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Old May 26, 04, 4:34 pm   #91
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: ROA - UA 1K, Marriott Platinum, Hilton Diamond
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Tide has said it well. Hilton and Marriott are about the same when it comes to giving upgrades. I do about 180 nights a year, usually 90 with Hilton and 90 with Marriott. I would say I get upgraded 50% of the time without asking at both Hilton and Marriott and the other 50% I ask and usually get something better.

Don't listen to that BS going on in the Marriott forum. It's four or so people who get pissed because they don't get the presidential suite everywhere they stay (go figure - their attitudes at check-in I'm sure have nothing to do with the lack of upgrades ). And to those who say Starwood always upgrades, that's great. When you pay close to twice as much as you would at Hilton or Marriott you should get a suite everytime. Starwood is great when you only travel to the 20 largest cities in the USA but unfortunately most folks aren't that lucky.

As for your question - you'll get about the same with a diamond card as you would with a platinum Marriott card. I have done well this year with the double points at Hilton but I think some of their awards are a bit too many points.

Good luck in the decision!!
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Old May 26, 04, 4:44 pm   #92
 
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i had a friend who was top tier hyatt. he was gold or diamond hhonors the year b4 and wanted to rebuild his status. i told him to ask hhonors if they will comp him based on his status at hyatt.

bottomline: hhonors will NOT comp anyone to diamond. however, they offered my friend a fast track to diamond deal (Xstays or Ynights in 90days IIRC)which basically still works out to the same number of nights/stays on a per annum basis. this happened earlier this year i believe.
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Old May 26, 04, 5:17 pm   #93
 
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Hilton does comp status. Just because someone knows one person who did not get comp'd, don't believe it's true for everyone. As with any hotel or airline, if you don't get the answer you want on the phone with them, hang up and phone back until you do. Usually within three calls you'll find the right person and get what you were looking for
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Old May 26, 04, 5:34 pm   #94
 
Join Date: May 2002
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saimike
bottomline: hhonors will NOT comp anyone to diamond. however, they offered my friend a fast track to diamond deal (Xstays or Ynights in 90days IIRC)which basically still works out to the same number of nights/stays on a per annum basis. this happened earlier this year i believe.
I was comped Diamond at Hilton and just took a phone call and a fax too. I think someone at the Diamond desk got greedy when they say 92 nights at Marriott, 114 at Starwood and 27 at Hyatt.

As someone was comped to Diamond just a few months ago and has been a Platinum at Marriott for several years, I would have to agree that the two programs are about the same with Marriott having a slight edge. Yes, it does require more nights to make Marriott Platinum. And if you don't think you can make the 75, then by all means go for Diamond. If you can make 75 nights, then I'd go for Marriott as you get much more consistent service and an upgrade to at least the conceirge/club level. I mostly stay with Hilton at Hilton Garden Inns (in my opinion this brand is the star of the Hilton family) to avoid Courtyards/Fairfield Inns as I really don't like them. In general I try and stay at Renaissance as much as possible as those hotels have somewhat of a boutique feel to them (each is distinct) and my upgrade success rate has been higher. Marriotts simply have ugly furnishings but the treatment is great generally. Hilton is great sometimes and sometimes not, but then I have only experienced 5 full-service Hilton brand hotels. If you travel internationally,then Hilton would probably work better for you than Marriott. Marriott only seems to have presence in capital cities (UK being an exception) of major countries where American do business but you can find Hiltons even in smaller (3rd world) countries.

I also make Platinum at Starwood every year but as stated you have to travel to larger cities for Starwood to work for you. I usually make Platinum here based on stays rather than nights with last year (had a long project in NYC) being an exception.

Last edited by zakami; May 26, 04 at 8:44 pm.
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Old May 26, 04, 5:46 pm   #95
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
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Programs: UA1P MM, Hilton Dia, SPG Lifetime Gold, Hertz Gold
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UAPremierExecMRE
MIKEM, you are correct. The lack of upgrades is one of my biggest complaints. They claim to give you the best available room (I understand "room" is not the same as "suite") but it never happens. I never take the first room they give me, I always tell them to pick the 3rd room down on the list of rooms they had planned for me and that's the one I want. Prior to this I always seemed to get rooms next to the ice/vending room or the elevator shaft. With Marriott's new Platinum Premier level I worry the value of Platinum will be diluted.
UAPremierExecMRE,
The properties you stay at have a huge impact on upgrades. Some MR hotels have only a couple suites. The only way you are going to know is to make the switch. Spend the 1-2 hours getting comp to Diamond. Then start staying at some Hiltons. You will know very shortly what the deal is. I would definitely do this to give yourself a piece of mind.
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Old May 27, 04, 2:19 am   #96
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MIKEM
The properties you stay at have a huge impact on upgrades. Some MR hotels have only a couple suites. The only way you are going to know is to make the switch. Spend the 1-2 hours getting comp to Diamond. Then start staying at some Hiltons. You will know very shortly what the deal is. I would definitely do this to give yourself a piece of mind.
I agree with your first and second sentence. But not with the rest.

