I believe there are several discussion threads and postings on this topic but I wanted share my furstation around redeeming Marriott certificates and find out if & how other members might have addressed it. As part of megabonus and marriott credit card anniversary nights, I always end up earning free night certificates. Finding a hotel with a category of 1-4 or even 5 in San Francisco bay area is very hard or next to impossible. I got a perfect opportunity to use them while travelling to a different country and state. Unfortunately I will not be travelling and only my family members will be going on this trip. As part of the reservation process, I have learned that I can not use these ceritificates because I am not staying at the hotel. Why these restrictions? If Marriott wants to give these as a loyalty perks, they need to make this whole process more flexible. What is different between points and these ceritificates? If I can use the points for my family members, why cant I use the certificates for their stay? Any insight you all can provide can be greatly appreciated.