Marriott Bonvoy Program Terms & Conditions February 2021 Update

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Marriott pushes updates to the Terms and Conditions governing its Bonvoy guest loyalty program almost monthly. We cover the changes when they are significant (sometimes only minor spelling or word changes).

Marriott updated the T&Cs yesterday, and there are more changes this time, of which one is exceptionally vague and one that significantly helps those with trying to achieve lifetime status.

You can access Marriott’s page for T&Cs here.

READ MORE: Marriott Bonvoy Rate & Bonus Points And Miles Promotions

Marriott added the following paragraph:

The Program Rules incorporate the additional terms that apply to certain experiences or properties which participate in the Marriott Bonvoy loyalty program in a limited or unique capacity. Specific Loyalty Program benefits, amenities, offers, awards and services may not be available at or as part of such experiences or properties, even though the applicable experience or property is not explicitly identified as being excluded where the benefit, amenity, offer, award or service is described in these Program Rules. Please refer to the Supplemental Terms page to view the separate terms governing the participation in the Loyalty Program by the applicable experience or property for information on what features of the Loyalty Program are available.

I have been in touch with Marriott to find out where is this Supplemental Terms page is that lists all the properties that participate in Bonvoy program in a limited or unique capacity.

Countries where membership is not available

Sudanese can now join Marriott Bonvoy when the country was previously excluded.

Still, your membership address cannot be in Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Syria, or the Crimea region of Ukraine.

You may have a second chance!

If the Company cancels a Member’s Account for any reason, the Member may not reapply for membership in the Loyalty Program except in very limited circumstances at Company’s sole discretion, and any Account opened in the Member’s name and Points, Redemption Awards and promotional Awards earned in that Account will be forfeited upon discovery.

Marriott added the part in bold.

Points Purchases

It may take up to 7 business days (NINE DAYS) to deposit the points into your account. Previously, Marriott promised to do this within 48 hours.

Lifetime Status

In order to obtain Lifetime Elite Status, a Member must meet the below Lifetime Elite Status Criteria (4.2.f.) during the Member’s participation in the Loyalty Program. An “Eligible Status Year” is a calendar year during which a Member obtained Elite membership status (Silver Elite, Gold Elite, Platinum Elite, Titanium Elite, or Ambassador Elite) by achieving the Silver Elite, Gold Elite, Platinum Elite, Titanium Elite, or Ambassador Elite Minimum Requirement. The calendar year in which a Member achieves Silver Elite, Gold Elite, Platinum Elite, Titanium Elite, or Ambassador Elite Status, as described in the prior sentence, will count as an Eligible Status Year, in addition to each subsequent year that such Member retains the benefits of Elite membership Status. For example, if a Member meets the Gold Elite Minimum Requirement during the 2021 Eligible Status Year by earning twenty-five (25) Eligible Nights and becomes a Gold Elite Member for the remainder of 2021 and for all of 2022, 2021 and 2022 will each count as separate Eligible Status Years.

Previously, only the year you earned the status counted but now the following year too.

Previously:

Only a calendar year in which a Member achieves Silver Elite, Gold Elite, Platinum Elite, Titanium Elite, or Ambassador Elite Status, as described in the prior sentence, will count as an Eligible Status Year, regardless of the length of time that such Member will retain the benefits of Elite membership Status. For example, if a Member meets the Gold Elite Minimum Requirement during the 2019 Eligible Status Year by earning twenty-five (25) Eligible Nights and becomes a Gold Elite Member for the remainder of 2019 and for all of 2020, 2019 will count as a single Eligible Status Year, but 2020 will not count as an Eligible Status Year unless the Member meets the Gold Elite Minimum Requirement during the 2020 Eligible Status Year.

Annual Choice Benefit Choice

You must make the 2021 Annual Choice Benefit Choice by January 7, 2022. This year the cut-off date was January 8 (a day later).

Charity Donation

Marriott now clarifies that the $100 (Choice Benefit option) goes to WE Charity (501c3) instead of WE Foundation.

Qualifying Event

with or without catering, that do not actualize a minimum of ten (10) guest rooms for at least one (1) night

Qualifying events now must have a minimum of TEN guest rooms for at least one night.

Conclusion

I am baffled about where Marriott Bonvoy members can find the supplemental page that lists the properties with limited participation that are not clearly defined as such on the search.

Not sure why point purchases should take up to seven business days. The transaction should be instantaneous as it is with many other Points.com partners (a Canadian company that handles the point sales on behalf of Marriott).

The way Marriott counts qualifying years really help those members that may not qualify every year. From my reading, You can get a qualifying year yearly even if you qualify every other year. Sounds confusing, right?

Not sure why the change to the qualifying event now? For years, you could get 10 elite qualifying nights with Marriott Rewards for booking a $100 meeting room for an hour, and there was no limit on how many of these you could have yearly.

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