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What are Marriott Bonvoy hotel points worth?

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This article is our attempt to decide what Marriott Bonvoy points are worth. How should you value them?

Valuing miles and points is a thankless job. We have always published articles on what Avios points are worth, but that Avios article is so complex that it simply proves my point.

In the face of constant reader requests, however, I wrote this series of articles on how we value each of the major hotel points currencies. We are updating the articles this month.

You can buy Marriott Bonvoy points from Marriott by clicking here.

What are Marriott Bonvoy points worth?

Here are links to the full series:

The reason I have changed my mind after all these years is that I have found a methodology that works for me. It takes a subjective valuation and then explains the boundaries around it. Or, in plain English:

  • I will tell you (without justifying it) what I think a Marriott Bonvoy point is worth
  • I will tell you, on the upside, how far wrong I can be (which is good news)
  • I will tell you, on the downside, how far wrong I can be (which is bad news)
  • I will tell you what Marriott Bonvoy points are worth if you turn them into something else – usually airline miles – which effectively locks in a floor value

Why I think ‘range’ is important when valuing hotel points

When we look at using Avios for business or First Class flights, the ‘cash alternative’ is often a poor comparison. Most HfP readers don’t want to, or simply can’t afford to, pay cash for business or First Class flights. Their choice is Avios or nothing. Even if you can afford to pay, what are you comparing with? A cheap non-refundable sale flight? A pricier flexible ticket? The cost of an indirect flight, not on BA?

Hotels redemptions are different:

  • you stay in far more hotels each year compared to the number of premium cabin flights you take, so you can be selective about when you use points
  • you can usually afford to pay for a hotel if you choose not to use points
  • there are far more options in the hotel market than in the flight market – most people only have a lot of miles in one airline programme, whereas you are likely to hold hotel points in multiple schemes
What are Marriott Bonvoy points worth?

It is easy to sit on hotel points until you get a good deal

The net result of the three facts above is that it is easy to turn down a hotel redemption when it doesn’t seem like good value. You can pay cash or redeem via another hotel scheme instead.

Here is the crux of what I am trying to say. If you compare two hotel schemes:

  • scheme A usually gets you 0.3p per point but if you are lucky you can get 1p
  • scheme B usually gets you 0.4p per point but if you are lucky you can get 0.6p

…. scheme A may actually be the best.

Most people who try to ‘value’ hotel points don’t take this into account.

If you redeemed points for every stay you did, regardless of the cash price, scheme B would be the best. No-one does this though. In reality you can pay cash for your stays in scheme A until the day when a bumper redemption arrives and you can get 1p.

What are Marriott Bonvoy points worth?

With our methodology out of the way, let’s take a look at what Marriott Bonvoy points are worth.

If you want to learn more about the programme, our full review of Marriott Bonvoy is here. We are not going into detail in this article.

To keep things simple, we do not adjust for the fact that you would earn points back if you paid cash instead. This can have a noticeable impact when generous bonuses are running.

On the upside, members get ‘five nights for the points of four’ when redeeming. This is available to all members, not just those with elite status. We don’t factor this in.

What are Marriott Bonvoy points worth

The HfP average valuation of a Marriott Bonvoy point:

0.5p

We are not justifying this valuation, except to say that I have looked at enough Marriott redemptions over the years to be happy with it. Anyone who knows Marriott Bonvoy should know that this feels right. A £250 hotel will usually be around 50,000 points

How high can value go on the upside?

1.0p is still achievable and a sensible target.

I achieved 1.0p at JW Marriott Venice last month, reviewed here. I have a booking at The St Regis New York for next month which, whilst it will probably be cancelled, got me 1.1p. A Marriott Berlin stay in February 2023, reviewed here, got me 0.75p. Outsize value is still possible.

Taking a quick look at the most luxurious Maldives resorts, I can see 2p+ redemptions at the most expensive resorts, albeit few people will ever earn enough points to book these.

The Al Maha desert resort in Dubai, image below, was one where I got 1.5p per Bonvoy point last year. Points rates have crept up since then, and cash rates have come back down, but looking at November 2023 I can still see 1.0p.

What are Marriott Bonvoy points worth?

How low can value go on the downside?

0.31p.

Irrespective of how Marriott’s dynamic pricing develops, there is a floor to what you will receive for your Marriott Bonvoy points.

Marriott offers ‘Instant Rewards’, which allow you to redeem your points towards your hotel bill at participating properties.  Details are on the Bonvoy site here.

The chart runs from 250 points for $1 credit to 125,000 points for $500. Irrespective of how few you use, you are getting 0.4 cents (currently 0.31p) per Bonvoy point.

