After announcing price changes to select Starwood properties, more bad news is coming for Starwood Preferred Guest elites. The hotel chain corrected a previous statement on where SPG Gold elites will land in the new program, going down from Marriott Rewards Platinum to Gold when the programs come together in August.
Starwood Preferred Guest elites are getting more bad news as a result of Marriott’s plan to combine all three of their loyalty programs under one umbrella. Australian Business Traveller reports SPG Gold elite members will be effectively downgraded on August 1 by staying at the Gold Elite tier in the new program.
On April 16, 2018, Marriott held a grand announcement confirming that all three of their hotel loyalty programs – Marriott Rewards, Ritz-Carlton Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest – would come together under the Marriott Rewards brand. In the days after the announcement, SPG Gold elites understood when the merge is complete, they could be moved up to Marriott Rewards Platinum status by linking their SPG account with their Marriott Rewards account and matching status. In addition, holders of The Platinum Card from American Express may have also received Marriott Rewards Platinum status, as one of the benefits of the card is SPG Gold status.
Leaders for the hotel are now backtracking on those promises, instead offering Marriott Rewards Gold status for current SPG Gold members. Now, the only way to have Platinum status after August 1 is to stay 50 nights between Starwood and Marriott properties.
Under the new program, Marriott Gold members’ late checkout benefit extends to 2 p.m. where available and a 25 percent points bonus on hotel stays. Without the requisite 50 stays, current SPG Gold members could lose access to executive lounges, free breakfast and extra bonus points.
A spokesperson for Marriott confirmed to the travel publication that the original information was incorrect but did not go into further detail. It is unclear when the hotel company officially made the change.