The poll gives three choices and otherr for comments and concerns.
We need some changes -
I joined in 2015, so I haven't really had much opportunity to see change in the rewards program. But I'm guessing an opportunity to see change is not too far on the horizon.
I voted Other - Marriott Rewards has 'evolved'. We are Insiders, hear us roar!
Ok, although I'm sure I'll regret it, what's up with the Robert Taylor identity? Let me guess, when you were a young whipper,
Liz Taylor gave you a smooch on the set of Ivanhoe. Spill the beans Rambler .
Unlike Bob I never chain smoked.
Robert was in the Navy Reserve and did a series of WWII movies, and a documentary about Carrier life. Died too young. Replaced Ronald Reagaon on his TV series. A Nebraska kid who made it big time. A female friend told me I look like him--she has good eyesight but not sure why she compared me to him. I took it as a compliment!!!
"A female friend told me I look like him"
Sadly, female friends tell me I look like him
There you go bejacob there's an idea for a new thread (like Insiders with Outrageous Shirts ) -
Separated at Birth
Personally, I'd prefer this comparison.
Though, I suppose it's better to be compared to a political reporter than a politician. Especially these days.
As the enlisted guy at the badge room once told me when I was getting my CAC card, "If you want a better picture, bring a better face!?
Marriott Rewards has given me the opportunity to travel to many places (that I thought were not possible) and these dreams have become a reality. I think the usage, in general, has required more points as time has evolved, but I have gotten better at maximizing the most efficient use of these points, such as taking travel packages, paying for short term stays and not using my points which allows me to accumulate more points for future travel.
I think it’s got better. Although I joined a little before before the big 2009 devaluation I really saw very little downside as I made Plat later that year and had very few points in the bank, but benefitted from the 20% extra Plat uplift from those changes. I also benefitted from the no blackout dates policy which whilst has never been quite what was portrayed did make redemptions far easier. The category creep has built up but rates have done the same. The addition of 4pm checkout is a significant benefit. Finally the addition of SPG is very good, so good it’s my choice of vacation next year, at a resort with free breakfast! There’s another improvement, folks, even if it is via the back door.
So I say better, and be careful what you wish for. According to pony-tailed marketing types millennials like instant gratification, points for free stays in the future don’t interest them, and SPGers are used to a miserable earn and burn. Take from that what you will...
I'd add rollover nights and status buy backs to that list. Those were put in to help folks during those rough years after the financial collapse. They became "permanent" a few years later. That was also about the time the criteria for LT status were lowered.
So while some things have gone, and we keep seeing category creep on properties, there have been some nice enhancements as well.
AS the suggester of RON, thanks
I tend to agree with erc also voted other. The program along with all other similar programs seems to have evolved. Id say while points are worth less today they are much easier to get from multiple sources. The main difference I see from the past is that a lot of people in the program have high status who might not have in the past. There are a lot of ways to get top status now without staying 75-100-200 nights a year. I believe that change was very intentional on Marriott's part.
Marriott is going to ruin SPG!
That wouldn’t make any sense. Spend billions on a company and trash it?
As a Marriott Plat the takeover of SPG has brought real tangible benefits, so far.
25+ years within the MR program and I think things have not gotten any better over the years. The top-tiered elite still get no real perks that align with uber-loyalty.
I think there have been some improvement, as pointed out above. I also agree with brightlybob that the merger with SPG has brought nice, tangible benefits. I appreciated the instant tier status-match, ability to transfer points between programs and the exceptional treatment at Starwood properties!
I continue to be extremely pleased with the Rewards Program, and the way I've been treated at the majority of the properies at which I've stayed. I've been brought up with a "treat people like you'd like to be treated" attitude all my life, so I never walk into a property expecting them to bow to me as a 14-year loyalist - instead, I bring THEM a gift upon check-in (usually Hershey Kisses or other food item - check-in peeps LOVE chocolate ;-) and simply by being nice, the benefits tend to take care of themselves. I love any opportunity to earn bonus points, and love what they've done with the Green Initiative (skipping housekeeping for bonus points), the NFL Twitter kickbacks, and I have no doubt that won't change when the merger hits. Great standards never go out of style. :-)
I've been a member for over 35 years. I'm lifetime platinum and currently platinum premier. I made lifetime platinum when you needed 12 yrs, 1000 stays, and 3.5 million points. That has since changed to something more obtainable which has also diluted the glamor of the concierge and the ability to receive an upgrade. The platinum to gold levels are not different enough to award the upper tier anything of substance anymore, other than the 50% points bonus. So coming from a historic perspective, I have seen what I feel is a decline.
I am also a long suffering member and if I count my Marriott Marquis Club years have been with them since 1979. I too find the levels rather inconsequential between gold AND Platinum other than the 50%. I brought this up to corporate during my Ambassador years, and...