It is absolutely correct that the properties have a huge impact on upgrades.

Every chain has properties that give you all the expected benefits including wonderful upgrades and every chain has properties where you have to ask and still get nothing.

That is the case with Marriott. Hilton. Starwood. Hyatt. And all the other chains.

You may have luck with a destination and a hotel. You can find a list of "good" and "bad" properties in each hotel forum on Ft.com. The Starwood Lurker opened a thread for members to write about their "refused" upgrades. I'm pretty sure that SPG cares about this list and puts a lot of effort to improve. At the end, you find the same hotels again and again. Nothing really changes. Is SPG a bad programme because of this? No.
If you go to London, you'll find out the Marriott properties are far superior compared to Hilton. But don't conclude that Marriott is better everywhere ... you'll also find many examples the other way round. Maybe Hilton has more "better" properties. I don't know and I also don't think that these absolute figures would be important because you won't stay in all of the hotels belonging to a chain. At the end, it all depends where you (have to) go.
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Old May 27, 04, 5:55 pm   #97
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Denver, Colorado
Programs: UA: PremierExec, Marriott Rewards: Platinum, Hertz: 5 Star
Posts: 34
Thanks for the info, I really appreciate it. Sounds to me like there isn't any consistancy with Marriott or Hilton and I may be best off where I'm at.
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Old Mar 30, 05, 2:03 pm   #98
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
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It's been about 4 years since this subject matter was posted, but would you still stand by HHonors today in 2005? I'm having similar issues determining between Marriott and HHonor points. As well as Delta versus United.
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Old Mar 30, 05, 2:19 pm   #99
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lotuss77
It's been about 4 years since this subject matter was posted, but would you still stand by HHonors today in 2005? I'm having similar issues determining between Marriott and HHonor points. As well as Delta versus United.
I'm active in both programs and like them both for different reasons.

What level of hotel do you use the most? Where do you travel? How many elite-qualifying room-nights do you do per year? What do you expect in terms of a reward? (e.g., big vacations to high-end properties, easy-to-get weekend stays, air miles, etc.)

Depending on your answers, one might be perfect to consolidate in - or the best answer could be to split stays.
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Old Mar 30, 05, 2:48 pm   #100
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techgirl's 2001 explanation of why the Hilton award program is better than Marriott's is as sound today as it was when she wrote it. She compared mid tier; if you stay enough for top tier, it takes 28 stays with Hilton and 75 nights with Marriott. It's a no brainer which I'd chose.
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Old Mar 30, 05, 3:20 pm   #101
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: ORD, LGA, DFW, IAH
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apirchik
HHonors gives you elite bonus points on all the family of hotels while Marriott Rewards gives bonus points on full-service hotels only.
Marriott Rewards elite bonus points are earned at all brands of Marriott hotels. For the full-service hotels, you earn bonus points on all folio charges excluding room tax, while at Courtyard and below you earn bonus points only on the room rate charges.
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Old Mar 30, 05, 3:59 pm   #102
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The Ten Second Overview

Advantages of Marriott:
- In most markets, Marriott has more properties to pick from.
- Marriott offers a couple of different true long-stay flavors and many more of them. Hilton has one, and fewer of them.
- Mainline Marriotts tend to be more consistent across the board than mainline Hiltons. (Although both have great properties, Marriott has fewer crummy properties.)
- Marriott has sliding-scale rewards, making shorter award stays possible at reasonable levels. Hilton's awards are nice, but are intended to be consumed in blocks of exactly six nights.
- Marriott tends to have a reasonable number of passable properties in their Cat 1 & 2 levels, good for folks to want cheap "weekend getaway" type awards. I hardly ever see even a clean Hampton in Cat 1 with HH.

