The Guide to Marriott Bonvoy

Here's what you need to know about elite status, earning points and redeeming points within the Bonvoy program.
Elina Geller
Lee Huffman
Sally French
Sam Kemmis
By Sam Kemmis,  Sally French,  Lee Huffman and  Elina Geller 
Updated
Edited by Meghan Coyle

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The Marriott Bonvoy rewards program is one of the largest hotel rewards programs in the world, encompassing 31 brands across price points, from budget-friendly properties to luxurious getaways around the world.

Navigating this program can seem daunting. Yet despite its size, the Bonvoy program is relatively simple. From earning points to achieving elite status, Marriott has streamlined most elements of the program. Here we detail them one by one.

What is Marriott Bonvoy?

Marriott Bonvoy is the Marriott hotel company’s loyalty program, allowing you to earn and redeem points for stays at Bonvoy brands including The Ritz-Carlton, St. Regis, JW Marriott, Sheraton, Westin and Renaissance Hotels. Marriott opened its first hotel in 1957, and since then has grown into one of the largest hotel brands.

It’s free to join the Marriott Bonvoy loyalty program, and all members can book hotels at discounted rates, enjoy free Wi-Fi and earn points toward free nights. If you stay at Marriott properties often, you can earn Marriott Bonvoy elite status, which will grant you additional benefits such as late checkout, free breakfast, lounge access and more.

Marriott also offers several co-branded personal credit cards and a business card for those who want to earn even more Marriott points. Once you accumulate enough Marriott points — whether through credit card spending or hotel nights — you will be able to redeem those points for free award nights.

Marriott brands

There are 31 different Marriott hotel brands, ranging from affordable to luxury. We’ve organized the brands by price point to help you familiarize yourself with the different properties.

Luxury brands

The hotels in this category are expensive, well known and try to offer high-end experiences for guests.

  • The Ritz-Carlton.

  • St. Regis.

  • JW Marriott.

  • Ritz-Carlton Reserve.

  • The Luxury Collection. 

  • W Hotels.

  • Edition.

Premium brands

These premium brand hotels are sophisticated, but priced lower than the luxury brands.

  • Marriott Hotels.

  • Sheraton.

  • Marriott Vacation Club.

  • Delta Hotels.

  • Le Meridien.

  • Westin.

  • Renaissance Hotels.

  • Gaylord Hotels.

Select brands

These moderately priced properties offer useful amenities, comfortable spaces and feature locally inspired designs.

  • Courtyard Hotels.

  • Four Points.

  • SpringHill Suites.

  • Protea Hotels.

  • Fairfield Inn & Suites.

  • City Express.

  • AC Hotels.

  • Aloft Hotels.

  • Moxy Hotels.

Longer stay brands

The hotels in this category offer apartments or rooms that feature amenities that cater to longer trips (i.e., larger living spaces and kitchen).

  • Marriott Executive Apartments.

  • Residence Inn.

  • TownePlace Suites.

  • Element.

  • Homes & Villas by Marriott International.

Collections

According to Marriott, the properties in this category are a distinctive collection of chosen hotels that range from boutique to luxury, but are unique in their own ways.

  • Autograph Collection Hotels.

  • Design Hotels.

  • Tribute Portfolio.

How much are Marriott points worth?

Based on our most recent analysis, NerdWallet values Marriott Bonvoy points at 0.8 cent apiece. To determine the value of reward points, we compared cash prices and reward redemptions for hotel stays across several destinations and dates. We divided the cost in cash by the cost in points to determine a “cent per point” value for each stay, then averaged this value across several searches.

Bonvoy points were previously known as Marriott Rewards points, and they have dropped in value since we started tracking them in 2019. And while there's no way to tell whether they will go up or down in the future, you shouldn't necessarily count on them maintaining their value over time.

Marriott Bonvoy vs. competitors

Marriott is the largest hotel program in the world by most metrics, so if you travel regularly, it’s likely you’ll find yourself staying in a Marriott at some point.

And the good news is that Marriott is consistently a solid pick. Relative to other hotel loyalty programs, Marriott Bonvoy ranks just about exactly in the middle.

In NerdWallet’s annual rankings of best hotels and best hotel loyalty programs, Marriott ranked fourth in the best overall hotels category and tied with IHG for fourth place in the best loyalty program category among seven total hotel brands analyzed.

