I am a Lifetime Platinum member. My wife keeps bringing up the fact that it is my name on the Marriott Rewards account. She is feeling a little less than special. Our membership was obtained as a team, and we came up through the ranks together. We decided where to stay together, and that decision was typically a Marriott hotel because we wanted to obtain Lifetime Platinum.
I understand the complexities of allowing two partners to be Lifetime Platinum. But those complexities pale in comparison to a relationship with a spouse or partner. The obvious issue is what happens if I die or we separate - she would have zero status at Marriott - which is completely unfair. I understand that she is able to enjoy the benefits of LP, but the fact remains that she has not been properly recognized. It's not fair, and it seems something could be changed or worked out.
I personally feel like you should be allowed to participate in the MR program with your spouse or significant other - period. It's not the same as airline miles - planes have individual seats. Hotels have multiple or King size beds, with a standard occupancy of 2 (save some European hotels). Sure, we could open an account under her name, and start all over - but we all know that is ludicrous, since we would be staying at Marriotts without the benefit of the status we rightfully earned.
It seems like something could be done about this, correct? A couple of suggestions:
Now that we have achieved Lifetime Platinum, and with no other levels to achieve, it would be nice if there were a Partner Platinum status to go after. For instance, we will probably earn another 75 Elite nights this year - which will go for nothing. Why couldn't those nights go towards my spouse's Platinum (or Gold, etc) status and start to accumulate towards her Lifetime Status? Seems like an easy change - and if implemented, the nights required at each level should be LESS than the first partners.
Secondly, technology can easily allow BOTH partners to check in at each hotel stay, when both are in attendance. Thus, each partner would have individual Lifetime Elite night balances.
Anyone else have this discussion with their spouse? Agree? Comments?
This is a terrific idea.
I am a platinum member not far from P lifetime status. My wife usually travels with me, but on occasion, travels to see her mother by herself. When she does, she cannot use our "Family" Marriott Rewards account number, as it is in my name.
As a company espousing family values, I think it would be wonderful to allow a Platinum spouse to use the same account.
And yes, even though most nights were earned together, if I die first, she losses the benefits....
Marriott? How about a new "Wally" Rule?
Thanks for listening.
You make some valid points and I agree. I am no where near lifetime status yet but if I was that would mean many many years of loyalty and paid stays. The least they could do is have a spouse traveling alone be able to use the "family" platinum number and benefits associated with it. Marriott got their revenue and loyalty over many years, the least they can do is provide those small perks to lifetime members in return.
I love the idea, but my wife does very little if any traveling and staying at a Marriott without me. Most of her travels involve conventions and they always seem to be at a Westin or Hilton.
Now when she books a ballroom she does use Marriott and has her points added to her account, only because of the reasons you mentioned wally3433 in your posting. If Marriott did offer a "family" Rewards account we'd have all the points/nights/meetings in one account rather than two separate. Now with the new Rewards policy being implemented on Feb. 1, 2016, all in a similar situation such as ours will need to pay close attention to the 24 month rule and make sure to use the account. Looks like some will suffer from using a Gold account rather than the Platinum account which stinks.
Please explain how this would devalue the program as you see it?
I know for one that if I'm staying in a Marriott with my wife, both of us will be in the Lounge with or without this concept, so if that is one of your points for the devaluation I'd have to disagree on that point.
I definitely agree! something should be done regarding the Lifetime Platinum Spouse plan...What if my husband does pass on? I have a Marriott Visa Card in My name, no one seems to question when I pay with this card? So why wouldn't I be eligible to also have the Lifetime Platinum in my name as well? I pay 50 percent of the bills! I think it is ODD that we have not heard a response from Marriott ???
I absolutely endorse this idea. I'm not Lifetime, but I'm headed that way. Our Marriott Visa card is in each of our names, and *I* earn the points and nights from that, not my husband. I can see the point of view that just giving it to the spouse automatically may not be desirable for Marriott, but an expedited way to earn status or even a way to earn status on a spouse once I reach Lifetime would be valuable for all parties involved. That way, we don't lose benefits by starting over on a new rewards account, but Marriott gets our continued loyalty and increased incentive to continue staying at Marriott properties.
