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Marriott/Starwood merger closed; FAQs; Status Match; MR & SPG accounts can be linked

Marriott/Starwood merger closed; FAQs; Status Match; MR & SPG accounts can be linked

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Old Apr 9, 18, 5:15 pm   -   Wikipost
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Last edit by: SkiAdcock
Wiki Link
Deal closed Sep 23 - http://news.marriott.com/2016/09/mar...alty-benefits/

FAQ :
http://members.marriott.com/faq/#wil...to-one-program

Will Rewards and SPG be turning into one program?
These are two of the best programs in the industry, and we want you to benefit from everything that makes SPG and Rewards great. We donít anticipate that the two programs will come together before 2018, and we will keep you informed of any updates. In the meantime, thereís no change to how you book reservations, manage your accounts or earn Elite night credits, points and miles in the current programs

Status Matches
MR Platinum <--> SPG Platinum
MR Gold <--> SPG Gold
MR Silver <--> SPG Preferred Plus
MR Member <--> SPG Preferred

If your status changes (i.e. Gold->Plat) in one program, your status in the other program will be automatically upgraded within 24 hours per Marriott FAQ

You can now link your Marriott Rewards or Ritz-Carlton Rewards account with your SPG account.
To link your accounts, log in to either account at:
http://www.spg.com/linkmarriott
http://members.marriott.com/

It will be a 3:1 transfer ratio between MR-SPG

If I have Lifetime Status in one of the programs, will I also get it in the other program when I link my accounts?
This is the Official Answer : "We appreciate your loyalty! Lifetime Status is specific to the program that you earned it in. While linking accounts will not result in Lifetime Status in the other program, your Elite status will be matched to the same Elite tier in the other program. Any existing Lifetime Status you already hold within either program will still be enjoyed within that program. Weíre working on more ways to recognize your loyalty and Lifetime Status as we work towards harmonizing the programs, which we donít anticipate happening until 2018."

Transferring points from SPG to MR does NOT change lifetime MR points.

Transferring points from SPG to MR does NOT count as activity & therefore does not extend the expiration date of points.

SPG platinum member matched to MR plat and now interested in the MR - UA Silver status match ? Check here.


Updated Terms and Conditions for the two programs can be found at
http://members.marriott.com/terms-conditions/
http://www.starwoodhotels.com/prefer...spg_terms.html

Complete listing of all the hotel brands in the in the merged company :
http://www.marriott.com/marriott-brands.mi#ourbrands
http://www.marriott.com/Images/Brand...chitecture.png
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Old Sep 23, 16, 10:54 am
  #151  
 
Join Date: May 2002
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Originally Posted by SkiAdcock View Post
Hey I'm nervous on the Marriott side if they raise # of nights required. I'm currently LT Plat w/ Marriott.
Anyone who is currently Marriott Lifetime Silver, Lifetime Gold, or Lifetime Platinum is almost certainly safe, given that Marriott International is the surviving company. I can't imagine Marriott saying, "Ha ha, we lied when we said lifetime and now we're revoking your lifetime status until you reach a higher threshold."

I also assume anyone who already has lifetime status with SPG will be treated well when the programs are combined.

That doesn't mean there won't be new lifetime requirements once the programs are combined, but only to achieve a newer higher lifetime tier.

I would not be surprised to see a new level that's higher than Marriott Platinum (probably at 100 nights), with additional benefits, when the programs are combined -- with a new threshold to achieve the lifetime version of that level.
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Old Sep 23, 16, 10:56 am
  #152  
 
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I'm a Marriott Plat with 100+ nights this year. I just linked to my SPG account. I know status is matched, but is 'super' elite levels like Ambassador status also matched?
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Old Sep 23, 16, 11:01 am
  #153  
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Originally Posted by yngdiego View Post
I'm a Marriott Plat with 100+ nights this year. I just linked to my SPG account. I know status is matched, but is 'super' elite levels like Ambassador status also matched?
NO. Only your basic elite status is matched--so you as MR Plat are now SPG Plat ONLY.

