This morning I shared that Marriott Rewards Platinum Premier status receives United MileagePlus silver elite status in 2017. In turns out that United MileagePlus Global Services Elites will also receive an upgrade to Platinum at Marriott Hotels. United Premier Gold, Platinum, and 1K elites will continue to receive Marriott Rewards Gold status. Top tier elites at both Marriott and United invite only elites are receiving additional perks through the United and Marriott partnership. This partnership is through Marriott’s RewardsPlus which launched in 2014.
Marriott hotels have three public elite status, Silver, Gold, and Platinum. Platinum status through Marriott is the most difficult hotel status to achieve, as it requires 75 nights per year. Most other top-tier programs only require 50 or 60 elite nights to earn top-tier status. Hilton and Hyatt requires 60 nights and SPG requires 50 with additional perks at 75 nights. Since United is providing Platinum status with Global Services Elite status, the most difficult hotel elite status to earn is now free!
Marriott Platinum Additional Perks
The difference between Marriott Gold and Marriott Platinum is miniscule. In fact, most people might not even notice a difference between the two elite levels when traveling. Both Gold and Platinum members receive the most important benefits: Lounge access, complimentary breakfast, 4pm late checkout, and enhanced wi-fi. With all the goodies as a Gold, it’s hard to truly notice a difference between the two elite levels.
Marriott Platinum added benefits are more subtle, such as points and gifts. Platinum Elites earn a 50% bonus on points earned during their stay. Gold Elites only earn 25%. Since it takes nearly 30,000 points for a decent Marriott room, the added bonus is necessary to make Marriott free nights happen! Silver Elites only earn a 20% bonus. The bonus point difference between Platinum and Silver is far greater than Platinum and Gold.
Platinum Elites is the only level which enjoy a welcome amenity, an exclusive benefit for platinum. A welcome gifts can range from 500 bonus points to a food and beverage item of your choice. In the past I have received house made macaroons and wine to a discount at the bar. Welcome gifts and amenities vary by property and are always a nice start to every stay.
Marriott Rewards room upgrades are hit or miss with no guarantee or upgrade instruments available. Both Gold and Platinum members are eligible for room upgrades, but an upgrade at Marriott is a vague term. An upgrade can mean a room with a view, or a more desirable room such as corner unit or the top floor. An upgrade at Marriott does not mean a suite. As a Marriott Gold, I have never noticed a different or received a legit upgrade. Anecdotally, I can say as a Platinum I have enjoyed several suite upgrades. I have noticed though that upgrades are more common in Europe and Asia than North America. Platinum status should increase ones likelihood of enjoying a better room or maybe even a suite from time to time.
Marriott Platinum is a great for the road warrior who does not already have hotel status with Marriott. Platinum status does not offer any groundbreaking benefit that Gold does not already offer, but the extra recognition goes a long way when away from home. Traveling can be stressful and it is nice to see United and Marriott team up to increase recognition for their most loyal customers. Be sure to sign up for Marriott Platinum if you currently are a United Global Services Elite.
In the end, I do believe that United Global services are receiving the better end of the deal, as they are receiving top-tier status. Meanwhile, Marriott invite only top-tier elites are only receiving a lower-mid level status. Not to be greedy, but if United is giving away top-tier status at Marriott, shouldn’t Marriott give away at least United Platinum status? Or would you argue that hotel top-tier status isn’t as valuable as airline status?