Heads up to all you folks with 135,000 + points- time is running out to get MR cheques. See below note and link to site to order is
I use these for vacation instead of points as many time my points go further for the room- takes more points for free room vs using my cheques at the redemption ratio. I can use them for everything including parking, meals, golf, spa; and i can get MR credit for my night stay vs when you use points. the new MR redemption page- nice layout (Marriott Gift Cards | Marriott Rewards Merchandise) has $1000 gift card for 205,000 points. it is nice they are giving notice that this cheque promo is being eliminate so we still have time to order more. How many times do other companies just eliminate promos without telling you?? they come with 12 month expiration. have a great 2013!!
Marriott Cheques — Save your cash and use Marriott Cheques instead for golf, dining, and more. They're available in various amounts and currencies and accepted at participating hotels worldwide.
* As of January 1, 2013, $100 and $1,000 Elite-only gift cheque rewards will no longer be available. Gift cheques purchased by December 31, 2012 will be honored until the certificate’s expiration date.
Where did Marriott announce this elimination of this award? I am a lifetime platinum and I did not receive any information regarding this program change. It appears that Marriott has eliminated all of their platinum awards which is very disappointing. So much for loyalty!
Note: I don't consider fine print on the Marriott Gift award page to be a notification of a program change. If they truly wanted loyal members to be aware of this, they would have communicated it more clearly or posted it themselves on the insiders site. I hope this isn't another sign that Marriott no longer cares about its most loyal members. Is this the new Marriott?
Floidatravel, thanks for posting this in a new thread. Otherwise, most of us would never have known about the change and would have missed the opportunity to redeem for this award prior to their elimination.
Get 'Em While They're Hot - regarding gift checques: the paper gift checques will be discontinued on Dec 31, 2012. To be clear - you can purchase these until December 31, and they'll be honored until the cert's expire. The reason they're being closed down is because the group we purchase them from is retiring the product, so there's nothing we can do about it. However, we will be announcing a replacement using the gift cards - details are not yet totally baked, but I promise to let you know as soon as possible. One hint: we're leaning toward putting a similar offer in-market only during certain times of the year, sort of like how McDonald's offers their McRib Sandwich (which I abhor BTW, but many love). We will not broadly announce the end of these products so you're getting a TRUE INSIDERS tip right here and now.
With respect to your decreased usage of the community and sentiment towards navigation, believe me when I say we hear you. We conducted our annual satisfaction survey back in August and that was exactly what we heard. So we're aiming to make iterative changes where we can in the short term (like the collapsible links available on the homepage and the overview page of each forum). But more importantly, improving the navigation is certainly a top priority for the coming year and we're committed to including the community in that process. So we appreciate your participation and we hope you'll all stick around to help with be part of the solution.
In response to the thread, but also vickisocal (because I know how it can drive us crazy when we know something's out there and can't find it). I found the thread where michellel mentioned it - a pretty lengthy back and forth discussion titled "Question regarding qualifying rollover nights" - a Dec. 4th posting by Michellel subtitled Get em while they're hot. Now, I don't post this because I don't have a life, actually I do. I post it because I want to continue encouraging all of us to share this type of info on this forum once we get it. A big thanks to floridatravels for making the effort.
I've been after Marriott about communicating more to us in this forum like they do Facebook and I've sensed a real effort on their part to be more timely. This is invaluable as Marriott becomes more and more aggressive in their pricing and boy 2013 looks to be their year (or at least they're thinking that and have initially priced accordingly, I've seen significant price increases from last year). The seasonal point savers awards info was released to the public six days before we were told by Marriott on this forum (once told I did a search and found the press release). I would like for the Insiders forum to at least know what the 'outside' public knows. (and btw superchief, I agree with you, you would like to think there would be more direct communication from Marriott; but if not, this is even more of a reason for us to look out for each other).
Don't forget, this Wednesday (you would think I was Marriott PR, I'm not, I just want us all armed with info) on CNBC 9pm and midnight ET, they profile Marriott. Ok, back to my actual life, holiday shopping in the nation's capital (ps - terrific rates in DC this month, come on out) .
One reason I have greatly reduced my participation on Insiders is because it is difficult to navigate and find the important information. Who would expect to look for info about elimination or changes to MR rewards in a thread about rollover nights. As a lifetime platinum, I don't care about rollover nights and therefore had no reason to read this thread. Wouldn't it be nice if there was a designated section for upcoming changes to the MR program or platinum benefits?
Superchief, et al
I too have cut back substantially with my participation on Insiders due to ONE SIMPLE reason. I find it very difficult to navigate the site for the information that I find useful and previously was much easier to find. I realize that others may not not find the navigation as difficult as I do, but I have tried and tried and just don't get it......
