Marriott Bonvoy and previously Marriott Rewards members have held award reservations without having the corresponding number of points in their accounts, a unique feature of the program.
Member must have ensured that they have enough points in their account 14 days before the stay, or the reservation is canceled without a fee. Now, Marriott is tweaking this policy.
You can access Marriott Bonvoy here.
You are now required to have enough points in your account for the award certificate to be issued within 60 days from when the reservation was made OR 14 days before scheduled arrival, whichever is earlier.
Note that this change also applies to existing bookings. You have 60 from today or 14 days before the check-in date, whichever is sooner, to secure the reservation that will otherwise expire.
Remember that Marriott Bonvoy doesn’t guarantee the number of points required for an award reservation until it has been confirmed by withdrawing the points from your account.
You can only hold up to three Points Advance reservations at any one time.
There have been some resort properties where Points Advance reservations have represented 25% of all future reservations, a situation that is unsustainable if a significant amount of them ended up being canceled at the 14-day mark before arrival due to an insufficient number of points.
Let’s hope that this helps hotels better control their inventory. It also benefits members who now may have difficulty securing awards due to excessive Points Advance bookings holding up standard room availability.
These Points Advance reservations made sense when Marriott allowed members to lock into the old redemption rates when the yearly award chart changed took place without any limitations on the number of them you had outstanding at any given time (now three).
I have never used this functionality myself, as most of my reservations are made relatively close to the arrival.