Marriott Rewards on Saturday released the existing Travel Package conversion chart that didn’t make much sense (read more here).
Marriott had suddenly started to use max seasonal values not even yet in place instead of standard ones when mapping these and members where revolting (rightfully so).
You can access Marriott’s page for member updates here.
Marriott has now lifted the one month blackout period when the existing Travel Package certificates couldn’t be used. They can be used immediately.
Also, members that redeemed for category 6, 8 and Tier 1 – 3 can request one-time category downgrade (their new certificate category won’t change) and they will get points back.
Here’s the email that we received from Marriott spokesperson regarding this:
Secondly, as you know, this past Saturday, new Travel Packages became available for purchase. At the same time, due to system capabilities, we had to place a month-long blackout on cancelations and modifications to existing Travel Package certificates. After pressure testing our new system over the weekend, we’re happy to relay that starting today, the blackout period is over. In addition, members who purchased a Category 6, Category 8 or Tier 1-3 certificate prior to 8/18 are able to request a one-time exchange for a package one category lower. To submit a request, contact us at https://www.marriott.com/marriott/contact.mi Select “packages – deals” from the drop down menu.
Here’s the conversion chart that I believed would have been fair (from my earlier piece – access here):
Perhaps the Tier 1 – 3 could have mapped to Cat 7 considering the properties in question. I was only looking at the max night values without any form of seasonality.
This all could have been mostly avoided had Marriott Rewards issued the mapping chart in advance instead of sitting on it and used STANDARD instead of MAX values for comparison purposes.
It is good that Marriott is now basically giving back 30,000 points for those that redeemed for Category 6 and 8 (not sure about the value on Tier 3 – 5) but I am sure that members would be happier with new category 5 and 6 certificates.
I did redeem for category 6 and 8 Travel Packages because it would have been logical, looking at the night values, that they had converted to cat 5 and 6 (most useful for me). I do have problem with the cat 1 – 4 certs because you can (mostly) use them at the cities where hotels are inexpensive.