One year there was a promo that began in the middle of May and ran through the summer, but you are right, normally there is no promotions in May. We've come to expect one beginning June 1. It's a pretty safe bet that this year will be the same. This site is a good source of news on the subject, so stay tuned.
I've complied all the dates back to 2009 and they are on FT
The "summer bonus" which has gone by various names have run:
June 1, 2009 through August 31, 2009- - maximum offer was 25K points for 20 nights
June 1, 2010 through August 31, 2010- - maximum offer was 40K points for 25 nights
June 1, 2011 through August 31, 2011- - maximum offer was 40K points for 25 nights
June 1, 2012 through August 31, 2012- - maximum offer was 40K points for 25 nights
May 15, 2013 through September 2, 2013- maximum offer was 55K points for 30 nights
June 1, 2014 through August 31, 2014 - maximum offer was 45K points for 25 nights
No, and odds are that no one will.
Expect to hear something about a summer promotion beginning June 1 within the next couple weeks. History shows (see vickisocal's post above) that the normal summer promo period is June 1 thru August 31. It's reasonable to think this year will be no different. As for what the offers will look like, that's anybody's guess.
I'm not gonna "shoot the messenger" but this is very unfortunate and will lead to Marriott no longer being my preference, but just who has the best rates. I've already commited several thousand dollars in travel towards trips with Marriott stays for the summer, so there probably won't be an immediate loss of business due to it being too late with other hotels since now their rates have increased as well. I had assumed (as ALWAYS) there would be a promo where the additional cost would be justified because of the promos and my points as a platinum member to get free stays for the winter.
I don't travel much for business so nearly all of my stays come directly from my pocket.
I will be very disapointed and an unhappy customer if this turns out to be the case.
Whatever the strategy for Marriott is: People start planning vacation now for the summer month, and knowing a promo is upcoming is a very important part of the planning, esp. if it involves multiple stays. IHG has its promotion out since days (not a brilliant one, but better than nothing). So soon it is going to be best rates and best promo values. Like we say here: "Other moms also have beautiful daughters"
NO-one has actually answered OPs question about why there's no May megabonus promo. So I'll try.
Marriott runs two megabonus promotions each year. One in the fall, from mid September to mid January and a second for Spring, from beginning February to end April. although the recession emerged in spring 2008, it only started effecting non-bankers bottom lines in 2009, and that year Marriott did a special May promo, double nights credit and a summer bonus from June to August, being a slightly less highly paying version of the Fall and Spring megabonuses. This summer bonus has since 2009 emerged every year, in a variety of different names.
I can't remember any major summer promos before 2009 and so I'm guessing the lack of a summer promo now is because Marriott feels that the economic recovery means it doesn't need to chase summer trade. Neither HH nor SPG have any large summer promos, and IHG has launched a distinctly lukewarm summer offer, in my case stay 12 IHG nights, get 10k points. Not inspiring but it seems the only game in town for a bonus on paid summer stays.
SO why none in May? I suspect that Marriott doesn't want us to expect that there will be big extra bonuses on all our stays, hence the traditional summer gap until 2009 which the response to the financial crisis led to the closure of much of that summer gap from May to Aug to being a gap in May only.
My wait is over. As much as I prefer Marriott over the other brands I have now booked my 2 weeks vacation on IHG (leftover pointbreaks and non-chain 4 days Paris - woho- I am from germany and Paris is a 5h drive so a cheap solution) I still might change my plans later on, but my framework is set. Another chapter in the book of lost opportunities, esp. as Paris has some quite acceptable Courtyards on weekend pricing.
I'm in Canada/USA for 27 nights in July/Aug on a family roadtrip, redeeming a total of 42 room-nights, 25 (over 6 hotels) at Marriotts and 17 (over 3 hotels) at IHG, redeeming a total of 1-mill points, and I must admit I was labouring at the back of my mind about switching a few to paid stays to take advantage of a summer promo. Now this would be madness as over the last 5 years Marriott has been out of promo only about 60 nights. Effectively being in promo is the new norm! I have to burn the points sometime, otherwise I'll find I'm 90 and those 1mill points won't buy a weekend in Fresno. Nonetheless, to my point, this lack of any promo does mean it's a great summer to redeem! Burn baby, burn (points that is!)
