How To Apply Marriott Suite Upgrades To A Reservation In 6 Simple Steps

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One of the bigger positives moves we’ve seen come out of the Marriott/SPG merger is the inclusion of Starwood’s suite upgrades into the new combined loyalty program’s package of benefits.

Under the new combined loyalty program Marriott Platinum Elite status holders (50 nights needed/year) can now choose to receive 5 suite night awards as part of their benefits package and Marriott Platinum Premier Elite status holders (75 nights needed/year) can choose up to 10 suite night awards as part of their benefits too, so it’s helpful to know how these awards can be applied online.

If, like me, you’ve had the misfortune of having to ask the Marriott Rewards Twitter team any questions recently you may well have had to wait 6 days for a response…..

….and if you’re really unlucky the response will be wrong anyway!

You do NOT need to call Marriott to apply a Platinum suite upgrade award to an existing reservation – it can be done quickly and simply online.

Before I go on to show how easy it can be to apply a Marriott suite night award to a reservation it’s worth pointing out that you can’t use these awards at all Marriott properties.

Per Marriott:

Not all hotels participate in Suite Night Awards. Suite Night Awards are not redeemable at the following brands: The Ritz-Carlton®, Protea Hotels®, Aloft®, Element®, Design Hotels™, all-Suite Hotels, Marriott Executive Apartments®, Marriott Vacation Club® EDITION, Ritz-Carlton Reserve, Ritz-Carlton Destination Clubs and Marriott Grand Residence Club properties.

In addition, Suite Night Awards are not redeemable at select Participating Properties. Contact a Customer Engagement Center for individual hotel Suite Night Award participation.

Ritz-Carlton St Thomas

In the case of some of these brands the exclusion is understandable (the timeshare/fractional ownership properties for example) and in some cases it doesn’t really matter as the properties don’t really offer suites anyway….but it’s more than a little annoying that brands like the Ritz-Carlton and EDITION can simply choose not to offer a core Marriott benefit.

Anyway, that gripe is for another blog post…here’s how you apply a Marriott site night award to properties that actually honor elite benefits.

Applying A Marriott Suite Upgrade Award To An Existing Reservation – 6 Simple Steps

Step 1

Head over to Marriott.com and login using the link in the top right corner of the page.

Step 2

Click on the “My Trips” link in the top right corner of the webpage.

Step 3

From the list of your booked trips that now appear find the one you’d like to upgrade and click on the “details” link to the right of the reservation.

Step 4

From the reservation page that you should now have before you click on “view/modify”.

Step 5

Full details of your reservation should now be on the screen in front of view and, towards the bottom of the screen, you should see the option to apply your suite night awards to the reservation.

Clic on “start upgrade request”.

Step 6

You’ll now be presented with a choice of rooms into which you’d accept an upgrade – some of the options are true suites while others may just be slightly larger rooms or rooms with a better view…so choose carefully.

The text on the page clearly reads “The more rooms you select, the more likely you are to be upgraded” so bear this in mind when making your selection.

It’s Done!

Once you’ve selected the room(s) you’re happy to be upgraded into and submitted the form that’s it. There’ nothing more for you to do.

You’ll get a confirmation screen that looks like this….

…and you’ll see that Marriott will “start looking” for suite availability 5 days before your stay and will keep you updated of progress via email.

Almost as soon as you submit your suite upgrade award request you’ll also get an confirmation email from Marriott to let you know that your request is in progress.

Time to sit back and wait to see what happens.

Has anyone had any great successes with these Marriott suite upgrades yet? Anyone score a Presidential Suite they weren’t expecting? 🙂

Featured image: Living area of a JW Suite at the JW Marriott LA Live courtesy of Marriott

18 COMMENTS

  1. I tried to use my 10 nights for an 8 night stay. This process has been around for at least 3 months or more. It’s still pretty worthless. My “request” was cancelled twice. I was told by Marriot, the first time that the CNX request came from the hotel….b.s… I know the hotel very well and they told me they do not have the ability to CNX these suite night upgrade requests. Second time, Marriot said the CNX request came from my app, which is b.s. They tell you that they will try to confirm at the 5 day mark..and then if it does not happen, the request is cnx…and they do not keep trying for you….even if you are in their very top tier….so it feels pretty much like a con getting these things…

    • Wow..just wow. That’s a terrible experience! I have two requests pending right now for 2019 so it will be interesting to see just how well or badly they turn out…I suspect my request at the Gritti in Venice (award booking) has a very low chance of being honored.