The same is true for me: as an SPG Plat100, I am only MR Plat...and don't get PP or any Elite Concierge.
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Old Sep 23, 16, 11:03 am
  #154  
 
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Originally Posted by bhrubin View Post
NO. Only your basic elite status is matched--so you as MR Plat are now SPG Plat ONLY.

The same is true for me: as an SPG Plat100, I am only MR Plat...and don't get PP or any Elite Concierge.
Well then I won't ever be staying at a SPG property!
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Old Sep 23, 16, 11:03 am
  #155  
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Ritz-Carlton and EDITION awards are LACKING

Be forewarned! I've tried to search for some EDITION and Ritz-Carlton award stays using MR points...and found most are unavailable--even though what look to be standard entry level rooms are available for cash.

In EVERY case where the RC or EDITION is not available for an award stay, the comparable SPG options are ALWAYS available for an award stay: StR, LuxColl, and W.

That doesn't bode well for this new "matched status and points" nor for the award availability for the eventually merged program in 2018.
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Old Sep 23, 16, 11:07 am
  #156  
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Originally Posted by yngdiego View Post
Well then I won't ever be staying at a SPG property!
I don't mind at all! That's one fewer newly minted SPG Plat competing with me for an automatic suite upgrade.
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Old Sep 23, 16, 11:09 am
  #157  
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Agree with Horace. Marriott has not "punished" SPG elites, in fact it's been more than generous in matching tiers...possibly pissing off MR elites with the influx of so many newbies from Starwood at the current tiers. As noted by others, MR Gold is pretty much what SPG Platinum is, so that's a real win for SPG Golds who I think come out best among all elites.

The new 2018 merged program may see some significant changes to tier benefits but the current baseline suggests that indeed a fourth tier may better reflect the current MR Platinum tier to adjust for the different requirements between the two programs for their respective versions.

Lifetime will also be interesting, with grandfathering likely. As a Lifetime SPG Gold, I was worried about dropping down to Lifetime [MR] Silver, but now suspect it will be Lifetime Gold in whatever the new program will be. As long as that tier provides club access and/or breakfast, I'll be happy. (Not expecting to make it to Lifetime Platinum, even though I've been SPG Plat for the past several years.)

Impressed by the status matching process. Worked very well and was instantly reflected on my previously MRGold account, now showing MRPlat. A friend also transferred some SPG points to MR points and it too was instantaneous. He was then able to book a Marriott property using those points (as converted at the 3:1 ratio). However, while I received an email from Starwood this morning, still haven't received anyting from Marriott.
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Old Sep 23, 16, 11:11 am
  #158  
 
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Originally Posted by yngdiego View Post
I'm a Marriott Plat with 100+ nights this year. I just linked to my SPG account. I know status is matched, but is 'super' elite levels like Ambassador status also matched?
Marriott Rewards members at the Platinum and Platinum Premier levels are matched to basic SPG Platinum, regardless of the number of Marriott nights.

The additional SPG Platinum benefits that are granted at 50 nights, 75 nights, and 100 nights are based only on points posted to SPG.

In a way, this seems fair. Someone who has been genuinely loyal to Starwood properties retains an advantage in SPG, as long as it's still a separate program.
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Old Sep 23, 16, 11:20 am
  #159  
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Originally Posted by YXUhomebase View Post
have many heard much - will the merger eventually mean we will lose "lifetime" platinum status from SPG?
My guess is one of the bigger things both sides are still struggling w/ is how to combine the LT programs - perhaps raise the nights threshold for LT moving forward if they combine SPG & Marriott nights as someone posted above (which could then impact a # of us on both sides), keep the # of years to be a member (which Marriott had & was higher than SPG, but then Marriott dropped a few years ago).

and because they haven't sorted it out yet, that's why it wasn't included in today's announcements.


Originally Posted by JackE View Post
When one business acquires another, it acquires it's assets.

But it also acquires it's liabilities. Lifetime benefits, earned at great cost to customers, is a liability to any company.

Since this is an acquisition, not a bankruptcy, Marriott terminating lifetime status cheats it's new members. Just as if SPG employees were told that the pensions they earned were for SPG, not Marriott.
I'd argue that the points are a liability but don't see where having exec lounge access ends up on any SEC filings.

