I am a Platinum and always use the Platinum phone numbers when calling Marriott. Last year my wife got her own Marriott Visa Premier card so we could double up on the benefits. With her Visa card she is a Silver and today booked her free cat 5 hotel room. She ended up getting it charged to her credit card and not the certificate. I said "no problem, just call the reservation line and they will take care of it". After 40 minutes on hold she had to hang up, so we could go to an appointment. I assumed she just hit a busy time and she could get through later. After we returned she called again and after 65 minutes I had her hang up and said that I would call the Platinum line. My call was answered immediately and when I gave the agent the reservation # and explained what happened, she immediately took care of it. This would appear to indicate that Platinum's do get better service. (yeah!) However, I find it amazing that such poor service is apparently being offer to Silver's. Was this a unique situation, or are other Silver's (and maybe Gold's?) seeing the same thing?
I was Gold, now Silver, and have never had any problem getting an answer to a phone call. I live in the UK. Once, when I rang the UK number to make a reservation using a certificate, I was put on hold, but after only about a minute, a message came on to say that as all UK agents were still busy on the phone, I was being transferred to Global Reservations. Within a few seconds I was talking to an agent in the US, who was very helpful and sorted out my booking straight away.
I'm silver, always have been, and probably always will be. I've never encountered wait times like that for reservations. But if I had something amiss with a reservation, I'd call the Silver Customer Support line ((800) 321-7396) rather than reservations. I just recently booked a trip and was supposed to get Points Savers on four nights. When the confirmation showed up, it wasn't PS but a regular redemption. I called customer support, was answered immediately, and the CS rep handled it quickly and restored the points to my account.