Do the reward levels seem odd to you? Easy to get Silver, but rather difficult to move up from there. Why the leap to 50? Any insight into the gulf between silver and gold? There's got to be some research behind these levels.
I don't want to travel that much. but I would like to see something around 25-30 that gives you some additional recognition beyond everyone can do it Silver.
If you look at the different levels it is 25 nights higher for each level up from from Gold to Platinum, yet so are the possible perks.
If I recall correctly, Silver comes free with the regular MR Visa from Chase, which gives you 10 EQ nights per annum. However, I believe the jump from 10 to 50 is due to the huge difference in benefits from Silver to Gold. Either way, Marriott definitely has the most strict Elite qualification of any program out there! Then again, Marriott allows you to spend your way to a higher level too...
With the MR Visa from Chase you can get 15 nights credit to start and then one night's credit for every $3,000 that you spend on the card. The upgraded Chase MR card costs $85 but gives you a free night each year in a category 4 or lower hotel, so the card is essentially free.
The card has given me a good start toward Gold (and sometimes Platinum) status.
Here's a chart showing the benefits for the different elite levels:
The Silver is essentially a "gimmee" to get you involved in their Rewards program, specifically with hopes of you growing into a bigger, longer term customer. The benefits given are worth it to Marriott to have a however brief exposure to you. The Gold benefits actually incur a cost to Marriott (even if only an opportunity cost), Concierge Lounge, upgraded rooms (however loosely defined), Internet, etc. Marriott wants to cover those costs with additional stays. The jump from 10 nights (that has already been discussed in this thread can be met with minimal revenue to Marriott) to 50 separates the occasional lodger from the actual customer and the benefits proportionally reflect it.
its so MR can give gold to UA on reciprocity and all we get is UA Silver (a real joke). Us plebes who actually sleep in the beds earn it the hard way. Who said life or MR rules were fair? Certainly, MR has done everything it can to show us how unfair the program can be to long standing loyal members. If you want fairness, get a dog, they are loyal and are fair to owners and other alike.