Marriott Rewards has a free night offer after three stays. The free night is limited to the lowest Category 1 to Category 4 hotels for redemption. This restriction greatly limits the usefulness of the certificate in the 8 hotel redemption categories in Marriott Rewards system, although you can take your free night at the Category 4 JW Marriott Bucharest, Romania.
You can see hotels by redemption category level at this link. Just select the Category you desire and click Find: http://www.marriott.com/rewards/pointsGridPopUpPropertyList.mi
There are different variations of the Marriott Rewards Summer promotion. Some members may have points based promotions. My wife and I both received the free night after 3 stays offer.
Offer: Stay 3 times at a Marriott brand hotel between June 1 – August 31 and receive one free night after your 3rd qualifying stay.
· The free night may be redeemed at a Marriott Category 1, 2, 3, or 4 hotel from June 1 through December 31, 2009.
· There is a maximum of one free night you can earn for this promotion.
· Free night will post 3 to 5 days after 3rd qualifying stay.
· Registration is required by June 30.
There is no direct registration link. You must sign in to your account and the summer offer should appear on the Marriott Rewards homepage to allow registration for your offer. Your account may be targeted for a different promotion.
Terms: Stays completed during promotional period prior to promotion registration will qualify for the free night award as long as member registers for free night promotion by June 30.
Loyalty Traveler Analysis: Nice promotion to keep in mind as you shop for hotels this summer. Throwing 3 stays Marriott’s way will have added value of one free night.
The category limitation is big in my opinion. There is much more leverage opportunity when redeeming your free night for an IHG or Starwood free night at a high-end hotel. Many major cities and resort areas start at Marriott Rewards category 5 hotels.
Marriott’s promotion excludes Category 5-8 from free night redemption. Last October I predicted category increases with Marriott Rewards hotels. That has only partially come true with the Marriott Vacation Club increases recently announced. The table I created in my October post shows only about 10% of Marriott’s properties globally are in the high-end categories of 5, 6, 7, or 8.
Knock off the top 300 Marriott resorts and city hotels and there are still over 2,500 hotels to redeem your free Marriott Rewards category 1-4 hotel night.
Summer 2009 is the year of free night qualifying hotel stays. Marriott Rewards will cover August after the Starwood and IHG promotions end. I’ve seen Marriott-brand hotel rates in the San Francisco Bay Area recently under $60 per night.
Starwood Hotels offer is two stays earns one free Fri, Sat, or Sun night through Sep 26 and no promotion earning limit for hotel stays through July 31. InterContinental Hotels Group promotion is every two nights earns one free night valid from July 3-Dec 26 and maximum 4 nights earned for hotel stays through July 3.
The presence of Marriott brand hotels in many more locations than Starwood Hotels may make this “stay three, one free night” offer from Marriott a good alternative to Starwood’s Stay Two, one free weekend night.
Starwood Hotels is much more liberal in the free night redemption with any hotel in Category 1-6. The Starwood promotion excludes only 18 hotels of around 900 hotels globally.
IHG is the easiest free night to earn with only two nights needed to earn a free night. Two nights can be in either one stay or two one-night stays. The Marriott Rewards terms seem more liberal than IHG with changes to free night reservations allowed and the possibility of redeeming your free night for December 31 New Year’s Eve night stays.
Hotel choices for your destination and your ability to get good value from your free nights will determine your best hotel loyalty program option.
Regardless of where you travel there will be a high value free night promotion available for your summer stay.
I toured several San Francisco Airport hotels last week including several Marriott Rewards Category 4 hotels like:
San Francisco Marriott San Mateo – a nice looking hotel adjacent to Highway 101 that I have noticed for years and first visited last week.
San Francisco Airport Courtyard and Residence Inn at Oyster Point – Residence Inn has great outdoor pool adjacent to San Francisco Bay park path. The pool was unused last Saturday when the temperature was a rare 80s on the coast.