn elite night credits for only one room.

Homes & Villas by Marriott

Marriott has partnered with select vacation home property management companies to provide access to premium & luxury vacation homes around the world.  You can search and book homes on their Homes & Villas website: www.homesandvillasbymarriott.com.

Basic Info:

  • Vacation rentals can be booked with points.  Point prices are pegged at 0.6 cents per point value.  For example, a $1000 stay would cost 16,667 Marriott Bonvoy points.  That’s not a good value for your points, in my opinion.  Also note that Stay for 5 Pay for 4 Awards do not apply.
  • You can earn points on paid rentals.  The base earning rate is 5 points per dollar plus bonuses for elite status.
  • It is important to compare prices.  Often the same rental property can be found on other sites like Vacasa, VRBO, Airbnb, etc.  Sometimes Marriott Homes & Villas charges significantly more for the same property and dates, but that’s not always the case.  See this post for details.

Point transfers to Marriott Bonvoy

Marriott Bonvoy is a transfer partner of American Express Membership Rewards on a 1,000:1,000 basis. Amex sometimes offers a bonus when transferring points to Marriott; usually from 30%-40%, but a targeted offer has gone as high as 50%.

Point transfers to airline miles

Marriott Bonvoy points are transferable to a huge selection of airline partners. In most cases the transfer ratio is 3 Marriott points to 1 airline mile. However, if you transfer 60,000 points, you’ll get 25,000 miles instead of 20,000. That makes the transfer ratio 3 to 1.25. Additionally, when you transfer to United Airlines miles, you get a 10% bonus. 60,000 rewards points converts into 27,500 United miles (a 3 to 1.375 transfer ratio).

–> Link to Marriott’s point transfer page <–

Below you’ll find a complete list of Marriott transfer partners as well as quick tips for best uses.

Tips for transferring Marriott Bonvoy points to airline miles

Transfer in 60K increments, up to 240K per day: When transferring points to airline programs, you’ll get the most value by transferring multiples of 60,000 points. When you transfer 60,000 points, Marriott automatically adds 15,000 bonus points to the transfer, and those 15,000 bonus points typically convert to 5,000 miles. For example, 60,000 points transferred to Alaska Airlines becomes 25,000 Alaska miles. By transferring in this way, you get a 3 to 1.25 transfer ratio to airline programs. You are limited to 240K points in transfers per day (which typically equals 100K miles), so if you want to transfer more you should spread out your transfers over multiple days.

Don’t transfer yet: Don’t transfer points until high value awards are available and you are ready to book them. Transfers are one-way only. Marriott Bonvoy points are valuable for their flexibility and for hotel stays. Once you transfer, you are locked into a single program that may or may not have awards available.

Don’t forget that rewards points can be valuable when used directly: Marriott points can sometimes be very valuable when used directly towards hotel nights.

Use rewards points to exactly top off an account: Most other transferable points programs require transfers in 1,000 point chunks. This can make it difficult to exactly top off an account when you need an odd number of miles. Marriott lets you transfer exact mile amounts over 1,000. For example, if you need 1,001 airline miles, you can get exactly that by transferring 3,003 points.

Watch for hotel to airline transfer bonuses: Airlines occasionally offer bonuses when you transfer points from hotel programs. Since Marriott is a hotel program it usually qualifies.

Current transfer bonuses

If there are any current transfer bonuses from hotel programs, details will appear here:

Transfer Bonus DetailsEnd Date Sortable

Best Marriott airline transfer partners

The following airline transfer partners represent the best potential value in my opinion:

Rewards ProgramMarriott Transfer RatioBest Uses
Air Canada Aeroplan60K to 25KRedeem for Star Alliance flights and/or flights with Air Canada partners (such as Etihad). No fuel surcharges; $39 CAD award booking fee; 5,000 points to add stopover on one-way award. See: Air Canada Aeroplan: Everything you need to know.
Air France KLM Flying Blue60K to 25KMonthly Air France Promo Awards often represent very good value. Air France miles can be used to book Sky Team awards, including Delta awards. Air France offers very good business class award pricing between the US and Europe & Israel.
Alaska MileagePlan60K to 25KAlaska Airlines has a number of great partners and offers reasonable award prices for most of them. Unlike most other programs, Alaska allows stop-overs one one-way awards. This makes it possible to stretch award value much further. Travel Codex offers an excellent overview to booking Alaska Airlines awards here.
American AAdvantage60K to 25KBest for AA's web special awards or for partner awards such as Cathay Pacific business class, Qatar business class, Etihad first class, etc. AA no longer charges change or cancellation fees on awards.
ANA Mileage Club60K to 25KRedeem for Star Alliance flights. Multiple stopovers allowed. ANA offers many great sweet-spot awards, including flying around the world in business class for as few as 115K miles! See also: ANA - a terrific Membership Rewards gem.
Asiana60K to 25KRedeem only 50K miles for one-way first class Star Alliance awards between US and Europe! Beware very high fuel surcharges when flying airlines such as Lufthansa.
Avianca LifeMiles60K to 25KAvianca LifeMiles can be great for Star Alliance awards. They offer reasonable award prices and no fuel surcharges on awards. They also offer shorthaul awards within the US (for flying United, for example) for as few as 7,500 miles one-way. Best of all, their mixed-cabin pricing can lead to fantastic first-class award prices. See this post for details.
Cathay Pacific Asia Miles60K to 25KCathay Pacific has a decent distance based award chart, but they no longer allow stopovers longer than 24 hours. Cathay Pacific Asia Miles can be a good option for booking American Airlines flights with a distance based award chart, especially if other OneWorld Alliance miles aren't available. For long distance flights, it is possible to reduce the cost of first class by adding on a business class flight. See this post for details.
JAL (Japan Airlines) Mileage Bank60K to 25KJAL has a distance based partner award chart. Depending upon the length of the flights, this can lead to great award prices on partners such as Emirates and Korean Air.
Korean Airlines60K to 25KKorean Air is known for having top notch business and first class on their international flights. Historically (pre-pandemic), first class awards were wide open for awards. Korean is also a fantastic program for booking certain partner awards. For example, it is possible to book Delta flights from the US mainland to Hawaii for only 25,000 points round trip in coach or 45,000 points in first class.
United MileagePlus60K to 27.5KUnited offers free award changes, and free cancelations 30+ days before departure. Like Avianca and Aeroplan, United never charges fuel surcharges for awards. Unfortunately, United charges many more miles for international first class awards. Good uses of miles include United's Excursionist Perk awards and (sometimes) dynamically priced United economy awards.

Useful Marriott airline transfer partners

The following airline transfer partners can offer great value under certain circumstances:

