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Say Hello to Marriott Bonvoy, launches Feb 13, 2019

Say Hello to Marriott Bonvoy, launches Feb 13, 2019

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Old Feb 24, 19, 9:53 am   -   Wikipost
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New Tier Names. This applies to Lifetime naming as well.

Platinum Premier Elite becomes Marriott Bonvoy Titanium Elite . (75 nights)
Platinum Premier Elite with Ambassador becomes Marriott Bonvoy Ambassador Elite. (100 nights + $20,000 spend)
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Old Jan 17, 19, 11:37 pm
  #211  
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
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Originally Posted by itsaboutthejourney View Post
The irony is that the person running loyalty for Marriott was the #2 guy at SPG. He's a good guy, but I have a feeling he doesn't have control over things like IT and communication with members as part of Marriott's massive corporate structure. I put blame on the CEO Sorenson who clearly hasn't backed up his own words that loyalty is key to this merger. He miscalculated that retaining SPG members is as simple as restructuring the program to being closer to the SPG model, not taking into account the customer experience Starwood worked so hard to align between loyalty, IT/mobile, customer care, loyalty point persons at each property, etc.
Try to listen in on an analyst call and let us know if they once mention "customer satisfaction."
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Old Jan 17, 19, 11:47 pm
  #212  
 
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Originally Posted by shoodawg View Post
I believe it's obvious that whoever is running the loyalty show at marriott couldn't care much less about legacy / long term starwood members. it's sort of like they've given us the finger. fortunately, we have other options.
switch to Hyatt, the customer experience is so much better
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Old Jan 18, 19, 12:47 am
  #213  
 
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You would think after the IT breach and the botched merging of the programs Marriott would send an encouraging positive message to its loyal customers to start the new year.

Well, unfortunately this was not the case. The email sent on Wednesday contained not one, not two, but three and possibly four pieces of unpleasant news/reminders of unpleasant upcoming changes.

1. Sure, Bonvoy is just a name and no big deal. But choosing such a ridiculous name makes it clear this was done with no customer input or focus groups, and little thought. This makes one wonder what other unpleasant changes will be forthcoming if this is how decisions are being made.

2. Renaming the two tiers above Platinum is great for people who are in the two tiers above Platinum. For people who have lifetime Platinum status, not so great. I donít travel much for business any more so I was hoping that lifetime Plat status would be useful for at least a couple of vacations a year. If this status continues to be degraded into an inferior status level and no higher lifetime status will now be available, this really is not positive news.

Sure, some people may still like to travel 75 nights a year when they are 70 or 80 years old, but a meaningful lifetime status level would be nice for many people.

Free status in other programs just for holding a credit card (Diamond in Hilton, at least Platinum in IHG, etc.) may become more valuable than earning lifetime Plat in um, Bonvoy. (At least Platinum status in Bonvoy is not currently available just by having a credit card as far as I know.)

3. An unpleasant reminder of the change to add a category 8 in March was given in the email. As if the huge point devaluation last August, the reduction in the Platinum amenity points for a stay, etc. wasnít enough.

4. A reminder of additional upcoming credit card changes after recent changes have already occurred was contained in the email. Since Marriott ďenhancementsĒ tend to be unpleasant changes made to benefit them, one can only imagine what updates are coming next.

Some good news though: A lot of people are booking B and Bs, serviced apartments, and other lodging options and really enjoy the amenities and price. Although there are a few Sheraton hotels I still love, this all may finally be the impetus to more fully explore these other options and not be concerned about points and status with mega hotel chains.
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Old Jan 18, 19, 3:00 am
  #214  
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
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Originally Posted by kaizen7 View Post
Shouldnt a hotel supposedly welcoming people instead of wishing them goodbye like bon voyage?
maybe they cannot wait you are leaving ...
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Old Jan 18, 19, 7:54 am
  #215  
 
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Originally Posted by sethMCOflyer View Post
Why didn't they just release these names back in August?

