Achieve elite status at Marriott properties with these new credit offers
CNN Underscored rates financial products like credit cards and bank accounts based on their overall value. We may receive a commission through the LendingTree affiliate network if you apply and are approved for a card, but our reporting is always independent and objective. Terms apply to American Express benefits and offers. Registration may be required to enjoy some American Express benefits and offers. Visit americanexpress.com to find more about.
If you’ve always thought that a hotel’s upmarket status was a boon for those who spend dozens of nights in hotels each year, we have a surprise for you: it’s not. In fact, it’s possible to earn hotel elite status without even stepping foot in a hotel lobby – and that’s thanks to a credit card.
Most major hotel chains – think Hilton, Hyatt, IHG and Marriott – offer some sort of elite status through their credit card. All you need to do is sign up, get approved, and keep the card. For Marriott’s Bonvoy program in particular, achieving elite status couldn’t be easier.
That’s because Marriott offers status as a free benefit on four of its credit cards. Plus, you can win Marriott elite status for free from a fifth credit card, which isn’t even technically a Marriott card:
As you can see, it’s very easy to achieve Marriott elite status, although in the past the highest level of elite status you can earn purely with a Marriott credit card has come from Marriott Bonvoy’s American Express Brilliant Cardoffers free Gold status with the option to upgrade to Platinum status if you spend $75,000 on the card in a calendar year.
That card also now comes with a 75,000 bonus points welcome offer, which you’ll receive after spending $3,000 in the first three months after opening an account. You’ll also receive a statement credit of up to $300 to use at Marriott properties each year, as well as a Free Night Award each year. However, the card charges a $450 annual fee (see rates and fees), making it the most expensive Marriott card on the market to date.
Luckily, there’s a brand new feature on boundless Marriott Bonvoy the card allows you to achieve even higher elite status than Platinum, and the card itself only charges $95 annually. But, be warned, you will have to spend a lot of on the card to avail.
As before, you’ll get 15 Elite Night Credits just by boundless Marriott the card suffices for annual Silver elite status, and you can win Gold status after spending $35,000 on the card in a calendar year. However, you can also now get extra Elite Night Credits with the card. For every $5,000 you spend on the card, you’ll earn extra Elite Night Credits to go to the next elite level.
There’s no limit to the number of Elite Night Credits you can earn as part of this new benefit, so if you spend $35,000 on Gold status – usually 25 Night Credits is required Elite – then you’ll need to spend an additional $125,000 in a calendar year to achieve Platinum status – $160,000 total on the card for a year. Plus, if you want to target Titanium elite status, you’ll need to spend a whopping $285,000 total on the card in a single calendar year.
While this is a unique – and extremely expensive – way to earn elite status, you can absolutely do it. Also keep in mind that this doesn’t take into account any nights you actually plan to stay at a Marriott property, earning Elite Night Credits the “traditional” way.
For most people, this new ability to earn one Elite Night Credit for every $5,000 you spend will likely come in handy if you’re just a few nights away from “traditional” status. . The ability to spend on your credit card to propel you above the highest level of elite status can be essential to ensuring you don’t spend more nights in a hotel room than necessary.
Finally, for a limited time, Marriott Boundless Card is offering a signup bonus of 100,000 points, which you will receive after spending $3,000 in the first three months after opening an account. The card comes with an annual Free Night Bonus on your account anniversary starting the second year you have the card, as well as the ability to earn 3 points per dollar on the first $6,000 spent on combined purchases each year at gas stations, grocery stores, and dining out.
If you are looking for a way to make your next vacation more comfortable, elite status is the way to go. With it, you can avail perks like free upgrades, late check-out and early check-in, bonus points and more.
Of course, what you get depends on how elite you are. The higher the status level, the more benefits. Here are the benefits you can expect to receive at each level of Marriott elite status:
- Member Status: The most basic level of this elite status is automatic when you enroll in the Marriott Bonvoy program and stay 0 to 9 nights per year. You’ll get benefits like free Wi-Fi in your room, membership rates, and cellular subscriptions.
- Silver elite status: Usually earned after staying 10 nights per year. Along with the benefits of a basic membership, you’ll get perks like 10% extra points on your stay and late check-out (where applicable).
- Golden Elite Status: Usually earned after staying 25 nights per year. You’ll receive 25% bonus points for your stay, room upgrade (when available), 2pm late check-out (where available), 250 or 500 point welcome gift, and enhanced in-room internet access plus other benefits. benefits you will get with Silver status.
- Platinum Elite Status: Usually earned after staying 50 nights per year. You’ll receive 50% bonus points for your stay, room upgrades (including suites, when available), welcome gift selection on arrival, annual gift selection, lounge access and guaranteed 4pm late check out guarantee along with benefits you will get Gold Status.
- Titan Elite Status: Earned after 75 nights per year. You’ll get 75% bonus points with your stay, enhanced room upgrades (including suites, when available), welcome gift selection, enhanced annual gift selection, and 48-hour room guarantee along with the benefits you’ll get with Platinum status.
- Elite Ambassador Status: Earned after spending 100 nights and $20,000 in qualifying spending per year. You’ll get dedicated Ambassador service and the ability to sign up or pay any time within a 24-hour period as well as all the benefits you’ll get with Titanium status.
In general, if you are going to stay in a hotel often, you can only have elite status. From complimentary breakfasts to lounge access and even suite upgrades, Marriott’s elite status can often make for a more comfortable stay.
While it was previously possible to achieve Marriott elite status through the chain’s credit card, this new option is for boundless Marriott card holders is a positive development, as it opens up a way for travelers to gain even higher elite status – similar to how American Airlines now allows its own AAdvantage members achieve elite status by spending on its credit card – without having to spend tons of nights on the road.
Looking for a travel credit card? Find out which card was selected by CNN Underscore as our card best travel credit cards of 2022.