Rewards ProgramMarriott Transfer RatioBest Uses
British Airways Avios60K to 25KWhile flights on British Airways itself often incur outrageously high fuel surcharges, many BA partners charge low or no fuel surcharges. Excellent value can be had in redeeming BA points for short distance flights. It's possible to move points (Avios) between Iberia, British Airways, Aer Lingus, and Qatar. See also: Complete guide to Avios - British Airways, Iberia, and Aer Lingus.
Delta SkyMiles60K to 25KDelta no longer charges change or cancellation fees on awards originating in North America. Flash award sales can offer great value. See: Best uses for Delta miles.
Emirates Skywards60K to 25KThe best use of Emirates miles has been to fly Emirates itself. Unfortunately fuel surcharges can be steep. See: Emirates Sweet Spot Awards - First class from 30K miles round trip. Another great use is to book JetBlue Mint flights. See: Book JetBlue Mint (including Mint Studio) with Emirates miles.
Etihad Guest60K to 25KEtihad has a very competitive award chart for American Airlines flights, among others.  For example, they charge only 50,000 miles one-way for business class flights from North America to Europe. Partner awards must be booked over the phone.
Iberia Avios60K to 25KIberia offers very low award prices on their own flights. Round trip partner awards can offer good value under some circumstances as well. Fuel surcharges are often lower when booking with Iberia rather than British Airways. It's possible to move points (Avios) between Iberia, British Airways, Aer Lingus, and Qatar.  See also: Complete guide to Avios - British Airways, Iberia, and Aer Lingus.
JetBlue60K to 12.5KJetBlue points offer the most value when cheap ticket prices are available and when award taxes are high relative to the overall cost of the ticket (more details can be found here). The JetBlue Plus Card and the JetBlue Business Card offer a 10% rebate on awards, so you can get more value by holding one of these cards. JetBlue points can also be transferred to Amtrak 2 to 1 (with Amtrak points worth up to 2.9 cents each, this transfer can offer good value).
LATAM Pass60K to 25KLATAM Pass points can be useful for flying LATAM member airlines: prices aren't bad for short or nonstop routes. Unfortunately, partner awards are often priced unreasonably high.
Qantas Frequent Flyer60K to 25KBest use is probably for flights on El Al with no fuel surcharges. Also useful for short AA flights. Qantas offers distance based award charts similar to Cathay Pacific. Both are OneWorld Alliance members. I recommend comparing award prices across both programs before transferring to either. Qantas offers round the world business class awards for only 280,000 points (but with many restrictions)
Qatar Privilege Club Avios60K to 25KQatar has reasonable award prices for flying Qatar itself. Points are now transferable 1 to 1 to British Airways (and from there to Aer Lingus or Iberia)
Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer60K to 25KUse to book Singapore Airlines First Class awards (generally reserved for their own members), Alaska Airlines economy awards, or for Star Alliance awards (including United Airlines).
Southwest Rapid Rewards60K to 25KAward flights are fully refundable. Point values vary due to certain taxes not being charged on awards, but tend to average around 1.5 cents per point.
Turkish Airlines Miles & Smiles60K to 25KMiles & Smiles offers a number of awesome sweet-spot awards including 7.5K one-way anywhere within the US, even to Hawaii. Many awards cannot be booked online but can be booked via phone or email. See: Turkish Miles & Smiles Complete Guide and Turkish business class sweet spots from the US.
Virgin Atlantic Flying Club60K to 25KVirgin Atlantic offers a few great sweet spot awards including ANA first class between the US and Japan for as low as 55K points one-way; and US to Europe on Delta One business class for 50K points one-way. See: Best uses for Virgin Atlantic points (Sweet Spot Spotlight).

Additional Marriott airline transfer partners

Rewards ProgramMarriott Transfer RatioBest Uses
Aegean Miles + Bonus60K to 25K
Aer Lingus Avios60K to 25KAer Lingus shares the "Avios" currency with British Airways and Iberia. In most cases it is best to move points to one of those programs in order to book awards for less.  See also: Complete guide to Avios - British Airways, Iberia, and Aer Lingus.
Aeroflot Bonus60K to 25K
AeroMexico ClubPremier60K to 25KAeroMexico is a SkyTeam partner. Club Premier points can be used to book flights on AeroMexico, SkyTeam alliance members (such as Delta or Korean Air), or on select partner airlines. Unfortunately many have reported that awards are extremely difficult to book through AeroMexico so we do not recommend transferring points to this program. If you want to fly AeroMexico, look to transfer points to another SkyTeam partner (such as Air France) and then book AeroMexico with that program.
Air China Phoenix Miles60K to 25K
Air New Zealand Air Points60K to 307
China Eastern Airlines60K to 25K
China Southern Airlines’ Sky Pearl Club60K to 25K
Copa Airlines ConnectMiles60K to 25K
Frontier Miles60K to 25K
Hainan Airlines60K to 25KI’m not aware of any great uses for Hainan miles
Hawaiian Miles60K to 25KHawaiian Airlines’ award prices tend to be quite high, but there are some not-terrible uses: fly to neighboring islands for 7.5K miles, fly first class round-trip from Hawaii to South Pacific islands for as few as 95K miles, fly first class round-trip from Hawaii to Australia for as few as 130K miles.
Jet Airways Inter Miles60K to 25KJetAirways JetPrivilege miles are useful only for a few very specific cases such as certain flights to Hawaii for as low as 15K (30K business) one-way, or to the Caribbean or Central America for as low as 10K (20K business) one-way. Details can be found here.
Multiplus60K to 25K
Saudia Airlines60K to 25K
South African Airways Voyager60K to 25K
TAP Air Portugal60K to 25K
Thai Airways International Royal Orchid Plus60K to 25KI'm not aware of any good uses for these miles
Vueling Club60K to 25K
Virgin Australia Velocity Frequent Flyer60K to 25K

Indirect transfer partners

In some cases it is possible to transfer to an airline or hotel program in order to then transfer from that program to another program. In most cases this is a bad deal, but it’s cool to think about the possibilities.

Rewards ProgramMarriott Indirect Transfer
Hilton120K to 75K via Virgin Atlantic
IHG120K to 50K via Virgin Atlantic
Wyndham60K to 12.5K via Hawaiian (60K to 25K) then Caesar's Total Rewards (2 to 1)

Manage points

Share points with others

Marriott allows program members to move their points to another person’s account.  Here are the basic details:

  • You must call to share your points
  • Limit: you can share at most 100,000 points per calendar year (but you can receive up to 500,000 points per year if multiple people share points with you)
  • Cost: Free

How to keep points alive

Points expire after 24 months of inactivity.  Fortunately, almost all points activity will reset the clock.  Points remain alive and available as long as you earn or use points at least once every 24 months.

Note the following activities which do not reset the 24 month clock:

  • Gifting or transferring Points; however, converting Points to Miles or Miles to Points does count toward maintaining an active status;
  • Receiving Points as a gift or transfer; or
  • Earning Points through social media programs

United partnership (RewardsPlus)

Marriott’s partnership with United Airlines is named RewardsPlus.  RewardsPlus offers benefits to United and Marriott Bonvoy members who sign up here: mrrewardsplus.com.  RewardsPlus offers the following benefits:

  • 10% more miles (convert points to miles): When you convert Marriott points to United miles.  For example, instead of converting 60K points to 25K miles as you can do with other airlines, you can convert 60K points to 27.5K United miles.
  • One to one miles to points: RewardsPlus members may convert United MileagePlus miles to Marriott points at a 1 to 1 ratio.  This is rarely a good idea in my opinion.
  • United MileagePlus Premier Silver status (Marriott Titanium Elite and Ambassador Elite members only): United Silver status offers free economy plus seats at check-in, free domestic first class upgrade on day of departure when available, one free checked bag, etc.
  • Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status (for those with MileagePlus Premier Gold or higher status): Marriott Gold status offers 2pm late checkout, 25% point bonus, welcome gift (points only), room upgrade when available, enhanced internet.

Choice benefits (including Suite Night Awards)

If you have completed 50 nights at Marriott hotels through the calendar year, then you are eligible to pick a “Choice Benefit”.  A second Choice Benefit is available for those who complete 75 nights.  Here’s the website for selecting your benefit: choice-benefit.marriott.com/en-us/marriott-rewards/benefits.

Note that if you acquired Platinum status or higher through a status challenge, credit card spend, lifetime status, etc., you won’t get to pick a Choice Benefit unless you also complete 50 nights within a calendar year.

Selection Deadline: Mid January

If you don’t make a choice by mid-January, you’ll get the “5 Suite Night Awards” choice automatically.