Riddle me this Mr. Ambassador - I too remember the Marriott Marquis Club and its inception in the seventies (as does Mrs. erc). superchief1 and a few others of us are absolutely confident we joined a loyalty program in the seventies; yet Marriott swears it began in 1983 and I cannot find any earlier reference in the entire internet thingy. Would you please use your 'surveillance' assets and dig this up for us? Thank you.
ps - I'm trying to also research whether you tipped me at Georgetown U. when you were Mastering and I was serving (until I can prove otherwise, you'll get the benefit of the doubt). I do recall when there was a freeze and coffee prices shot up a nickel how the Dr.s making beaucoup bucks threw a hissy fit, so I'm sure undercover as you were, you just 'sucked it up' .
I was on the DCI's dime at GU, but that's another story. Had a sabbatical with the DCI's Exceptional Analyst Program that allowed me to finish my PhD in govenment/international relations. Went by my real name, of course, the one that I always use!!
As for the Marquis Program, it meant that when you stayed twelve times at a Marriott you got one free night. The
griffin was on the posters. I do not recall any formal cards being passed out. Since Marriott was heavily in the DC area, most of my stays were there. I made it by staying at the Pooks Hill hotel, as I recall.
First off, apologies to cutting in on bbob's dance. Please check out his thoughtful response below
Now, back to Marquis Club - I know what it was, I was in it (and lived in the Promenade above your Pooks Hill hangout). What I'm curious about is why it is virtually impossible to find any info on it in cyberspace - it's a bit like the SNL sketch, where somehow Coke has replaced Pepsi (at the Billy Goat Tavern which was made famous by the Olympia Cafe sketch) and there is practically no evidence left of the original (correct) "no Coke, Pepsi"; all you can find is some knucklehead, perhaps on coke, talking over the bootlegged original - but you can see/hear Belushi saying no Coke, Pepsi.
NO FRIES CHIPS, NO COFFEE PEPSI, NO TOMMY PARKY, CHEEBURGER - YouTube
and now the 'fake' - but apparently purchased revision
Cheeseburger Cheeseburger - Funny - Billy Goat Tavern - YouTube
We're talking conspiracy - our Seventies loyalty program has been wiped from the history books (next we'll discover that Soylent Green was people!).
I have checked with the Marriott History department (we will serve no guest before his time) and hope they can solve the mystery. My Google friends have no idea--that's strike one! Amazing!!!! He whispers slowly and quietly, "Rosebud" and the screen goes dark.
Thanks, I'm glad you're on it. If it can be found, your 'team' will find it.
I have the dossier guy on the trail. Fingers Crossed!
I think it would be true to say this is probably a 20th/21st century split situation.
Those who were members during the 1980s and 1990s have regaled stories of staying at a dozen Marriotts at $20 per night and redeeming the 5,000 accumulated points for 2 weeks in the Seychelles, first class flights for the family of 5 - and grandma, 2 weeks Free carhire with guaranteed limo upgrade and a Free Ford Pinto on return home - ok so maybe not that good but these packages, flight, hotel and car were a common redemption offer. For them the current 40,000 points for a night at the NYC FFI is an unambiguous devaluation of Weimar proportions.
Those of us that joined in the 21st century have got used to category creep, the infamous matrix and program cuts so the last year spent wooing our SPG friends has rather improved things somewhat. Maybe we have or maybe we haven’t got back the earn burn value from 10 years ago, but we have gained rollovers, bigger Plat bonus, 4pm checkouts, better redemption via the no blackout policy, suites specifically included in upgrade wording, free breakfast at weekends and at (SPG) resorts.
To those that never experienced the generosity of airline and hotel programs in the late 20th century the Marriott history over the last 10 years has been patchy but over the last year unremmitingly positive. To those who did experience the 20th century programs whatever is here now is a mere shadow of what it was...
In the 60s I paid less than $20, including a sumptuous dinner of Mighty Mos from the adjacent Hotte Shoppe! Of course there were no loyalty programs, then, other than Green Stamps at the supermarket and free glasses at the gas station.
By the Way, erc can give you the recipe for the secret sauce on a Mighty Mo.
1/2 c. catsup1/4 c. chili sauce1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce1 1/2 tsp. A-1 sauce2 drops Tabasco sauce1/2 c. finely chopped sweet pickle1 1/4 c. mayonnaise
Combine first 5 ingredients. Add chopped pickles and mix well. Stir in mayonnaise until well blended. Store in tightly covered container in refrigerator. Use as a sauce on hamburgers to make the famous Hot Shoppes Sandwich.
Senior (Bill's dad - always insisted on Hunt's, not Heinz - thus the catsup)
I haven't seen a lot of overall changes but would expect significant changes when they combine programs with Starwood . Not sure they will be good or bad overall.
