Marriott Bonvoy is the only hotel programme where there is value – or at least minimal loss of value – from transferring your points into airline miles.
Whilst many hotel programmes have terrible airline conversion rates – see this HfP article – Marriott Bonvoy offers a 3:1 transfer rate.
Given that we value a Marriott Bonvoy point at 0.5p, you would be effectively ‘paying’ 1.5p per airline mile if you did this. It isn’t cheap but it’s not terrible.
However, Marriott Bonvoy offers a special bonus. If you convert 60,000 Marriott Bonvoy points to airline miles at once, you receive a 5,000 mile bonus.
This means that 60,000 Bonvoy points gets you 25,000 airline miles, a conversion rate of 2.4 to 1. This means that you ‘paying’ 1.2p per airline mile, based on a 0.5p per Bonvoy point valuation, which is very reasonable.
From 31st October, three airlines will no longer offer the extra 5,000 miles when converting 60,000 Bonvoy points. These are:
- American Airlines
- Delta Air Lines
It isn’t clear why, but you would be safe to assume it is either an increase in the price charged for the miles or a wish by the airlines to reduce the attractiveness of Marriott Bonvoy credit cards vs their own.
This is a blow for HfP readers who used the Marriott Bonvoy American Express card to collect American Airlines miles, as this was one of the few routes open to you in the UK.
My other issue with this change is that it adds to the complexity of the Marriott Bonvoy programme. We will need to add caveats in future whenever we mention this benefit, in the same way that Singapore Airlines moving to 3:2 in the American Express Membership Rewards programme broke the ‘all airlines are 1:1’ rule. Sometimes it is worth programmes taking a hit on the financials if it means keeping things simple for users.
How to earn Marriott Bonvoy points and status from UK credit cards (December 2022)
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.
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.
You can also earn Marriott Bonvoy points indirectly:
- American Express Gold (20,000 bonus Amex points)
- American Express Rewards Credit Card (10,000 bonus Amex points)
and for small business owners:
- American Express Business Gold (20,000 bonus Amex points)
- American Express Business Platinum (40,000 bonus Amex points)
The conversion rate from American Express to Marriott Bonvoy points is 2:3.
(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.)