50 Night Choices

  • 5 Elite Night Credits: These add to your prior year total if you wait until January to make your selection. In other words, the only good reason to select this choice is to get to the next level of status (75 night or 100 night, but 100 night status also requires $20K Marriott spend). For example, if you earn 70 elite nights in 2022, this selection would bring you to 75 nights and you’d get Titanium status plus another Choice Benefit. Unless you are trying to earn lifetime status, there’s no other reason that I can think of to make this choice.
  • 5 Suite Night Awards: Each Suite Night Award is a one-night confirmable upgrade to a standard suite or select premium room, depending on the hotel’s availability of those rooms. The number of Suite Night Awards used must match the entire length of stay; it cannot be used for part of a stay (e.g., the first two nights of a five-night stay). Once Suite Night Awards are requested to be applied to a stay, Marriott will begin checking upgrade availability 5 days in advance of your stay, up until 2pm on the day of your arrival. If your Suite Night Award request doesn’t clear, you’ll get the awards back to be used later.  Note that many Marriott hotels do not accept Suite Night Awards so these can be frustratingly difficult to use.
  • Gift Silver Elite Status
  • $100 Charity Donation: Make a $100 (USD) donation to UNICEF.
  • 40% off a Marriott bed: Get 40% off retail prices for Westin Heavenly Beds, St. Regis beds, etc.

75 Night Choices

  • 1 Free Night Award (Up to 40K Points): Certificate is valid through December 31st of the year after the elite nights were earned. For example, by picking this Choice Benefit based on having earned 75 elite nights in 2022, the certificate will be valid through the end of 2023.
  • Gift Gold Elite Status
  • The rest of the 75 night choices are the same as the 50 night choices:
    • 5 Elite Night Credits
    • 5 Suite Night Awards
    • $100 Charity Donation
    • 40% off a Marriott bed

See also: Marriott Choice Benefit Valuations. Which to pick?

Marriott Bonvoy Credit cards

Credit Card Eligibility

Below is a chart to help determine if you are eligible for particular Bonvoy credit cards.  For more precise information, please see this post: Are you eligible for a new Marriott card?


Marriott Bonvoy credit cards are issued by both Chase and American Express.  If you're interested in getting more than one Chase or Amex Marriott card, it's important to consider the complex rules they have put in place:

Credit Card Details

Below you’ll find information about each currently available Marriott card:

Card Offer and Details
Marriott Bonvoy Boundless™ Credit Card
3 Free Nights up to 50K points each
3 Free Night Certificates each valid for a night up to 50K points after $3K in purchases in the first 3 months

$95 Annual Fee

This card is subject to Chase's 5/24 rule (click here for details).

See Also: Are you eligible for a new Marriott card?

Recent better offer: Earn 5 50K free night certificates after $5K spend in 3 months [Expired 10/28/20]


Card Type: Visa Signature

Base
Dine
Gas
Grocery
Brand

Earning rate: ⚬ 6X Marriott Bonvoy ⚬ 3X gas stations, grocery stores, and dining on up to $6K in combined purchases each year ⚬ 2X everywhere else

Big spend bonus: Earn Gold status when you spend $35K each year ⚬ 1 Elite Night Credit towards elite status for every $5K spent

Noteworthy perks: ⚬ Annual free night certificate for 1 night at a hotel redemption level up to 35K ⚬ Automatic Silver status ⚬ 15 nights of elite credit each year ⚬ 1 Elite Night Credit for every $5K spent

See also: Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide

Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card
75K points
75K points after $3K of eligible purchases in the first 3 months of card membership. Terms apply. (Rates & Fees)

$125 Annual Fee


Card Type: Amex Credit Card

Base
Dine
Gas
Phone
Biz
Brand

Earning rate: 6x at Marriott Bonvoy properties ⚬ 4x U.S. restaurants, U.S. gas stations, wireless telephone services purchased from U.S. suppliers and on U.S. purchases for shipping ⚬ 2x on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply. (Rates & Fees)

Big spend bonus: Marriott Gold elite status with $35K annual spend ⚬ Earn an additional free night (good for one night at a redemption level at or under 35K points, subject to resort fees) after you spend $60K on purchases in a calendar year

Noteworthy perks: 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card renewal month for a one-night redemption level at or under 35K points (subject to resort fees) ⚬ Complimentary premium Internet access at Marriott properties ⚬ Terms Apply (Rates & Fees)

See also: Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide

Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card

FM Mini Review: The best use for this card is probably to downgrade from the Ritz or Boundless card to avoid the annual fee. That way, you can always upgrade again when you need the annual free night or other perks


Card Type: Visa Signature

Base
Travel
Brand

Earning rate: ⚬ 3X Marriott Bonvoy ⚬ 2X travel ⚬ 1X everywhere else

Noteworthy perks: Automatic Silver status ⚬ 15 nights of elite credit each year

See also: Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card
75K points
75K points after $3K in the first 3 months. Terms apply. (Rates & Fees)

$450 Annual Fee

Recent better offer: 100K + 1 free night award after $5K spend in 3 months [Expired 5/18/22]

FM Mini Review: Decent ultra-premium option for Marriott fans, but Hilton fans may prefer the ultra-premium Hilton Aspire card.


Card Type: Amex Credit Card

Base
Travel
Dine
Brand

Earning rate: 3X airfare charged by airline; 3X US restaurants, 6X Marriott; 2X on all other eligible purchases

Big spend bonus: Platinum Elite status with $75K calendar year spend

Noteworthy perks: ⚬ 50K Free Night Award each year upon renewal ⚬ $300 Marriott statement credit per membership year ⚬ Gold Elite status ⚬ 15 elite nights credit ⚬ Priority Pass Select with 2 free guests ⚬ Global Entry fee credit ⚬ Free premium internet at Marriott properties

See also: Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide

Marriott Bonvoy Moments

In addition to redeeming points for award nights or for airline miles, it is also possible to redeem points for experiences. These include things like backstage concert tickets, impossible to get sports event tickets, dining with famous chefs, etc.  Some experiences have fixed award prices, but most are setup as auctions.  In either case, you may or may not get good value depending upon circumstances.

Marriott Bonvoy Moments (click here to visit website)

  • Search by: location, category, date range, keyword, points range
  • Fixed Price & Auction
  • When to start looking: Events start to appear ~3 months in advance. 2 months seems to be the sweet spot.

Bonvoy pros & cons

Pros (where Marriott Bonvoy is better than average):

  • Stay for 5, Pay for 4 Awards (Note that Hilton and IHG offer even better options)
  • Points Advance: Ability to book awards even if you don’t yet have enough points in your account
  • Marriott offers very good point earnings on paid stays for elites
  • Points to miles transfer ratio offers reasonably good value (most competing hotel programs offer poor value when converting points to miles)
  • Marriott offers elite benefit guarantees (I don’t think any other major brand does the same)
  • Marriott has a huge number of hotels that run from bottom-tier to ultra-luxury

Cons (where Marriott Bonvoy is worse than average):

  • Marriott charges resort fees on award stays (Hilton and Hyatt do not)
  • Elite benefits are extremely inconsistent from brand to brand and even from hotel to hotel within a brand.
  • Marriott phone representatives are poorly trained in the complexities of the rewards program. As a result, they often give incorrect information over the phone.
  • Marriott credit cards don’t offer great value for spend, but can be worth keeping for their annual free nights.

Q & A (Questions and Answers)

Q: I originally booked a stay with points but now I want to apply a free night certificate and the point price has increased. Is there a way to apply the certificate based on the original point price?

No. When you edit your stay to use a free night certificate, the stay will re-price based on current award prices.

Q: Can I get the Stay for 5, Pay for 4 benefit if I pay for some of the 5 nights with cash or free night certificates?

A: No.  To get this benefit, you must book at least 5 nights with points.  If you have a longer stay, though, you can include cash or certificate nights (or both) as long as you still have at least 5 nights paid with points.

Q: If I book a stay with Points Advance, can I lock in current award prices?

A: No.  When you apply your points, you will pay the rate that is in effect at that time.

Q: I completed a stay but it hasn’t credited to my account. What can I do?