Senility will set us free!
Do you remember the 7-night multiple hotel stay Sampler rewards called Hawaii Hopper or Europe Hopper for 150,000 points.
These Marriott Rewards hotel redemption were for 2-night, 2-night, and 3-night combination of hotels and are valid for 12-months from issue date at ANY participating Marriott hotel within the Marriott-defined region of Europe or Hawaii.
Today 7-night stay is 315,000 points, in some cases addition hotel room charge applies. .
Yes, it is much easier to become Lifetime Platinum member today, but that is NOT a real improvement in my book or is it?
How about a week in NY at the Marquis for 150,000 points? Now over a quarter million!
Yeah! And I once stayed at the Key Bridge Marriott for $25 and tonight they want $215. Prices go up, regardless of whether they are in dollars, Euros, or points. It's called inflation.
When I paid $25 at Key Bridge, McDonalds was advertising a "3 course meal for 43 cents".
Of course, had Marriott rewards existed, I would have gotten only 375 points, with a platinum bonus. How many nights would I have had to stay to earn 150,000 points?
A whole lot, but if someone smarter than me were to calculate cost of living versus prices for hotels and points needed I'd be grateful (and shocked)
I'm not sure how to answer that question. I do know that inflation in hotel rates spiked in 2011 & 12 and has generally been fairly close to the overall inflation rate since then. I can only give my gut feel that redemption prices have about tracked the increase in dollars.
I do know that over the past 15 years, I have averaged 30 paid Marriott nights and 8 1/2 free nights per year and over the past 5 years, with similar travel pattern, that average has remained 30 paid Marriott nights and 8 1/2 free nights per year. I can assume, from that , that I am getting similar value.
Perhaps, bejacob has figured out the average rate of inflation for point stays.
Goodness no. That sounds like a job for an economist not an accountant.
I think your calculations of free nights to paid nights tells a pretty compelling story.
Actually, I think an accountant can do it better than an economist. Have you ever pondered the question "If all the economists in the world exchanged jobs with all the weather forecasters, would anybody notice?"
Seriously, if we looked at the list of changes for one year and then divided the total of all increases less decreases, (in points by the number of hotels, we would have an average number of points increased. divide that by the average rate in points and we have the rate of inflation for that year.
Marriott and the rewards program continue to decline significantly, as they strive to become Motel 6, changes include:
eliminate a customer service phone line, daily maid service, prior to arrival maid service, limited access to the hotel lounges, room delivered arrival gifts, daily room turn down service, daily newspapers, room upgrades, rooms booked with points that are not the worst room available, guaranteed rooms, honoring guaranteed reservations, etc.
in the quest to become a full service prison, maybe they should eliminate:
soap, shampoo, beds, toilets, showers, phones, TV, etc. then the move to no service and no loyalty would be complete, oh, they are already at the point of no service and no loyalty to the best customers,
if we treated our best customers like Marriott we would have no customers, they are lucky they are big
alcplatiumpremier , which Marriott hotels are you staying at. I assume that they are some alternate universe from the one where I stay. Looking at your list of things eliminated, I wonder where you are staying, because most of these are not what I have experienced. I'm LT PlatinumIn almost 52 years of staying at Marriott hotels I've seen little evidence of deteriation of the hotels or the program.
1. customer service phone line, is still functioning at 800-321-7396. I used it last week and had a minor problem fixed
2. daily maid service - I never failed to receive it, except for one time when I inadvertently left a DND hanging from my door. Marriott has begun offering guests extra points to forego it, but that's hardly denying it.
3. prior to arrival maid service, I never heard of any hotel that doesn't provide it
4. limited access to the hotel lounges, Marriott has not changed access at any FS hotel I've stayed at except for a few that have increased off hours and weekend service
4. room delivered arrival gifts I never received them except on a few special occasions, so there is no change.
5. daily room turn down service. You are correct on this one. FS Marriotts seem to have discontinued this service
6. daily newspapers You're partly right on this. Papers are no longer delivered to my door at most Marriott hotels, but they are available in the lobby and CL at every FS hotel I've stayed at. Papers have been eliminated at some FI and RI locations.
7. room upgrades, I almost always get an upgrade. There has been no change in this one. I get a suite about a third of the time and that is as it has been since I first became Gold and did not change when I became Platinum
8. rooms booked with points that are not the worst room available. I see not difference between rooms booked with points certs, or cash.
9. guaranteed rooms, I've never had a guarantee that was not honored
10. honoring guaranteed reservations. I've never been walked or otherwise had a reservation not honored.
Out of 10 items on your list, 8 have never happened to me, one happens sometimes, and turndown service is your only correct item. Perhaps you should switch to Motel 6 and see if Marriott is really becoming like them!
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