Originally Posted by sfozrhfco View Post
If I would posit a guess, I would say that they will create a whole new program if they end up combing the two. It would make the most sense to offer Lifetime Tiers as the airlines have done after mergers. Thus Lifetime Platinum would be at the current SPG Platinum level, then have something like Platinum75 with upgrades, and Platinum100 with Ambassador. They have only started this discussion today, so it will be a while before any decisions are reached and announcements made.

In the meantime, the programs are still completely separate. You can't use your SPG number for Marriott stays so your nights/stays will only count for SPG hotels . Nights and stays through Marriott hotels only count for your status levels with Marriott at least through 2017. All you can do is earn Marriott points with your Marriott number and transfer the points earned after your stay to your SPG account and vice versa.
Agree that its too soon to know how the LT status (on both sides) will shake out. See my guess above.

Agree w/ your 2nd paragraph (which is also one reason why I don't the exec lounges are going to be over-crowded on either side w/ elites from the other program coming over).

Originally Posted by Horace View Post
Anyone who is currently Marriott Lifetime Silver, Lifetime Gold, or Lifetime Platinum is almost certainly safe, given that Marriott International is the surviving company. I can't imagine Marriott saying, "Ha ha, we lied when we said lifetime and now we're revoking your lifetime status until you reach a higher threshold."

I also assume anyone who already has lifetime status with SPG will be treated well when the programs are combined.

That doesn't mean there won't be new lifetime requirements once the programs are combined, but only to achieve a newer higher lifetime tier.

I would not be surprised to see a new level that's higher than Marriott Platinum (probably at 100 nights), with additional benefits, when the programs are combined -- with a new threshold to achieve the lifetime version of that level.
My hope is they'll grandfather in both sides of LT in 2018 at the levels they're currently LT at, and agree they might have a new LT program once it's all merged.

Originally Posted by yngdiego View Post
I'm a Marriott Plat with 100+ nights this year. I just linked to my SPG account. I know status is matched, but is 'super' elite levels like Ambassador status also matched?
Originally Posted by bhrubin View Post
NO. Only your basic elite status is matched--so you as MR Plat are now SPG Plat ONLY.

The same is true for me: as an SPG Plat100, I am only MR Plat...and don't get PP or any Elite Concierge.
What he said.

Originally Posted by yngdiego View Post
Well then I won't ever be staying at a SPG property!
Ever? Ever's a pretty long time. I'm happy w/ the Marriott brands I currently stay at in dif cities & don't want to go through the rigamarole of staying at a SPG property under SPG # & then have to transfer the points back afterwards to Marriott. So unless there's not a Marriott alternative where I'm staying or the price differential is so different (ie, Marriott much higher than SPG) I'll probably stick w/ Marriotts brands, at least through 2017.

Originally Posted by bhrubin View Post
Be forewarned! I've tried to search for some EDITION and Ritz-Carlton award stays using MR points...and found most are unavailable--even though what look to be standard entry level rooms are available for cash.

In EVERY case where the RC or EDITION is not available for an award stay, the comparable SPG options are ALWAYS available for an award stay: StR, LuxColl, and W.

That doesn't bode well for this new "matched status and points" nor for the award availability for the eventually merged program in 2018.
I've actually found Marriott redemptions to be the easiest to use. I've had problems redeeming w/ other programs but was able to redeem w/ Marriott brands w/ no problem. So I'd say it's a case of YMMV.

Cheers.
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Old Sep 23, 16, 11:21 am
  #160  
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
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Two key questions come to mind for me and I'd love to hear thoughts from others:

1) I agree that the 3:1 MR:SPG exchange rate sounds reasonable. How are people feeling about redemption value, especially converting from SPG to MR? I'm trying to figure out if I'll get better 'bang for the buck' redeeming my SPG in SPG or looking for conversion opportunities. I understand there's a lot of subjectivity here. My SPG account is worth about 3.2 million MR points.

