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Your Marriott Bonvoy elite status will be extended by 12 months due to coronavirus

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Marriott Bonvoy has announced how it intends to deal with Marriott Bonvoy elite status for next year.

Whilst the company admits that the fine print needs to be worked out, the following announcement was made today in a blog post from the Marriott International CEO:

“I also want to take a moment to address our Marriott Bonvoy members. Like many of you, frequent travel is a way of life for me and most of the Marriott team. It is the way we connect, get inspired and evolve our business every day. While it is the right thing to do, it’s been hard not to be able to travel. We know that when you get back in the air and on the road, your points and status will be important to you.

Status Extension: We want you to be able to enjoy the status that you earned in 2019. With that in mind, the status you earned in 2019 will be extended to February 2022.

Points Expiration: To provide you ample time to redeem points, the expiration of points will be paused until February 2021. At that time, your points will only expire if your account has been inactive for at least 24 months.

As the days unfold, we will continue to monitor and evolve our program requirements as necessary.”

It has already been announced via the main Marriott coronavirus advisory page that

Suite Night Awards for status members will be extended by 12 months, to 31st December 2021

Free Night Awards, whether from the Marriott Bonvoy American Express credit card, annual choice benefit, promotions or a travel package will be extended to 31st January 2021

Marriott Bonvoy has decided that 2020 never existed

This is a very simple solution to Marriott’s problem.

Very simply, whatever status you have in Marriott Bonvoy today, you will have next year.

Of course, there is a problem ….

For a lot of people, including myself, the status they have in Marriott Bonvoy today is not the status they were expecting to have.

As we covered recently, Marriott Bonvoy has not implemented a soft landing on existing members.  Members who did not requalify and thought that they would only drop one level in 2020 have been dropped multiple levels.

This is despite the fact that the Marriott website implied, for three months, that they would not drop at all.  Drops were then done three weeks later than expected, leading to further confusion.

Marriott Bonvoy elite status will be extended by 12 months due to coronavirus

Some questions remain unanswered

We don’t yet know what will happen to people who do not currently have Marriott Bonvoy elite status or want to improve it.  Will they be offered a reduced target in 2020 to reflect months of no travel?  We don’t know.  I’m sure it will come clear in time.

This is a good move though

I don’t want to be too critical.  This is a good move by Marriott Bonvoy and almost as good as the coronavirus status extension Hilton Honors announced the other day.

IHG Rewards Club now remains the weak link, offering nothing more than a small reduction in the status points needed to requalify for next year.  It is going to have a pretty small elite tier in 2021 if it doesn’t move soon.

If you want information on the Marriott coronavirus cancellation policies, they are in our coronavirus cancellation and refund master thread here, covering BA, Virgin Atlantic, easyJet, IHG, Hilton and Marriott.

How to earn Marriott Bonvoy points and status from UK credit cards

How to earn Marriott Bonvoy points and status from UK credit cards (April 2024)

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 comes with 20,000 points for signing up, 2 points for every £1 you spend and 15 elite night credits per year.

You can apply here.

Marriott Bonvoy American Express

20,000 points sign-up bonus and 15 elite night credits each year Read our full review

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 Premium and MeliaRewards Gold status.  We reviewed American Express Platinum in detail here and you can apply here.

The Platinum Card from American Express

40,000 bonus points and a huge range of valuable benefits – for a fee Read our full review

You can also earn Marriott Bonvoy points indirectly:

and for small business owners:

The conversion rate from American Express to Marriott Bonvoy points is 2:3.

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which can be used to earn Marriott Bonvoy 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.)

Comments (37)

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  • Andrew says:

    Come on IHG! You’re sticking out like a sore thumb as the only major chain not giving a year extension now!

    • Chrisasaurus says:

      They already stick out as the only chain to have almost no (guaranteed) benefits as top tier elite so I guess they’re not worried!

  • Tim_t says:

    I wonder what I will get as by careful timing with a status challenge match I achieved platinum elite in January 2020 so that I would have it that thru to the end of 2021. I suspect that I won’t get anything extra, not that I’m complaining as I’m still happy with that.

    • TGLoyalty says:

      You’ll have it until Feb 2022 anyway.

      • Tim_t says:

        I do, and like I said I’m happy with that anyway, but it is no extension, assuming this is what happens.

  • Alexey says:

    Melia just did the same

    • TGLoyalty says:

      Hope they extended the expiration date as have a fair chunk expiring in May

  • Vince says:

    Good on Marriott. Some complain (rightly so) about Marriott yet for me IHG are much worse. So I emailed the IHG Ambassador team informing them of my absolute frustration of the program and lack of care for loyal customers they continue to show. Not sure it will reach anyone important or anyone who cares of course!!
    Interesting (& exciting) times ahead for us all.

  • Tical says:

    My status has dropped to Silver despite having the Amex Platinum card. Looking at the benefits, I am still enrolled so not sure what happened there but not keen to call Amex with that request now

    • TGLoyalty says:

      Reapply for the benefit online through the Amex platinum benefits portal.

  • mvcvz says:

    Hoping IHG will implement something similar. But not holding my breath for the duration.

  • Neil says:

    I think this is really positive news.

    Does anyone know what happens to lifetime status year count, does that additional 1 yr of status also count as an additional lifetime year towards achieving the next lifetime status?

  • Sue says:

    Just checked Marriott and Hilton details on Awardwallet, extensions to status and points don’t seem to updating. anyone else found this?

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

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