Marriott Rewards and SPG programs are merging tomorrow into the same platform (Marriott’s) and members should expect that the websites and apps are intermittently offline for the day (let’s hope that not for longer).
SPG members, hotels and reservation information are ported to the Marriott platform (probably already done) so this change mostly affects Starwood, although may cause instability is something goes wrong.
You can access Marriott’s website for combined program information here.
Here’s the check list:
1. SPG members should take a screenshot of their account (and perhaps Marriott too) that shows the number of stays, nights and points.
2. SPG members should ensure that they have list of all upcoming reservations and rate information stored somewhere in an electronic format (make sure that you have those emails).
3. Many hotels will change in number of award points required tomorrow. You can still book today using current rates and you can call in tomorrow for those reservations where the hotel category dropped. We have handy excel sheet with all hotels in the system (read more here) and Marriott will have the list on their website here.
4. My favorite Marriott reward option Travel Packages will cost more come tomorrow. You can still redeem today at the current rates (read more here).
5. SPG members can quality under the old rules for Platinum, Platinum 75 or Ambassador status this year ONLY by staying at Starwood legacy brands. This is something to keep in mind when merging accounts tomorrow.
6. Marriott will combine the lifetime nights and years from both accounts when counting towards the Silver, Gold, Platinum or Platinum Premier status. The Platinum Premier lifetime status is only available this year.
7. Probably not the best idea trying to reach Marriott Rewards or SPG customer service number for the next few days. Lines are likely very busy!
I guess that we have been waiting (or not) for this to happen since Marriott announced their purchase (or merger) with Starwood. It has been a long road and we should know more tomorrow including the new T&Cs of the combined program that were leaked last week (not the most up to date version).
There certainly will be hiccups and data integration issues but lets hope that all goes as smoothly as possible. I am staying at IHG and Hilton properties for the next few days until the dust settles.