Or was the plan to have a terrible merger and then just change the name once they got it somewhat stabilized?
Couple factors here.
  1. Marriott didn't want to tick off the old Lifetime Plats (750 nights/2.0M points) by taking their grandfathered level and not grandfathering at the highest possible level. Technically the creation of new PP with ambassador created a new discrete rank but one that offered little benefit (Your24, 75% pts bonus for PP over 100% for PP w/ Amb, the Ambassador). Making it with PP w/ Amb made it sound like it was just PP w/ an Ambassador with no clear benefits (the majority of the MR platinum pool had never had an ambassador pre-merger, there were limited trials).
  2. Marriott also saw how the SPG LTPs (500 nights + 10 years at plat) were also outraged by the fact that they would be grandfathered below. They addressed the point of 750 Nights + 10 years pre-merger to give SPG Elites a bite of the new LTPP apple, and then point #1 applies for the SPG Elites that qualified for new LTPP to make LTPP w/ Amb seem minor in difference.
  3. Lightspeed PMS connected to Starwood Reservations computers couldn't properly reflect status above Platinum to the front desk clerk. There were other ways to get at this information, but this depended on the hotel management to go out of their way to do it and then convey that information to staff, versus it just popping up when an FDC interacted with a guest (checkin or otherwise). Now all of the Starwood properties (according to the timeline previously published) have been switched to MARSHA backened/Opera PMS, which properly reflects statuses above Platinum.
  4. Hotels had enough going on with benefits changes (Platinum breakfast benefit at more properties, late checkout being guaranteed and time changes for different elite pools, etc.) and the differences in hard benefits promised at property being virtually non-existent at ranks above Platinum that MR decided to just do one set of changes first, let properties adjust, then take care of it in the rebrand.
MR now gets to divorce itself of the legacy names (Rewards for Marriott and Preferred Guest for Starwood) and any previous gripes/complaints about the integration.

As information is given now (e.g. no mention of any elite benefits at Plat in below), elites at Platinum and below have no reason to complain (no reduction in benefits or increase in benefits for higher ranks).
Elites at Plat Premier or Plat Premier with Ambassador will be happy, because after being greeted as just merely Platinum at properties for months, it will be more likely that properties will properly recognize status for upgrades and other aspects of on property experience.

Rebrand occurs, celebration, properties roll out new materials, people learn their new metal (or rank in the case of Ambassador) and the properties learn the difference, time passes...

I have no crystal ball, but in addition to making the different ranks clearer with the change to Titanium and Ambassador names, it sets the precedent in the future (six months? A year from now? Longer?) to carve out future benefits changes, particularly for the 100 night + $20K eligible spend guests. 100 EQN + $20K is no longer the 75 night rank + ambassador in name, but one that has an entirely different name...
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Old Jan 18, 19, 8:08 am
  #216  
 
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The issue isn't the name. It's the massive devaluation that is two months out when peak/off-peak, Cat 8, and hotel cat realignment all hit at the same time and all diminish the value of the program.
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Old Jan 18, 19, 8:34 am
  #217  
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
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Originally Posted by C17PSGR View Post
I don't like the inconsistency and I realize some here have had problems in the integration but there is no objective basis to suggest that Marriott is (a) losing hotels at an unusual rate, (b) losing market share, or (c) facing an unusual drop in reservations. Frankly -- I'm a little surprised they didn't have a drop in reservations but the percentage of direct bookings from Marriott.com is actually up, compared to before the merger -- go figure.
I don't have data on reservations rates after the merger, but the 3rd quarter report showing the dip in net income vs previous year should be a good indication that there were clearly some bumps Marriott was facing due to the merger.

Marriott International Reports Third Quarter 2018 Results | Marriott News Center
Marriott’s reported net income totaled $483 million in the 2018 third quarter, compared to 2017 third quarter reported net income of $485 million. Reported diluted earnings per share (EPS) totaled $1.38 in the quarter, a 7 percent increase from reported diluted EPS of $1.29 in the year-ago quarter.
I have to admit, the whole merger did generate significant buzz for the brand, so they might have a spike in interest to the whole charade from new customers.
But after you peel away the ritzy marketing and videos, these new customers might not necessarily return.
Most importantly, if you peek closer and see so many unhappy loyal and high paying customers (mostly legacy SPG ones) receiving a lesser product in the loyalty program after the merge, the company is bound to bleed when these repeat customers shrink their bookings.
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Old Jan 18, 19, 10:37 am
  #218  
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I'm not sure what my status is with the merged company since I was Lifetime Platinum in both of the old programs.

However, we recently discovered a Hilton in our main market that is higher in quality than any of the nearby Marriott or Starwood locations (other than the Ritz-Carlton). So, after one stay, we bought the Amex card that immediately makes you Hilton Diamond and are now treated so much better by Hilton than we are by MT/SPG that we now look for Hiltons first.

