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Is the 120,000 Marriott Rewards Points Worth $12,000 in Spending?

by on Thu November 16, 2017 • 1 Comment
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marriottpremier170If you don’t have the Marriott Rewards® Premier Credit Card yet, a new sign-up bonus could earn you more points with every dollar spent. Through their latest offer, you can earn up to 120,000 bonus Marriott Rewards®  points by earning 10 points per dollar on all purchases through your first year of card membership, or spending $12,000 – whichever comes first.

If you qualify, the 10 points will appear on your statement as a bonus on top of the points you would regularly earn in spending categories. This is a big increase from the regular offer of 80,000 points after you spend $3,000 on purchases in your first 3 months from your account opening.

Is it a good deal?

The promise of 120,000 Marriott Rewards bonus points is their biggest to date, and is an increase of 40,000 points from the regular new account offer. In fact, the 120k points is among the largest bonus offers of all hotel credit cards available. The card also comes with one free night certificate at a Category 1-5 hotel annually after your first year, and Marriott Rewards Silver Elite Status, which can be matched with Starwood Preferred Guest, making it an overall good deal.

There are two key downsides to this promotion. First, the minimum spend is very high for the full bonus: $12,000 in spending is difficult to achieve if you wanted to earn the full bonus before your first anniversary year. Second, Marriott Rewards have devalued since their merger with Starwood. We estimate 120,000 Marriott Rewards points to be worth around $900 in value, depending on where you choose to redeem your points.

How much are Marriott Rewards® points worth?

Based on previous research, we value Marriott Rewards® points at 0.7 cents each – but if you are patient and can shop around for the best deals, you can get a value of one cent per point or more. Because rooms are priced by category, some destinations will have more hotel options which can provide better value. Be sure to search all Marriott hotels at your destination before booking an award.

What are the best uses of Marriott Rewards® points?

If you plan to earn the full bonus of 120,000 Marriott Rewards®, you can unlock awards at some of the best hotels in the Marriot portfolio. Some of our favorite picks for awards include:

The Cove Atlantis, Autograph Collection

the-cove-atlantis-autograph-collection

Located in the Atlantis Resort in the Bahamas, The Cove Atlantis, Autograph Collection is an award-winning hotel available with Marriott Rewards® points. A room for two people starts at 45,000 Marriott Rewards points per night – meaning you could stay over a weekend and still have 30,000 points leftover, enough for a night at a Category 6 hotel or a Tier 1 Ritz-Carlton® hotel. When we searched for award nights, there was good availability in the winter and open availability all summer.

The Ritz-Carlton, Montréal

the-ritz-carlton-montreal

Sitting in the heart of downtown, The Ritz-Carlton, Montréal is among the high-end chain’s best properties around the world. After a day out, you can relax in the hotel’s greenhouse, have a drink in the garden or terrace, or simply retreat to large rooms with luxury amenities. A weekend at this property costs 120,000 Marriott Rewards® points, exactly the amount you could earn through this promotion. We found plenty of award options for two-night getaways, especially looking 2-3 months ahead.

The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, Autograph Collection

the-cosmopolitan-of-las-vegas-autograph-collection

It’s rare to have to find points awards directly on the Las Vegas Strip – but The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, Autograph Collection lets you turn Marriott Rewards® points into nights on the strip. At Category 9, a weekend in Vegas at one of the newest hotels costs 90,000 points. When we looked for award nights, we found open availability throughout the year – even on weekend nights.

Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino

aruba-marriott-resort-stellaris-casino

Combining direct beachfront access with spacious rooms and gaming, the Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino is one of the hotel company’s premier destinations. In the winter and spring months, two nights at this destination resort can cost upwards of $600 per night – making it a great deal on Marriott Rewards® points. Two award nights (even weekends) cost 90,000 points, giving you an effective value of over one cent per point. Award availability through the spring and summer are good, but avoid hurricane season, because the cash rate can drop to under $250 per night, giving you a poor overall value.

Questions and Answers

After the promotion, what are the bonus categories for this card?

