Jul282012

Marriott Announces Cash + Points Reservations that save no cash or points

“Coming Soon: Marriott Reservations with Cash + Points.”  

Marriott Concierge, company representative of Marriott Rewards, started a new thread on FlyerTalk Thursday, July 26, 2012 announcing the new flexibility to combine cash nights and redemption nights in a single reservation. 

The link to the Marriott Rewards Cash + Points page shows these details:

Coming Soon: Cash + Points

Get ready for Marriott Rewards Cash + Points, a new way to book a stay that lets you combine redemption nights and cash nights within a single reservation of two nights or more. Along with this new flexibility, you’ll still earn points and Elite night credits for your nights paid with cash. So add a few days of relaxation onto a business trip or redeem just a portion of your points for a vacation.

Apparently this change is simply the opportunity to combine paid nights with reward nights for the same stay within one reservation.

For example: Combine a Thursday night using the standard points for a reward night with a paid night for Friday at the same hotel. In the past this would have been booked as two different reservations.

Now your paid night and reward night will be combined into one reservation.

That is not what is generally meant by the phrase “Cash + Points” which implies in the normal context of hotel bookings that a Cash + Points reservation requires fewer points than a standard reward night along with a cash supplement in lieu of the points.

The FlyerTalk thread does provide one member’s example of how this Marriott Rewards Cash + Points enhancement helps the Marriott Rewards member.

I recently had a “cash and points” stay at Renaissance Aruba.

First night Paid, two nights points, then last night paid.

The system couldn’t handle it.

Everyday, I had a new folio under the door indicating a single night’s stay with all previous charges rolled forward. Had to get new keys every day. After returning home, only one paid night posted (points for both nights did) and no points for incidentals posted. Had to submit a correction request to Marriott. It was corrected.

 
Sounds like this will help smooth this. Although, I do not have these stays often. Seems like its not a huge program upgrade vs. what has been eroded in the last year.

                                                 Mr. Vker – July 27, 2012

 

Other Cash and Points models in major hotel chains

Club Carlson Points + Cash:

  • Room rate is discounted 40% from published Best Available Rate.
  • Club Carlson is the only hotel loyalty program that counts Points + Cash nights for promotion credit, elite credit and loyalty points are earned for the cash portion paid. Hilton HHonors and SPG count cash & points reward nights only for elite credit and not for promotions and no points are earned for the paid portion of the award stay.
  • Category 1-3 = 5,000 points + Cash
  • Category 4,5 = 10,000 points + Cash
  • Category 6 = 15,000 points + Cash
  • BAR room rate = $100 room at a category 4 hotel. Points + Cash rate = 10,000 points + $60.

Hilton HHonors Points & Money

  • Room rate is 50% points of standard reward night + cash copay.

Hilton HHonors does not have a published table of copay rates, however, there was a published table on the Hilton website briefly in 2011 that I was able to copy. Hilton removed the Points & Money table within hours of Loyalty Traveler publishing the table on this blog.

HHonors Points & Money rates still appear to follow this chart.

image

 

InterContinental Hotels Group Priority Club Points & Cash

Priority Club allows members to buy 5,000 or 10,000 points per night of a Points & Cash reward stay. The points required are the same as a standard reward night, but the cost to buy 5,000 or 10,000 points is discounted from the regular purchase rate of $11.50 to $13.50 per 1,000 points.

Priority Club Points & Cash Copay

  • 5,000 points = $40
  • 10,000 points = $70
  • There is no limit to the number of points that can be purchased throughout the year for Points & Cash reward stays. There is a limit of 40,000 points per day a member can buy for Points & Cash rewards.
  • Normal points purchase rate for Priority Club is $11.50 to $13.50 per 1,000 points. There is an annual purchase limit of 50,000 points per year. Priority Club Points & Cash reward nights get around the annual limit for buying points and the points cost less.

image

 

Starwood Preferred Guest Cash & Points

SPG is the original hotel loyalty program to offer Cash & Points Reward Nights.

SPG Cash & Points nights require 40% of the points for a standard reward night and a fixed cash copay.

  • SPG Category 1 hotel = $25 + 1,200 points
  • SPG Category 2 hotel = $30 + 1,600 points
  • SPG Category 3 hotel = $45 + 2,800 points
  • SPG Category 4 hotel = $60 + 4,000 points
  • SPG Category 5 hotel = $90 + 4,800 points
  • SPG Category 6 hotel = $150 + 8,000 points
  • SPG Category 7 hotel = $275 + 15,000 points
  • (Cash & Points at SPG Category 1 and 2 hotels only offered in Asia-Pacific, US and Canada)

 

Marriott Rewards Cash + Points

The announcement of Marriott Rewards Cash + Points coming soon seems like an enhancement that really does not offer any type of discount on the cost of a paid hotel room or a discount on the standard redemption rate for nights using points.

Hopefully Marriott Rewards has something a little more consumer-friendly behind the curtain since this announcement appears to only streamline the reservation process for the hotel to combine paid nights and nights on points into a single reservation.

I guess this is a minor enhancement, but nothing like a major program change for reward night redemption members would expect with the announcement:

“Coming Soon: Marriott Reservations with Cash + Points.”

This preview indicates the changes are nothing to get too excited about.

Follow the conversation Marriott Rewards members are having on this announcement:

Loyalty Traveler original post link: http://loyaltytraveler.boardingarea.com/2012/07/28/marriott-announces-cash-points-reservations-that-save-no-cash-or-points/

Ric Garrido, writer and content owner of Loyalty Traveler, shares news and views on hotels, hotel loyalty programs and vacation destinations for frequent guests. You can follow Loyalty Traveler on Twitter and Facebook and RSS feed.

About Ric Garrido

Ric Garrido of Monterey, California started Loyalty Traveler in 2006 for traveler education on hotel and air travel, primarily using frequent flyer and frequent guest loyalty programs for bargain travel. Loyalty Traveler joined BoardingArea.com in 2008.

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Comments

  1. I think your info about C&P for SPG is inaccurate. I was able to redeem Sheraton Lima for 1600+30 cat 2.

  2. There’s one scenario I can think of where this may help the guest, besides streamlining the process. Could you use free nights to augment paid nights to satisfy a minimum stay requirement? For example, if the hotel has a special event period prohibiting stays of 1 or 2 nights, could you book a 4 night reservation with 2 paid and 2 reward? Or if a paid “extended stay” rate has a 7 night minimum, could you have 5 paid and 2 reward?

  3. LR—sorry a bit off topic but I booked a stay for Sheraton Lima for next month. Is the hotel in a safe area to walk around? Otherwise, I will stay at Miraflores Radisson instead.

  4. Yes, Sheraton Lima is great. I think it should be a Cat 3 or 4, but it’s a great value at a Cat 2. The Westin is nicer, and closer to attractions, but the Sheraton Lima is safe and a GREAT deal

  5. I just made a dummy cash & points reservation there (Sheraton Lima) and it seems to still work.

  6. Marriott does elite status by nights, right? So, those like Mr. Vker don’t have to worry about now only getting one “stay” credited instead of two, correct?

  7. @Charles Clarke – You are correct that the elite status by nights. I think in the case of Mr. Vker where points only posted for one paid night and not for the second paid night in a mixed paid/award nights stay, that suggests elite night credit probably was not earned either for the second paid night.

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