Marriott has been running a promo on the cheques for the last two years- 28%off- normally it takes 195K points to get them. The promo always posted that it ran thru Dec 31st. the last few years i make a habit of placing orders for the Cheques in December because you dont know if they will offer same 'special' the next year. Essentially in they are simply raising the regular rate of 195K to 205K for $1000, but come Jan you can get the $1000 it in a gift card which means you could use it for payment of any room rate- including discounted rates. i certainly prefer the 135k points to the 205k points but i earn lots of points thru special promos and my MR credit card so it wont take long to get those extra points.
i for one do not expect Marriott to give me a heads up when they are not continuing a special promo - i am sure there are many promos that are not continued at various times. And if they keep offering the special over and over again then isnt it really no longer a 'special' but the regular offer?? Just asking??
either way- i thank them for letting us know even if it is only posted on that particular page, that this is the last year of this offer. i always assume 'specials' wont be continued past deadline and order as many of the cheques i can before the deadline.
i know we all have different standards and expectations and perhaps i am not the norm. I love MR, have consistently had wonderful experiences ( and when i am not happy with a hotel or service and make a note of it my next stay they have made improvements) and i feel i get tremendous benefits out of being a PP member. room rates are going up everywhere- their costs of doing business are escalating and of course it is a supply vs demand market. As more people travel, higher occupancy rates leads to higher room rates. I am sure you have seen other chains are posting higher rates as well.
have safe and happy travels in 2013.
I was unaware that the $1000 Marriott Checks for 135K MR points was a special promo. I thought this was a special award offered only to platinum members as a platinum benefit. This platinum award has been offered for several years. I know MR has eliminated virtually all of its platinum benefits, so this appears to me to just be another example of taking away a valued benefit. This award also protects Marriott from inflation, since the $1000 checks are applied against the current room rates. Therefore, I don't understand the need to eliminate it. Whey couldn't they just replace the Marriott check award with a comparably valued gift card?
1) It has been around for more than 2 years. I've used it a number of times for much longer than that. It was exclusive to G/P/PP members.
2) It was able to be used on discount rates. Most recently I used it on 119 a night Marriott Member rate for 2 rooms at the Marriott in Curacao over Thanksgiving. I've also used them for AAA rates, and other discout rates. I know they could be used on discount rates, since I've never booked a rack rate room in my life!!!
3) Burying the announcemnet in a thread about rollover nights seems counter productive.
4) I am sad to add this to BOGO's and hopper awards as some of my favorite things about MR.
actually this special promotion has been available to all elite level members; Gold, Platinium and Platinum Premier. As the travel industry improves i am sure all chains are re-assessing their business offers and tryign to make changes that are appealing while also keeping in mind their bottom line.
Hope that helps clarify.
Bottom line - order as many as you can if you feel they are of value to you. i have order 3 sets and look forward to using them for my vacations in 2013 and giving as gifts this Holiday. Dont need to stay at the hotel to use these chques and anyone can use them- not just MR members.
I have been a member of Marriott Rewards since its inception (Marriott Marquis program). Marriott has offered special awards to its loyal members for several years, through good times and bad. Platinum benefits included BOGO's and other special awards. I know that there has been an available award for platinum members for several years to purchase $1000 in checks for 135k points, and this was available on the 'platinum benefits' section of the website in previous years. I'm not aware of this being a special promotion for all elites. Did the platinum award go away? These programs attracted members such as myself who maintained their loyalty during the bad times. I believe that eliminating most of the platinum benefits is very shortsigted on Marriott's part because long-term loyal users no longer have a reason to stay at Marriott properties over competitors.
I'm also not confident that 'good times' are returning in the near future. Our travel budgets for 2013 are being reduced and I know many others who are experiencing the same thing. Unemployment and compensation among professionals are not improving, so less discretionary money is available for pleasure travel. Smart companies appreciate rewarding loyal customers at all times, and Marriott became a global leader because the Marriott family recognized the their importance. The new corporation direction may result in short-term profit increases, but these will be difficult to sustain as loyal customers defect. Without loyalty, the industry becomes a commodity.
Note: The community manager message regarding this program is unclear to me. Is she saying that there will not be any reduced level Marriott check/gift card available for platinum members. I can understand the thinking behind relacing the checks with gift cards. However, will there be a similar reduced point award opportunity for platinum members as there has been for the past several years? An occasional promotion is significantly less attractive than an ongoing platinum reduce point award, and does nothing to motivate someone to achieve and maintain platinum level.
Good morning! A few points to bear in mind:
I appreciate your notification regarding the elimination of this benefit. However, I find it difficult to believe that very few elite members utiliized this program based on the comments from other platinum members on this and other sites. Ed French made the same comment regarding BOGO's. It appears that MR no longer believes that platinum members deserve any special awards or benefits. This is rather disappointing.
As I recall, this was a platinum only offer for several years and I don't recall when it became available to gold. It previously could be found in the 'platinum benefit/ award' section of the website. I have to admit that I don't know where it is offered today because I don't use the site as much as I did previously becaus most of the platinum benefits have been eliminated. Although I didn't use the 135k gift check award the past 2 years because I primarily used my MVC timeshares, I have used it in the past. I believe that many platinum members who are aware of this award consider it to be a valued benefit and will be very disappointed if it is not replaced by something of similar value. Are you saying that only .002% of platinum members used the award in 2011? Are there any platinum awards left now that this and the BOGO's have been eliminated?