A: First, wait a bit.  Marriott properties vary tremendously with how quickly stays are credited to accounts.  It’s not unusual for a stay to appear on your account about a week after checkout.  Next, if the stay still hasn’t appeared, you can fill out a missing stay request online: www.marriott.com/loyalty/myAccount/missingStayRequest.mi

Q: If I book multiple rooms for the same stay will I earn rewards on all of them?

A: You will earn points for up to three rooms, but you’ll earn elite night credit for only one room.

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Cavedweller

Greg

On the Hilton AMEX Aspire Card $450 u get a One night free award. Yes I get it in 8 to 12 weeks BUT how long is it good for and can I combine it with next years After I renew ??

Yes I’ll use ur link but waiting till 6/1so I can use it on my 5/2023 trip..

WAYNE

I’m using a 35k free night certificate. Can I add wife’s name to reservation, so that she can then apply her suite night upgrade?

Carrie Kalenda

Hello,

Bonvoy Boundless card holder, 24 months up in November, am I allowed to hold Amex Business plus Boundless or do I need to PC my Boundless? If so , what are options for PC? Trying to earn 30 ENC. Thank you.

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r2e

Seems like Points Advance can now only be held for 60 days into the future.

Effective May 27, 2021, Members who seek to make an Award Redemption reservation with an insufficient Points balance may book an Award Redemption reservation (“Points Advance Redemption Reservation”) that is at least thirty (30) or more days from the arrival date, and hold it for sixty (60) days from time of booking, or no later than fourteen (14) days prior to the Member’s arrival date, whichever occurs sooner. Points Advance Redemption Reservations booked prior to May 27, 2021 will be placed on a 60-day hold beginning on May 27, 2021, or held no later than fourteen (14) days prior to the Member’s arrival date, whichever occurs sooner.

Jose Santiago

I have been Marriot Gold for many years and I think I might be able to hit Platinum this year. Here’s the plan: 1- I was gifted 13 elite nights for being gold last year. I plan to stay 10 nights this year. 5 nights in Key West and 5 nights in Gran Canaria. I currently don’t have any Marriot Branded Credit Cards. I’m currently at 3/24. Which credit cards do you recommend I get (and in what order) to get the 30 elite nights and maximize bonus? I know I need to get one business and one personal card. I don’t have strong qualifications for a business card, but I might be able to come up with something.

Jose Santiago

Also how late in the year can I apply for the cards and still get the credit card elite nights credited for 2021?

MatCyr

Hello,

I am struggling to find the eligible expenses for the $150 credit for the Marriot Bonvoy Business Card. Am I missing it?

Mat cyr

Thank you Greg!

justmeha

@Greg The Frequent Miler might be worth adding a explanation how peak and off peak pricing works.

i personally came here just for that.

Charlie

I’m pretty sure I already know the answer to this but…Since I currently have an SPG converted Bonvoy personal card and have had the SPG business in the past, there is no way for me to obtain the 15 nights x2 since I am not eligable for the Bonvoy business and Chase business cards are no longer offered. Right?

[…] 35K free night certificates come from holding certain Marriott credit cards and/or from completing Marriott promotions that offer free nights as rewards.  These certificates […]

[…] a master stroke of bad timing, Marriott has reduced the value of points when redeemed for Homes & Villas stays.  Previously, points were worth 0.7 cents each for these stays, but now you’ll get […]

Andrei Z

Excellent post. However, I hope you can clarify something I can’t find an answer to. I do have the Amex Bonvoy Brilliant card which I opened on 8/30/18 and activated on 9/6/18. The spend for the bonus on that card wasn’t completed until December. So, where does the 24 month count start from, the activation date or the date when the bonus posted to the Marriott account?

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Jimmy

I signed up for Marriott Premier during November 2017, upgraded to Boundless and received upgrade bonus during January 2019. August 2019 upgraded to Ritz card and still currently hold it. If I open Amex Bonvoy Business now will I receive SUB?

Jimmy

Thanks Greg. I’ll report back once I open the card and meet the MSR. I’m currently at 58 nights, so hoping to retain titanium status with the help of 15 nights credit for having the business card and 5 night credit for platinum choice benefit.

Jimmy

Just read today’s “Are you eligible for a new Marriott card?” post. Based on the post, I would not be eligible for sign up bonus for the Amex Bonvoy Business Card given that I received upgrade bonus on Chase Bonvoy Boundless card during January 2019. I guess I will have to wait until January 2020 to apply.

Jimmy

Greg- I tired last night and got the Amex pop up. Therefore, I ended up cancelling the app. Guessing app terms and IT system logic aren’t synced correctly.

because you have or have had a Marriott Consumer and/or Business Co-Branded Credit Card issued by Chase (that may have included an earned welcome or upgrade offer), you are not eligible to receive the welcome offer.”

Sean

I signed up for the AMEX SPG in 10/17, and the BIZ in 4/18. Got the Chase pop-up today stating I am ineligible for the bonus while applying for the Boundless card. It has been well beyond 24months, any thoughts?

Sean

Oh, my misunderstanding. I was under the impression 24 months since the SUB. Keeping my AMEX for the annual free nights. Thanks for clarifying.

Sean

Hey Greg, follow up alternative to my dilemma. If I product change the Amex Bonvoy to the Bonvoy Brilliant, would that be considered “acquiring” the card and I need to wait 90 days before I would be eligible for the Bonvoy Boundless SUB, or just 30 days from the product change?

Top

What’s the different between “member rate stay for breakfast” vs” stay for breakfast rate”? Member means Marriott Bonvoy member?

Kelly Boni

So I have a question. If I have the Marriott boundless card AND the old SPG Amex now Bonvoy Amex…can I still get the bonvoy brilliant Amex? I want this card and so I want to try, but don’t want to ruin my credit if I am declined because I can’t have the card.

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[…] But that’s not to say the confusion has been eliminated entirely. The application eligibility restrictions for Marriott Bonvoy cards are about as difficult to keep track of as you could possibly imagine. They vary from card to card, and there’s not a lot of logic at play here. So if you’re interested in acquiring one of the four Bonvoy-branded cards currently available to new applicants — the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card, the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card, the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card or the Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card — use this cheat sheet to see if you’ll be able to sign up based on which cards you’ve had or currently have. (We can’t take credit for being the first to visualize this info, though. Thanks to Greg from Frequent Miler for inspiring us with this chart.) […]

[…] But that’s not to say the confusion has been eliminated entirely. The application eligibility restrictions for Marriott Bonvoy cards are about as difficult to keep track of as you could possibly imagine. They vary from card to card, and there’s not a lot of logic at play here. So if you’re interested in acquiring one of the four Bonvoy-branded cards currently available to new applicants — the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card, the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card, the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card or the Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card — use this cheat sheet to see if you’ll be able to sign up based on which cards you’ve had or currently have. (We can’t take credit for being the first to visualize this info, though. Thanks to Greg from Frequent Miler for inspiring us with this chart.) […]

[…] But that’s not to say the confusion has been eliminated entirely. The application eligibility restrictions for Marriott Bonvoy cards are about as difficult to keep track of as you could possibly imagine. They vary from card to card, and there’s not a lot of logic at play here. So if you’re interested in acquiring one of the four Bonvoy-branded cards currently available to new applicants — the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card, the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card, the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card or the Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card — use this cheat sheet to see if you’ll be able to sign up based on which cards you’ve had or currently have. (We can’t take credit for being the first to visualize this info, though. Thanks to Greg from Frequent Miler for inspiring us with this chart.) […]

[…] breakfast and/or lounge access at most (but not all) […]

[…] You also have the option to select a free night certificate valid for properties costing up to 40,000 points per night as your Choice Benefit when earning Titanium Elite status. […]

[…] For a full rundown of Marriott elite benefits, see our Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide. […]

[…] For more (much more) about Marriott Bonvoy, including more tips for earning elite status, see: Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide. […]

[…] Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide […]

[…] Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide […]

[…] updated our Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide to reflect this […]

[…] you get Platinum status. Stay 48 and your status is Gold. Stay 75 and it is Titanium. See our Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide for full details on […]

[…] that not all of the Marriott cards are still available to apply for new.  Please see our Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide for information about all of the Marriott credit cards and anything else you might want to know […]

[…] Please see our guide for more information: Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide. […]

Donato

Hi Greg. I have a large trip coming up. Your chart says that if I currently have the chase boundless, and I want the Amex brilliant I need to wait 24 months after upgrade bonus. However TPG, who referred me to your article only shows 24 months after SUB. As of now do you know what is the most accurate and up to date? If it is still the upgrade bonus then I’m out until July. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks for the article as well!

