The other day Marriott sent me an e-mail to congratulate me for being in their program for 20 years. Wow, has it really been that long I have been collecting their points? That sounds crazy to me. Then again, we are approaching the 6th year I have been running the blog and posting every day so time does tend to fly by.
But something funny has happened this year – I have found I am staying at more and more Marriotts than ever before despite how I feel about their loyalty program. The reason is simple and I am worried it will go away one day. What is this?
The sweet availability to send SPG points to Marriott at 3x each. My, how I like this three times over.
First off, there are few times I ever need to stay at a luxury hotel. It simply is not my thing. Give me a clean basic room with a soft bed and good shower (and fast wifi, clearly) and I am good to go. I stay in a hotel room for as short a time as I can. I don’t live there, it is just a room for the night.
With that I am finding it is just so darn simple to stay at a basic Marriott property just about anywhere on the planet I go with over 5700 locations and over 1+ million rooms.
I have to say I am enjoying mixing and matching SPG locations and with all the program options to send points back and forth and even send Marriott to SPG and then to my wife’s SPG account has been great. This way, when we stay at a Sheraton, we get club access since she has the business SPG card that gets us in. I love options and so many choices!
Does this mean I am warming up to Marriott Rewards now? Yes and no. Yes, for the points side, but as they reminded me at the top of this post that is about points. As to the elite program no and I still miss what SPG once was. I am, however, happy with the GOLD status from SPG and we shall see if the free SPG Gold I get from holding my non-Delta AMEX Platinum business card will keep going down the road (I hope so).
Has your feeling toward the combined Marriott and SPG changed at all this year? Are you enjoying all the perks and flexibly? Are you staying more at their hotels than you planned like me? Let me know in the comments below. – René
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