All the news seem to come out at once. We started this morning with the American Express Canada Press Release, which had a lot of confusion on whether the new earning ratios are in fact a devaluation. Now Marriott issued their own Press Release explaining some of the changes to their reward redemption schedule.
Below is a list of key changes.
- 52% of hotels will move to a lower redemption rate
- 31% will go higher
- 17% remain the same
This means that 6,300 hotels will be under 35,000 points per night. This is important for American Express cardholders who will be receiving the Free Award Night.
There will be a new Category 8 that will cost 25,000 more points per night, starting in early 2019. So you may want to redeem Category 7 hotels now to lock in the cheaper rate.
There will be a PointSavers Chart that will give members up to 20% savings on reward redemption at select properties.
Additional Earning Opportunies
Starting in August 2018, members will be able to earn points on all purchase (i.e. room, F&B, spa) made at all brands. This is an amazing change as it gives members more ways to earn points.
Additional Redemption Options
All members can instantly redeem points for meals, cocktails, spa treatments or anything else that can be charged to the room. For this redemption, 250 points is worth $1.
Points advance allows you to book a stay even before you have enough points for the reward redemption. The condition is that the balance of the points will need to be earned or purchased at least 14 days prior to check-in. This is helpful if you want to lock in a reward redemption when you were given warning that the redemption schedule will go up in the near future.
Travel Packages now include all SPG properties, instead of just SPG categories 3 & 4. Starting in August 2019, Marriott Rewards and SPG members can redeem points for airline miles and hotel stays at any of the 6,500 participating hotels.
Unfortunately, if this is going to be the final changes, I will need to re-track my thumbs up on the American Express SPG changes.
Either way, glad to at least see the majority of the hotels going down in categories.