If you’ve ever thought about owning a Marriott co-branded credit card, now might be a good time. Both Chase and American Express recently announced new deals for cardholders, and it’s one of the best we’ve seen.
Marriott’s hotel portfolio is one of the largest in the world, including more than 30 brands and 7,000 hotels worldwide. Chances are, wherever you go, you’re likely to find a hotel under the Marriott umbrella. Accommodations range from the budget Four Point Hotel and Courtyard Hotel to the chic Ritz-Carlton and St. Regis.
According to a recent survey of global travel trends by American Express, 86% of respondents expect to spend more or the same on travel in 2022 than in a typical pre-pandemic year. With the new welcome bonus on several Marriott co-branded cards, you can earn hotel stay rewards for meeting the minimum spend requirements.
Here are the new and improved welcome bonuses:
Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card*: Receive 3 free nights (worth up to 50,000 points per night) when you spend $3,000 or more within the first 3 months of account opening. $95 annual fee, earn 3 points per year on combined grocery, gas, and restaurant purchases (up to $6,000), and 2 points per $1 on all other purchases Enjoy 17 points for every dollar spent on hotels.
Marriott Bonvoy Bold® Credit Card*: Earn 30,000 bonus points when you spend $1,000 or more within the first 3 months of account opening. $0 annual fee, earn 14 points per $1 at over 7,000 hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy program, and 2 points per $1 on other travel purchases (from air tickets to taxis and trains) Points, earn 1 point per $1 on all other purchases.
Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card (Terms apply. See rates and fees): Earn 100,000 Marriott Bonvoy Bonus Points and a 1 Free Night Award after spending $5,000 on the card in the first 3 months. Free Night Awards are available for redemption of up to 85,000 points per night. Annual fee of $450, earning 6 Marriott Bonvoy Points per $1 per $1 spent at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy™ program, and $1 per $1 at U.S. restaurants and flights booked directly with airlines 3 points and 2 points per dollar spent on purchases at all other eligible hotels.
There is also a Marriott Business Credit Card, although the welcome benefits on the card remain the same for now:
Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card (terms apply. See rates and fees): Earn 100,000 Marriott Bonvoy Rewards Points after $5,000 in eligible purchases within the first 3 months of card membership. Offer ends 5/18/22. Annual fee of $125, earning 6 points per dollar at Marriott Bonvoy™ hotels, US restaurants, US gas stations, wireless phone service purchased directly from US service providers 4 points, plus shipping on purchases in the US, 2 points per dollar on all other eligible purchases.
Why you might want Bonvoy rewards
The Marriott Bonvoy program may have some quirks (getting a Bonvoy is one thing), but having a Marriott credit card is a convenient way for those looking for a quick reward night and working toward elite status in the chain . .
Another potential value use of Marriott Bonvoy Points is to transfer them to Marriott’s airline partners. There are over 40 airline partners, almost all of which allow you to convert your points to airline miles at a 3:1 ratio. In other words, 30,000 Bonvoy points can be converted to 10,000 miles through participating airline partners. Marriott earns an additional 5,000 miles for every 60,000 points converted to airline miles, so 60,000 points can be converted to 25,000 miles.
As a Marriott cardholder, you’ll also earn 15 Elite Stay Points, which means you’ll automatically earn Silver membership in the Bonvoy program. This status includes a 10% stay bonus, preferred late check-out, free WiFi, and more.
If you have both a Marriott Consumer Credit Card and a Marriott Small Business Credit Card, you can go straight to Gold status, which includes 25% bonus points and late check-out at 2 p.m. This is the only situation where you can combine Elite Night Credits for a total of 30 nights. You cannot combine 15 Elite Night Credits between two spending cards.
If you already want to apply for one of these cards and are eligible, these new welcome bonuses, specifically the Marriott Bonvoy Unlimited and Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant American Express, can give you a head start on a bunch of points and elite at Bonvoy status in the plan. However, if you don’t travel a lot, it doesn’t make sense for you to hold on to these cards long-term. You’re better off using a card that earns cash back, so you can spend your rewards as you like at hotels or elsewhere.
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