I don't see how this could devalue the program for others. A Gold/Plat member is allowed one guest in the concierge lounge anyway (don't get me started on properties completely not enforcing this), it doesn't prevent them from getting upgrades because the Plat spouse would have gotten the upgrade anyway, and it doesn't prevent them from earning points or free WiFi or anything.
The devil is in the details though. How would you manage this? Does it have to be a legally married spouse? What about our gay allies who cannot legally get married in some states right now? What about if I'm not married but want to grant it to a sibling? A lifelong best friend? Only one person, or what if my spouse makes lifetime plat under this plan and I then want to afford the same "fast track" for another person?
Divorce is the #1 reason to make a change. If they make a non-account carrying spouse "earn" a status, then there would be no argument.
In other words, if it takes 750 nights to earn Liftetime Platinum, why can't there be a second level of Liftetime Platinum where both partners have Lifetime Platinum next to their name?
I think something similar to a Costco membership might work in the case of a divorce.
If one person earns any status, I think that the primary account holder should be able to add ONE authorized user - spouse or partner - to the account.
This seems like a really feasible idea for Marriott Rewards accounts because it would hopefully prevent 'abuse' and allow situations such as divorce or separation to be handled a little easier.
In my house we have a Costco executive membership. I was not the primary card holder, but was added as an authorized user. We both earn Costco rewards points and are able to use the membership.
I am LT PE with Marriott and wife has no benefits nor will she get unused points if/when I pass - on the other hand, I am also GOLD HILTON (higher for many years) and they has a "joint account" and my wife enjoys full GOLD benefits and will own the unused points when I pass! COME ON MARRIOTT. . . YOU SHOULF ALLOW WIFE ON LT PE Accounts!
After I pass and after the 1-3 year mourning period....it would be nice for my spouse to have my status and points.
Seriously, let's say Marriott decides to throw us one bone after all the take aways. Which should they add...
Courtyard Free Breakfast for Gold and Platinum?
True Elite Access to CL's limiting the crowds?
Free or reduced parking for elites?
Same day cancellatiom for elites?
We ask for a lot? What do we really want if we can expect one thing at the most?
I would increase my Courtyard stays with a breakfast benefit.
rb - those are all good things and any one of those individually would be a nice concession.
But in my original post, I am not actually asking Marriott to just give this status away. I am requesting that they give us a way to earn that status for the "other" spouse/partner.
At a minimum, partner Lifetime Platinum should be earned at 1,400 nights, 4 million points, right? I would love to get that on the table as a starting point.
I agree with wally3433. Marriott doesn't necessarily need to GIVE this away, but at least having a way to earn the status would be helpful.
Then again, the idea posted about being able to designate an authorized partner on any account also sounds awesome. Almost all other rewards programs offer this, hotel or not, so why not Marriott? I can argue either way, but having SOMETHING would be a start, Marriott!
I stay at Marriott properties because they tend to be higher-quality rooms. However, the rewards program definitely leaves a lot to be desired in comparison with their competitors.
Hi, I fully agree that a Spouse Member is something that Marriott Rewards is remiss in not implementing. Myself and my husband jointly own numerous vacation club weeks with Marriott and frequently trade these for reward points. However, the current system only allows for his name to be on the Rewards account. This is wrong on so many levels and as I frequently travel alone is, to say the least, irritating. Also, from reading some of the posts it would seem Marriott always choose to put accounts in the husbands name! Mmmmm in this day and age, is this the way to do business and expect people to keep coming back? Loyalty works both ways.
Great topic. We're in the same boat. I am Lifetime Platinum though my husband and I earned the status together. We almost always travel together, since we work together as well as share our personal time. I have booked rooms for him from time to time when he's traveled alone, and the front desk almost always has no problem just checking him in whether I ever arrive or not. I do understand though that they don't have to. It would be good to look further into ways Marriott could give some credit/recognition to spouses who have earned the status in reality, but not on "paper."
In our house, I have the Marriott Visa card in my name. My husband's name is on the Marriott Rewards Points.
Found out the hard way, that because I checked into the hotel/resort/timeshare (while he stayed with the rental car) we did not get the 'nights stayed' credited. We could have been Lifetime Gold by now. As we always travel together, he now is the one who gets out of the car.
