The merger isn't even finalized yet, it has to be approved by the government first. Once that is complete, then the changes to the rewards programs will start. My guess, you won't hear anything until mid-year at the earliest, with any changes coming 1/1/17 at the earliest. Just my two cents.
CORRECT - and I am surprised there are so many that are actually contacting Starwood properties asking for benefits. REALLY! I know of a few geniuses that did.
If we are lucky ks77 our grandchildren will be the benefactors of the new MR.
Absolutely my view too, if anything a little optimistic as far as full integration is concerned.
Looking at Marriotts takeover of Protea, it was agreed in Nov 2013, completed April 2014, but only next month will we be able to points be earn and redeem at Protea hotels.
Looking at Marriotts takeover of Delta, this purchase was agreed in Jan 2015 and completed in April 2015. A little over half the hotels will fully participate in MR by February, and the rest, after system upgrades, by June.
Following the Delta example would suggest earning and burning will take about a year after deal sealed in June 2016, so that's June 2017.
Following the Protea example would suggest earning and burning will take until 2018!
Admittedly Protea was an African group and a lot of IT work had to be done but the fact is that the amount of work to be done to integrate Starwood is vast, and worldwide. My betting is on an announcement of a new "Stariott" Scheme in early 2017 that will see Starwood hotels gradually folded into the system during the rest of the year, with the unified earn and burn scheme being fully implemented in Jan 2018.
Jerry here is a scary thought for those that can't be patient - list this as worst case scenario:
Sirius - XM Merger 2007
The two satellite radio systems are still not totally integrated - The accounting systems became totally integrated in 2014.
Those impatient soles should cross their fingers that they will live long enough to enjoy whatever the surviving benefits are.
Hi Divatraveler! Welcome to Insiders! As you may have seen, this is a great place to discuss all things travel related. From sharing your recommendations and experiences to learning the ins and outs of the Rewards program, we cover it all! I'm carat and I moderate the community along with lindseyh and deannad. If you ever have any questions or comments, feel free to reach out to any of us, we're here to help!
Our awesome Insider's have beat me to it! They've provided some great feedback here. Both loyalty programs are industry leaders. We don't have the answers yet but will share more information as we get it.
Again, welcome to the community! Looking forward to hearing more from you!
I don't think anyone will be surprised.
It has been acknowledged by both boards (of Marriott and Starwood) that they expect to close the deal the middle of this year.
Most of our comments are on the merger of the loyalty programs.
I personally (and I believe most others) will be surprised if there is any program in place during the calendar year of 2016 where MR will include Starwood properties.
To be honest I doubt that any MR elite checking into a Starwood property will be acknowledged as an elite to well into 2017!
Look at the recent American/USAir merger - the loyalty programs stayed separate for almost 2 years after the merger.
Each program has millions of members - it's just not easy to especially with companies with different cultures.
Further to the above comment if you look at a relatively simple merger like Delta which is an excellent Canadian chain (but only a couple of dozen properties), It has taken well over a year to get to the point where you get recognition for MR members and there are still kinks being worked out. Merger between Starwood and Marriott is complex, will require multiple national governmental approvals. Loyalty program integration is step 96 on a 100 step process. They are at step 3, Don't expect anything this year
One thing you can do is get an spg credit card and earn points. Mostly you get 25,000 points but they up it to 30,000 sometimes. It might not seem like much but spg points go much farther than Marriott rewards. I did this when American and US air merged and at some point they merged the miles.
A little off subject yet not really.
I had a conversation while staying at the new JW Marriott Resort Los Cabos, Mexico with a fellow Marriott Platinum member regarding the Starwood integration. I was surprised when she told me at a recent stay at a Westin Hotel they already knew she was Platinum and while they told her she would not be receiving credit for her stay there they would honor her Elite status with Marriott and gave her a room upgrade.
I found this to be interesting and if true it sounds as if some of the rewards information may already be in the sharing between.
I cant imagine this is due to the takeover IAHFLYR, it's not even legal yet, so there can't be any sharing of private data. Completion is still months away but I do remember reading something similar being posted on flyertalk where a MR Gold was walked to a not-particularly-similar Holiday Inn and he said staff at the HI were aware of his MR status because both the Marriott and Holiday Inn were ran by the same franchisee. I'd imagine that is for the moment the more likely explanation, but it's good to see that SPG hotels will be happy to honour MR status, though I think thats very reflective of the whole SPG ethos. I'm not so sure SPG members will find the same at Marriotts as whenever I read threads like this it reminds me of Marriotts corporate diktat to hotels "not to overachieve" in the exec lounge, and I wince. Now I twitch as I wince not only for us, but also for SPG members. Hopefully the overachieving memo represents Marriotts nadir because here in the EU at least, the Marriotts I stay at seem to be proud to overachieve and keep alive the "spirit to serve" that is so the antithesis of that corporate directive.