As I mentioned in the earlier post that there are sweeping changes coming to SPG/Marriott Program. However, there are minor changes that haven’t been highlighted but definitely affects us a lot of us. They are in no way I would consider minor changes.
I am sort of horrified that the changes are coming on August 1, 2018 vs January 1 2019 when it is ideal time to get the significant advantage of both the program. This only gives us a bit over three months notice of the new program being introduced. In general I’d prefer more notice for such major program changes, though at the same time I’m personally quite pleased with the new program, and will benefit from it being introduced sooner rather than later.
The way I see it, consumers both win and lose because of this decision. While I think the new program is mostly very well thought out, I’m not sure I get Marriott’s motive here.
The good part is Marriott is dangling Platinums to everyone who is willing to get it.
Marriott is offering transitionary status
As of August of this year, all three loyalty programs are moving to Marriott’s platform, which will obviously be a huge transition, given the number of members we’re talking about. Marriott Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest are very different loyalty programs, and in order to avoid pulling a bait-and-switch and hugely changing elite benefits mid-tier, a lot of people will see a short term status boost.
Specifically, here’s how status transitions will work this year for those who earned Marriott Rewards status:
The most noteworthy thing here is that Starwood Preferred Guest Gold and Marriott Rewards Gold members will be upgraded to Platinum status in August, and that will be valid through the end of the membership year (which is early next year).
Yes, just about everyone is getting Marriott Platinum status this year.
What benefits will Marriott Platinum members receive?
Marriott Platinum members will receive the following benefits, among other things, as of August:
- Room upgrades subject to availability, including standard suites
- Executive lounge access, and the ability to choose restaurant breakfast as your welcome amenity at most brands
- 15 points per dollar spent (a 50% points bonus)
- Guaranteed 4PM late check-out, except at resort