Following Hilton’s lead, Marriott is now making it possible to earn top tier elite status exclusively through credit card spend. Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you look at it), it’s not nearly as lucrative as Hilton’s offer, whereby $40,000 of spend on their American Express Surpass card will get you Diamond status. Instead, Marriott is offering one elite qualifying night for ever $3,000 spent on their credit card. You already get Silver status and ten qualifying nights just for having the card, so you’d need to spend $120,000 for Gold status (which requires 50 nights) or $195,000 for Platinum status (which requires 75 nights), taking into account the 10 night “head start” you get.
Unless you spend millions of dollars a year on credit cards, this probably isn’t worth it just for the status. Marriott has the highest qualification tiers of any program and I would argue the fewest benefits (although it’s a tight race between them and Hilton). But if you otherwise stay at Marriott hotels and consistently find yourself just below the next tier, this is very tempting.
Loyalty Traveler has the full breakdown here.