I think the cleanest way to do this would be for Marriott Rewards to allow gifting of status to a spouse when one reaches lifetime status. The way United does:
Annual companion Premier status As a Million Miler, you may invite your spouse or significant other to share your current Premier status. This membership is nontransferable and will automatically renew each year unless you let us know otherwise.
What United does is nice, but that benefit encourages additional spending by the companion for United - making it "easier" for United to offer this benefit.
My original Wally Rule point was that LTP status was ALREADY earned by two people making a common decision on where to stay. Standard hotel room is for (2) people. A plane seat is for (1) person.
And I am not asking for LTP status for my wife for free - just asking for a way to earn it, without having to start all over.
As an LTP member, there is nothing else to gain by racking up additional nights at Marriott.....which actually translates into a DISINCENTIVE to stay at Marriott. I was suggesting a way for Marriott to fill that void. Otherwise, we might as well start staying at more Starwood hotels under my wife's name, and start racking up those points and status levels.
It does, I was just trying to think of a "nice and clean" method to make this happen. And although I know comparing airline and hotel loyalty programs are different, I would argue that both airline and hotel programs benefit from offering this feature. If you are a plat, you are more likely to stay with that property for the benefits (additional points, welcome gift, etc).
I also disagree that "there is nothing else to gain by racking up additional nights at Marriott". You gain the points which translates to free stays, or those points could be redeemed for other items. As a lifetime plat, you earn 50% more points, which is a great benefit.
My spouse has gold status, I am close to lifetime platinum status. I like the thinking here that a reasonable reward for lifetime platinum should be to allow the spouse be 'brought up' to platinum life partner. It's ridiculous that one shared Marriott card should only validate nights if the platinum partner logs in. Let those who wish to keep separate accounts and status continue to do so, but let spouses who share credit cards also share status.
As a million miler with Continental that carried over to United, my wife does in fact have the same status as myself so when she travels without me as she did last weekend she is given the same benefits as if she was traveling with me, unlike Marriott.
A wonderful comparison vickers so maybe Marriott could build off that concept since it works for an airline and Lord knows they are Rewards Plus married.
Hey Wally I just had this same discussion with a MR Rep...I'm a LTGE member and my partner travels often to conferences...I tag along to enjoy the Marriott stays and perks but its become a hassle because he pays for the room...and since the reservation is in his name for business travel, once the reservation is made we have to remember to add my name and rewards number to the reservation, let the hotel know who will be checking in first (if not together)...upon arrival make sure my reward number is on the reservation, show my ID and swipe my credit card!! Yeah that's way to much and stressful...but we do it because MR only suggestion is to have my partner get his own account. And just like you said, "who wants to start over when WE built this account together..." (paraphrasing a little). I think it's time for MR to listen to its valued members and make that change...one love!!
We! are in same situation and considering other options! I am furious to learn that even though our vacation club villas are deeded in both names and we both paid for them when converted to rewards points , it is only in his name along with millions of travel points that I have managed. We have been lead to believe by Marriott reps that on his death the spouse would inherit!???? This is not right!!!!!!
Before I agreed, and may be someone can elaborate on for me, it is my understanding the points goes on to whom ever the reservation is made out to. Unless is a group or business events where the corporate / master account get all the points.
in the past I have paid for my wife, my staffs and myself but other times I have stayed because other company sponsor event I don't get any point because again how the reservation was made. We both felt that it was unfair because we have travel to stay at their hotels and by the way they also want or personal information and don't the surveys, postcard and emails marketing stuff.
I agree, hopefuly someone at Marriott has read the previous comments or this is way for us to express out our frustration publicly and quietly.
Again, I can be very optimistic by offering one or two solutions if they are willing to listen.
1. if both names are the reservation and have stayed they should share or split the points.
2. you are the registered guest and someone else pay you guest some kind of point, because if didn't make a commitevent to come than they would less participant.
What a great post!! Although my wife does not typically travel with me (98% of my travel is work-related), she is my virtual travel partner in addition to being a Marriott champion. Without the support of my wife, I could (and would) never travel as much as I currently do now, resulting in a huge drop in Marriott hotel stays. Come on Marriott, let's recognize the husbands/wives/partners who support your most loyal customers. A little recognition to these "unsung heroes" is past due.