Advantages of HHonors:
- Easier to quickly rack piles of points. Points & Points, better bonuses, better credit card, etc.
- If you are a high-end business traveler, you'll be quickly rewarded with Diamond Status, thanks to your Base Points accumulation.
- The elite levels are easier to get and better than Marriott levels. Read posts here from all levels - Silver to Diamond/Platinum. It's a somewhat resounding consensus that, within a given property quality level, the HH elite gets better incremental treatment than the MR elite.
- If you roadtrip a lot, the Hampton brand is far superior to the Fairfield brand.
- You can turn air miles into HH points at a decent conversion rate if you need a quick bump up to a six-night award. With Marriott, it's harder to fortify your point total from other sources if you want to quickly jump to a major award level. Double-convert through Diner's Club is okay in an emergency situation, but not a spiffy convert rate.

Probably more than I've missed...those are just off the top of my head.
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Old Jan 5, 06, 9:31 pm   #103
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Atlanta
Programs: LH SEN, DL PL, HHonor Diamond, Marriott Platinum
Posts: 86
Marriott vs. Hilton

Hi all,
What program do you think is better - Marriott Rewards vs. Hilton Honnors? I want to consider all possible aspects:
- points cost (earned per dollar/spent per free night);
- points earned per stay (only X points/dollar or additional promotions);
- points earned from affiliated credit cards (paying for staying in the hotel and for regular payments outside);
- availability of rooms for award points;
- upgrades and occasional promotions;

did I forget something?

I'm a dimond in Hilton but this year will have to stay a lot in Waldorf (Germany) where there is no Hilton. So I have no other choice but to use Marriot at least for those nights. The question is should I switch to Marriot completelly or not. It's hard to collect in two banks:-)

I'll cross-post it in the Marriott forum to ask their opinions but if moderators decide it can be managed differently please fix it as needed.

Last edited by Canarsie; Jan 5, 06 at 10:05 pm. Reason: This milepost was merged into this thread unedited.
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Old Jan 5, 06, 11:18 pm   #104
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 200
How many nights a year do you stay, and how many are in Waldorf? I would do at least 50 with Marriott so you can get gold and after that it depends on how many more nights you have each year.
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Old Jan 6, 06, 8:30 am   #105
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rytrom
Hi all,
What program do you think is better - Marriott Rewards vs. Hilton Honnors? I want to consider all possible aspects:
- points cost (earned per dollar/spent per free night);
You'll have to do this assessment on your own: it varies too widely depending on where you do your paid stays and what kind of awards you want. A frequent Residence Inn guest will have very different numbers from a frequent full-service Marriott/Renaissance guest. Someone seeking 250,000-point travel packages will have a very different ROI perspective than someone just looking to quickly earn a couple of free nights for a weekend getaway.

By and large, the two programs are in the same ballpark in terms of overall rewards per dollar spent, IMHO.

Quote:
- points earned per stay (only X points/dollar or additional promotions);
Varies by brand with Marriott, varies by your profile settings for HHonors. Run the numbers based on your own stay pattern and preferences...all of the information is available online. The good news is that in whichever program you pick, you get Silver status with the credit card, so factor that in from Stay #1.

Quote:
- points earned from affiliated credit cards (paying for staying in the hotel and for regular payments outside)
MR Visa is weak as a primary-spend card. HH Amex is pretty good - just a tad bit weaker than SPG Amex.

Quote:
- availability of rooms for award points;
Varies widely. YMMV. I've had reasonably good luck with both programs, but when I've done major awards (Hawaii, etc.) I've worked around airline award availability first. So by default I'm not trying to get rooms at max-peak seasons in most cases.

Quote:
- upgrades and occasional promotions;
They are similar: both give me nice rooms as a Gold. C-level, corner rooms, ocean views, "junior suites", that kind of thing.

Neither of them give me true suites except on extremely rare and unpredictable occasions.

Quote:
I'm a dimond in Hilton but this year will have to stay a lot in Waldorf (Germany) where there is no Hilton. So I have no other choice but to use Marriot at least for those nights. The question is should I switch to Marriot completelly or not. It's hard to collect in two banks:-)
I actively collect in two banks - Marriott (by staying at the hotels) and SPG (via the Amex) - and I know I can easily raise more HH points when I need 'em from my air miles. I do this by design: I want the diversity to help out when awards are tough to find, plus SPG has the added bonus that you can use small amounts of points for weekend stays without taking a bit value hit vs. the return you'd get on a big 5-nighter at a high-end property.

So...whether to cut over cold turkey kind of depends on what level at Marriott that would yield. Based on what others say about HH Diamond, I probably wouldn't want to give that up. It probably depends on how many nights you plan to do and how important the specific Diamond perks are to you. (You can always keep HH Gold simply by doing some spending on the Amex.) The only thing that sucks about Marriott is you have to do 50 nights as a Silver: while they've made Silver the giveaway level, there isn't any intermediate ground in there at 20-30 nights where you bump up.
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