If Marriott Bonvoy devalues hugely tomorrow, what is my escape route?

This is our floor price. What can you do with your points if Marriott Bonvoy devalues massively overnight?

With Marriott Bonvoy, the best value is to convert your points to airline miles. Importantly, you get more value by doing this than redeeming for some room nights.

Use Marriott Bonvoy points for frequent flyer miles

Marriott Bonvoy has, by far, the most generous airline transfer rate in the industry.

Bonvoy points transfer to over 40 airlines. The transfer rate is 3:1. If you convert 60,000 Bonvoy points at once, you receive a bonus of 5,000 miles with most airline partners, giving you 25,000 miles in total.

If we assume an airline mile is worth 1p, then you are getting 0.42p per Marriott Bonvoy point if you convert in batches of 60,000 points. Convert in smaller chunks and you are getting airline miles worth 0.33p per Marriott Bonvoy point.

This ‘worst case’ scenario is actually pretty good when you look at the numbers.

The list of Marriott Bonvoy airline partners is here.

Use Marriott Bonvoy points to book a home rental

Marriott has a home and villa rental platform called ‘Homes & Villas by Marriott’ – see here.

If you choose to pay with points you get 0.57 cents (0.45p) per Bonvoy point.

Again, this is surprisingly good – very close to our ‘average value’ of 0.5p for a hotel redemption.

It is worth noting, however, that this rate has devalued by 5% over the past year – you used to get 0.6 cents per Bonvoy point – so it is debatable how much you want to rely on this as an escape route.

What are Marriott Bonvoy points worth?

In summary …. what do we think Marriott Bonvoy points are worth?

  • on average: 0.5p per point
  • on a very good day: 1p is still achievable at a top hotel in a top city, despite the move to dynamic pricing
  • if you transfer out to airline miles in a worse case scenario: 0.42p per point when transferring in chunks of 60,000 points, or 0.33p for other quantities
  • if you are happy to book home and villa rentals with your points, you are guaranteed 0.57 cents (0.45p) per point if you pay with points

As to how this should impact your behaviour:

  • if you tend to visit prime hotels in prime locations at prime times of the year, you should save your Marriott Bonvoy points for a day when you can get 1p when redeeming them
  • if your travel style is more about travelling off peak and staying in mid range hotels, dynamic pricing means that you are likely to see something close to 0.5p wherever you redeem – you might as well spend points as you earn them

If you want to buy additional Marriott Bonvoy points from Marriott, the link to buy is here.


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

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

HUGE 60,000 POINTS BONUS UNTIL 3rd JULY 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 (9)

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

  • Raf says:

    As you say, the high end resorts are the way forward in terms of value for points.

    Just came back from 6 nights at the St Regis Maldives- cash price $29,000, points 460000

    • Ian M says:

      How was the property, would you recommend/return?

      • Rafal says:

        Genuinely as good it gets. The service standard is on another level, with the butler anticipating pretty much every request- the resort feels very private- it was apparently running at 50% occupancy but you rarely saw many people.

        • Kwab says:

          How much did you spend on incidentals and meals?

          • Rafal says:

            Best not to remind me… 🙁

            C. $5k for the week but that includes a family of 4, some experiences and spa treatments. Pure F&B was probably $3k for 4 for the week.

  • Mark says:

    I have a young family and collecting hotel points is my primary goal, although I do have a reasonable stash of AVIOS. Marriott is my primary hotel chain, mainly due to location to my work, and I generally achieve titanium with ease. This then, for me, provides additional value for points redemption’s because I get a room upgrade about 50% of the time, generally choose free breakfast and can access executive lounges. While these benefits are not guaranteed everytime, they are significant savings when I do get them and can increase the cash to points redemption. But as the article said, point valuation will always very wildly for hotel redemption’s, frequent stayers in a hotel chain will just get a little more.

  • memesweeper says:

    The United partnership yields even more than most airline miles: United offers a 10% bonus when converting Marriott points into United miles, resulting in 27,500 United miles per 60,000 Marriott points. Theres a further bonus when booking a United ticket.

  • SBIre says:

    The 5 for 4 at the Maldives is awesome value, and I’m glad I did it, but my two best redemptions were a Four Points in Istanbul when I was unexpectedly there for the Champions League weekend last June (16,000 when no rooms were below £400 anywhere), and my upcoming booking at the Courtyard Saint Denis for a RWC game (22,500 versus £955! Though I admit there were cheaper hotels further away)

  • Fabian says:

    The Gritti Palace in Venice (probably my favourite hotel in the world) is very good for redemptions given the cheapest room is usually €1.5-2k per night and you can get in at 88k points per night. It’s worth the €1.5k per night though too!

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

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