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Marriott has brought back a pretty good points sale this week in honor of its “Week of Wonders” promotion which runs through 14 October. The offer that you’ll see when you log in to the sale will depend on whether or not you hold any kind of elite status with Marriott Bonvoy as non-elite Bonvoy members are being offered a 50% bonus and everyone with elite status (Bonvoy Silver status and higher) is being offered a 55% bonus.
- Marriott Bonvoy Elite members are eligible for the 55% bonus Points purchase offer with a minimum purchase of 2,000 Points on transactions completed between 6:00 p.m. EDT October 6, 2021, and 11:59 p.m. EDT October 14, 2021.
- 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.
- Points that have been already purchased or received as a gift in 2021 are included in the 100,000 Points purchase limit.
- The 55% bonus Points earned with this promotion are not 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.
- Points purchases will be processed within 72 hours after the purchase is complete.
- A Member must be an active member in good standing to purchase and/or receive Points.
- New Members may purchase Points thirty (30) days after enrollment in the Marriott Bonvoy program.
- Once Points have been purchased or gifted, no refunds will be permitted.
This is just about as simple as it gets – as long as you buy 2,000 points or more you’ll be buying Marriott Bonvoy points with a 55% bonus (if you have elite status) or a 50% bonus (if you don’t have elite status).
As most people reading this post will probably have some sort of Bonvoy Elite status – you get Silver Elite status just for holding the non-annual-fee Marriott Bonvoy Bold credit card (review) – this post will focus on the value available from the 55% bonus.
If you buy just 2,000 Marriott Bonvoy points you’ll end up with 3,100 points (after the 55% bonus is factored in) for just $25.00…
…and that works out to a cost/point of ~0.81 cents.
If you buy 100,000 Marriott Bonvoy points, you’ll end up with a total of 155,000 points at a cost of $1,250…
…which also comes to a cost/point of ~0.81 cents.
Is this a good deal?
Note: Anyone even vaguely new to the miles and points world should read this post before proceeding.
There are three key things to know before I go any further:
- This isn’t the best deal we see Marriott publishing. Marriott sometimes offers a bonus as high as 60% (points costing ~0.78 cents each) and there’s a chance that we’ll see a bonus of that magnitude offered around the Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales.
- We sometimes see Marriott allowing Bonvoy members to purchase up to 150,000 points (excluding bonuses) so even if the Black Friday/Cyber Monday sale doesn’t offer an improved bonus, it may offer the chance to buy more points.
- Marriott is currently running a promotion in which ~4,000 properties are all offering Reward Night bookings at off-peak pricing for stays through the end of October so, regardless of what may or may not be offered in the inevitable late November sale, if you need a few more points to make a booking, this sale may be a good way to top up your account.
I value Marriott Bonvoy points at around 0.6 cents each so, at first glance, the points on sale here are still quite expensive, but there may be times when buying points here isn’t such a bad deal.
To see what I mean we have to start with the current Marriott Bonvoy award chart:
At 0.81 cents/point this is how much a night at each category would cost if you were to buy points in this promotion:
If you’re looking 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 (or 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 very good example would be a hotel like the Langley (just outside London) which almost always charges more than $450/night (including taxes)…
…and this makes it cheaper to buy points than it is to pay with cash even in peak season (this particular date is available for 50,000 points which would see a guest save approximately $295 on a single night assuming all 50,000 points were purchased for 0.81 cents each).
Another thing to keep in mind is that by buying 155,000 points in this sale, a Bonvoy member would automatically have enough points for a 5-night booking at any Category 5 property (outside of peak season) and a 5-night booking at all properties in Category 4 and below at any time of year.
$1,250 for 5 nights ($250 per night including all taxes) at properties such as the Westin San Diego Gaslamp Quarter, the JW Marriott Tuscon Starr Pass, the Whitely in Atlanta, the Penha Longa Resort in Portugal, the Ritz-Carlton Wolfsburg, the St Regis Kuala Lumpur, or the JW Marriott Khao Lak Resort in Thailand can be a fantastic deal and that’s why this sale shouldn’t be dismissed out of hand.
Marriott is selling Bonvoy Points from ~0.81 cents each through 14 October and if you need points to make a booking right away, this could represent a good opportunity to top up your account. If you have no immediate need for points or can wait to see what other deals come to light down the line, it may be worth waiting to see what Marriott publishes for the Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales.
Featured image: The JW Marriott Khao Lak Resort courtesy of Marriott