Leveraging Titanium benefits of a friend

Old Sep 11, 19, 9:22 pm
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2019
Programs: Air Canada
Posts: 3
Leveraging Titanium benefits of a friend

Hi everyone - question for the Bonvoy experts, and apologies in advance if this is in the wrong forum:

- I am a marriott Silver Member
- A close friend of mine is a Titanium Member
- I recently booked a 5 night Cat 7 stay on points
- My friend has asked me if I would be willing to call the hotel to update my reservation to have him as the primary reservation holder, and myself as the secondary
- He also asked that I update the Bonvoy account # associated with the reservation to his account number.

The way he explained it to me is that upon checkin at the hotel, I would be eligable to leverage the titanium perks while he would collect the nights.

I just want to validate and fact check if this would work. I am staying at a Ritz property next week and a suite upgrade would be incredible.

Thank you!
scandalous42 is offline  
Old Sep 11, 19, 9:39 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Nov 2016
Programs: SPG100, United GS, HA P70K
Posts: 80
This is why we canít have nice things.

It might work, it might not. It depends on the front desk agent. He would need to be present at check-in and have his CC on file for incidentals.

Please donít do this as itís expressly against the BonVoy program rules and it takes away a potential upgrade from someone who has earned their status. If you want Titanium Elite works, earn it!
damnyourefine is offline  
Old Sep 11, 19, 9:58 pm
  #3  
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: SF Bay Area
Programs: None - previously UA
Posts: 2,758
Originally Posted by scandalous42 View Post
Hi everyone - question for the Bonvoy experts, and apologies in advance if this is in the wrong forum:

- I am a marriott Silver Member
- A close friend of mine is a Titanium Member
- I recently booked a 5 night Cat 7 stay on points
- My friend has asked me if I would be willing to call the hotel to update my reservation to have him as the primary reservation holder, and myself as the secondary
- He also asked that I update the Bonvoy account # associated with the reservation to his account number.

The way he explained it to me is that upon checkin at the hotel, I would be eligable to leverage the titanium perks while he would collect the nights.

I just want to validate and fact check if this would work. I am staying at a Ritz property next week and a suite upgrade would be incredible.

Thank you!
The terms of the Marriott program do not allow you to transfer benefits of status. But Marriott seems to letting people do this so there is a grey area...

But the whole arrangement of you getting benefits and him getting nights sounds a bit sketchy - worst case this might trigger an audit and likely wonít result in the hoped for outcome.
MSPeconomist likes this.
escapefromphl is offline  
Old Sep 12, 19, 5:17 am
  #4  
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 1,553
Originally Posted by scandalous42 View Post
Hi everyone - question for the Bonvoy experts, and apologies in advance if this is in the wrong forum:

- I am a marriott Silver Member
- A close friend of mine is a Titanium Member
- I recently booked a 5 night Cat 7 stay on points
- My friend has asked me if I would be willing to call the hotel to update my reservation to have him as the primary reservation holder, and myself as the secondary
- He also asked that I update the Bonvoy account # associated with the reservation to his account number.

The way he explained it to me is that upon checkin at the hotel, I would be eligable to leverage the titanium perks while he would collect the nights.

I just want to validate and fact check if this would work. I am staying at a Ritz property next week and a suite upgrade would be incredible.

Thank you!
This will probably seem harsh, but if you try this and get nailed, I would hope that you and the friend would be permanently banished from the Bonvoy program. I am an LT Titanium and strongly object when people try to game the system, as appears to be the case here.

Last edited by SCEflyer; Sep 12, 19 at 5:17 am Reason: Sp
SCEflyer is offline  
Old Sep 12, 19, 5:29 am
  #5  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2019
Programs: Air Canada
Posts: 3
Hi all - thanks for the feedback. I was checking to see if this was a common loophole. Given this is a violation of policy I will not be moving forward. Thanks all.
Kacee, markko, Statman and 1 others like this.
scandalous42 is offline  
Old Sep 12, 19, 7:09 am
  #6  
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: SF Bay Area
Programs: None - previously UA
Posts: 2,758
Originally Posted by SCEflyer View Post
This will probably seem harsh, but if you try this and get nailed, I would hope that you and the friend would be permanently banished from the Bonvoy program. I am an LT Titanium and strongly object when people try to game the system, as appears to be the case here.
Thatís what basically everyone in this thread below (and others) is doing, gaming the system to get their friends and family benefits while they pick up the points. Either Marriott has a strict policy and doesnít allow anyone other than primary to get benefits or use award booking or we have this situation where benefits are effectively diluted because 20 extra elites are checking in except they arenít really there. It makes no difference if itís your daughter, spouse or some guy at work. Marriott has a method of gifting points so the cert gets issued in someone elseís name but no one seems to do that because staff arenít trained, it canít be booked online and the recepient doesnít gets any elite benefits and you donít get the elite nights.


How to properly put award redemption stay in family member's name (I'm not staying)
escapefromphl is offline  
Old Sep 12, 19, 9:06 am
  #7  
Suspended
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: SFO
Programs: UA 1K 1MM; AS MVPG75K; Marriott Titanium; Hilton Diamond (Aspire); Hyatt Refugeeist
Posts: 41,378
Originally Posted by escapefromphl View Post
That’s what basically everyone in this thread below (and others) is doing, gaming the system to get their friends and family benefits while they pick up the points. l
IMO there's a significant difference between using your points to book a room for friends or family, with no intent to game the system, and adding a non-guest's name to the reservation for the express purpose of gaming the system. The former is expressly allowed by the program rules, the latter is fraud.