You´re right. Burn baby, burn, this is the right approach. I will do a 6 week road trip to the US in August/September and right now my booking are fully in Marriott and IHG (sorry!) points. I plan to burn 350K Marriott and 300K IHG points. Get rid of it before it further devaluates.
Wow, how interesting. Where are your travels taking you, Paddy?
I'm visiting the in-laws in Oakville ON. Sister in law is putting up our 3 teens for the first 4 nights and me and missus are redeeming at Oakville Holiday Inn. Then it's off with her teen and our 3 on the Roadtrip to Ottawa for 2 nights at the Marriott, Ausable cabins (independent) for 2 nights, Albany CY for a 1-night stop-off then to NYC Marriott Marquis for 3 nights. After that it's a drive to DC at the White House Holiday Inn (kids want the rooftop pool) for 2 nights then over to Niagara at the Marriott Fallsview for another 2 nights (stopping off en-route at FFI DuBois). After dropping the kids off in Oakville me and missus then go on for a visit to her teenage home-city of Montreal staying at the downtown Holiday Inn for 3 nights before returning to Oakville for a final week with the in-laws, staying at the FFI there. All told 550k MR and 400k IHG points burned redeeming at over $10,000! It's a worthwhile game, this!
And after all that I'll be glad to get back to work for a nice rest!
I am going to do a "boring" 6 week trip to the other side of the US. 2 weeks from Seattle to Oakland, but not along the sea, but back-country along the cascade range (Mt. St. Helens, Mt. Hood, Crater Lake NP, Lsssen Vulcanic NP, SFO.) Then 2 weeks at the Marriott Waikoloa on Big island Hawaii. The with a San Jose stoppover to Salt Lake City and then via Yellowstone to Denver.
What a bummer!! As an elite member like many of us are, I would travel out of my way to stay at marriott properties because I thought that Marriott appreciated our 100 plus night stays per year, Guess I was wrong! No problem Marriott, you will have quite a few less stays from me this year....Hilton here I come. Might as well work on getting on the Top of their promotion status with them and give myself more options. Please send me your survey this year for the Freddie awards, lets see how many awards you get this year. Very, Very, disappointed Marriott. 1,150 lifetime stays, over 200K dollars spent.....Wow.
Here it is towards the end of June and still no Summer Megabonus bonus points program. It has cost Marriott as I have opted to stay at Hilton properties since they do have some additional reward points for me. Cancelled several stays already and will cancel all for July as well. I have a choice and choose to to go where the points are! LOL!
I'm still loyal despite the lack of "extra" points, mainly because I get 5 points per mile spent with the credit card, on top of the regular points they always offer. You still build points that can be converted into travel packages and reward stays, even if there's no extra special points promo. To be honest, those that will jump to Hilton make the concierge lounges a little less crowded for the true loyalists!
Great reply, tomd68. Those are my thoughts exactly. My travel plans haven't changed at all due to the lack of a promotion.
It actually gave me a chance to redeem some rewards instead of trying to hit some bonus to earn more.
I think of the 5 stays I have in the next 6 weeks I'm using points for 2 of them.
I probably will end up moving one stay to Hilton, not for lack of a bonus so much of lack of a Gov rate at the Anaheim Fairfield Inn. The Gov rate at the Hilton makes it about 2/3rds the price.
While I agree at this point that my travel plans have not changed (Marriott vs. another brand), the lack of a summer promotion is just another indication, to me, of the lack of respect/value that Marriott has for it's premier members.
Tomd68 - Make room in the lounges for true loyalists? Really? Through a combination of the United Airlines partnership and lack of enforcement of concierge lounge access rules, the experience is, IMHO, almost unbearable.
As a lifetime PP member, I am constantly being pushed in terms of my loyalty. I am trying hard to stay due to my positive experiences but more and more I am challenged.....