The knock is that the points are worth even less than the Marriott Bonvoy points but you earn them quickly and there are almost as many places to use them. But being treated so much better by most Hiltons is enough to make us not worry about points.
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Old Jan 18, 19, 11:43 am
  #219  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
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Originally Posted by OssianBlue View Post
The issue isn't the name. It's the massive devaluation that is two months out when peak/off-peak, Cat 8, and hotel cat realignment all hit at the same time and all diminish the value of the program.
Sure, but try convincing that hundreds of posters in at least two lengthy FT threads complaining about the name. There's a set of people here who will instantly bemoan or ridicule anything Marriott has done since the merger -- sometimes even before they understand that a change may actually benefit them.

There have been a few good things and a few bad things in the merger. But there's a campaign to make every change seem bad. I'm not sure if people want sympathy or just to vent, but attacking things like "Bonvoy" or whether Titanium is a more precious metal than Platinum seems silly and childish to me. It's just names. If they had used Premier 1, 2, 3, etc. The Premier 1's would argue that 3 is a bigger and more valuable number...seriously, you can complain about anything if you try hard enough.

The complaining about stupid things actually makes it easier for Marriott to sneak in changes none of us will like, since they serve as a nice distraction -- what's one more negative thing when there are already "so many"?
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Old Jan 18, 19, 11:46 am
  #220  
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
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Originally Posted by phltraveler View Post
Couple factors here.
  1. Marriott didn't want to tick off the old Lifetime Plats (750 nights/2.0M points) by taking their grandfathered level and not grandfathering at the highest possible level. Technically the creation of new PP with ambassador created a new discrete rank but one that offered little benefit (Your24, 75% pts bonus for PP over 100% for PP w/ Amb, the Ambassador). Making it with PP w/ Amb made it sound like it was just PP w/ an Ambassador with no clear benefits (the majority of the MR platinum pool had never had an ambassador pre-merger, there were limited trials).
  2. Marriott also saw how the SPG LTPs (500 nights + 10 years at plat) were also outraged by the fact that they would be grandfathered below. They addressed the point of 750 Nights + 10 years pre-merger to give SPG Elites a bite of the new LTPP apple, and then point #1 applies for the SPG Elites that qualified for new LTPP to make LTPP w/ Amb seem minor in difference.
  3. Lightspeed PMS connected to Starwood Reservations computers couldn't properly reflect status above Platinum to the front desk clerk. There were other ways to get at this information, but this depended on the hotel management to go out of their way to do it and then convey that information to staff, versus it just popping up when an FDC interacted with a guest (checkin or otherwise). Now all of the Starwood properties (according to the timeline previously published) have been switched to MARSHA backened/Opera PMS, which properly reflects statuses above Platinum.
  4. Hotels had enough going on with benefits changes (Platinum breakfast benefit at more properties, late checkout being guaranteed and time changes for different elite pools, etc.) and the differences in hard benefits promised at property being virtually non-existent at ranks above Platinum that MR decided to just do one set of changes first, let properties adjust, then take care of it in the rebrand.
MR now gets to divorce itself of the legacy names (Rewards for Marriott and Preferred Guest for Starwood) and any previous gripes/complaints about the integration.

As information is given now (e.g. no mention of any elite benefits at Plat in below), elites at Platinum and below have no reason to complain (no reduction in benefits or increase in benefits for higher ranks).
Elites at Plat Premier or Plat Premier with Ambassador will be happy, because after being greeted as just merely Platinum at properties for months, it will be more likely that properties will properly recognize status for upgrades and other aspects of on property experience.

Rebrand occurs, celebration, properties roll out new materials, people learn their new metal (or rank in the case of Ambassador) and the properties learn the difference, time passes...

I have no crystal ball, but in addition to making the different ranks clearer with the change to Titanium and Ambassador names, it sets the precedent in the future (six months? A year from now? Longer?) to carve out future benefits changes, particularly for the 100 night + $20K eligible spend guests. 100 EQN + $20K is no longer the 75 night rank + ambassador in name, but one that has an entirely different name...

I would agree with all of this - and this is why I still think marriott is so short sighted regarding their elites. Rather than taking care of the truly high spenders (people coming up the ranks) they are worried about previous high spenders. It is just dumb. There are many people dumping marriott for other brands as the experience of marriott is far worse than the SPG experience. Another example is the point devaluation. Sure, it may have had to happen but it certainly did not have to happen at the same time they were screwing up loyalty accounts and irritating regular guests. Perhaps waiting 6 months and announcing it would have been better.

I just do not understand the thinking here - is there zero strategic thinking that happens at marriott? Do they only hire reactionary people who can only think one step ahead?
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Old Jan 18, 19, 11:52 am
  #221  
 
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Originally Posted by JBord View Post
There have been a few good things and a few bad things in the merger. But there's a campaign to make every change seem bad. I'm not sure if people want sympathy or just to vent, but attacking things like "Bonvoy" or whether Titanium is a more precious metal than Platinum seems silly and childish to me. It's just names. If they had used Premier 1, 2, 3, etc. The Premier 1's would argue that 3 is a bigger and more valuable number...seriously, you can complain about anything if you try hard enough.