Mike

Greg – I’m trying to use points to buy up to Platinum Elite. I need another 10 nights. I’ve booked two 5-day stays using points (18,000 each) at Tier 1 properties. Are there any tricks to be sure I get credit for those stays? I’ve had mixed success getting awarded for the nights when I check in on my phone but don’t actually stay in the hotels.

Many thanks,
Mike

[…] Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide […]

wise2u

starwoods and Marriott, ruined their loyalty programs. You describe the current program except you forgot some important instructions….#1 don’t trust any FT lurker or program PR person…their lies have fooled us before.
#2 the best way to enjoy the Bonvoy experience is to bend over and prepare for the worst, any changes to the programs will require a large quantity of lube and blogger praise. #3 have low expectations for the future.

Bill

Greg & Nick, two questions around the AMEX Bonvoy Brilliant Card:

1. If I accept an upgrade offer on my AMEX Bonvoy, will that bypass the restrictions in the chart above. I’ve received a SUB on Chase Premier Plus within the last 24 months, and I know that would disqualify me for the SUB, but didn’t know if that restriction also applied to the upgrade offers.

2. Do you know of somewhere that lists the actual hotels that are “participating” in the annual $300 travel credit? The T&Cs refer to the general marriottbonvoy.com website, … which is not helpful. I’ve searched flyertalk for DPs, hoping there was a wiki with DPs, … but no such luck. Seems like I remember hearing on a podcast (maybe yours) that there was some website that contained that list.

[…] Must wait 24 months since the Chase Card Bonus […]

Jason

Question about “soft landings” for 2020. I’m currently Titanium elite w/ only 25 nights earned in 2019(and 0 more expected this yr). I thought that meant that I’ll be Gold status for 2020. Recently though a Marriott rep mentioned that I’ll be a Platinum for 2020 unless I get to 75 this yr in which I’d maintain Titanium. She mentioned that even if I had 0 nights this yr I’d drop only one level from Titanium to Platinum for 2020. This sounds too good to be true. I thought about trying to get to 50 this yr to get Platinum but maybe I’ve got it in the bag already. Any insight here?!

Nick Reyes

Marriott has in the past commonly offered soft landings like what you’re describing. Unfortunately, it’s impossible to know whether or not they will definitely do that next year. Further, while the rep could be right, I’d not read too deeply into unwritten policy quoted by any phone rep.

All that said, based on past experience, I think it’s likely that you will get the soft landing and if you have 0 nights planned for the rest of the year, you aren’t likely to hit 50 nights anyway. Indeed, I’m a handful of nights short of Titanium, which I plan to hit in part so that I have a shot at a soft landing to Platinum in 2021.

Isaac M Pollak

i read somewhere that any nights above 75 can be credited to the following year
I cant find it online
Anybody know about this?
I am today at 81 nights for 2019 and will hit 90 before end of the year
am also at 55 for Hyatt so qualified for globalist for 2020

[…] Mas isso não quer dizer que a confusão tenha sido totalmente eliminada. As restrições de elegibilidade de inscrição para os cartões Marriott Bonvoy são tão difíceis de acompanhar quanto você pode imaginar. Eles variam de cartão para cartão, e não há muita lógica em jogo aqui. Portanto, se você estiver interessado em adquirir um dos quatro cartões da marca Bonvoy atualmente disponíveis para novos candidatos – o Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant , o Marriott Bonvoy Business , o Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card ou o Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card– use esta folha de dicas para verificar se você poderá se inscrever com base em quais cartões você possui ou possui atualmente. (Porém, não podemos receber o crédito por ser o primeiro a visualizar essas informações. Agradecemos a Greg, da Frequent Miler, por nos inspirar com este gráfico .) […]

[…] But that’s not to say the confusion has been eliminated entirely. The application eligibility restrictions for Marriott Bonvoy cards are about as difficult to keep track of as you could possibly imagine. They vary from card to card, and there’s not a lot of logic at play here. So if you’re interested in acquiring one of the four Bonvoy-branded cards currently available to new applicants — the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant, the Marriott Bonvoy Business, the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card or the Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card — use this cheat sheet to see if you’ll be able to sign up based on which cards you’ve had or currently have. (We can’t take credit for being the first to visualize this info, though. Thanks to Greg from Frequent Miler for inspiring us with this chart.) […]

[…] But that’s not to say the confusion has been eliminated entirely. The application eligibility restrictions for Marriott Bonvoy cards are about as difficult to keep track of as you could possibly imagine. They vary from card to card, and there’s not a lot of logic at play here. So if you’re interested in acquiring one of the four Bonvoy-branded cards currently available to new applicants — the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant, the Marriott Bonvoy Business, the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card or the Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card — use this cheat sheet to see if you’ll be able to sign up based on which cards you’ve had or currently have. (We can’t take credit for being the first to visualize this info, though. Thanks to Greg from Frequent Miler for inspiring us with this chart.) […]

[…] For more on the Marriott Bonvoy program, including everything you need to know about peak and off-peak award pricing, see our Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide. […]

[…] Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide […]

[…] for 100,000 airline miles.  And we can easily calculate the cost to book a 7 night award using the Marriott Bonvoy Award Chart.  Add these together and you get the “do it yourself” […]

[…] have updated our awesome Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide with each of these changes.  As a reminder, the complete guide includes a huge amount of […]

[…] points to get two things: a bunch of airline miles and a 7 night stay certificate. Please see Travel Packages in our Complete Guide to Marriott Bonvoy for a complete […]

Mike

Greg I have a question, when does Marriott change the total years as elite. Mine was 4 years at Platinum or higher last year and it is still 4 years this year. Nothing has changed. What is up with that?

Michael Zulim

Thank you Greg

Ollie

Hi Greg, Many thanks for your brilliant detailed post.
I hope you have the answer for this question.
Can Platinum members enjoy the benefits like lounge access and welcome gift when staying using the free Awards nights?

Nick Reyes

Yes, absolutely. You get those benefits when you book direct – whether a paid rate, a free night using your points, or a free night certificate. Keep in mind that Marriott can be super confusing — while you get breakfast at a St. Regis property, you don’t get free breakfast at Ritz-Carlton or Moxy, you only get a $10 per person per day credit at Courtyards, etc.

See this resource to know what you’ll get wherever you’re considering:

https://frequentmiler.com/which-marriott-elite-benefits-apply/

Ollie

Thank you Nick!

Robby

This is a great summary! I’m curious though what happens if you achieve platinum elite status during the middle of your reservation? Any suggestions for how to get those benefits during the last half of the reservation or do you have to checkout and back in again?

[…] See also: Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide […]

[…] For more information on Marriott Bonvoy, see our Marriott Bonvoy complete guide. […]

Josh

Hi Greg, thanks again for this great resource. Just wanted to point out that I don’t think the birthday elite night credit is guaranteed. I did not get one on my birthday and called Marriott and the agent said it was targeted and even checked with his supervisor that there was nothing he could do.

tlc

You are right, the birthday night is targeted. I had no luck convincing any agent to gift me a birthday elite night credit either!

