What Are Marriott Elite Night Credits?

Credits get you elite status in the Bonvoy loyalty program. Here's how to earn them.
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Elite members in the Marriott Bonvoy loyalty program enjoy perks like free room upgrades, late checkout, bonus points and sometimes, free breakfast. But how do you become an elite member? Staying several nights in hotels to earn “elite night credits” — the most common way to earn status — isn’t an option for less-frequent travelers.

You don’t have to be a road warrior to earn status in Marriott Bonvoy. That’s because booking hotel rooms isn’t the only way to earn elite night credits. For instance, you can earn elite night credits by using a qualifying credit card, among other activities.

Here’s what you need to know about elite night credits and qualifying for elite status with Marriott.

An overview of Marriott elite night credits

Elite night credits qualify you to become an elite member in the Marriott Bonvoy loyalty program at one of the different tier levels, and can be earned by staying at participating properties. For example, if you stay one night at a participating Marriott hotel, you'll earn one elite night credit.

Earn 10 elite night credits and you become a Silver Elite member of the Bonvoy program. Stays paid for with points or cash earn elite night credits.

How many elite night credits do I need to earn status?

Marriott Bonvoy members can qualify (or requalify) for elite status by staying a certain number of nights per year (from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31) at Marriott family properties.

  • Silver Elite: 10 nights per year.

  • Gold Elite: 25 nights per year.

  • Platinum Elite: 50 nights per year.

  • Titanium Elite: 75 nights per year.

  • Ambassador Elite: 100 nights per year + $20,000 in qualifying spend.

The higher your elite status, the bigger the benefits. For example, Gold Elite members get a 25% bonus on the number of Marriott Bonvoy points they earn on paid stays. But Titanium Elite members get a 75% bonus.

Elite night credits also help you qualify for Bonvoy Lifetime Elite status, which means the Bonvoy points you earn never expire and you keep your elite status forever without having to requalify every year.

Here are the milestones for reaching Lifetime Elite status:

  • Lifetime Silver Elite: 250 lifetime nights + five years as Silver Elite status or higher.

  • Lifetime Gold Elite: 400 lifetime nights + seven years as Gold Elite status or higher.

  • Lifetime Platinum Elite: 600 lifetime nights + 10 years as Platinum Elite status or higher.

In 2020 and in 2021, in response to the coronavirus pandemic, Marriott helped its existing elite members requalify for status by depositing elite night credits into their Bonvoy accounts. Members automatically got 50% of the credits they needed to maintain their previous year’s elite status. The spending threshold required for reaching Ambassador Elite status has been reduced to $14,000 in 2021 as well.

How to earn Marriott elite night credits

Besides staying at Marriott family hotels, there are several ways you can earn Marriott elite night credits.

Hold a co-branded credit card — or two

One of the easiest ways to earn Marriott elite night credits is by holding one or two of its co-branded credit cards, issued by American Express and Chase. All but one of these Marriott co-branded credit cards come with 15 elite night credits that are deposited to your account at the beginning of every calendar year automatically (the premium Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card card comes with 25). See below for options

Better yet, if you hold one personal credit card and one business card, you can get elite night credits from each card and earn up to 40 elite night credits total — enough to qualify out-right for Marriott Gold Elite status. Terms apply.

🤓Nerdy Tip

If you hold two personal Marriott co-branded cards or two business cards, the elite night credits don’t combine.

If you have a Marriott credit card, keep an eye out for promos that award you with elite night credits based on how much you spend. If you’re a few nights away from the next tier, this is a great way to earn some elite night credits.


Marriott Bonvoy credit cards
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 at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels.

• 2 points per $1 on grocery stores, rideshare, select food delivery, select streaming and internet, cable and phone services.

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

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

• 3 points per $1 at restaurants worldwide 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.

• Gold 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.

• Platinum 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 60,000 Bonus Points plus 1 Free Night Award after you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. Free Night valued at 50,000 points. Certain hotels have resort fees.

Earn 3 Free Night Awards (each night valued up to 50,000 points) after spending $3,000 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.


Stay during promotions

Another great way to earn Marriott elite nights is by enrolling in the loyalty program’s promotions. For example, the company recently offered a promotion called Better Two-gether (it ended earlier this year). This promotion awarded double elite night credits, plus double redeemable Bonvoy points, on paid Marriott stays of two or more nights.

So if you stayed five nights at a Marriott property during the promotion period, you earned 10 elite night credits — five elite night credits from the stay and another five from the promo.

Booking stays strategically during these promotions can get you to the next elite status tier much quicker.

Plan group events or meetings

Marriott guests who plan corporate meetings or family reunions can earn one elite night credit for every 20 room nights booked for an event at a Marriott property (limited to 20 elite night credits per event).

A note: Birthday elite night credits are on pause

In the past, Marriott loyalty program members received a complimentary elite night credit on their birthday. To qualify, members needed to have their birthdate listed under “Personal Info” in their Bonvoy account and have their email communication preferences set to receive all offers.

The benefit has been paused, and it’s not clear whether it’ll be back in the future.

If you’re collecting Marriott elite night credits

What are Marriott elite night credits good for? They can qualify you for elite status with the Marriott Bonvoy program. You can earn these credits by staying at participating hotels and resorts whether you book with cash or points. Holding the right credit cards, hosting events and participating in global promotions can accelerate your climb to elite status.


How to maximize your rewards

You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are some of the best travel credit cards of 2024:

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

150,000

Earn 3 Free Night Awards (each night valued up to 50,000 points) after spending $3,000 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
3.3
NerdWallet Rating
Rewards rate

1x-14x

Earn up to 14X total points for every $1 spent at thousands of hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy®, earn 2X points for every $1 spent at grocery stores, rideshare, select food delivery, select streaming, and internet, cable, and phone services, and 1X point for every $1 spent on all other purchases.

Points

Intro offer

60,000

Earn 60,000 Bonus Points plus 1 Free Night Award after you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. Free Night valued at 50,000 points. Certain hotels have resort fees.

Points
See more marriott cards
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