Out of seven hotel brands analyzed, here's a closer look at how Marriott competed across sub-categories:

Earning Marriott Bonvoy points

Many Marriott Bonvoy members wonder, how do Marriott points work? Let's start with how to earn points so you can redeem them for free hotel nights and more. There are many ways to earn Marriott Bonvoy points, ranging from hotel stays to one-off promotions.

Stay at Marriott hotels

For the most part, you’ll earn 10 base Bonvoy rewards points per dollar spent at Marriott properties. So if you spend $100, you’ll earn 1,000 points. However, some budget brands (such as Residence Inn and Towneplace Suites) offer lower base earning rates.

Bonvoy elite status holders earn additional points on top of this base rate:

  • Silver members earn 10% more.

  • Gold members earn 25% more.

  • Platinum members earn 50% more.

  • Titanium and Ambassador members earn 75% more.

Use a Marriott credit card

The Marriott credit card portfolio includes a half-dozen consumer and business cards issued by Chase and American Express.

Personal credit cards that earn Marriott Bonvoy points

Chase Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card
Marriott Bonvoy Bold® Credit Card
NerdWallet Rating
Apply now

on Chase's website

Marriott Bonvoy Boundless™ Credit Card
Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card
NerdWallet Rating
Apply now

on Chase's website

Marriott Bonvoy Bountiful
Marriott Bonvoy Bountiful™ Card
NerdWallet Rating
Rates & Fees
Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant American Express Card
Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card
NerdWallet Rating
Apply now

on American Express' website

Rates & Fees
Annual fee

$0.

$95.

$250.

$650.

Rewards

• 3 points per $1 spent at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels.

• 2 points per $1 on other travel purchases (such as airfare, taxis and trains).

• 1 point per $1 on all other eligible purchases.

• 6 points per $1 spent at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels.

• 3 points per $1 on up to $6,000 a year in combined purchases on grocery stores, gas stations and dining.

• 2 points per $1 on all other eligible purchases.

• 6 points per $1 spent at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels.

• 4 points per $1 on up to $15,000 a year in combined purchases at grocery stores and on dining.

• 2 points per $1 on all other eligible purchases.

• 6 points per $1 spent at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels.

• 3 points per $1 at U.S. restaurants and on flights booked directly with airlines.

• 2 points per $1 on all other eligible purchases.

Terms apply.

Other benefits

• 15 Elite Night Credits annually, qualifying you for Silver Elite Status

• Free Night Award (valued up to 35,000 points) every year after account anniversary.

• 15 Elite Night Credits annually, qualifying you for Silver Elite status, plus path to Gold Status when you spend $35,000 on purchases each calendar year.

• 1 Elite Night Credit toward Elite Status for every $5,000 you spend.

• Free Night Award (valued up to 50,000 points) after spending $15,000 in a calendar year.

• Automatic Gold Elite status, plus 15 Elite Night credits each year toward Platinum Elite status.

• 1,000 points per paid eligible stay booked directly with Marriott Bonvoy at participating properties. Terms apply.

• Free Night Award (valued up to 85,000 points) every year after your account renewal month.

• Automatic Platinum Elite Status and 25 Elite Night credits per year.

• Fee credit for either Global Entry or TSA Precheck.

• Priority Pass Select lounge membership (enrollment required).

• Up to $300 in statement credits per calendar year (up to $25 per month) for eligible purchases at restaurants worldwide.

• Terms apply.

New cardholder offer

Earn 30,000 Bonus Points after spending $1,000 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening with the Marriott Bonvoy Bold® Credit Card.

Limited time offer! Earn 5 Free Night Awards (each night valued up to 50,000 points) after spending $5,000 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening with the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card.

Earn 85,000 Bonus Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases in your first 3 months from your account opening.

Earn 95,000 Marriott Bonvoy bonus points after you use your new Card to make $6,000 in purchases within the first 6 months of Card Membership. Terms Apply.

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* Rewards earned by using one of these cards at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels come on top of the points you earn for being a member of the Bonvoy loyalty program. Taken together, paying with a Bonvoy card at a Bonvoy location can earn 14-17 points per dollar spent.

** There are two Marriott Bonvoy cards with substantially the same benefits but they come from different issuers. The Marriott Bonvoy Bountiful™ Card, described above, is from Chase. Its near-twin is the Marriott Bonvoy Bevy™ American Express® Card, which you can read about here.

To view rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card, see this page.