Mike

You might want to write to Marriott Insiders community managers like I did and they gave me the free night. The agents wouldn’t help at all.

tlc

Okay, I will try that. Thank you!

[…] have a valuable redemption in mind. As a reminder, here is the Marriott Bonvoy award chart (see our Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide for more […]

[…] price: 85K per night standard. Category 8 hotel (85K standard, 70K off-peak, 100K peak).  Book 5 nights for the price of […]

[…] price: 85K per night standard. Category 8 hotel (85K standard, 70K off-peak, 100K peak).  Book 5 nights for the price of […]

[…] Frequent Miler – lots of great info, including charts showing signup bonus eligibility, such as this one for Marriott Bonvoy cards. […]

Penny

Hello Greg,

I am planning to book a meeting to earn 10 elite credit nights. How should I put the wording in the RFP contract? The people at local Marriott property does not seem to know anything about this. Should I input as below?

1. “Member elects to receive Elite Credit Night benefits” Will this works?
2. “Member elects to receive Elite Credit Night benefits. 10 Elite Credit Nights on first qualified meeting event per calendar year”. I am not sure if they would agree to input this to the contract.

Please advise.

Thank you.

Paul

I wonder if you can upgrade new chase Bonvoy cards to the Ritz Carlton Visa after a year. I called Chase to ask if it is a possibility to upgrade new Bonvoy card (Boundless) to Ritz after one year as I have a family member who loves my Ritz Carlton card. I was told that only existing Marriott cards can be upgraded before the cards switched to Bonvoy, and new accounts will never be eligible for upgrade. I hear conflicting stories. Has anyone else heard anything about this?

[…] When construction is complete, the Courtyard hotel will be rebranded as a Sheraton resort.  This is good news for those with Marriott Platinum Elite status, or higher: It means free breakfast one way or another (Courtyard hotels only offer up to $20 per day in food & beverage credits).  If the Sheraton has a lounge, you’ll get access.  If not, you’ll be able to choose free daily breakfast for two as your welcome gift choice.  Additionally, the Sheraton is expected to offer suites so you may get a free upgrade to a suite if you’re lucky.  It may also be a great use of your Suite Night Awards if you have any (details here). […]

Anna

Is it true that it takes 6 weeks points transfer to other airlines?
Appalled that it will take 6 weeks.
Very inconsistent nor helpful with reps.
Any tip to expedite?

[…] Marriott Gold Status: Marriott Gold members receive a points welcome gift with each stay, room upgrades when available, 2pm late checkout, and other perks (details here). […]

[…] For the first time ever, there’s a single tool that can handle the vast majority of award search needs. Juicy Miles doesn’t just search easy inquiries such as “can I book a United flight with United miles?”  No, no, no.  This tool is capable of finding award flights on airlines that most would have never thought to look at.  And it will show you how to get there, not just with your airline miles, but also with your transferable points: Amex Membership Rewards, Capital One “Miles”, Chase Ultimate Rewards, Citi ThankYou Rewards, or Marriott points. […]

[…] have updated our Marriott Bonvoy Guide with this […]

[…] For the first time ever, there’s a single tool that can handle the vast majority of award search needs.  This isn’t just looking at the easy stuff such as “can I book a United flight with United miles?”  No, no, no.  This tool is capable of finding award flights on airlines that most never would have thought to look at.  And it will show you how to get there, not just with your airline miles, but also with your transferable points: Amex Membership Rewards, Capital One “Miles”, Chase Ultimate Rewards, Citi ThankYou Rewards, or Marriott points. […]

Bob

Can one product change from the AMEX Boundless Biz card to the Bonvoy Premier Plus Biz Visa card? If so, it seems like a great way to get the associated 35k annual cert for $99, instead of $125 . . .

Bob

Duhhh . . . I will answer my own question – can’t product change between an AMEX and a Chase card. Sorry for the question – I guess I felt “bonvoyed” when Marriott/AMEX unilaterally raised the AF on the old SPG Biz card from $95 to $125 w/o adding any usuable increased real value to the card (at least for me). Now, at the $125 AF, the Bonvoy Biz card is the most expensive Bonvoy card (in terms of $/point) to get an annual free night cert (35k). At least with the Ritz and Bonvoy Boundless cards, the $300 stay credits make the 50k certs effectively a $150 purchase (I ignore the other benefits of the cards that are duplicated elsewhere – priority pass, etc.). That said, the ability to add an AU to the Ritz card w/o any cost, and then essentially get a free Priority Pass Select membership for the AU,has come in handy for my son’s travels.

Useless Points Make Me Sad

I have quite a few Marriott points, but I’m sour on the program at the moment because I keep finding what seem like great deals (Courtyard Marriott Paris, only category 4, great!), but then I go to book them, and I get the message, “This property is not accepting points bookings at this time.” Is there some secret to knowing which properties will or won’t accept points bookings, or is it like airline awards where you have to be lucky enough to find redemption availability when you need it?

Bryant

We used to be able to select a free night award as a qualification benefit after reaching 50 nights. What happened to that?

[…] Premier card is not the only way to manufacture elite nights.  We cover lots of options in our Marriott Bonvoy Shortcuts to Elite Status.  The potentially cheapest option is to get 10 elite nights by holding a meeting at a Marriott […]

How do you input the wording for the 10 elite nights credit in the RFP contract? My local Marriott property does not seem to know anything about this. Thank you.

Jack

The inconsistency of the program between brands is unacceptable.

Jessica

I have the regular Bonvoy and AMEX is denying my application for the Brilliant card. They’re telling me that I cannot have a Bonvoy and a Bonvoy Brilliant card. 🙁 Is anyone else having this issue?

[…] wing get free access to the Chambers Club.  Of those staying in the Barlow wing, only Marriott Titanium and Ambassador elite guests get access.  Those familiar with Marriott’s program may notice that something […]

[…] The chart from Frequent Miler says it all […]

[…] and friendly banter that made us feel as if she was truly happy that we were staying there.  I had Titanium Elite status with Marriott, and so she explained the elite benefits.  Those with Platinum Elite status, or higher, could […]

[…] Details about the double take promo can be found here: Marriott Promo For Q1/Q2 2019: Double Take – Double Points From Second Stay.  And, everything you ever wanted to know about Marriott’s rewards program can be found here. […]

[…] price: 50K per night standard. Category 6 hotel (50K standard, 40K off-peak, 60K peak).  Book 5 nights for the price of 4.  Note: I booked when […]

[…] Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide […]

Rick

Can you send this to the BONVOY people so they can share with their properties?? This is the only chart I use since you can’t find this on the app or the website!!

[…] also had readers who have commented on the Ritz-Carlton post linked above as well as in our Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide and we have received emails from others. We are as surprised as anyone about these status […]

Ben

Hi Greg,
If my wife is AU on my Ritz Carlton card, is that an obstacle for getting new Bonvoy card?
I added her only for the Priority Pass, but she has it on her AmEx Platinum.

Vaibhav Shetge

Seems like the signup for rewardsplus is restricted. I get the following message “You must be a Platinum Premier Elite member or above to qualify for RewardsPlus.”

[…] that finally appeared in my account as a Marriott cardholder plus 1 birthday elite night (see: Marriott Bonvoy shortcuts to elite status), I’ll only be 23 nights away from re-earning my Titanium 75 night status.  My guess is that […]

Josh

I am gold elite. I have been a Marriott Rewards member since June 2018. I have had 45 nights since June. Am I just 5 away from the next tier or did I lose all progress since it’s now 2019. If so when do I lose my gold tier? I have only stayed 10 nights so far this year.

Nick Reyes

The good news is that if you had 35 nights during 2018, you’ll have Gold status until February 2020.

Here’s how loyalty status works:

Your stays from January 1st through December 31st determine your status for the next loyalty year, which runs from the following January until February of the next year. You get to enjoy the benefits as soon as you meet the requirements, but you’re really earning status for the next year.

