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Guide to Marriott Bonvoy

Four Points by Sheraton hotel room
Courtesy of Marriott
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The Marriott hotel brand was originally founded in 1927, yet it has since grown and expanded to become one of the largest hotel chains in the world. At the moment, you can stay at more than 7,600 Marriott properties among 30 different hotel brands worldwide. Due to the breadth of this program, your experience with Marriott could include some time in a luxury St. Regis or Ritz-Carlton property or a few simple stays in a Springhill Suites or a Residence Inn hotel.

Fortunately, Marriott gives frequent hotel guests the chance to earn points good for free hotel stays while enjoying elite status benefits. If you’re interested in getting the most out of your Marriott leisure or business travel, keep reading to learn more.

What is Marriott Bonvoy?

The Marriott Bonvoy program is the loyalty program of all Marriott properties combined. Joining this hotel loyalty program is absolutely free, and becoming a member lets you save on regular hotel rates, earn points for each dollar you spend with Marriott hotels and potentially enjoy elite status benefits like room upgrades or free breakfast.

While you’ll get more benefits as you climb the ranks of elite status with the Marriott Bonvoy program, you should also know that some perks come standard just for joining. For example, all members get complimentary in-room internet access, member rates and mobile check-in and services.

Marriott Bonvoy elite levels

The Marriott Bonvoy program has six membership levels and five levels of elite status you can pursue, each with an increasing number of perks you can enjoy when you get there. Generally speaking, you’ll climb the elite status ladder with Marriott Bonvoy the more nights you accrue with the hotel brand.

The following table explains the most important benefits you’ll get with each level of elite status with Marriott, as well as the activity you’ll need to get there:

Member Silver Elite Gold Elite Platinum Elite Titanium Elite Ambassador Elite
Required stays 0-9 nights per year 10-24 nights per year 25-49 nights per year 50-74 nights per year 75-99 nights per year 100+ nights per year and $14,000+ in qualifying spending
Bonus points n/a 10% 25% 50% 75% 75%
Complimentary in-room internet access
Member rates
Mobile check-in and services
Ultimate Reservation Guarantee
Late checkout (* based on availability)
Dedicated Elite Support
Points, breakfast offering or amenity (varies by brand)
Enhanced room upgrade (based on availability)
Lounge access
Guaranteed room type
Annual Choice Benefit (5 Suite Night Awards or gift options)
48-hour guarantee
Ambassador service

Changes to Marriott Bonvoy in 2022

Marriott is revamping its loyalty program with a number of major changes, including a shift to dynamic pricing and extensions of elite status, points and certificates.

Beginning in March 2022, the company will move away from award charts and categories and transition to dynamic award pricing. That means Marriott hotels can change their award pricing on a day-to-day basis, though you can lock in award nights at current prices until March 2022. Marriott has not announced a specific date when the changes will begin.

Bonvoy currently prices award nights according to an awards chart that assigns category numbers to properties. With prices ranging from off-peak to peak award prices, members have a rough idea of how many points they’ll need to redeem for an award night. Marriott informed Bankrate sister site, The Points Guy (TPG), that 97 percent of their properties will continue to price award nights using this model through 2022. In 2023, the awards charts will go away in favor of dynamic pricing without caps on the amount of points a hotel stay can cost.

Marriott Bonvoy is also announcing some positive benefit changes in 2022. For starters, the program is extending its elite status for qualifying members. You may remember, the loyalty program initially extended elite status earned in 2019, just as the pandemic began to heavily impact the travel industry. Now, you can enjoy elite status benefits through February 2023, no matter when you earned the designation.

Also, Marriott Bonvoy will continue to pause point expiration through December 2022. The program will also extend Marriott Suite Night Award certificates and Free Night Award certificates through June 30, 2022, giving members more time to make travel arrangements as travelers adjust to the new norms of traveling.

The Free Night Award is more flexible in 2022, with the ability to add up to 15,000 points for a free night certificate. If you have a 35,000-point annual Free Night Award certificate and at least 15,000 points in your account, you can redeem the combined points for award nights that require 50,000 points.

How to sign up for Marriott Bonvoy

Joining the Marriott Bonvoy program is free and easy. All you have to do is head to the Marriott Bonvoy website and follow prompts that ask you to join the program. You’ll need to provide your name, email address, home address and preferred language. At that point, you’ll be given a Marriott Bonvoy loyalty number and the chance to build out your profile with more personal information (if you want).