Business credit cards that earn Marriott Bonvoy points

Marriott Bonvoy Business® American Express® Card
NerdWallet rating 

Marriott offers a single small-business card, the Marriott Bonvoy Business® American Express® Card, which currently features this welcome offer: Limited Time Offer: Earn five Free Night Awards after you use your new Card to make $8,000 in eligible purchases within the first 6 months of Card Membership. Redemption level up to 50,000 Marriott Bonvoy® points for each bonus Free Night Award, at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy®. Certain hotels have resort fees. Offer Ends 3/20/24. Terms Apply.

The Marriott Bonvoy Business® American Express® Card also offers:

  • 6x points at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels.

  • 4x points at U.S. restaurants, at U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and on U.S. purchases for shipping.

  • 2x points on all other eligible purchases.

  • 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card account anniversary.

  • Complimentary Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status.

It carries an annual fee of $125. Terms apply.

Eat Around Town

When you dine and pay using your linked debit or credit card, you earn bonus Marriott Bonvoy points for every dollar you spend. These points are in addition to any rewards earned from your cards. To participate, you don't have to have a Marriott credit card. You can link any debit or credit card to earn Bonvoy points through Eat Around Town.

Currently, you’ll earn an additional 6,000 points in your first 60 days when you join and make your first eligible purchase.

Book meetings at Marriott

Whether you’re planning meetings for your company or a private event, like a wedding or birthday, you can earn Bonvoy points at Marriott properties. Most Bonvoy members can earn up to 60,000 points per event on eligible room, food, beverages and audio/visual charges. Titanium and Ambassador members earn up to 105,000. You’ll receive two Bonvoy points for every dollar you spend.

Refer friends to join Marriott Bonvoy

When you invite friends to join the Marriott Bonvoy loyalty program, you'll each earn 2,000 bonus points per stay for their first five stays. That's a potential of 10,000 points for each of you. Marriott allows members to refer up to five friends to earn bonus points through this referral program.

Use Marriott Card to book a cruise

You'll earn 3x Bonvoy points when you book a cruise through Cruise with Points. Additionally, Chase Marriott Bonvoy card members receive an extra 2x points when they book through the Cruise with Points program.

Rent cars through Hertz, Dollar or Thrifty

Bonvoy members earn 500 points when they rent a car with Hertz or 250 points with Dollar or Thrifty.

Purchase Marriott points

Marriott Bonvoy points can also be purchased in increments of 1,000 for $12.50. This means that points cost 1.25 cents each, which may or may not be worth it, depending on your trip. However, buying Marriott points is almost never a good idea unless you have a specific redemption in mind.

Transfer credit card points

Marriott is a transfer partner for Chase Ultimate Rewards® and American Express Membership Rewards, which means these points can be turned into Marriott points. Generally, this isn't the best use of these otherwise valuable credit card points, but if you have a specific high-value Bonvoy redemption planned, it could be worth it. Terms apply.

Other promotions

In addition to earning Marriott Bonvoy points from staying at participating Marriott properties, individuals can also earn points by spending through select partners, like Hertz, or using the Eat Around Town dining portal.

Using Marriott Bonvoy points

Although Marriott Bonvoy points can be used in a number of ways, hotel stay are still the best way to use Marriott Bonvoy points for maximum value. As of April 2022, Marriott uses dynamic awards pricing based on fluctuating demand, so you’ll want to target off-peak dates to make your Marriott points stretch farther.

It’s also important to note that Marriott Bonvoy points will expire if there is no qualifying activity in your Marriott account within 24 months. Qualifying activity includes making a purchase on a Marriott credit card, earning points by staying at a hotel, earning points through a Marriott Bonvoy partner, redeeming points or purchasing points.

Airline transfer partners

Marriott Bonvoy points may also be transferred to more than 40 airline partners, at the rate of 3 Marriott Bonvoy program points for 1 airline frequent flyer mile. In addition, for every 60,000 points transferred to a frequent flyer program, Marriott Bonvoy will add a 5,000-mile bonus, providing members with a total of 25,000 miles in the airline program of their choice. Unfortunately, this transfer bonus doesn't apply to American, Delta, Avianca or Korean Air.

United Airlines and Marriott have a special partnership, so the transfer ratio is even better. Instead of a 5,000-mile bonus, you will receive 10,000 bonus miles when you transfer Marriott points to United. So, for every 60,000 Marriott points transferred, you’ll end up with 30,000 United miles.

