Marriott Rewards Announcement
RewardsPlus launches for Marriott Rewards and United Mileage Plus members. Major announcement of Marriott Rewards partnership with United Mileage Plus conferring elite status match to Marriott Gold elite for United Mileage Plus elites holding Gold or higher status. Marriott Platinum elites and higher get status match to United Silver elite. This is definitely a great deal for United elites. Also bonus miles when making Marriott Rewards points transfers to United miles. Loyalty Traveler post: RewardsPlus launches for Marriott Rewards and United Mileage Plus members. July 15, 2013.
Loyalty Program Change:
Marriott Rewards quiet points-to-miles devaluation and loud AA partnership (LT July 1, 2013). Marriott Rewards partners with American Airlines again after three years. Marriott Rewards changes its points-to-miles transfer tables from 125,000 points = 50,000 miles to 140,000 points = 50,000 or 35,000 miles with partner airlines. This means there is no exchange rate advantage above the 70,000 points = 25,000miles (or 17,500 miles). Air + Hotel Packages exchange rates have not been changed yet and still offer 1 point = 1 mile rate.
***** Marriott Rewards - MegaBonus Sep 15, 2013 – Jan 15, 2014 (Loyalty Traveler post Aug 12)
- One free category 1-5 night after two stays. Limit of two free night certificates for promotion.
- Marriott MegaBonus 2013 Q4 link.
Marriott Rewards Seasonal Awards
Marriott Rewards introduced Marriott Seasonal Awards in 2013. This new award offers hotel stays at a 25% points discount off the standard award and 5th night free rates. A category-8 hotel standard award at 40,000 points per night is reduced to 30,000 points per night with a Seasonal Award. Caribbean resorts currently offer seasonal award discounts through November 30.
Ritz Carlton Rewards
Program News: Marriott Rewards 2013 hotel award category reassignment effective May 16, 2013.
Loyalty Traveler posts:
Ritz-Carlton Tier Changes May 16, 2013 mostly impact USA hotels (Feb 14, 2013).
Note to members: You must have your Marriott Rewards account earning preference set to miles in order to see Marriott Rewards miles promotions. You may not see MegaBonus points promotions for your account when your account is set to earn miles. And you may not see MegaMiles offers when you account is set to earn points.
Marriott Rewards lowers Lifetime Elite qualifications
Lifetime Milestones as of January 1, 2013
• Platinum Elite: 750 nights + 2 million points (25% fewer nights)
• Gold Elite: 500 nights + 1.6 million points (37.5% fewer nights)
• Silver Elite: 250 nights + 1.2 million points (58% fewer nights)
For more details, visit MarriottRewards.com/Lifetime. Loyalty Traveler post: Marriott Rewards lowers lifetime elite qualification Jan 1, 2013(Dec 18, 2012).
Marriott Rewards makes elite rollover nights permanent program benefit for 2013. Loyalty Traveler post December 20, 2012 – Marriott Rewards elite rollover nights permanent benefit for 2013.
Gaylord Resorts are Marriott International’s 14th brand. Loyalty Traveler post Oct 31, 2012: Gaylord Resorts are Marriott’s new 14th brand.
- Ritz-Carlton – Luxury
- JW Marriott – Luxury
- Edition – Luxury
- Marriott - Upper Upscale (highest market share brand USA with 7.3% of all guests)
- Renaissance - Upper Upscale
- Autograph Collection – Upper Upscale (semi-independent hotels brand reached 50 hotels November 2013)
- Gaylord Resorts – Upper Upscale – four large convention hotels acquired by Marriott in Nashville, Dallas, Orlando and National Harbor, Maryland outside D.C.
- Marriott Executive Apartments – Upper Upscale corporate leased housing.
- Residence Inn - Upscale extended stay.
- Courtyard – Upscale
- Fairfield Inn – Upscale
- SpringHill Suites – Upscale extended stay.
- AC Hotels by Marriott – Upscale (Spanish chain with 80 hotels in Spain and some in Italy and scattered others.