Which credit cards earn Marriott Bonvoy points?

If your goal is earning rewards in the Marriott Bonvoy program, you should know that there are quite a few ways to do so. You can earn Marriott points with a co-branded Marriott credit card, but you can also transfer points earned in the Chase Ultimate Rewards program on a 1:1 basis.

If you’re after a Marriott credit card specifically, here are the main hotel credit cards you should take a closer look at:

Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card: Best basic hotel credit card option

  • 3 Free Nights after spending $3,000 on purchases in your first three months from account opening
  • Up to 17X total Bonvoy points at over 7,000 hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy with the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Card; 2X Bonvoy points on all other purchases
  • Automatic Silver Elite status, 15 Elite Night credits per calendar year and a free night on your account anniversary
  • $95 annual fee
  • Terms apply

The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card gives you the chance to earn a generous sign-up bonus as well as up to 17X points for spending at participating Bonvoy locations and 2X points on all other purchases. You’ll also get automatic Silver Elite status and a path to Gold Elite status when you spend $35,000 on purchases each account year.

A $95 annual fee applies, but you’ll get a free night worth up to 35,000 points on your cardmember anniversary and no foreign transaction fees. Carrying this card also gives you 15 Elite Night credits you can use to climb the ladder to the next tier of elite status.

Marriott Bonvoy Bold® Credit Card: Best with no annual fee

  • 30,000 bonus points when you spend $1,000 on purchases within three months of account opening
  • Up to 14X points on Marriott stays; 2X points on other travel expenses; 1X points on all other purchases
  • 15 elite night credits per calendar year and no foreign transaction fees
  • No annual fee
  • Terms apply

This no-annual-fee card comes with a generous sign-up bonus of 30,000 points when you spend $1,000 within the first three months. You’ll also get 15 elite night credits that are enough for Silver Elite status with Marriott Bonvoy, and you’ll get the chance to earn points on Marriott spending and all your other expenses and bills.

While this card doesn’t charge an annual fee or any foreign transaction fees, keep in mind that you won’t get many elite perks when you stay at Marriott hotels.

Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card: Best for luxury hotel rewards

  • 75,000 Marriott Bonvoy points after you use your new card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first three months; plus, up to $200 in statement credits for eligible purchases at U.S. restaurants within the first six months of card membership
  • 6 Marriott Bonvoy points for each dollar of eligible purchases at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy program; 3X points at U.S. restaurants and on flights booked directly with airlines; 2X points on all other purchases
  • Receive up to $300 in Marriott Bonvoy statement credits each year, complimentary Gold Elite status for Basic Card Members, a Free Night Award up to 50,000 points on your cardmember anniversary, Priority Pass Select airport lounge membership, 15 Elite Night credits, a fee credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck membership and more
  • $450 annual fee
  • Terms apply

The luxe-level Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant American Express card comes with perks galore for Marriott Bonvoy members. Even with a steep annual fee of $450, the benefits nearly pay for themselves.

Not only can you earn a generous bonus, but you’ll earn 6X points on eligible purchases at Marriott properties, 3X points at U.S. restaurants and on flights booked directly with airlines and 2X points on all other purchases. Major cardholder benefits include up to $300 in statement credits each year of card membership for eligible purchases at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy program, complimentary Gold Elite status, a free night award up to 50,000 points on your cardmember anniversary and 15 elite night credits toward the next tier of elite status. You’ll also get Priority Pass Select airport lounge membership and a fee credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck membership.

Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card: Best for businesses

  • 75,000 bonus Marriott Bonvoy points after you use your new card to make $3,000 in eligible purchases within the first three months of card membership; plus, up to $150 back in statement credits on eligible purchases made on your new card within the first three months of card membership
  •  6X points at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy program; 4X points at U.S. restaurants and U.S. gas stations; 4X points on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and on U.S. purchases for shipping; 2X points on all other purchases
  • Receive 15 Elite Night credits, a Free Night Award for up to 35,000 points on your cardmember anniversary, complimentary Silver Elite status, complimentary premium internet and no foreign transaction fees
  • $125 annual fee
  • Terms apply

If you’re a business owner who wants to earn Marriott points on leisure or business travel you book with your card, the Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card should be on your list. This card lets you earn a generous welcome bonus of 75,000 points when you spend $3,000 within three months of card membership, but you can also earn more bonus points in popular business categories as well as on everyday spending.

