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In this post I wanted to look at six reasons you should consider applying for this card. In no particular order:
A sign-up bonus of 100,000 + 7,500 points
With this sign-up bonus you can earn:
- 100,000 Marriott Rewards bonus points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
- 7,500 bonus points when you add your first authorized user and they make a purchase within three months
That’s a massive sign-up bonus, and the biggest we’ve ever seen on this card. I value Marriott points at ~0.8 cents each, so to me 107,500 points are worth ~$860.
The ability to convert those points into 35,000+ Starpoints
Now that Marriott has taken over Starwood, keep in mind that points can be moved between Marriott Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest. Marriott Rewards points can be moved to Starpoints at a 3:1 ratio, meaning that 107,500 Marriott points would be worth ~35,800 Starpoints.
While there are plenty of great uses of Marriott points, the ability to transfer points between programs is awesome.
An annual free night certificate
The Marriott Rewards® Premier Credit Card offers an annual free night certificate on your account anniversary every year. This can be redeemed at a Category 1-5 property, which covers a majority of Marriott’s property. To me, this more than justifies the $85 annual fee, and I think a lot of people should be able to maximize the value of that.
If you’re looking for another Chase card that gets you annual free night certificate, consider the IHG® Rewards Club Select Credit Card. That card has only a $49 annual fee, and the free night certificate has no caps — it can be redeemed at any IHG property.
15 nights towards status annually
The Marriott Rewards® Premier Credit Card offers 15 elite qualifying nights towards status annually. This means you automatically get Marriott Silver status for as long as you have the card, and then you’d need only 35 nights or 60 nights to earn Gold or Platinum, respectively.
On top of that, you get an additional elite qualifying night for every $3,000 spent, so this is the best card for spending your way to Marriott Platinum status, if you’re so inclined.
If you’re a Marriott loyalist, this is a great way to get a status fast track. Do note that if you just want to earn status with Marriott as easily as possible, consider picking up The Platinum Card® from American Express, which comes with SPG Gold, and then that can be matched to Marriott Gold.
We don’t know how much longer the card will be around
Marriott has taken over Starwood, and in 2018 it’s expected that the Marriott Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest programs will be integrated. We don’t know what the future of the loyalty program will look like, and also don’t know what the future of the credit card partnership will look like.
It’s possible that Amex will take over the agreement, it’s possible that Chase will take over the agreement, or it’s possible that they both issue cards. Since a new loyalty program is being created, it’s also possible that there will be a new product altogether. The point is, we don’t know how much longer this exact product will continue to be around, which makes it worth considering.
The great value of Marriott’s Hotel + Air packages
One of the best uses of Marriott points are their Hotel + Air packages, where you can redeem points for a package consisting of airline miles and a week of hotel stays. In many cases these packages get you roughly the same number of miles as Starwood’s direct mileage transfers, plus you get a week of hotel stays. This is a fantastic value, and a reason to consider accruing Marriott points.
For example, here are the rates at which you can convert Marriott Rewards points into United miles:
|RewardsPlus Hotel + Air Package||7 Nights + 55,000 Miles||7 Nights + 77,000 Miles||7 Nights + 110,000 Miles||7 Nights + 132,000 Miles|
|Ritz Tier 1-3||350,000||370,000||400,000||420,000|
|Ritz Tier 4-5||470,000||490,000||520,000||540,000|
A word of caution
Do note that the Marriott Rewards® Premier Credit Card is subjected to Chase’s 5/24 rule, meaning you’re unlikely to be approved for the card if you’ve opened more than five accounts in the past 24 months. If this does apply to you, I’d recommend considering the IHG® Rewards Club Select Credit Card, which isn’t subjected to the rule. That card offers an annual free night certificate, Platinum status for as long as you have the card, and a 10% refund on points redemptions.
If you aren’t subjected to the 5/24 rule and don’t yet have a card like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, I’d highly recommend that as well.
The sign-up bonus we’re seeing at the moment on the Marriott Rewards® Premier Credit Card is the best I ever recall seeing. This is a card that’s worth holding onto long term for the annual free night certificate it offers, which more than justifies the annual fee, in my opinion.
On top of that, the card has a huge sign-up bonus that’s potentially worth 35,000+ Starpoints, and can also help you requalify for status with Marriott. If you don’t yet have this card but are eligible, I’d consider applying for it.