When Marriott first came out with the Instant Redemption program I was not very receptive to the idea because it seemed to be a bad use of points. At the time the program was announced Marriott Rewards Members were able to redeem less points for Gift Cards equal in value. Of course the best use of points is for hotel stays but then the Marriott Rewards member does not receive the Elite nights credits for doing so. In the past when I was in need of additional Elite night credits I would use points for Marriott Gift Cards to help pay for leisure stays. Now it has come to my attention that Instant Redemption you can use less points for amounts of $200 and higher in comparison to the Gift Card options. Also when Instant Redemption is used you are still able to get Elite night credits for your stay and you don't have to wait for a gift card to arrive in the mail. Below is a list of points required for both Instant Redemption and Marriott Gift Cards.
Value Points Required
Marriott Gift Cards:
Value Points Required
Curses, foiled again!
Be aware and look at the fine print. You cannot use the instant redemption at all locations.
Since the demise of the E195 gift cheques and the gross increase in the point cost of the $1000 gift card, I figured I'd just use the instant redemption for an upcoming family trip to Cancun. Although the 190k points for $1000 isn't as good as the E195 was (135k = $1000), it sure is easier to stomach than the stinkin' gift card (255k=$1000).
Checked the fine print last night, nope, Mexico is not included. Called the PP desk to verify, yep, I'm screwed again.
That's too bad. I'm guessing you were hoping to get the Elite Night Credits which is why you were looking at Gift Cards/Instant Redemption options.
Just as a FYI for other Insiders here is the fine print you were talking about:
"Instant Redemption Awards are offered at participating hotels in the United States (except Hawaii), Canada and Europe (includes the United Kingdom, France and Germany) for the following Marriott brands: JW Marriott, EDITION, Autograph Collection, Renaissance Hotels, AC Hotels, Marriott Hotels & Resorts, Courtyard by Marriott, Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott, SpringHill Suites by Marriott, Residence Inn by Marriott and TownePlace Suites by Marriott. Instant Redemption Awards are not available at Marriott Vacation Club and The Ritz-Carlton."
I wish Marriott would give us Elite night credits for rewards stays. That way we would always be able to make the best use of our points. Sorry this didn't work out for you. Hope you have a safe and fun trip to Cancun!
I could care less about the Elite Night Credits, I'm LT Plat. I just wanted to get the best deal with my points.
I booked the rooms for $94/night with breakfast included. Can't do that with a reward...if you spend the points on a reward, you get the 4 walls, a bed and bathroom and that's it. I have 3 rooms for 6 nights each at that price, so I figured roughly $1800 (yeah, there's tax and such), so 380k points would give me $2000. That's enough to cover the rooms, have a few foo-foo drinks on the beach and be fat, dumb and happy for a few days.
Oh well, the shaft is almost up to the hilt and getting twisted. Thank goodness SPG points are still worth something.
Hey bonzai, I realize this is a hail mary, but what the heck, no harm no foul.
If your upcoming family trip to Cancun is before 11/23, is not pre-paid, you're using a standard room, the creek don't rise, etc etc; Marriott is running their seasonal point savers. Casa Magna 30k room for 22.5, JW 35k for 26.5.
Just an fyi for that one in a thousand chance - have a great time
Thanks for the idea, I've looked into that. We're arriving 11/23 so it only applies for that night. The rest of the stay is at the full points price. I'm rethinking the whole thing, maybe rebooking everything with points and paying for breakfast with a gift card I got suckered into buying when they were only 204k that still has some value to it.
This just really sucks, going from the E195 for 135k points to the gift card for 255k is bad enough. Then me being an idiot and not looking at the fine print about Mexico not included for the 190k instant redemption. Why wouldn't they include that? Oh, yeah, we're talking about the folks in the ivory tower, never mind.