I receive regular emails from readers asking ‘How can I stop my Marriott Bonvoy points from expiring?’ or ‘When do my Marriott Bonvoy points expire?’. This series looks at the major hotel loyalty programmes and shows you how to keep valuable points intact.
Marriott Bonvoy is the hotel loyalty scheme for AC Hotels, Aloft, Autograph, Courtyard, Delta Hotels, Design Hotels, Edition, Element, Fairfield Inn, Four Points, Gaylord, Le Meridien, Marriott, Moxy, Protea, Renaissance, Residence Inn, St Regis, Sheraton, The Luxury Collection, The Ritz-Carlton, Springhill Suites, Towneplace Suites, W and Westin.
If you need to refer to this article in the future, there is a link to it on our ‘Hotel Offers’ page in the Marriott section. This also includes details of current Marriott Bonvoy promotions.
When do Marriott Bonvoy points expire?
According to clause 1.6 of the Marriott Bonvoy terms and conditions here:
Members must remain active in the Loyalty Program to retain Points they accumulate. If a Member Account is inactive for twenty-four (24) consecutive months, that Member Account will forfeit all accumulated Points. Members can remain active in the Loyalty Program and retain accumulated Points by earning Points or Miles in the Loyalty Program or redeeming Points in the Loyalty Program at least once every twenty-four (24) months, subject to the exceptions described below. If a Member does not maintain an active status for five (5) consecutive years, the Member’s Account may be deactivated. Once Points are forfeited, the Points cannot be reinstated, but a Member can earn new Points, unless that Member’s Account has been deactivated.
i. Not all Points activities help maintain active status in the Loyalty Program. The following activities do not count toward maintaining an active status in the Loyalty Program:
A. Gifting or transferring Points; however, converting Points to Miles or Miles to Points does count toward maintaining an active status;
B. Receiving Points as a gift or transfer; or
C. Earning Points through social media programs, such as #MarriottBonvoyPoints
How does Marriott Bonvoy define ‘earning or redeeming points’?
The key point is that YOU DO NOT NEED TO STAY AT A HOTEL TO KEEP YOUR POINTS ALIVE. You simply need to have some activity go through your account.
Marriott has a very lenient policy (you only need one item of activity every two years) so there is no reason why you should lose your points.
There are various ways of achieving this if you live in the UK:
Buy Marriott Bonvoy points – $12.50 gets you 1,000 points and your problem is solved. Note that a reader was told in 2021 that you need a minimum purchase of 2,000 points for this to work although the terms and conditions do not say this.
Refer a friend to Marriott Bonvoy who completes a stay – you earn 2,000 points
Transfer some American Express Membership Rewards points to Marriott Bonvoy (the ratio is 2:3)
The easiest way to trigger some spend activity would appear to be to book and then cancel a redemption night. This should count as activity. However, comments from our readers in the past have suggested that this does not work, at least if the cancellation is done immediately after booking.
Transfer some points into an airline loyalty scheme. The minimum transfer is 3,000 points.
Redeem points for cash credit when staying at a Marriott hotel (although if you had a stay, you would be earning points from it anyway unless you booked via an intermediary such as Expedia)
Transfer your Marriott Bonvoy points to another person. You can transfer up to 100,000 points per year to another person, so if your partner has an active account you might as well just transfer your points to them. There is no charge for transfers but you need to call Marriott Bonvoy to arrange them. You need to transfer all of your points because the transfer itself is not ‘activity’ and will not stop any remaining points expiring.
As you can see, there is no excuse at all for letting Marriott Rewards points expire – just spend $25 on buying 2,000 points.
How to be notified of upcoming miles and points expiry dates
If you want to track the expiry dates of all of your miles and points, I recommend signing up to AwardWallet for free. It keeps all of your points balances, including non-travel loyalty schemes, in one place and updates them automatically.
If you pay for the premium version ($30 per year) it also tracks your all expiry dates and emails you when points are about to expire. On the free plan, you can track the expiry date for three loyalty schemes of your choice.
How to earn Marriott Bonvoy points from UK credit cards (July 2021)
There are various ways of earning Marriott Bonvoy points from UK credit cards. Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses.
The official Marriott Bonvoy American Express card usually comes with 20,000 points for signing up, 2 points for every £1 you spend and 15 elite night credits per year. Until 31st August 2021, the bonus is doubled to 40,000 Marriott Bonvoy points. You can apply here.
You can also earn Marriott Bonvoy points by converting American Express Membership Rewards points at the rate of 2:3.
Do you know that holders of The Platinum Card from American Express receive FREE Marriott Bonvoy Gold status for as long as they hold the card? It also comes with Hilton Honors Gold, Radisson Rewards Gold and MeliaRewards Gold status. We reviewed American Express Platinum in detail here and you can apply here.
You can also earn American Express Membership Rewards points with American Express Gold (20,000 bonus points), the American Express Rewards Credit Card (5,000 bonus points) and – for small business owners – American Express Business Gold (20,000 bonus points) and Business Platinum (40,000 bonus points).
(Want to earn more hotel points? Click here to see our complete list of promotions from the major hotel chains or use the ‘Hotel Offers’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)