  2. It doesn’t show for some brands for me. Do we have any info on how to handle it for places like this (St. Regis comes to mind most prominently).

    • Hmm…that’s interesting. I’ll see if there’s a way I can look into this. I don’t have any ex-Starwood properties reserved right now so I can’t check right away…but I’ll work on it.

      Is it only the former Starwood brands for which the upgrade option isn’t showing for you?

      • Hi,

        I have used reward certificates now at three different categories of hotels and also applied at others where I did not get the option to upgrade. I have used at St. Regis , JW Marriott and regular Marriott successfully. However I was not given the option to upgrade at W Goa in India. When called the service desk after 3 hrs of wait I was told not all hotels participated and not all the times the upgrade certificates are accepted.

        Hope this helps.

        AJ

        • Very useful information – thanks!

          It would appear that certain brands and certain (unnamed) properties are not participating in the suite upgrade award benefit so it’s likely that the W Goa is one of these properties.

          I’m surprised you managed to use s suite upgrade award at an RC as that appears to be one of the excluded brands.

      • It looks like not all brands have to honor suite night awards which is probably why you’re not seeing the option to upgrade (blog post now updated to show which brands are excluded).

        Interestingly St Regis isn’t one of the excluded brands so I’m left to wonder if the St Regis that you’re trying to upgrade is an all-suite property (which are excluded)

  3. Very useful guide. Thank you. Can you inform us as to which brands this works with and which ones do not participate i.e. Ritz Carlton.

    • I’m looking into this and I’ll update this post as and when I have all the information available – not sure when that will be right now but I’ll do my best to be quick!

    • Did you check to see if the property was selling its entry-level suites for the nights you stayed? It would be interesting to know if the property simply doesn’t honor suite upgrades or if the case that you were unlucky and all the suite had been booked/allocated to other upgraders.

  4. Yeah, using these SNA’s are complete b******t [edited TFM]. You can now add Westin Grand Cayman to the secret excluded property list too. Even though they always accepted them when they were SPG. And Marriott is being really sneaky about the participating property list. I have a 5 night stay booked and 5 SNA nights. When I click modify reservation it says Use your suite nights and has the “Start Upgrade Request” button. I click the button and it shows me all of the rooms available to request an upgrade to. I select 2 of the list and click submit. Then it goes to an error page. I immediately get 2 emails simultaneously, the first says we received your request and the second email says your suite night request has been removed. The first 5 separate days I try this I get the same result, I tried on different days over a 3 week period thinking this was just a tech glitch with all the problems they are having. I finally call and after a long time on hold they tell me it is a non-participating property even though the website invites you to use your SNA’s. So the only way to learn that it is on the secret excluded list is to actually book the room, and actually submit your SNA’s. They probably figure it will piss fewer people off if they pretend it is available until you get to the actual point of using them.

    • That’s pretty bad (I may try to pull together a post about this).

      Ultimately, if there’s no way of seeing which properties are “non-participating” while you’re booking we will end up with situations where people make non-refundable reservations in the belief that they have a shot at an upgrade only to find out that they have no shot at all.

      Underhand seems to be a good word to use here.

      • Underhanded is exactly right. And with all of the talk about the agents giving wrong answers, I really wonder what one is supposed to do when they ultimately tell you it’s on a list that I can’t show you? He guessed, “well it’s probably because it’s a resort property.” At that point I didn’t challenge him further, but thought to myself that would be the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard. So now SNA’s are not usable at resort properties? Isn’t that pretty much the only time anyone asks for a suite? When they go to a resort with their family and need extra room, not when they are on a business trip in a city.

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