Accor, Hilton (some), and IHG already price their awards dynamically, and Accor is the clearest example as 2,000 points are always worth 40 euros towards the paid rates.
IHG prices hotel awards dynamically, but there appears to be a range of 0.4 to 0.7 cents per point depending on the hotel, day of the week, and the market. Hilton prices premium rooms dynamically, pricing them at 0.34 cents each per Honors point.
You can access Marriott here.
Note that this is pure speculation on my part how dynamic awards could work under Marriott. There is no indication if and when, if ever, they will move away from the award categories below beyond what was stated on their loyalty program guide last year (read more here).
Here’s how dynamic awards work with Accor, Hilton, and IHG:
Value of a point?
Hilton and IHG use different values depending on the location, day of the week, and market dynamics. Accor’s points are always worth 40 euros per 2,000 points.
If Marriott decided to move to dynamic awards, my educated guess would be that the value attached to a point would be somewhere between 0.5 to 0.7 cents each. I have used 0.6 cents each on the examples below.
Here are three examples:
You can redeem a five-night stay for 340,000 points.
The same room, if paid, would cost $10K.
If you value a Marriott Bonvoy point at 0.6 cents each, this five-night award would cost 1,664,200 points.
Grand Bohemian Orlando, FL
You can redeem five nights for 140,000 points
The same room using cash would cost $984.38
If you value Marriott Bonvoy points at 0.6 cents each, this five-night award would cost 164,061 points, not much of a difference from their award rate for the exact date.
Sheraton Grande Sukhumvit, Bangkok
You can redeem five nights for 125,000 points.
The cash rate for the same dates is 10,805 THB ($337)
If you value Marriott Bonvoy point at 0.6 cents each, this five-night award would cost 56,166 points, less than half the current going points rate.
Pros and Cons of Dynamic Hotel Awards
The dynamic awards work in your favor when the rates are really low, or you are very flexible with your destinations.
You can pretty much forget redeeming for those vacations in the most desired locations, such as French Polynesia or the Maldives, because the awards will cost in the millions.
Again, Marriott claims that they have no intention of moving to dynamic hotel rewards despite what their loyalty program guide indicated.
It is, however, the trend where most loyalty programs are moving—tying the points or miles with a value that you merely use towards airfares or hotel rates. I wouldn’t be surprised if Marriott hasn’t something similar coming in due course, whether it is mid or late this decade.
Remember where you heard it first, and do your aspirational award redemptions when they are still possible.