Good Marriott Bonvoy redemption options

When redeeming Marriott Bonvoy points for free hotel stays, we estimate the average value at 0.8 cent each. While you don't earn Marriott points when you use points to book hotel rooms, you still receive all of your elite-level benefits.

To get a better value from your points, check out the PointSavers program. PointSaver awards cost around 30% fewer points than standard awards.

You can also get more value out of your points if you redeem them for a stay of five consecutive nights. You’ll get the fifth night free, so if you’re redeeming for a hotel stay that costs 10,000 points per night, five nights will cost 40,000 points instead of 50,000 points.

Bad Marriott Bonvoy redemption options

Some redemption options don't give you good value for your points. While each individual redemption may vary, we suggest you skip these rewards:

  • Air + Car: Estimated value at less than 0.4 cent each.

  • CruisesOnly: Estimated value around 0.4 cent each.

  • Gift cards: Estimated value between 0.2 and 0.4 cent each.

  • TSA PreCheck: Estimated value around 0.3 cent.

  • Merchandise: Estimated value at less than 0.3 cent each, compared with Amazon prices.

Marriott Bonvoy elite status

The Marriott Bonvoy program includes a whopping five elite status levels: Silver, Gold, Platinum, Titanium and Ambassador.

Silver Elite

Gold Elite

Platinum Elite

Titanium Elite

Ambassador Elite

Points earning bonus

10%.

25%.

50%.

75%.

75%.

Late checkout

When available (time unspecified).

2 p.m. (when available).

4 p.m. (guaranteed).

4 p.m. (guaranteed).

4 p.m. (guaranteed).

Room upgrades

None.

When available, no suites.

When available, including suites.

When available, including suites.

When available, including suites.

Check-in gift

None.

Points.

Points, breakfast, or welcome amenity.

Points, breakfast, or welcome amenity.

Points, breakfast, or welcome amenity.

Lounge access

None.

None.

Yes.

Yes.

Yes.

Annual choice benefit

None.

None.

At 50 stays.

At 50 stays and 75 stays.

At 50 stays and 75 stays.

Ambassador service + Your24

None.

None.

None.

None.

Yes.

These five Marriott membership levels provide varying levels of perks depending on your loyalty. Generally though, the best benefits start when you reach Platinum because this level includes free breakfast and the Marriott Annual Choice Benefit.

Lifetime elite status

It is possible to earn lifetime elite status for Silver, Gold and Platinum members. Lifetime status is based on the number of years you’ve earned that status and the total number of nights earned.

  • Silver. Five years of Silver elite status and 250 lifetime nights.

  • Gold. Seven years of Gold elite status and 400 lifetime nights.

  • Platinum. Ten years of Platinum elite status and 600 lifetime nights.

While you can easily achieve the number of elite status years by having the related Marriott credit card, earning lifetime status still requires a large number of elite night credits.

Elite night credits

Members receive elite night credits based on eligible paid and award reservations. When you book an eligible rate, you’ll receive one elite night credit for each night you stay. Marriott Bonvoy members earn elite night credits on cash rates, points reservations and when you book points and cash stays.

Marriott occasionally offers promotions where members can earn additional elite night credits. Register for the promotions for free through the Marriott app or website, then book an eligible stay at participating properties.

When you have a Marriott credit card, you also receive elite night credits each year. The number of elite night credits varies based on the type of Marriott credit card you have. These elite night credits stack with the credits you earn from your eligible stays.

Marriott Annual Choice Benefit

When you reach Platinum status with Marriott, you’ll receive an Annual Choice Benefit, which allows you to choose between several perks. If you become a Titanium elite, you get access to a few additional perks to choose from.

Platinum elite Annual Choice Benefit options

  • Five Nightly Upgrade Awards to use for upgrades to premium rooms and suites.

  • Save $1,000 on a purchase of a bed from any Marriott brand.

  • Gift Silver elite status to a family member or friend.

  • Donate $100 to the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF). or the Arne M. Sorenson Hospitality Fund.

  • Five Elite Night Credits to help you reach the next elite status level.

Titanium elite Annual Choice Benefit options

In addition to the above choices, Titanium elites also get the following two perks to choose from.

  • One Free Night Award worth 40,000 Marriott points.

  • Gift Gold Elite Status to a family member or friend.

How to maximize the Marriott Bonvoy points program

If you want to get the most out of your Marriott Bonvoy membership, use these strategies to maximize your elite status, earning power and rewards.

