This is just to make a point, and I rarely ever do, but here goes.
I travel 250 plus days of the year with at least a 100 of those days overseas. I'm also married with two children.
I'm not angry, in fact I still think the rewards program is one of the best out there and I'm sure at some point I will probably stay in a Marriott Hotel. Bad clerks and crappy service are unfortunately a way of life and you'll get them in most places regardless of how much you pay for a room or a meal. BUT; Policy is policy and I cannot get over the so called "No Blackout" policy you guys advertise.
It should read "No Blackout Dates....unless you have a family and need a one, two, or three bedrooms room" or maybe "No Blackout dates if you're a couple....but please no kids"
To make matters worse...you won't even allow us to pay additional cash to get the extra bedroom!!!! Who came up with that idea? who ever it was FIRE HIM... he's making you look bad!
What am I suppose to do with all those points if I can't take my family anywhere?
I just spent four months in a competitors hotel in Dubai, mainly due to the unavailability of an upgrade at the Marriott. Another story but your loss!
In an attempt to redeem points, I just attempted to book a vacation this Christmas in California, but couldn't get anything but a studio or single room, and trust me I tried every single hotel in 100 miles. But fine I'll stay with a competitor...once more your loss!
Due to the above, I also just cancelled a 34 day stay in Gulf Breeze Florida and forfeited a guaranteed 50,000 bonus points.....why... because they're absolutely useless to me if you can't accommodate my family.....
Time to part our ways, thanks for the great memories,
oh and I'm also cancelling the credit card!
i feel your pain @mac010406 as I also have tried to use points to book 2 bed. suites at Residence Inn. We go every year to a specific hotel and I cannot use my points because I cannot get a 2 bedroom with them. It is a BIG oversight on Marriott's part and hopefully will be rectified. I do not accumulate nearly as many points as you, but I can certainly see where this could be very frustrating as you have so many to use and options are so limited. If your family was older and could stay in a separate room, you could book adjoining rooms but that is about the extent of options.
Thanks for bringing this to Marriott's attention. Hopefully The specified item was not found. or merb will look into the situation and see if Marriott has even thought of extending this privilege.
Thanks for the comments and research. I have nothing personal against the Marriott chain...nothing. I get upgraded often, the concierge level makes life easier when I'm on the road, and I have used my points on numerous occasions for many a happy holiday.....all great stuff and well worth being part of the program.
But, for two years I have been unable to redeem points for a one or two bedroom suite at either the Residence / Spring Hill / Fair-view or a Vacation club property. Again, what makes it even more frustrating is I can't even use a combination of points and cash. The rooms are available, I know they are because I see them in their full splendor when offering to pay cash.
So, if that's the deal...that's the deal, I get it...it's just business right? why give a one bedroom suite to a rewards member when it will more than likely be rented out at full price anyway. I sort of see your point, though you certainly risk losing high revenue generating customers in the long run...but who cares?
As frustrated as I am, I'll still occasionally use the Marriott. But I'm never going to purposely seek a hotel that's twenty minutes out of my way just because I want the points, and I'm certainly never going to stay an extra day or two to meet the requirements of a point based bonus. Last week I cancelled a lengthy stay in Florida and chose to rent a two bedroom condo instead....I must say it feels quite liberating not to be concerned about points.
Please review your policy on this issue; and at least let members make up the difference with cash. It's not like most businessmen are traveling year round with their family in tow. Unfortunately I've already taken my business elsewhere, and like your policy it's nothing personal... just good business!
Have a great day
That is total BS mac. You shouldn't have to go through that much trouble. I would also advise you to contact Corporation prior to your stay. I have had excellent success with them when a Property had no available rooms for me to use points. I called my PP number and within 10 minutes was confirmed with an upgraded suite overlooking Lake Michigan using points. Magic! Cannot depend on getting a decent upgrade when you deal with the local property folks unless you know them and reward them real well.
Update: In the process of researching for my stay in California, I decided to return to the Marriott website and at least look at the possibility of adjoining rooms (advice from Madmax). Surprisingly every Residence, Springfield and Vacation club I viewed now offered a 1-2 bedroom suite for a combo of points with cash surcharge or an upgrade certificate.
I immediately wondered if the analytical booking and pricing software was looking to fill rooms. I first looked at the Residence Inn. A one bedroom suite was an extra $50 a night; a two story Penthouse well over a $100 / night. But I got what I asked for, the ability to pay with points and upgrade with cash, so I can't really complain, though last time I checked, the price for a suite and a one bedroom are usually the same.
The vacation club offered a two-bedroom suite for approximately 40,000 points a night (inclusive of 2 upgrade certificates per night). A lot of points but a great property.
I booked the latter, and was happy in doing so. The kids now get to see their Grandparents, Mom and I have our space, and we can all go to Disneyland and do our part in stimulating this economy.
Rather than believe that my vacation is the result of some crazy Marriott sales algorithm, I'd like to imagine it was due to an empathetic customer service rep who understands the true meaning of reciprocity. Customers will usually show loyalty...and spend more cash...when they feel valued...take that away and they will walk! Come on folks it's business 101
Anyway. though its too late to re-book the 32 nights in Florida.. I will be back.
Steven Mac ( Still a Loyal Marriott Rewards Member )
mac010406 that is the greatest news I've heard in quite a while. I will be turning in those points as fast as I can say "Arnold Palmer"...I always had a hard time saying those two names together without it coming out as "Arnold Palmal"
Thank you, thank you, thank you...however it happened.
Marriott used to do just that. Years ago I used points for a stay at the RI in Anchorage and got a 2 bedroom. It was considered an upgrade and cost additional points. They also used to do that at resort properties to get a view room. You could use additional points or pay an upgrade fee. I guess that was one of the "enhancements" when then eliminated that option.
I know a man who only uses Marriott resorts and rents an ocean front unit every time. Other that this, he never uses a hotel. If he would want to use all the points he has, he would want to use them for an ocean front room at a resort and has been told that this is not an option. He is now staying at a Sheraton part of the time.