Did Marriott ever think that maybe the low utilization rate was because you did not promote/advertise this benefit? I found out about them on this forum during a discussion about no room credit for rooms booked with points. Even as a user of the cheques, I had a very difficult time finding them on the web site when I wanted to purchase them. Paper cheques are a thing of the past and need to be eliminated. Elimination of the paper checks should cut the operating cost of the program significantly, I would think that Marriott could start with this profit increase before they started to take it out of my points.
As a businessman I understand what Marriott is doing. I may not like it, but I am glad that we still have the freedoms in this country for businesses to price as they want and that as consumers we have many choices of where we spend our money.
At 135,000 points/$1000 I calculate a value of 0.74 cents/point. Not a great value, but one that I could accept. At 205,000 points/$1000 I am looking at 0.49 cents/point. I have to think I can find better value for my points. Time will tell.
I have almost exclusively utilized my points for this award level and did not find any problem finding it on the website. I suspect that most people did not want to commit 135,000 points at one time there by low utilization.
sorry guys but got over it- MR was nice enough to let us know that it is expiring and gives you ample time to 'cash in' on this offer. AGAIN as i pointed out before the 135K promo was a just that a promo when actually the 'list' price was 195K points.
If you think this is a great deal then "cash" in now and get your cheques. Then MOVE ON and max out on the next promo.
I have to agree with floridatravels. The promotion was not that difficult to find on the Marriott Rewards page if you were an Elite member. I'm sad to see the deal go but can understand why if less than 1% of Elite members were taking advantage of the offer. I personally would rather see a new Gift Card offer come out in replacement of the cheques. At least with the gift cards you can use them for any type of rate you book and there will be less confusion with desk clerks on how to process them.
Is the % redemption among all of your elites (including silver and gold)? Silver elites would not qualify, and I think golds only qualified for the 'special promotion' period and this award as been available to platinum for at least 6 years. What is the redemption rate among platinum members? I would also be interested if you ever conducted a survey among platimum members who are aware of this award regarding their level of interest in utilizing this reward. This would be a better indicator of the value of the offer. I believe your low redemtpion is driven by low awareness of the award.
I have no problem with the elimination of Marriott Checks if a similar award is offered for gift cards,
I am new to the forum. Is there any news on when the Elite Rewards will be made known to the members. I am Lifetime Platinum(new rules) and used to take advantage of the gift checks @ 135,000 points and would like to know what the new Elite Discount will be for Lifetime Platinum Members on a $1000.00 Gift Card.
As an aside making the offer only in market for specific periods, will put members in a "lottery" based on their point balances. I routinely earn 500,000-750,000 points per annum. But the big balance bumps that allow me to utilize the retired E195 Award $1000 in Cheques were mega bonuses that are earned seasonally quarterly. Winter, Spring and Summer Mega was good for $1,000. I was motivated to travel more to max those bonuses.
Will there be a replacement for E195 reward? My suggestion would be a Xxxx reward $1,000 gift card for 165,000 Points. Made available year round to Platinum members and seasonally to other levels silver/gold etc. or just make it a Platinum Award.
Removing elite benefits completely without reassigning valuable awards to the highest level guests is bad business.(My suggestion still devalues the points) Personally I will be looking for a new hotel chain if something is not announced soon. Thanks jb
I usually just read, but I am responding for a reason. I am a longtime Platinum Premier and Lifetime Platinum member. I solely used my points on the $1000 gift cheques. I redeemed it about 3 times a year. I was caught off guard with the discontinuation of this award and only found out when I tried to order it again today. I rarely go to sites like this due to lack of time. I love Marriott and will continue to be loyal buy I sure hope they replace this with something similar.
I'll be sad to see this promotion go, but I'm confident there will be acceptable alternatives (Gift Cards?). I used this promotion twice in conjunction with reward stays at Hawaii resorts for food/drinks, etc. Agreed, this benefit was not openly promoted, but could always be found when searching the website under Platinum benefits.
I always thought a promotion was something available for a limited time. This promotion has been out there for 6 straight years. We used them on all sorts of rates and never had a hotel deny them or a clerk not be able to figure them out or find someone who could.
I didn't use the BOGO's, which was another elite only offer taken away to low usage, but I do use these. Slowly but surely it seems these lesser known perks are being chipped away at. BOGO's, Hoppers, points-to-certs at a somewhat reasonable rate, what will be next?
I also want to thank floridatravels for this information as I have used the Marriott Cheques several times. I'll get another set of $1000 for now, and then wait to see what the gift card benefit may be. I do know that it can be somewhat difficult for the front desk clerk to type each checque into their system when redeeming (especially when they are busy), so that may be part of the reason for eliminating the reward as a paper checque. And I believe Michelle when she says only .002% have used them as very few desk clerks are aware of them. Thanks again for the heads up!