Best Rate Guarantee

Like most hotels, Marriott encourages travelers to book directly with the hotel. Marriott believes it will always have the lowest prices through its website, mobile app and customer service, and it backs that up with a best-rate guarantee.

If you can find a lower rate within 24 hours of booking your initial reservation, Marriott will match the lower rate and give you an additional 25% discount on the room (20% for Design Hotels) or 5,000 Bonvoy points.

Use credit cards to earn elite status

Many Bonvoy members have trouble earning enough elite night credits each year to earn elite status based on how often they travel. One way around these requirements is the automatic elite status that Marriott credit cards offer. Additionally, some Marriott cards allow cardholders to earn upgraded elite status based on annual spending.

Terms apply.

🤓Nerdy Tip

If you have multiple personal Marriott credit cards, the elite night credits don't stack on top of each other. However, if you have a Marriott business credit card, those nights stack on top of personal cards. For example, if you have the Boundless card and the Business card, you’ll receive 30 elite night credits every year.

Fifth night free on award reservations

For every five consecutive nights booked at the same hotel using your Marriott Bonvoy points, you'll receive the fifth night free. This benefit can be used multiple times on longer stays. For example, you'll get two free nights on a 10-night award stay. The free night is the lowest point-value night during your stay.

Members can use this benefit an unlimited number of times. However, it doesn't apply to Cash + Points awards, Suite Night Awards or free night certificates. Best of all, all Bonvoy members are eligible for this benefit, even if they don't have elite status.

Final thoughts on the Marriott loyalty program

The Marriott Bonvoy loyalty program offers exceptional value for travelers who prefer staying at any of the over 30 brands in the Marriott portfolio.

Its loyalty program used to be called Marriott Rewards, and it has continued to evolve to deliver value to its members. Multiple levels of elite status can be earned through a combination of hotel stays, Marriott credit cards and other activities.

While the best redemption option is generally a hotel stay, Marriott offers several redemption choices, including the ability to transfer points to numerous airlines. Be sure to sign up for this free hotel loyalty program to start earning points on your next hotel stay.

Frequently asked questions

Marriott Bonvoy points can be used to purchase gift cards or for online shopping, and they can be transferred to airline partner programs to book flights. But more often than not, the best way to use Marriott Bonvoy points is to book rooms at Marriott hotels. When purchasing a room from Marriott’s website, check the box stating “Use Points / Certificates” to search award rates and book your stay.

Yes, it’s free to join the Marriott Bonvoy program, though you must provide your email address to join.

Sort of, yes. Thanks to a huge hotel merger, the Marriott Rewards, SPG and Ritz-Carlton Rewards programs joined forces; in 2019, they combined to become the Marriott Bonvoy program.

No, Hilton is its own company, formally called Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc. With a portfolio of 18 brands comprising more than 6,300 properties worldwide, Hilton hotels include Waldorf Astoria, Doubletree, Embassy Suites and Hilton Garden Inn. Marriott is a separate company, formally known as Marriott International. Among its approximately 30 brands are The Ritz-Carlton, St. Regis and SpringHill Suites.

There are over 7,000 participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels.

Yes, Marriott points expire after 24 months of inactivity. "Activity" includes both earning and spending points, so you can reset this expiration date either way.

To view rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Business® American Express® Card, see this page.
To view rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Bevy™ American Express® Card, please visit this page.
To view rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card, see this page.

Information related to the Marriott Bonvoy Bountiful™ Card has been collected by NerdWallet and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card.


How to maximize your rewards

You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2024, including those best for:

Marriott Cards from our Partners
Marriott Bonvoy Boundless™ Credit Card

on Chase's website

Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card
4.0
NerdWallet Rating
Rewards rate

2x-17x

Earn up to 17X total points per $1 spent at over 7,000 hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy® with the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Card. 2X points for every $1 spent on all other purchases.

Points

Intro offer

250,000

Limited time offer! Earn 5 Free Night Awards (each night valued up to 50,000 points) after spending $5,000 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening with the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card.

Points
Chase Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card

on Chase's website

Marriott Bonvoy Bold® Credit Card
2.8
NerdWallet Rating
Rewards rate

1x-14x

Earn up to 14X total points for every $1 spent at thousands of hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy® and 2X points on other travel purchases (from airfare to taxis and trains). 1X point for every $1 spent on all other purchases.

Points

Intro offer

30,000

Earn 30,000 Bonus Points after spending $1,000 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening with the Marriott Bonvoy Bold® Credit Card.

Points
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