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Marriott Bonvoy has launched a new points sale promotion in which it’s offering members a 30% discount on the regular price of points for all purchases of 2,000 points or more.
- Transactions must be completed by 11:59 p.m. EDT June 20, 2021, to be eligible for the 30% discount Points purchase offer with a minimum purchase of 2,000 Points.
- This offer is valid only for Points purchased through the promotion’s Buy Points or Gift Points pages.
- Purchased Points do not count toward Marriott Bonvoy Elite status.
- Members may purchase or receive Points purchased by another Member as a gift for a combined maximum of 100,000 Points per calendar year if purchased through the Buy Points Storefront or Gift Points Storefront.
- Points that have been already purchased or received as a gift in 2021 are included in the 100,000 Points annual purchase limit.
- Points may be purchased in increments of 1,000, up to 50,000 Points (with a minimum purchase of 2,000 Points required for promotion eligibility), or in increments of 5,000, up to 100,000 Points.
- Promotional discount purchase rate is 30% off the regular purchase rate of US$12.50 per 1,000 points (US$62.50 per 5,000 Points) with a minimum purchase of 2,000 points.
- Points purchases will be processed within 72 hours after the purchase is complete.
- New Members may purchase Points thirty (30) days after enrollment in the Marriott Bonvoy program.
- Purchasing Points using a Marriott Bonvoy cobrand credit card will earn Points as an everyday purchase.
The promotion is pretty simple:
- Buy 1,000 points & don’t get a bonus
- Buy 2,000+ points & get a 30% bonus
Because Marriott doesn’t play around with how its points are priced within a bonus band, anyone buying 2,000 points or more will be purchasing points at the cheapest rate on offer in this sale. Here’s the math to prove it:
If you buy just 2,000 Marriott Bonvoy points, it will cost you $17.50…
…which works out to a cost/point of 0.875 cents.
If you buy 100,000 Marriott Bonvoy points, it will cost you $875…
…which also comes to a cost/point of 0.875 cents.
Is This A Good Deal?
Note: Anyone even vaguely new to the miles and points world should read this post before proceeding.
I value Marriott Bonvoy points at around 0.6 cents each and the best sales that we usually see from Marriott offer points at between 0.781 and 0.833 cents each so, at first glance, these points look quite expensive. But that doesn’t mean that there won’t be times when buying points isn’t a good idea.
To see what I mean we have to start with the current Marriott Bonvoy award chart:
At 0.875 cents/point this is how much an award night would cost at hotels in each category if you were to buy points in this promotion:
If you’re planning to book a Marriott property in one of the less high-demand locations or if you’re planning to stay at a Marriott during a quiet period, it’s unlikely that you’ll find much value in buying points in this sale.
If, however, you’re considering making a Marriott booking in an expensive city like New York, London, Tokyo, Moscow, etc…, there’s a good chance that this sale could save you some money, but you’ll need to do the math to be sure.
A positive example would be a hotel like these Ritz-Carlton properties in the Miami area where, on a randomly selected night in January, a guest would be charged between $563 and $1,674 for rooms costing between 60,000 and 100,000 points.
Using points purchased in this sale, a night at one of these properties would cost between $525 and $875 saving the guest between $38 and $799 depending on the property selected…and that’s just for one night!
Buying points in this sale and then using them to make a booking can be a lot cheaper than paying for a booking with cash.
Having said that, it’s important to point out that it’s also easy to find an example of a property at which it’s almost always better to pay in cash. The Bangkok Marriott Hotel Sukhumvit (review), for example, rarely costs more than $160/night including taxes so, as a Category 4 property costing between 20,000 and 30,000 points per night, it’s a highly uneconomical location at which to spend points purchased in this sale (buying points and using them here would see you paying between $175 and $263/night).
Don’t Use The Wrong Credit Card
Marriott Bonvoy points sales are processed by Points.com and that eliminates the scope to earn a travel/hotel bonus by using a credit card that offers bonus points for shopping in one of those categories. This would be a very good opportunity to boost your spending towards a welcome bonus on a card that’s offering a good deal (like the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card)…
…or to boost your earnings of a currency that you particularly like. I, for example, would probably use my Chase Sapphire Reserve Card if I was to buy Bonvoy Points as I can never have too many Ultimate Rewards points (despite the fact that I would only earn 1 point/dollar).
This may or may not be a good sale depending on how you plan to spend the points you buy. Don’t buy Marriott Bonvoy points if you don’t have a plan for how you’re going to use them but buy as many as you need if the math makes sense.
As usual, following my frequently given advice is probably the best way forward:
- Find out the cost of a night at the properties you would like to visit (at the time of year you would like to travel)
- Compare that cost to the cost of an award night paid for with points purchased in this sale.
Only if the math clearly makes sense is it ok to buy points. If the results are inconclusive you should probably pass.