Marriott Bonvoy – Marriott’s Loyalty Program Review

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Marriot’s Ko Olina Beach Club, Hawaii

Marriott Bonvoy is a relatively new but one of the biggest Hotel Loyalty Programs covering 7000+ Hotels over 30 different affiliated brands globally. Whatever your travel style, Marriott Bonvoy Program has a hotel to suit your style.

The popularity of Marriott Bonvoy programs evident from the fact that there are many co-branded credit cards in North America which give you Bonvoy Points as rewards and even 50,000 to 75,000 Bonvoy points as joining bonus.

As with most Loyalty programs, registration to the Marriott Bonvoy Program is free.

Membership Tiers:

Every Member enjoys Membership status under the base category or elite categories. Elite categories are classified as Silver, Gold, Platinum, Titanium & Ambassador. Needless to say, as you move higher up the Elite Tier, you get additional benefits, room upgrades, free breakfast, welcome gifts etc. amounting to more value for money.

Contrary to the US, there is only one major credit card in India to provide an Elite status in Marriott Bonvoy Program is the Amex Platinum Charge Card. Just the ownership of the Platinum Charge card gets you Gold Elite status (To Primary & Add-On Cardholders).

Earning Points:

If you were in the US, you probably would have had a Credit Card which can earn you Bonvoy points directly. Unfortunately, no such thing in over here. There are only a couple of major ways to earn Bonvoy Points:

  • Hotel Stays – 10 Points per $1 spent on stays
  • American Express Points Redemption – American Express Reward Points can be converted to Bonvoy Points in a 1:1 ratio.

Tip: Amex comes up with a ‘50% extra points’ offer once in a year. For eg. 10,000 Amex Reward Points would get you 15,000 Bonvoy Points in this offer

Based on the Membership Tier, Bonus points are earned by member as under:

  • Silver Elite – 10%
  • Gold Elite – 25%
  • Platinum Elite – 50%
  • Titanium Elite / Ambassador Elite – 75%

Purchasing Points:

Marriott Bonvoy Program even offers an option of purchasing points which can come very handy. Points can be purchased in Multiples of 1000 Points @ $12.5 per 1000 Points. Marriott runs a generous ‘50% Extra Points’ offer too once a year. This year’s offer is running currently. The maximum points you can purchase in a calendar year are 50,000. However, for a limited period, Marriott are allowing members to purchase upto 100,000 points. With the current 50% offer, you could essentially buy upto 150,000 Points.  The 50% extra points offer is available till 25-Mar-2020. To avail this offer, you have to be registered member of Marriott Bonvoy program for at least 30 Days with minimum one stay within these 30 Days or minimum 90 Days without any stay.

Here is a recent post on our Instagram handle on how to achieve maximum benefits by purchasing Bonvoy Points:

As you can see, you pay 0.6 Re (Considering 1 USD = 74 Rs) per point and can achieve a value of 4.5 Rs. per point. While this is extreme value case, in general, a value of 1+ Re. per point is easily achievable.

Redeeming Points:

Bonvoy Points are best redeemed for the luxurious stay options as part of the 7000+ hotels participating in this program. The participating hotels are categorized as 1 to 8. In simple words, this categorization is based on the level of luxury of the hotel.

Here is the Points redemption chart:

Bonvoy Points are some of the most versatile points in a loyalty program. You can redeem them for free stays across Marriott’s 7000+ network of Hotels or you can redeem them under 40+ different Airline Mileage programs majorly in a ratio of 3:1. To give you an indication of the versatility, here’s what you can redeem Bonvoy Points for:

  • Free Stay
  • Room Upgrades
  • Discount off Room Rates
  • Vacation Packages
  • Car Rentals (Not in India currently)
  • Gift Cards
  • Charity
  • Air Miles
  • & Many More

Added Bonus – If you book 4 Redemption nights, the 5th night is free.

There is also an option for Cash + Points if you fall short of Points. Refer below table for the Redemption Chart of Cash + Points. We would advise to use this as the last resort as this would not provide the best redemption value of Bonvoy Points.

Cash + Points Redemption Chart

Some more key points to note about Marriott Bonvoy Program:

  1. When converting Points to Air-Miles at a rate of 3:1, member gets 5000 Bonus points if minimum 60,000 Points are converted to Air-Miles
  2. Marriott offers Best Rate Guarantee (BRG). If you find a lower rate anywhere within 24 Hours of booking, you only need to raise a claim. Marriott will review the claim and match the price, if claim is found correct. Some properties are excluded from this though.
  3. Marriott Bonvoy Program allows pooling of points through Family & Friends. It also allows gifting of Bonvoy Points from one member to another
  4. Marriott Points do not expire as long as you keep the account active by doing one of the following at least once every two years: make a paid (or redemption) stay at any of the participating hotels worldwide; redeem points; or purchase points every 24 months

Marriott Bonvoy with its impressive portfolio of luxury hotels, is definitely one of the best loyalty programs in the world. So be sure to sign up to the program.  

Tell us what do you think of Marriott Bonvoy Program.

4 thoughts on “Marriott Bonvoy – Marriott’s Loyalty Program Review”

  1. Seems to be a great program. But would have been great if this was applicable on other cards as well.
    But the redemption points system is really interesting 😮.

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