I dont see this as being difficult to action, and do see it as something we, the membership, would appreciate. Straightforwardly the account would be in the name of the first one to sign up, with the addition of the spouse as the second account member. This is particularly important for Lifetime status since it would be nice if my wife could receive the benefit of that status after my demise.
From reading this thread, this is something Hilton has managed to deal with. In my view its something Marriott should look into, I think most here would agree that our high travel is only possible due to our spouses staying at home and holding that particular fort.
I am LT Plat Elite which means many many nights in Marriott properties! I too feel that Marriott should allow spouse to be co partner on Marriott account! After all, she was the one "home alone" those many many nights I was traveling and I assure you she was part of the reason for my becoming LT Plat Elite.
I am also a Hilton GOLD and many years ago Hilton allowed you to "JOIN Memberships" . My wife had a Hilton Account so we did JOIN Memberships and she is co partner in my Hilton Account and enjoys the same benefits and when I "go" she will still be able to use and enjoy the 1 Million or so Hilton Points in our JOINT HILTON Account.
by the way. . . Hilton no longer allows you to Join Memberships but, we are grand fathered in out account!
I wish Marriott would "show some love" for LT Plat Elite spouses!
I liked the Costco approach. You can add a second member at no charge to use the account. This makes it fair especially for those of us who own Vacation club properties. Both have to sign up to own, both have to attend timeshare presentations for extra rewards points. If you are married or living together both must attend. For rewards points, only one is on the account. Doesn't make sense to me. Don't feel its fair either
United Airlines has the ability to attach your spouse to your Elite status when you achieve lifetime membership. I hit Lifetime Gold a couple of years ago on United and one of the benefits is a Lifetime Gold reward number for my wife (or another individual I wished to name).
If the airlines can do it, certainly Marriott can do it.
It is such an interesting topic. I agree with all the posters who say that the points should be joint ownership. Think of all the choices you make in purchases. Buy a car, no one would question who can drive it or if you died that it belonged in the estate. Buy a house, investments, anything with a monetary value you can choose who that will be left to. It should be the same with points. These are earned with the exchange of money. Whether the points are earned by one family member, or both, together or separate, they are a family asset and have a value. Lifetime Status - or whatever the status - should allow use by both spouses. To get these level of awards someone is gone from their home an awful lot of nights, away from their families, friends, community. And the person left at home is shouldering the weight of home responsibility and the absence of the other. To think that the points are not being earned jointly refutes the whole idea of marriage being a team effort.
I agree completely. I'm currently lifetime gold and very close to achieving lifetime platinum. My wife is the one who books everything for me and plans our vacations etc. It would be nice if she can get all the benefits too. Now that our kids are getting bigger, there are times when we have to divide and conquer. One of us goes with one child and the other go with the other child. Sometimes we have to go out of town for tournaments, I'll have to call to add my wife's name on the reservation so she can check in. We also own a couple of weeks at Marriott Vacation Club. Both our names are on the deed and when we pass on, we can deed it to our kids. I wish this can be done with our rewards status and points as well.
At Southwest, once you reach a certain level you can have someone as your designated companion. Which means, if you travel on the same itinerary, that person can fly free. Even when redeeming points for travel, your companion flies free. With the exception of the 9/11 fee ($5.60) It is however earned yearly.
I responded to this originally back in May, but now, with so many more comments, it's time for some additional observations. First, it's interesting, and I must say, disappointing, that we have had no input here from someone at Marriott. (At least I didn't see any, but my old eyes are missing some things now.) I'm sure they must monitor the Insiders pages and it would be nice to know that they are at least reading the really excellent comments I've seen posted here.
Secondly, thank you Jlowery35242 for pointing out that Hilton has a provision that will allow the spouse to receive their partner's points should their spouse die before they do. It's been noted that Marriott often won't do something until the competition does. They are, and no response to this from Marriott.
Finally, it was gratifying to me to see how many of my colleagues posting here acknowledge the role that their spouse or partner has had in their accumulating their lifetime or regular gold, or platinum level. It's time that Marriott recognized that a lot of travel is a team effort and that both members should be recognized. At the very least, we should be able to designate that any accumulated points transfer to our spouse upon certain stated conditions, including the death of any of us!