Marriott has launched its major promotion for Spring, which will be (yet) another outing for MegaBonus. This promotion is active across all Marriott brands, including Renaissance, Courtyard, Autograph, Edition, JW Marriott, Gaylord and the various US ‘extended stay’ chains.
In a negative move, the ‘free night offer’ that most people receive is now restricted to Category 1-4 hotels, rather than Category 1-5 as it was in the Autumn. This weakens the offer substantially, since the 2013 ‘revaluation / devaluation’ of the programme moved a lot of hotels out of Category 4.
However, I’m getting ahead of myself ….
Marriott targets different offers to different members, based on stay pattern. To see what you have been given, you need to log in to your account.
I very rarely stay at a Marriott group property, and if I log into my Marriott Rewards account and click on ‘Promotion Central’, I am offered a fairly generous version:
- One free night for every 2 paid stays during the promotional period
- Maximum of 2 free nights to be earned
- Free nights to be redeemed at Category 1-4 properties only
- Free nights to be redeemed within 1 year
- Promotion runs from February 1st to April 30th
- Last date for registration is March 31st
As I mentioned earlier, Marriott Rewards moved 370 hotels from Category 4 to Category 5 in February 2013. This devalued the free night certificates quite substantially. You will struggle to find anything decent in a major European capital city in Category 1-4.
Note that stays at Ritz-Carlton hotels will also count towards this bonus.
Other options for more regular Marriott guests
If you are Marriott elite member, you may receive a different version of this promotion.
- Stay 15 nights and get 25,000 bonus points plus an extra 15,000 points if you reach 20 nights
- Stay 20 nights and get 35,000 bonus points plus an extra 15,000 points if you reach 25 nights
- Stay 20 nights and get 35,000 bonus points plus an extra 2,000 per night to a maximum of 30 nights
Some people also received a variant with a free night covering Categories 1-5 instead of 1-4. There is also a variant on the Category 1-4 offer which gives 1,000 bonus points per stay for every additional one above the basic four.
Anyone whose Marriott account is set up to give airline miles instead of points will receive a different miles promotion instead.
Note that you need to register by 31st March, so it is worth registering even if you are not planning any Marriott stays at present – it would be a shame to be faced with a couple of Marriott nights in April only to find that you can no longer sign up for the MegaBonus.
Whether this promotion works for you will depend on your stay pattern. In hard £ terms, a free night certificate for just 2 stays is far more generous than competing promotions from the other big chains. It just depends on whether you can find a decent hotel in category 1-4 to redeem at.