Rounding out this offer is the Silver Elite status you get for being a cardmember, as well as 15 Elite Night credits, the Free Night Award on your cardmember anniversary and no foreign transaction fees. Considering all you get in return, the $125 annual fee is reasonable.

How to earn Marriott Bonvoy points

There are quite a few ways to earn Marriott Bonvoy points, and not all of them require stays in Marriott hotels. For example, you can earn points through:

  • Spending with a Marriott credit card
  • Eat Around Town Marriott Bonvoy dining program
  • Car rentals booked through Hertz
  • Cruise bookings made through Cruise with Points
  • Flying with United Airlines and earning points through RewardsPlus
  • The Your World Rewards program, which lets you earn Marriott points when you fly with Emirates

When it comes to hotel stays, basic members earn 10 Marriott Bonvoy points for each dollar they spend. However, elite members earn more bonus points based on the tier of status they have achieved.

How to redeem Marriott Bonvoy points

As mentioned above, Marriott Bonvoy is transitioning from its current rewards chart (see below) to dynamic pricing beginning in March 2022. Marriott says only three percent of its properties will begin changing their points prices in 2022. Regardless, it’s probably a good idea to book any upcoming award stays now before some hotels begin to change to the new pricing model.

For now, redeeming Marriott Bonvoy points for hotel stays requires searching for your destination and paying with points. Marriott Bonvoy categorizes hotels into levels and assigns point values based on the hotel level and whether you’re traveling during off-peak or peak travel season.

Keep in mind that redeeming points for four consecutive nights earns you a fifth night free, which essentially gives you more value for each point you use.

Here’s how redemptions look for regular hotel bookings based on the hotel category and travel dates:

Hotel Category Off Peak Standard Peak
1 5,000 7,500 10,000
2 10,000 12,500 15,000
3 15,000 17,500 20,000
4 20,000 25,000 30,000
5 30,000 35,000 40,000
6 40,000 50,000 60,000
7 50,000 60,000 70,000
8 70,000 85,000 100,000

Those who want their points to go the distance can also look into making a PointSavers redemption. While not always available, these discount bookings can help you stretch your points even further if you’re flexible on where you stay and when.

In addition, the Marriott Bonvoy program lets you book with Cash + Points, which can be a good option if you are short on points for a redemption you want to make. You may also be able to buy Marriott Bonvoy points.

You can also share your points with any other member or redeem your points for gift cards or an array of travel packages that include a hotel stay and some airline miles.

What are Marriott Bonvoy points worth?

According to recent valuations from The Points Guy, Marriott Bonvoy points are worth approximately 0.8 cents each. This makes them more valuable than points in several other hotel loyalty programs, although some hotel loyalty points are worth a lot more.

How do Marriott Bonvoy points compare to other points?

The following chart shows much Marriott Bonvoy points are worth (on average) when you compare them to points earned in other hotel loyalty programs:

Hotel program Accor Le Club Choice Privileges Hilton Honors IHG Rewards Club Marriott Bonvoy Radisson Rewards World of Hyatt Wyndham Rewards
Average point value 2 cents 0.6 cents 0.6 cents 0.5 cents 0.8 cents 0.4 cents 1.7 cents 1.1 cents

The bottom line

Marriott Bonvoy membership is a no-brainer since it’s free and you’ll get some basic benefits right off the bat. However, you should also know that earning points in this program is not that difficult. Not only will you earn 10X points spent at Marriott hotels as a basic loyalty program member, but you can earn more bonus points as an elite member or through spending with a Marriott credit card. With so many ways to earn Marriott Bonvoy points, you could end up with a free vacation in less time than you think.

The information about the Marriott Bonvoy Bold™ Credit Card and Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card has been collected independently by The card details have not been reviewed or approved by the card issuer.
Written by
Holly D. Johnson
Author, Award-Winning Writer
Holly Johnson writes expert content on personal finance, credit cards, loyalty and insurance topics. In addition to writing for Bankrate and, Johnson does ongoing work for clients that include CNN, Forbes Advisor, LendingTree, Time Magazine and more.
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