Marriott has chosen to take the path of Hyatt and Starwood and make ‘cash and points’ redemptions a separate redemption ‘bucket’.
This means two things:
Availability will be worse than for ‘100% points’ redemptions
They are, in some scenarios, a good deal if they are available and increase the value of your Marriott points
Here is the Marriott redemption chart using ‘cash and points which is taken from the Marriott website here:
…. and here is the Ritz-Carlton version:
If we get the calculator out, you will see that you are, de facto, ‘buying’ the additional points from Marriott at the following rates:
- Category 1: 1c
- Category 2: 1c
- Category 3: 0.79c
- Category 4: 0.67c
- Category 5: 0.59c
- Category 6: 0.6c
- Category 7: 0.64c
- Category 8: 0.94c
- Category 9: 1.29c
- Tier 1: 0.77c
- Tier 2: 0.79c
- Tier 3: 0.71c
- Tier 4: 0.93c
- Tier 5: 1.05c
I usually say that I conservatively value a Marriott point at 0.5p, which is around 0.8 cents.
On that basis, I should definitely do ‘cash and points’ for Category 4 to Category 7 redemptions. Marriott is ‘selling’ me half of the points I need for a redemption for less than my valuation of them.
For the other categories, plus Tier 4 and 5 at Ritz-Carlton, it does not look so attractive. I am not sure of the logic of this, because ‘cash and points’ is capacity-controlled by each hotel. If a hotel is worried about getting too many redemption requests, it can simply not participate – you don’t need to use pricing to put people off.
You cannot book ‘cash and points’ rooms yet – we are promised ‘early 2016’. More details can be found on the Marriott website here.
(Want to earn more hotel points? To see our complete list of promotions from the major chains, click here to visit our ‘Hotel Promos’ page or use the link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)