For example, since you (presumably) stayed 35 nights during 2018, you earned Gold Elite status for 2019. The 2019 loyalty year runs January 1, 2019 to February 1, 2020. You actually reached Gold elite status once you hit 25 nights on 2018, so you started getting Gold benefits sometime last year because you get the benefits right away, but the status year you get out of that really began January 1st 2019.

Starting in January 2019, the process started over for 2020 qualification. Now you’ll need 25 nights during 2019 to earn Gold status or 50 nights to earn Platinum status for the 2020 membership year. Whether you reach 50 nights during 2019 in March, May, or December, you’ll have Platinum status from the time you reach 50 nights until Feb 2021.

The other good news is that you’ve got 10 nights so far this year. If you have one of the many Marriott credit cards, that will give you 15 elite nights after your card anniversary (you only get 15 nights no matter how many of the cards you have). That means if you have one of the cards, you’ll already have the 25 nights necessary to secure Gold status again for 2020. You’d then be 25 nights short of Platinum status for 2020 and you’d need to complete those nights between now and December 31, 2019.

I’m sure that’s not exactly the news you were looking for, but it’s not all bad news either. Hope that helps!

Klara B.

I am so confused. I have been a member of the Ritz Carlton Rewards for more than 10 years. I had a gold card valid to 02/2019. At 2017 I stayed 22 night, 2018 I stay 15 night. This year I spent 10 night in January in Ritz. When I went there, they said to me that I am a Platinum Elite status. I got this status in the middle of last year. Maybe because I had 180,000 points (?). After February this year, I had 10 night stayed in a hotel and 15 night from a credit card and I am Gold Elite with 25 night.
I still do not understand how last year I was with a Platinum Elite status. The Ritz Carlton had an option that you need to have 50 nights stay in Ritz for two years or some points. I think we lost the second options.

[…] you don’t have enough points to book your stay right now, you can lock in current rates via Marriott’s Points Advance.  This holds the award for you until you have enough points to pay for it.  Keep good records, […]

Ryan

do you have any dp on bonvoy titaniums getting free breakfast and/or complimentary suite upgrades at ritz?

ThomasK

You write: under: “Elite status things to know”

*”Lifetime Platinum status does not include Choice Benefits”
What do you mean by that? I am I am LT P. Does that mean I will not get a choice of breakfast or welcome amenity or points?

ThomasK

Ok, that’s what you mean. Makes complete sense now. Thank you for putting this guide together. MUCH appreciated.

Tiy

Incredible post! Thanks.

Mary Jane

Once again, a fantastic article. I’m just afraid, at some point, you will sell your blog, move to Necker Island and then we will never hear from you again….

YoniPDX

Greg, Great info.
Pretty impressed that BONVoY marketing and items have rolled out so quickly. Normally these trickled down over weeks and months.

New Bonvoy key cards (feel free to use on blog-till you get better pics)
https://www.flickr.com/photos/139637597@N07/shares/64T86B

[…] We’ve previously reported that Marriott’s annual category changes have been announced and will take effect on March 5, 2019 (Marriott’s Annual Devaluation: 120 Fewer Properties For Credit Card Nights).  Every year, Marriott adjusts the point prices of many of their hotels by changing the category to which they’re assigned.  For example, category 5 hotels cost 35K points per night, standard.  So, to reprice a hotel upward, Marriott changes the category from 5 to 6 and it then costs 50K points per night based on their Bonvoy Award Chart: […]

Roy Wilhellm

When your Marriott Rewards card expires is it automatically replaced with a Marriott Bonvoy, or do we apply?

[…] price: 50K per night standard. Category 6 hotel (50K standard, 40K off-peak, 60K peak).  Book 5 nights for the price of […]

Jules

Greg, appreciate the comprehensive guide. Is there a sortable list for the upcoming Mar 2 category changes? I’ve seen a pdf version only. Thanks!

Gwen

I have the Marriott Rewards Premier Plus card, I took an upgrade offer a few months ago from the older Marriott card. Now I would like to get the SPG business card. According to your chart I am not able to get the bonus if I got an upgrade offer in the past 24 months.

When looked at the terms and conditions it seems like an upgrade does not disqualify you from getting the bonus on the spg business card if you have the Marriott Rewards Premier Plus card. The terms say “received a new Card Member bonus offer in the last 24 months on the Marriott Rewards® Premier Plus Credit Card from Chase or the Marriott Rewards® Premier Credit Card from Chase.” No mention of an upgrade.

When I look at the SPG luxury terms and conditions they specifically mention you are not eligible for the bonus with an upgrade. The terms say “iii) received a welcome or upgrade offer for The Marriott Rewards® Premier Plus Credit Card from Chase, The Marriott Rewards® Premier Credit Card from Chase, or The Marriott Rewards® Premier Plus Business Credit Card from Chase in the last 24 months”

The rules are so confusing! I plan on applying for the SPG Business Amex (or Marriott Bonvoy Business) when the 100k offer comes out and I will try to report back if I get the bonus or not.

Ken

Evidently with the new Bonvoy program, a point transfer from Chase UR will reset the 24 month clock. The old Marriott Rewards didn’t allow this transfer as a qualifying activity. This was confirmed by the new Bonvoy app in my account. Do you have any truth knowledge about this change? Thanks.

[…] Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide […]

Alison

I have a hotel reservation that I made in July 2018 part of a 7-night category 1-5 miles+nights certificate package. It is a category 5 property.

I need to cancel the reservation because I could not find a good deal on airfare. Is it better to cancel now and get a partial certificate refunded (hotel only, I already transferred the miles to my Alaska air account) back to my account? Or do you think there may be a benefit to cancelling when the program is called “Bonvoy.”

Thank you.

Alison

Thanks so much Greg, I will cancel closer to the date but make sure to be within the deadline just so I can maximize the expiration date. I appreciate your help!

Michael

Hi Greg. Does the credit card elite nights (15) count towards lifetime elite nights? Thank you

[…] of writing about Marriott all day, everyday, but things happen.  On Monday, I published my Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide and figured that would be enough about Marriott for a while.  But then I realized that it was past […]

[…] think Bon Voyage. As in, see ya later! Okay, lets come down. Frequent Miler has promised to keep a Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide updated. I think it is excellent and perhaps you should bookmark it. If you are into […]

Claude

I have the Lifetime Gold card from SPG (actually Lifetime Gold Elite in the joint program), what will be the status of this card in the new programe?

[…] the merger of Marriott Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) into a single Marriott Bonvoy program, there are now a boatload of cards that earn the same type of rewards.  Whether you already have […]

Tyler

Regarding the 5 Suite Night Awards. Does anyone know when they expire? If I don’t use them this year do they carry over to next year? I read through the terms and it doesn’t say. Hyatt’s suite upgrades are valid through 2/28 of the next year, and that was after the negative change

Tyler

Ok, thank you very much. Such a tough choice, cause none of the platinum benefits seem great… Oh well.

[…] today to unveil near term plans for converting their SPG and Marriott Rewards cards to the new all-in-one Marriott Bonvoy program.  Here’s a summary of the changes, organized by the currently existing credit card names […]

Stan

So now that we no longer earn an elite night credit for every $3K spent, is the only way to spend yourself to an elite level with lounge access the SPG Luxury card and spend $75K a year?

Stan

and a follow-up — If I have the Marriott Premier Plus card and spend $35K a year, that puts me at gold elite (equivalent to 25 elite nights.) Does the 15 elite nights annual bonus get added on top of the gold status putting me at 40 elite nights — well on my way to platinum at 50 nights?

