A major missing component to the merger of Marriott, The Ritz-Carlton, and Starwood has been a single loyalty program, but that’s all about to change with Marriott Bonvoy, Marriot’s new rewards program.
Though loyalty programs Marriott Rewards, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards, and SPG were integrated in August 2018 (in which Marriott and Ritz points retained their value, and Starwood points were converted at a ratio of 1:3), the three separate programs remained in so much that points bookings could still be made via the separate apps and websites.
Well, on February 13, 2019, three will officially become one when the SPG and Ritz-Carlton Rewards apps are deactivated and the Marriott app updates with the new Marriott Bonvoy branding. New credit card branding for existing Marriott, Ritz-Carlton, and SPG cardholders will follow.
The new program is more cosmetic than anything else. Most of the program changes in terms of status titles and levels and elite benefits changed with the integration in August. What’s changing now will be the actual names of the program’s top two tiers—Platinum Premier Elite becomes Marriott Bonvoy Titanium Elite and Platinum Premier Elite with Ambassador becomes Marriott Bonvoy Ambassador Elite—and the merger of Marriott Rewards Moments and SPG Moments (experiences bookable with points) to create Marriott Bonvoy Moments.
Elite status levels will now play out as follows:
Marriott Bonvoy Silver Elite 10–24 nights/year
Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite 25–49 nights/year (or free benefit to holders of The Platinum Card® from American Express)
Marriott Bonvoy Platinum Elite 50–74 nights/year
Marriott Bonvoy Titanium Elite 75–99 nights/year
Marriott Bonvoy Ambassador Elite 100+ nights/year plus $20K Qualified Spend
Once the dust settles from the rebranding, Marriott plans to introduce an eighth category with a standard redemption rate of 85,000 points, beginning in March 2019. Off-peak and peak pricing will also be introduced with point redemption rates varying by season and times of the year (though remaining in a specified range).
That’s definitely not good news, but on the up side Marriott has already indicatedwhich properties will be considered category 8 come March 2019. Between now and February 28, 2019, members can book category 8 properties at category 7 pricing and save up to 25,000 points per night.