BETHESDA, Md.—Marriott International plans to introduce one set of unified benefits across Marriott Rewards, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards, and Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) for its loyalty program members in August 2018. The company says that members will earn more points and earn them faster than under the prior programs—on average 20 percent more points for every dollar spent.
For the first time under the umbrella of the united Marriott loyalty program, members will have access to book stays and earn or redeem points among 29 participating global brands comprising 6,500 hotels in 127 countries and territories. Members will be able to combine their separate Marriott Rewards, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards, and SPG accounts into a single account spanning the entire loyalty portfolio. A new program name will be introduced in 2019, but until then, the names—Marriott Rewards, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards, and Starwood Preferred Guest—will continue to live on under the new set of unified benefits.
Also beginning in August, travelers will have the ability to book stays across the entire portfolio for the first time on Marriott.com, SPG.com, and the Marriott and SPG apps, or by contacting customer engagement centers.
“We listened to the travel aspirations of our members and set our sights on unlocking the full potential of our loyalty programs,” David Flueck, senior vice president of global loyalty at Marriott International, says. “We are excited to announce that this August, our members can enjoy one set of benefits across our extraordinary portfolio of hotels from iconic full and select service, to extended stay, to unique boutiques and luxury brands. We hope to inspire our members whatever their travel passion, whether resorts featuring overwater bungalows, peaceful secluded island settings, ski-in/ski-out mountain resorts, towering hotels with picture-worthy views, or even former palaces converted into hotels.”
Additionally, the company is expanding its Moments experiential platform, with more than 110,000 experiences in 1,000 destinations from attraction tickets and tours for purchase with cash by all guests, to events only available to members using points, including the new Moments Live event series.
“There are no more important customers than our loyalty members,” Karin Timpone, global marketing officer at Marriott International, says. “With good news for our members, we decided to announce the new benefits now and launch them as quickly as possible, so members could take full advantage. At the same time, we will continue to introduce more exclusive member experiences throughout the year on our Moments platforms.”
New Elite Tiers for Loyalty Members
In August, members will be able to earn and redeem across the entire portfolio of participating hotels and earn benefits and elite status faster with new elite tiers, the company says. For example, earning Silver elite status after ten nights and Gold elite status after 25 nights will become standard in all three programs. With Platinum elite status earned after 50 nights and Platinum Premier elite status earned after 75 nights, these tiers will become easier to attain for Marriott Rewards and The Ritz-Carlton Rewards members and align with SPG’s current offering. In addition, all Platinum Premier members surpassing 100 nights and $20,000 of spend will receive personalized service–the popular ambassador program–along with all the other benefits in that tier. Members who have achieved Lifetime status will continue to have their status recognized.
The breakfast offering for Platinum and Platinum Premier members will be expanded to 23 participating brands, including Courtyard, AC Hotels by Marriott, Protea, and Moxy, as well as resorts. For certain brands, members will receive free breakfast or an on-property food and beverage credit for breakfast or other dining options.
Marriott will also introduce a single points currency, and SPG members will see their points balance triple in August. SPG, Marriott Rewards, and The Ritz-Carlton Rewards members will all earn ten points for every dollar spent at all brands except for Residence Inn, TownePlace Suites, and Element which will be five points per every dollar spent. Elite members will earn more for stays with bonuses, and all members will begin earning points for food and beverage and qualifying incidentals on their folio, rather than just the room rate.
Redeeming Loyalty Points
To make it easier for members to redeem points, all hotels throughout the loyalty portfolio will have no blackout dates for points redemptions. In addition, a Free Night Award chart with peak, standard, and off-peak pricing will be adopted for all hotels. The chart, which will launch with standard pricing in August, will add off-peak and peak in 2019.
More Mobile Features
When members book directly on Marriott.com, SPG.com, or any of Marriott’s mobile apps, they will be able to choose from all 6,500 participating hotels, and also take advantage of exclusive member-only rates and free WiFi. In addition, members will be able to check-in or check out and receive Room Ready Alerts chat directly with hotels using Mobile Requests and where available use their smartphones as their room key on all of Marriott’s mobile apps.