[…] Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide by Frequent Miler. I know how much of a pain keeping these types of resource pages updated can be, let’s hope we can give this enough love so keeping it updated is worth the effort involved. […]

[…] Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide by Frequent Miler. I know how much of a pain keeping these types of resource pages updated can be, let’s hope we can give this enough love so keeping it updated is worth the effort involved. […]

[…] Marriott Rewards, Starwood Preferred Guest, and Ritz-Carlton Rewards are now one program with multiple names.  Starting February 13th, however, they’ll also share one name: Marriott Bonvoy.  You can find everything you need to know about Marriott Bonvoy in our complete guide. […]

GatorLitigator

Springhill also offers free breakfast for all.

Paul

This article is very well-written. You’ve taken a ton of information and made it very clear and concise. The credit cards will be re-branded to Marriott Bonvoy – I wonder if the Ritz Carlton Visa will remain specific to Ritz Carlton with the club level certificates. It’s already gone through big changes last August. Any ideas as to what may happen?

[…] welcome gift with each stay, room upgrades when available, 2pm late checkout, and other perks (details here). Go to benefit page, find the Starwood Preferred Guest Gold benefit, and click “Enroll […]

Zac

Free breakfast for all* – SpringHill Suites?

Zac

Sorry, I meant SpringHill Suites also provide free breakfast for all and should be included in that row in the table.

Mark

You are flat out crushing it of late Greg with these mega posts.

Am hoping to make the trip to San Diego.

Ricardo

Another question Greg:
I had dinner at one of the restaurants at the Ritz Carlton in Cancun. I was staying at the JW Marriott Cancun. When I paid the bill I gave my Marriott rewards number to the waitress so my points could be added to my account (10 basic plus 7.5 per $ as I am a Platinum Premier). They said that if I was not staying at the hotel, I could not get the points. With SPG this was not only possible but encouraged and I was wondering if you know anything about this.

Anonny Mous

Section 2.1.b(ii) of the T&C provides for this benefit but the wording makes it sound like it’s not required – “…Participating Properties that offer this benefit…” – and if you are credited the points, the Elite status bonus does not apply – “Elite bonus Points will not be awarded on charges incurred by the Member without a stay in a guest room under Section 2.1.b(ii)”. So if this was a legacy SPG thing, it’s probably more likely found on legacy SPG properties rather than at Marriotts. Marriott’s new slogan should be “consistently inconsistent, Bonvoy!”

BigMac

FYI here are the points conversions for an MVC 5 night package.

CAT 50,000miles 100,000miles

1-4 195,000pts 270,000pts
5 235,000pts 310,000pts
6 315,000pts 390,000pts
7 355,000pts 430.000pts
8 475,000pts 550,000pts

It wasn’t clear whether the United 10% bonus applied to these awards.

Roger Anderson

Hilton is charging me resort fee on award stay coming up in Kauai at their HGI. Check your sources.

Roger Anderson

Thanks for the information. My 7 day reservation was made points only. However, HGI Kauai Wailua Bay offered me what they call an ‘eStandby Upgrade’ request to move from the standard king room booked with points to an ocean view king room, paying an extra $21 per night, plus tax. I find out if I get it when I check-in. Can decline and be put in original room blocked. Technically, I am booking with points, but the upgrade charge could allow them to claim a ‘room rate’ applied. This hotel runs very high occupancy (95%+) in season (per front desk) probably since it is the only Hilton on Kauai. I am gold member and possibly could get upgraded without paying but at that occupancy rate doubt it. Stayed there two years ago around same time and place was full.

CaveDweller

Roger
Call them then post I never paid any on a award stay .Put the Screws to them and make Sure the matter is solved before u go or book another hotel. .
CHEERS

Ricardo

Great write up Greg. Question: how do you transfer points between people? Only same households or anybody? Is there a link to do this? (There was with SPG). And finally, I think with Marriott in the past at least a long time ago, you could combine points from people in the same household (without transferring them to either account) into one award. Is this still posible?

tro

Amazing, especially some of the charts.

Additional info that would be great to have: point expiry (& options to avoid), point pooling

Rick

Great write up. I wish Marriott would be so descriptive!
Have been having interesting conversations with my longtime SPG Ambassador. She indicated that effective 1/1/19 all award as well as cash&poinys nights would NOT qualify for elite level night requirements. Hmmm. You had stated that Elite nights are earned with either cash or award stays. Better check on this.

Also she said she was 99%sure that if one qualifies for the special grandfathered platinum premier elite lifetime status in 2018 it WILL be Titanium Lifetime status. Apparently these elite lifetime status were announced to take effect in late January 2019, when they were first announced in August.

I can’t believe that Marriott is allowing properties to make up their own rules when it comes to elite benefits. SPG never allowed this and it was part of the branding contracts. Sad.

Joe

Thanks for this write-up. I was lifetime Platinum Premier Elite and was expecting to be grandfathered into Lifetime Titanium, consistent with what you’ve stated above. Today, I checked my Bonvoy account and it says Lifetime Platinum. I called the Ambassador line and the agent insisted that there is no Lifetime Titanium level (no grandfathering). I’m waiting for my personal ambassador to get back to me on this as well. Is there any official communication that states that Lifetime PP Elite will be grandfathered to Lifetime Titanium? Do you have any suggestion on how I could get this resolved?

(I recently merged my Marriott and SPG accounts, keeping the SPG account number. Would this have perhaps caused the issue, given the IT system issues they’ve been having through the merger?)

Thanks!

Joe

I was lifetime Platinum Premier before the end of 2018. I haven’t heard back from my Ambassador yet. She’s been very responsive in the past – perhaps I’ll hear something early next week. Will post her response here. (I really hope I’m not getting “bonvoyed” after 20+ years of patronage, 1800+ nights, etc. that would be beyond upsetting.)

Nafisa Merali

I am having similar issues. I had lifetime Platinum in Aug and I worked to get to 750 nights however
I am still e mailing and talking to them. Frustrating

FlyingNinja

Will lifetime platinum premier elite become lifetime titanium elite?

Alan

When will the 15 elite nights from credit cards be given?

Alan

Hope the nights can show soon as the annual fee will hit my card soon. Wanna have the nights before I cancel the card.

CaveDweller

Check how late u can cancel the card and get the renewal fee back .I got by check after I canceled the card.
CHEERs

Alan

It should appear on 2/12 and due on 3/9. Hopefully the 15 EQN will be appeared before that.

Dan

Another great post thanks! I’m Platinum elite and looking to book two rooms for one night in Paris as an award, one using the Ritz Carlton credit card free night and the second straight up points. I understand benefits are inconsistent, but by the terms if I book two rooms would both rooms get free breakfast for two if the brand otherwise allows it? (I’m looking at the Prince de Galles which is Luxury Collection). I did see that:

Guaranteed Lounge Access: “Access to lounge for member plus one guest. This benefit only applies to the one guest room in which the Platinum Elite/Platinum Premier Elite member is staying.”

but I’m unclear if lounge access is distinct from breakfast benefit – I don’t think there’s a lounge at the Prince de Galles.

Oh and if anyone recommends a Marriott property in Paris for a special occasion (wife’s birthday) please chime in!

Thanks Greg!

David

Watering down the lifetime statuses. Looks like Lifetime Platinum Premier won’t translate to United Silver status anymore.
Wish they’d grandfather those who got the status via 1000+ BIB into the Titanium level. Am I missing something?

David

Thanks for the clarification. Didn’t see that anywhere.

Abi

For getting the 5th night free, can we mix up free night certificates and points ? Thanks!

Frank

My god! I feel like I am studying for an exam or something .

Marie

That 5th night free is only when you pay with points?

Rusty

Great write up thanks!

I’m currently a Platinum Premier and won’t requalify. Do you know if they will soft land us to Platinum Elite next year?

J.K.

What is “soft land”? I’m also currently a Platinum Premier and won’t re-qualify. I was hoping to get them to extend my current level since I’m finally going to take a decent vacation this year and could use the upgrade.