2) Any perceived dangers or downsides to linking accounts? I can't think of any per se, but I'm currently Lifetime Plat in SPG, Plat in MR via a status offer MR gave to my firm, Gold on United via travel and Plat on Delta via an accelerator offered to my firm, so it's not like there's much in the way of benefit to me other than the ability to transfer points.
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Old Sep 23, 16, 11:23 am
  #161  
 
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Originally Posted by Horace View Post

In a way, this seems fair. Someone who has been genuinely loyal to Starwood properties retains an advantage in SPG, as long as it's still a separate program.
"Genuinely loyal" doesn't really apply. By analogy, consider a couple that bears a child and then adopts another. Once adopted, the parents are smart to consider the second child equivalent in "status" to their first. And the first child is smart to accept his or her new sibling the same as if biological instead of adopted.
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Old Sep 23, 16, 11:24 am
  #162  
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Originally Posted by vandalby View Post
Two key questions come to mind for me and I'd love to hear thoughts from others:

1) I agree that the 3:1 MR:SPG exchange rate sounds reasonable. How are people feeling about redemption value, especially converting from SPG to MR? I'm trying to figure out if I'll get better 'bang for the buck' redeeming my SPG in SPG or looking for conversion opportunities. I understand there's a lot of subjectivity here. My SPG account is worth about 3.2 million MR points.

2) Any perceived dangers or downsides to linking accounts? I can't think of any per se, but I'm currently Lifetime Plat in SPG, Plat in MR via a status offer MR gave to my firm, Gold on United via travel and Plat on Delta via an accelerator offered to my firm, so it's not like there's much in the way of benefit to me other than the ability to transfer points.
1. Marriott travel packages are a really good deal & Visconti (in the SPG thread) noted that he's going to redeem his SPG points for them (you get a 7-day cert at dif category levels & X amount of #s that get put into frequent flyer programs; points put into the airline programs don't have to be used in conjunction w/ the stay).

2. I don't think there's really any downside to you linking the accounts. The only benefit for you is, as you note, the ability to transfer points.

Cheers.
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Old Sep 23, 16, 11:25 am
  #163  
 
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So I need 75 nights to qualify for platinum this year if I link? ...
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Old Sep 23, 16, 11:25 am
  #164  
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Originally Posted by Shareholder View Post
Agree with Horace. Marriott has not "punished" SPG elites, in fact it's been more than generous in matching tiers...possibly pissing off MR elites with the influx of so many newbies from Starwood at the current tiers. As noted by others, MR Gold is pretty much what SPG Platinum is, so that's a real win for SPG Golds who I think come out best among all elites.
Bolding mine.

First, I agree that Marriott has been very fair so far for SPG elites. I also think the 3:1 conversion rate is fair.

Second, I wholly disagree about the "influx of so many SPG newbies" into MR. There are FAR MORE MR Golds and Plats...and far more MR properties at which to earn those status levels. Aside from the fact that one can earn MR Gold by being United Premier Gold+, earn MR Gold by spending on the MR credit card, earn MR Plat by spending on the RC credit card. Earning MR Gold or even Plat isn't exactly as hard as its 50-75 night requirements suggest.

Third, MR Gold is NOWHERE NEAR as good as SPG Platinum. You are out of your mind. SPG Platinum gets guaranteed suite upgrades based on availability that are worth hundreds if not thousands of dollars; MR Golds get lounge access worth a meal or two! There's a reason people are clamoring to be SPG Platinums...and few clamor to be MR Gold. Being MR Gold (and even MR Platinum!) isn't that big a deal, especially when compared to SPG Platinum benefits.

There is a reason that SPG has the most affluent customer base of all the major point currency hotel chains like Marriott, Hilton, Hyatt, IHG, and Accor. While everyone in those other chains are freaking out over free breakfast and lounge/club access, far more SPG elites are ordering room service or enjoying free or subsidized breakfast in the restaurant while also enjoying their upgraded suites at higher end hotels.

Last edited by bhrubin; Sep 23, 16 at 12:22 pm
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Old Sep 23, 16, 11:35 am
  #165  
 
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Originally Posted by Tommys888 View Post
So I need 75 nights to qualify for platinum this year if I link? ...
That's not my reading of the FAQ. Your status match is as a result of your SPG status. So 50 nights / 25 stays.
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