Once you spend $12,000 on the card or arrive at the first anniversary of holding your card (whichever comes first), you will revert to the normal bonus categories. The bonus categories are: 5 points per $1 spent at participating Marriott Rewards® and SPG® hotels, 2 points per $1 spent on airline tickets purchased directly with the airline, and at car rental agencies and restaurants, and 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.

What are the other card benefits?

If you hold the card for more than one year, you will receive a free night certificate valid for Marriott hotel categories 1-5, as well as 15 nights’ elite status credits toward your next Elite membership level after account approval and every year after account anniversary, giving you guaranteed Silver Elite status annually. You will also earn 1 night elite status credit $3,000 spent on purchases with no limit to the number of credits you can earn. After the first year, you will be charged the $85 annual fee.

Can I transfer Marriott Rewards® to other programs?

Marriott Rewards® can be transferred to Starwood Preferred Guest Starpoints®, which can be used to book Starwood hotels. The transfer ratio is 3:1, meaning 120,000 Marriott Rewards points is worth 40,000 Starpoints®. You can also transfer Marriott Rewards® points to United MileagePlus® at a ratio of 4:1 with a minimum of 8,000 points, or 39 other airlines at varying ratios.

Are there other uses of Marriott Rewards® points?

In addition to nights at participating Marriott and Starwood properties, you can use your Marriott Rewards® for Hotel + Air packages starting at 200,000 points. Through this option, you can get 7 nights at any Marriott or Ritz-Carlton hotel, along with a bonus of at least 25,000 airline miles to use for your flight. Over 40 airlines are available in the Hotel + Air Packages, but the best deal comes on United Airlines through RewardsPlus: 200,000 Marriott Rewards® points will get you 7 nights at a Category 1-5 hotel and 55,000 United MileagePlus® miles.

Can you get this offer if you had the card before?

Yes: while you can get this card if you held the card before, you will have to meet some conditions. This bonus is available if you do not currently have the card and have not received a new cardmember bonus for this card in the past 2 years. Plus, under the Chase “5/24 rule,” you may be denied for this card and bonus if you have applied for five credit cards over the past 24 months.

Can a couple get two cards?

Yes, a couple can get two cards, but you can’t easily share Marriott Rewards® points between two accounts. If you decide to get two cards, you can get the most value by booking hotel rooms for each other using points acquired in your individual accounts.

Should you get the deal?

If you will be mostly staying at Marriott or Starwood properties, and don’t mind slowly working your way towards the full 120,000 bonus by spending at least $1,000 on your card every month, this promotion could give you a lot of points over the long run. If you don’t plan on staying at Marriott or Starwood hotels, or don’t spend much on credit cards, then this deal may not be for you.

If you spend more than $667 on a credit card every month, earning 10 Marriott Rewards® points per $1 over the course of a year may be better than the current offer of 80,000 points after you spend $3,000 on purchases in your first 3 months from your account opening. Spending a minimum of $700 every month, you would earn 84,000 Marriott Rewards® points in the first year (7,000 points each month for 12 months at 10 points per dollar). Before you apply for the card, look at your spending habits and points goals to determine which bonus would be better.

If you need quick points to top off an award, you may want to consider other cards that earn Ultimate Rewards®. Cards that compare to the Marriott Rewards® Premier Credit Card include The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, which offers 50,000 Ultimate Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

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Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Miles dont expireas long as card is open
Learn more

Partner Offer

50,000 bonus points

Intro Offer

$0 introductory annual fee the first year, then $95

Annual Fee

Yes

Foreign Transaction Fee Waived

Yes - transfer to United MileagePlus, Southwest Rapid Rewards, Marriott Rewards, and more

Points Can Transfer to Airline Miles ?

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"These responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered."

One thought on “Is the 120,000 Marriott Rewards Points Worth $12,000 in Spending?

  1. weedibix

    I think the best deal on the vacation package is not UA, but WN, because 110000 WN points will qualify you for a companion pass for the current and next calendar years.

    Reply

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