12 Replies Latest reply: May 16, 2016 4:45 AM by brightlybob RSS

Can the CAT 1-5 X-night stays from travel packages be upgraded?

lou37 Gold
Currently Being Moderated

I'm considering converting Marriott points to American Airlines points (20% bonus until 10/31/15) via a travel package with a CAT 1-5 7-night stay.  A popular travel blogger made the following statement "You can later up the hotel award category by paying the difference in Marriott Rewards points".  I have not found any evidence of this being possible and I haven't heard back from the blogger :-)

Can anyone confirm this is possible?  If possible, how did you do it?

(For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Can the CAT 1-5 X-night stays from travel packages be upgraded?
    carat Community Manager Marriott Associate Silver
    Currently Being Moderated

    Welcome to Insiders, lou37!  As you may have already seen, this is a great place to talk about all things Marriott, as well as share your travel experiences and recommendations.  I'm carat, and I am one of the moderators here along with lindseyh and deannad.  If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to reach out to any of us.

     

    In regards to your question, you are correct, it is not possible.  Free night certificates are only eligible for redemption at Category 1-5 hotels.  You cannot use points or pay the difference to use them at higher category hotels. 

     

    Again, Welcome to Insiders! Looking forward to hearing more form you!

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

    • Re: Can the CAT 1-5 X-night stays from travel packages be upgraded?
      lou37 Gold
      Currently Being Moderated

      I'm not sure if you answered my question.  The answer you gave is consistent with the free night certificate you get on your annual anniversary.  I'm specifically asking about the hotel certificate you receive when you purchase a travel package.

      (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

      • Re: Can the CAT 1-5 X-night stays from travel packages be upgraded?
        brightlybob Platinum 10 Reviews
        Currently Being Moderated

        You are completely correct lou37. I redeemed a Cat 6 Travel Package earlier this year planning a holiday to Vegas, but later decided on Miami and so needed to upgrade the 7 night cert to a Cat 8. The Plat line was knowledgeable and helpful and easily upgraded my Cat 6 to a Cat 8 for an extra 60,000 points.

         

        So YES TravelPackage certificates can be upgraded by calling the Plat line.

         

        But to be totally clear, those free cat 1-4 or cat 1-5 certs one-night certs from megabonuses/credit cards cannot be upgraded

        (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

      • Re: Can the CAT 1-5 X-night stays from travel packages be upgraded?
        deannad Community Manager Marriott Associate Member
        Currently Being Moderated

        Hi lou37,

        brightlybob is correct, you are able to upgrade the category on the travel package certificates. You would just need to contact Marriott Rewards when you have a reservation where you would like to redeem the certificate for a higher category, as our team can only upgrade the certificate when a reservation's already been made. The amount of points would depend on the original category of the certificate and which category you are looking to redeem it for.

        (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

        • Re: Can the CAT 1-5 X-night stays from travel packages be upgraded?
          amwny Platinum
          Currently Being Moderated

          Why is the incremental point cost to step up from a Category 8  to a Category 9 package so much greater (actually, and especially  on  a per night basis) for a 5  night package (45,000 points) than for a 7 night  package (30,000 points)?   20,000 or 25,000 points would seem more realistic.

           

          The net result of the package pricing  is that the added cost of two nights in a Category 9  hotel is 45,000 points for  a Vacation Club owner. It would be interesting to know the logic behind  this pricing scheme.

          (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

          • Re: Can the CAT 1-5 X-night stays from travel packages be upgraded?
            brightlybob Platinum 10 Reviews
            Currently Being Moderated

            For this we need a history lesson on Marriott Rewards.

             

            Before 2009 Marriott Rewards redemptions were based on an ever decreasing per night cost up to 7 nights. So a Cat 6 hotel redemption was 30k for 1 night, 55k for 2, 77k for 3, 97k for 4, 115k for 5, 130k for 6 and 140k for 7 nights. The "sweet spot" for redemptions was thus 7 nights since that pro rata cost only 20k per night. Similarly structured tables existed for the other categories and Marriotts Travel Package was arranged around this sweet spot, namely miles at par when purchasing a 7-night certificate.

             

            In 2009 Marriott changed its structure to the current 5th night free which means cat 6 is at 30k for 1 night, 60k for 2, 90k for 3, 120k for 4, 5th night free so 120k for 5, 150k for 6 and 180k for 7 nights. Here the sweet spot is now 5 nights where each night costs pro rata 24k points, 7 nights is no longer as attractive costing pro rata almost 26k points per night. Marriott nonetheless opted to keep the Travel Package deal based around 7 nights, instead of the new 5-night "sweet spot". However Marriott did opt to introduce the new sweet spot 5-night certificate for Vacation Club members, hence for MVC members they see the extra value of optimising their certificate to the 5 night "sweet spot"

            (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Can the CAT 1-5 X-night stays from travel packages be upgraded?
    amwny Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    While the insight on the structure is accurate, it points to an  unintended (or not)  consequence of the structure. Namely the utility of 5 night packages  for Category 8, 9, and higher Categories when they come into being has been drastically reduced, relative to  lower  categories.

     

    In fact,it appears  that at the Category 11 level, 5 and  7  night  packages would have the  identical point cost. Or to look at  it another way, the 5th  night is longer "free."

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Can the CAT 1-5 X-night stays from travel packages be upgraded?
    vertol46 Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    I just did this, but it required a lot more effort than it should have. Started with an agent via chat who told me, "Unfortunately, the certificate cannot be upgraded." Quoted deannad, above, and he replied, "Maybe Marriott Rewards can do it, but we can't." (I thought, "Hello, if I'm not chatting with Marriott Rewards, then who are you?") Tried doing it brightlybob's way by calling the Plat line. Started off great until the woman told me, "I'll need to transfer you to Marriott Rewards." (De javu all over again!) Was transferred to another agent, who was able to accomplish it. Overall, it was below average customer service, but the job was accomplished in the end.

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

    • Re: Can the CAT 1-5 X-night stays from travel packages be upgraded?
      brightlybob Platinum 10 Reviews
      Currently Being Moderated

      Like anywhere Marriotts phone lines can seem like "ordeal by customer service" due to a lack of specific company training and too much generic instruction.  Pleased to hear you got it done though...

      (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

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