Fwiw, while I haven't followed the linked thread, last time I booked a room on points for family members, I did not get stay credit, and they did not get my benefits. Nor did I expect either.
markko, TerryK, Horace and 1 others like this.
Kacee is offline  
Old Sep 12, 19, 9:29 am
  #8  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Minneapolis: DL DM charter 2.3MM
Programs: A3*Gold, SPG Plat, HyattDiamond, MarriottPP, LHW exAccess, ICI, Raffles Amb, NW PE MM, TWA Gold MM
Posts: 83,823
To get nights credit, the account holder is required to STAY and PAY. Anyone cheating on this should be permanently kicked out of the program. There are too many elites anyway; we don't need more fraudulent ones.
Kacee, CCIE_Flyer and Tanic like this.
MSPeconomist is offline  
Old Sep 12, 19, 9:52 am
  #9  
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: SF Bay Area
Programs: None - previously UA
Posts: 2,758
Originally Posted by MSPeconomist View Post
To get nights credit, the account holder is required to STAY and PAY. Anyone cheating on this should be permanently kicked out of the program. There are too many elites anyway; we don't need more fraudulent ones.
Marriott has no way to know if the account holder is staying and paying and hence if fraud is being committed. I quite frankly think they happily turn a blind eye to this practice, kicking people out who intentionally or unintentionally get credit for relatives staying would end up hurting their bottom line.
escapefromphl is offline  
Old Sep 12, 19, 9:59 am
  #10  
Suspended
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: SFO
Programs: UA 1K 1MM; AS MVPG75K; Marriott Titanium; Hilton Diamond (Aspire); Hyatt Refugeeist
Posts: 41,378
Originally Posted by escapefromphl View Post
Marriott has no way to know if the account holder is staying and paying and hence if fraud is being committed.
Sure they do. At many properties, they will not register a guest without seeing picture ID. This is standard at most locations outside the US, somewhat inconsistent within the US.
CO-PLAT and Horace like this.
Kacee is offline  
Old Sep 12, 19, 10:21 am
  #11  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Florida
Posts: 27,297
To tag on this thread - what if the Elite also is staying with an award booked out from the spousal non-elite account - would Marriott extend the Elite benefit to the booking? Must the Elite name and number added to the booking also?
Happy is offline  
Old Sep 12, 19, 10:28 am
  #12  
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: SF Bay Area
Programs: None - previously UA
Posts: 2,758
Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
Sure they do. At many properties, they will not register a guest without seeing picture ID. This is standard at most locations outside the US, somewhat inconsistent within the US.
But they allow you to add a guest to the reservation and most times in the US they will provide full benefits to those guests, without primary being present. From Marriott's point of view, they have no way to know if this is intentional abuse or not. It's entirely random if the front desk allows it. They would need a system that actually physically matches an ID to account name to prevent fraud or they could force the front desk to do this with repercussions, but they don't, it's not a priority for Marriott.
escapefromphl is offline  
Old Sep 12, 19, 12:48 pm
  #13  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Minneapolis: DL DM charter 2.3MM
Programs: A3*Gold, SPG Plat, HyattDiamond, MarriottPP, LHW exAccess, ICI, Raffles Amb, NW PE MM, TWA Gold MM
Posts: 83,823
Be careful what you suggest. There are now facial recognition systems for boarding planes and it wouldn't be a stretch to extend this to hotel check in. Problem solved, although many of us wouldn't like the privacy implications even if it would save some time.
MSPeconomist is offline  
Old Sep 12, 19, 1:05 pm
  #14  
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: NYC
Programs: Hilton Diamond, SPG Gold Elite, Marriott Gold Elite, Hyatt Discoverist, Best Western Diamond Select
Posts: 189
I read these kinds of threads all over travel blogs and Facebook groups, and it never fails to amaze me how people think having status means that status is automatically extended to everyone they know. "I'm a [Hoity Toity Level] member, can I lend out my status to family and friends and co-workers and their family and friends and 12 kids who accompany them, and get [Hoity Toity Level] benefits for all of them?" YOU are the member. YOU have the status. Not everyone you've ever known. Every time you do this, you're diluting the program, overstretching it, and eventually will be responsible for benefits being rescinded. You only have to look at how fast airline lounge benefits have degraded to see that. Just stop. Your friends and family and their families can get their own memberships and benefits if they want them.
MSPeconomist likes this.
Freckles68 is offline  
Old Sep 12, 19, 1:08 pm
  #15  
 
Join Date: May 2002
Programs: AAdvantage Platinum, United Silver, Marriott Titanium Elite
Posts: 1,679
From the Marriott Bonvoy Terms & Conditions:

2.1.d. Qualifying Stay. A ďStay" or ďQualifying StayĒ means all consecutive nights a Member registers for, and personally pays and stays at any Participating Property, for which the room is billed to the Member.

OP asked if a Silver Elite member could get Titanium Elite recognition because a Titanium Elite member offered to lend his name and Marriott Bonvoy number for a reservation, while not personally paying and staying.

In post 5, OP wisely decided against this scheme, based on feedback here.

Is it possible to set up a ruse to deceive the front desk? Maybe, at least at properties that don't check IDs and don't look carefully at credit cards. But it seems like an incredibly bad idea.

Last edited by Horace; Sep 12, 19 at 2:26 pm Reason: typo
Horace is online now  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread