A LoyaltyLobby reader sent us a question regarding the new Marriott Bonvoy points purchase option that is only available when making an award booking.
You can access Marriott Bonvoy here.
READ MORE: Marriott Bonvoy Rate & Bonus Points Offers
Here’s the question from the reader:
Am I right that you can only purchase extra points when making a reward booking if you do not have enough in your account for the booking ?
I just made a booking but I did not get any option to top up.
The reader here refers to a new function that Marriott rolled out last week that allows you to purchase points during the award booking process:
It appears that this buy points function is enabled IF you don’t have enough points in your account to complete the booking.
The simplest way around?
Make an award reservation further out that drains points from your account. Then, if you want to purchase points, complete the other reservation and buy the points. Then cancel the placeholder reservation.
Here’s the most important statement:
Members may purchase Points or receive Points purchased by another Member as a gift for a maximum of 100,000 Points annually through the promotion’s Buy Points or Gift Points pages.
Members may purchase up to an additional 100,000 Points annually while booking a hotel stay through the reservation path on Marriott.com.
This essentially means that you can currently purchase 300,000 points:
You can buy one set using the traditional buy points offer that is ongoing and another lot of 100,000 points + 50,000 bonus when making an award booking.
Later, you can cancel the award booking, and the purchased points will stay in your account. The point purchase IS NOT REFUNDABLE.
This is an excellent way around the yearly maximum points purchase limit of 100,000 points before the bonus.
These points are still valuable for very high-end reservations that will become more expensive (in points) at the end of this month when Marriott moves to “flexible” (read devalued) awards (read more here).