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Marriott Rewards 2009 Enhancements - 50% Platinum bonus

Marriott Rewards 2009 Enhancements - 50% Platinum bonus

 
Old Aug 26, 08, 9:36 am
  #1  
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Marriott Rewards 2009 Enhancements - 50% Platinum bonus

Marriott Rewards has announced enhancements to the program beginning January 15, 2009.

- No blackout dates for points redemption for standard rooms
- increase of Platinum member elite bonus from 30% to 50%
- 4th night free on a 3 night hotel redemption using points

http://www.marriott.com/rewards/learn/prgnews.mi
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Old Aug 26, 08, 9:38 am
  #2  
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whats the catch?

the first one that comes to mind will be some sort of inflation on redemption
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Old Aug 26, 08, 10:13 am
  #3  
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Points inflation in the redemption chart is exactly what I thought when I saw the 4th night free enhancement.
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Old Aug 26, 08, 10:32 am
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Don't be too paranoid.

I'd be really surprised if Marriott announced these improvements and instituted devaluations at the same time without any announcement.

I think these are improvements EXACTLY along the lines of what I had most hoped for:

1. More bonus points for higher level elites, the current % bonus is a little too modest to be a real incentive to stay with Marriott more.
2. A good value reward opp. for stays of less than a week, right now all of the best value uses of points are for stays of 7 days. Busy people can't stay an entire week away that often.
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Old Aug 26, 08, 10:35 am
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They all sound pretty good to me! ^
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Old Aug 26, 08, 10:36 am
  #6  
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Well, how much will these enhancements really change the program? First, the no black out dates may not really change redemptions very much. How many black out dates did most hotels really have? I do believe that blackout days are fairly rare. The problems with availability though is the capacity controls they put on the number of award rooms. And if Marriott isn't changing those, then item #1 doesn't change much.

Item #2, will add a few more points into the bank, but how many? What percentage of people staying at Marriott hotels are Plat elites? I suspect that in general it is a fairly small number. Add to that all we are talking about is 15 pts/$ rather than 13 pts/$ (not including any CC points.) This equates out to about a 2000 point increase if you have a 5 night, $200/night stay. I don't see that breaking the bank either. Its nice to have and definitely appreciated though.

Item #3, this one seems to be the real change in the program. But realize you would still be paying more points per night than if you order a 7 night award. So while this helps provide some flexibility in their program, if you want the best points per night rate, then the 7 night awards are still king.

So overall, I see these changes as nice to have, but not a major change in their program. Yes, Marriott could still increase/change/remove some of their existing awards. But I don't think they have to based on giving us these changes.
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Old Aug 26, 08, 10:45 am
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This is an interesting find - thanks satori - guess I'll wait and see what happens now, perhaps time to book any 2009 reservations using your points now and see what happens

But, this could be a genuine attempt to differentiate gold and platinum, which have for a long time been 'almost' the same.

So, if there are only changes to the platinum bonus (i.e. gold/silver remain the same) then it doesn't matter too much if the redemptions cost the same amount of 'more' as long as you are a platinum member as you'll start to get more points than gold/silver overall so it should benefit the plat members at the cost of gold/silver? Of course at the moment for me this is a good thing.... not everyone would see the same 'advantage' of course

I'm also curious what this means
No Blackout Dates: You’re free to redeem Marriott Rewards points for any available standard room at Marriott hotels worldwide. Because your trip should be on your schedule…
Something even more expensive than the current 'anytime awards'? Or just anytime awards at really 'anytime' as long as the hotel isn't full? It might be more worthwhile... but I love my points too much to pay double for a room using them atm
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Old Aug 26, 08, 11:11 am
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Can some one point me to the correct link. I click on the link in the OP and its says nothing of the enhancements mentioned by the OP. Is everyone commenting on the OP's post, or information they actually have seen on Marriott.com? TIA for clarification.
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Old Aug 26, 08, 11:39 am
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Marriott has changed the page since the OP noted the changes. I saw the page when the OP first wrote his post, and it mentioned the changes right below the section on CLEAR for platinum members.

Last edited by VA1379; Aug 26, 08 at 11:45 am
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Old Aug 26, 08, 11:40 am
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Originally Posted by aaupgrade View Post
Can some one point me to the correct link. I click on the link in the OP and its says nothing of the enhancements mentioned by the OP. Is everyone commenting on the OP's post, or information they actually have seen on Marriott.com? TIA for clarification.
I think that it was a Marriott mistake to reveal this news ... you're right - the link has gone from the web-page now, but it was definitely there an hour or two ago!

Probably the concierge saw this post and realised it shouldn't have been posted yet (if at all).

We shall have to see what happens in the near future!
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Old Aug 26, 08, 11:43 am
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Originally Posted by aaupgrade View Post
Can some one point me to the correct link. I click on the link in the OP and its says nothing of the enhancements mentioned by the OP. Is everyone commenting on the OP's post, or information they actually have seen on Marriott.com? TIA for clarification.
Quite interesting indeed. The enhancement information has been pulled from the website.
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Old Aug 26, 08, 12:01 pm
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Easy come easy go

Maybe they had not offically vetted the change
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Old Aug 26, 08, 12:26 pm
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I sure hope the changes are for real. They would be a nice little kicker on top of the existing Platinum benefits.

--Jon


P.S. For award stays, if you book more than 3 nights, will you still get an extra night free or perhaps two extra nights free for 6+ day awards. I guess we will have to wait for the official announcement before we can inquire about the details.
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Old Aug 26, 08, 1:32 pm
  #14  
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Earlier today, information about possible changes to the Marriott Rewards program was mistakenly published on Marriott.com.

Based upon your feedback regarding blackout dates and capacity controls, we are evaluating potential program enhancements. We have nothing to announce at this time. We’re sorry for any confusion this might have caused and we'll be sure to provide advanced notice of any future changes.

Regards,

Ira
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Old Aug 26, 08, 1:35 pm
  #15  
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Oops. I hate it when that happens.

But it is nice to see that Marriott is looking at making some positive changes to the program rather than negative/restrictive changes. ^
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