- TownePlace Suites – Upper Midscale
- Marriott Vacation Club
Hotel Chain Scale Segment 2013 Smith Travel Research STR used to rank hotels is scale based on average daily rate for the brand in the USA and globally.
- Marriott Rewards elite levels and benefits.
- Earn Marriott Rewards points.
- Redeem Marriott Rewards points and Hotel Reward categories.
- Marriott Vacation Club rewards.
- Marriott Rewards room upgrades.
- Marriott Rewards airline partners and earn rate for miles.
- Marriott Rewards points-to-miles exchange.
- Marriott Rewards 7 Hotel Nights + Airline Miles Travel packages.
- Marriott International Global Online Hotel Directory.
Note to Marriott Rewards members: You must have your Marriott Rewards account earning preference set to miles in order to see Marriott Rewards miles promotions.
Marriott Rewards Program Enhancement: Platinum members receive free suite upgrades for hotels in Asia Pacific Region. Loyalty traveler post August 17, 2012.
Marriott Platinum Elite fast-track challenge. Update Sep 5, 2013 – Recent news is Marriott Rewards no longer accepts requests for elite challenges. Members have reported target fast-track elite offers. Loyalty Traveler post March 15, 2012 describes the terms for a Marriott elite challenge.
Loyalty Traveler Opinion Piece: My Take on the Value of Marriott Rewards Points- (March 26, 2012)
Marriott Rewards Hotel Category Assignment Changes for 2012
- Marriott Rewards Hotel Category Changes March 15, 2012 (LT Feb 27, 2012)
- Marriott Hotels Dropping in reward category(Feb 27, 2012)
- Marriott Hotels rising in Category 5-8. (Feb 27, 2012)
Marriott Rewards PointSavers – PointSavers reduce the points cost of a free night by one hotel category. For example, category 5 hotel requires only 20,000 points per night priced at category 4 rate. 5thnight free rewards rate also applies to PointSavers rate.
***** Marriott Rewards Elite Rollover Nights become permanent program feature for 2013. 2012 was the fourth year Marriott Rewards offered elite rollover nights for elite qualifying nights over your earned elite membership. For example: Silver elite requires 10 nights in calendar year and Gold elite takes 50 nights. Stay 25 nights in 2012 and the 15 nights above Silver elite rollover to 2013 membership year. You will have earned Silver elite for 2013 from your 15 extra nights in 2012 rolled over to 2013. Rollover nights from 2012 to 2013 are deducted from 2013 end-of-year total nights to determine rollover nights for 2014. And you only get rollover nights based on the status you held the year before. Gold elite in 2012 with end-of-year 40 nights will not receive any 2013 rollover nights since did not requalify as Gold elite. Confused? Don’t worry. This is a great benefit for eligible elite members. Loyalty Traveler post Jan 6, 2012 – Marriott Rewards extends Elite Rollover Nights for 2012 stays and Loyalty Traveler post December 20, 2012 – Marriott Rewards elite rollover nights permanent benefit for 2013.
Marriott Rewards Program Change: All Marriott Rewards members receive complimentary internet at Asia-Pacific region hotels. Loyalty Traveler post May 2, 2011.
Marriott Seasonal Rewards
Marriott Rewards Seasonal Awards
Marriott Rewards recently introduced Marriott Seasonal Awards, a new award option for hotel stays at a 25% points discount off the standard award and 5th night free rates. A category-8 hotel standard award at 40,000 points per night is reduced to 30,000 points per night with a Seasonal Award.
The initial batch of Seasonal Awards includes 82 participating hotels for 2013 stays in limited locations. 48 hotels are in the USA. Europe has 16 hotels. Mexico, Costa Rica, and Caribbean offer 18 resorts.
The earliest dates for winter travel Seasonal Awards are 16 hotels in New York, Jan 1-Feb 28, 2013, and Europe at 16 Marriott and Renaissance Hotels from Jan 1- March 1, 2013. These are upper upscale hotels in Europe’s major cities like Vienna, Copenhagen, Amsterdam, Zurich, Hamburg and JW Marriott Cannes.
Three USA desert southwest regions offer summer 2013 Seasonal Award dates June 17-Aug 30 at six resorts in Palm Springs, California and seven resorts in Phoenix/Scottsdale, Arizona. Las Vegas, Nevada heats up the discount at 19 hotels, July 15-Sep 30, 2013.
Several major resorts in Marriott International’s portfolio offer Seasonal Awards. Nearly two of three hotels in this initial list are Marriott Rewards high-end award category hotels with five category-8 hotels, 20 category-7 and 28 category-6 hotels. There are 13 category-5 hotels and the 16 hotels at category-2, 3 and 4 include 14 Las Vegas area properties.
5th Night Free combined with Seasonal Award nights
The Seasonal Award 25% discount applies on top of Marriott Rewards 5th night free award discount saving 40% points with a five night Seasonal Award. A category 8 Marriott Rewards 5th night free award stay is discounted 20% from 200,000 points to 160,000 points. The Seasonal Award 25% discount applies to the 5th night free award rate reducing the 5-night award stay to just 120,000 points or 24,000 points per night. This is two free nights based on the standard award rate at 40,000 points per night.
A category-8 Seasonal Award for The Carlton, New York, Marriott Autograph Collection is only 30,000 points February 14 Valentine’s Day or pay the published rate of $376 after tax for a Deluxe Room. The $12.50 per 1,000 points redemption rate is better than most credit card analysts rate the value of Marriott Rewards points.
Three Las Vegas area category -2 hotels are only 30,000 points for 5 nights with Marriott Seasonal Awards in August 2013. 6,000 points per free night is a bargain basement award rate competitive with any other hotel loyalty program award. Courtyard Las Vegas Henderson/Green Valley Sep 19-24, 2013 showed redemption value at $16.83 per 1,000 points using 30,000 points to save $505. Marriott Rewards sells points for $12.50 per 1,000 points.
Marriott’s Caribbean and Latin America resorts provide another 18 hotel players in the Seasonal Award game. September 23 to November 23 gives two months where 5-night Seasonal Award stays are 40% off the standard award rate. Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands offer 4 resorts where US citizens can fly without a passport. Aruba, British Virgin Islands, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Cayman Islands and Curacao offer other Caribbean vacation destinations for Marriott Resort Seasonal Awards. Cancun and Costa Rica have four participating resorts.
Seasonal Award discount for a one week hotel stay on points offers potentially high redemption value for your points. Average daily rates of resort hotels in the Caribbean rival most any place on the globe.
Scrub Island Resort, Spa & Marina, Autograph Collection, British Virgin Islands is a Caribbean boutique resort of 27 rooms and 32 suites. This Marriott Rewards category 8 hotel property is 40,000 points per night for a standard award. 2013 Seasonal Awards offer a 25% points discount on the standard award rate reducing the cost to 30,000 points per night.
A 7-night stay at Scrub Island is 180,000 Marriott Rewards points with a Seasonal Award (120,000 points for 5th night free rate + 60,000 points for two additional nights). The published rate at $375 per night or $2,983 after tax gives a Marriott Rewards points redemption value over $16 per 1,000 points redeemed. Marriott Rewards Seasonal Award stays at Scrub Island require additional $25 daily resort fee payment. And you do not earn Marriott rewards points for resort fee spend.
Another valuable feature of Marriott Seasonal Awards is seen in the cancellation policy at Scrub Island. Pay the published rate of $375 per night for a one week stay and the cancellation penalty within 60 days of your stay date is three nights charge at $1,278.75. The Seasonal Award has only a one night cancellation penalty within 60 days of stay at $292.50. Seasonal Awards offer far better trip cancellation insurance.
Better hotel award values like Marriott’s new Seasonal Awards are a true program benefit for loyalty members.
[This article initially appeared Inside Flyer January 2013.]