The complaining about stupid things actually makes it easier for Marriott to sneak in changes none of us will like, since they serve as a nice distraction -- what's one more negative thing when there are already "so many"?
I think the new rewards program/tier names are stupid, but thatís not going to weigh in on my decision on how I value the program.

IMO, they really nerfed the value of their points when they made changes to the travel package. My job allows flexibility, so Iím actually pretty happy about the peak vs off-peak rates. Like you said, there are both good and bad changes to the program. Since I have not seen any discernible difference between platinum elite vs platinum Premier, I hope the introduction of titanium changes that... until then, Iíll be shifting some of my nights over to Hyatt
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Old Jan 18, 19, 12:46 pm
  #222  
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
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Sorry if I missed something in scrolling but can someone explain the lifetime mapping now?

If I recall, there was Lifetime Platinum Elite and Lifetime Platinum PREMIER Elite, the latter I think people were grandfathered into?

Are both now lifetime titanium? Or just the "Premier' is now Lifetime Titanium?
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Old Jan 18, 19, 12:57 pm
  #223  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
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Originally Posted by BaconSF View Post


IMO, they really nerfed the value of their points when they made changes to the travel package. My job allows flexibility, so Iím actually pretty happy about the peak vs off-peak rates. Like you said, there are both good and bad changes to the program. Since I have not seen any discernible difference between platinum elite vs platinum Premier, I hope the introduction of titanium changes that... until then, Iíll be shifting some of my nights over to Hyatt
What's "discernable" to you? You can view side by side benefit charts on the website. As a PPE, the only thing I've noticed as different since they introduced it, is that they still thank me for being Platinum at check-in. Which is perfectly fine with me as long as I get the benefits to which I'm entitled -- and I have.

You're right that there aren't huge benefit differences that are visible. A PPE should get more room upgrades, but how would you know unless you travel with a Platinum person everywhere you go? Personally, I'm not sure why there need to be huge differences...and the way that usually happens is a company devalues the lower tier rather than adds value to the upper tier, and I wouldn't want any tier to lose benefits.

Originally Posted by FlyinHawaiian320 View Post
Sorry if I missed something in scrolling but can someone explain the lifetime mapping now?

If I recall, there was Lifetime Platinum Elite and Lifetime Platinum PREMIER Elite, the latter I think people were grandfathered into?

Are both now lifetime titanium? Or just the "Premier' is now Lifetime Titanium?
Platinum = LT Platinum. Platinum Premier = LT Titanium.

Not saying this applies to you, but a number of people seem to be confused about Platinum. That status still exists, as does the corresponding LT status. There are no NEW changes to this 50-74 night status. All the changes are the 75 night and above statuses.
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Old Jan 18, 19, 1:01 pm
  #224  
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
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The outrageous thing to me about the travel packages is how they flat out lied for months about how the transition would happen. And did so quite intentionally. I'll not trust them again-just this week we had another example of the lies with the 75 night free night certs being changed to 2019 validity for selections Dec 31.

Edit: And the breakfast lies. And the upgrade lies.

Last edited by OssianBlue; Jan 18, 19 at 1:02 pm Reason: Adding lies.
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Old Jan 18, 19, 1:02 pm
  #225  
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
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Originally Posted by JBord View Post
What's "discernable" to you? You can view side by side benefit charts on the website. As a PPE, the only thing I've noticed as different since they introduced it, is that they still thank me for being Platinum at check-in. Which is perfectly fine with me as long as I get the benefits to which I'm entitled -- and I have.

You're right that there aren't huge benefit differences that are visible. A PPE should get more room upgrades, but how would you know unless you travel with a Platinum person everywhere you go? Personally, I'm not sure why there need to be huge differences...and the way that usually happens is a company devalues the lower tier rather than adds value to the upper tier, and I wouldn't want any tier to lose benefits.



Platinum = LT Platinum. Platinum Premier = LT Titanium.

Not saying this applies to you, but a number of people seem to be confused about Platinum. That status still exists, as does the corresponding LT status. There are no NEW changes to this 50-74 night status. All the changes are the 75 night and above statuses.
Thanks. Unfortunately it does apply to me . Has it been confirmed if Lifetime Titanium is an attainable status? Stay 'x' more nights and 'x' more yrs to get to it.
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