A nostalgic look back at the way things used to be. Circa 2009.
Let's suppose a hypothetical Platinum member wanted to spend a week in Europe on points.
Redeem 7 night travel European hopper 150 K points, 3 nights in Paris, 4 nights in London
50 K points- Spring Megabonus- 25 nights
95K points from same 25 nights- 190 dollars a night x 10 points base, x 5 points plat, x 5 points and Marriott credit card
5K 500 point arrival times 10 stays
redeem 7 nights at Cat 9 hotels, one night free if one stay is 5 nights = 270K points
30K Spring Megabonus- 25 nights
120K points from same 25 nights- 240 (I'm assuming average room rate is up that much from 2009) dollars a night x 10 points base, x 5 points plat, x5 points and Marriott credit card
5K 500 point arrival times 10 stays
Congratulations you are 57% of the way there.
An interesting analysis vickisocal. Two things stick out for me:
1. Megabonus in 2016 earns less points; however if I recall the lodging industry was not doing so great in 2009. Hyatt has no Winter/Spring bonus this year, so I am happy Marriott does.
2. The arrival gift has not improved in the span you reference above and some might argue has actually been devalued (in food/beverage amenity).
Yes, and in my example, after 25 nights/10 stays our hypothetical plat member had far more "buying power" in 2009 than now. My husband has been platt for 9 years and his stay patterns haven't varied that much 80-120 nihgts a year give or take. What we get with those points has dropped a lot.
I don't know in the hotel industry but do know in airlines( I assume it is the same) that companies must record as a liability point / miles balances. That becomes a hit to earnings so devaluing points/ miles does impact bottom lines. Yes 2009 all hotels/ carriers were chasing both company and individual travel dollars and one way was more points/ miles. You have seen airlines all go to dollars vs miles to reward the people that pay the most. They all provide points/ miles to other companies which they get paid . With mergers you get fewer options and no need for a company to be too out in front of their competitors and to give too much credit for points. So will the point continue to de value yes will they devalue more than prices going up not clear. But the good old days will not likely return . To me the best benefit for hotel loyalty is the concierge. Regarding points as long as I can get a couple long uses for points at vacation areas I am happy.
If you are a MVC owner, this situation is substantially worse. I have owned my timeshare in Orlando since Royal Palms was built in the 80's. One incentive was that I could convert my week for 110k MR points. At that time, 110 k could be redeemed for 7 nights at any Marriott resort worldwide, two free roundtrip airline tickets on most major airlines, one week free Hertz rental, and buy one/get one free 7 night cruise. My maintenance fees in 1994 were $500.
I still get only 110 k MR points for this week, maintenance fees were $900 in 2009, and are over $1200 in 2016 (still not bad for 1 week in a 2BR condo). As you might surmise, I never turn my week in for MR points any more. This is also why it is more difficult to redeem MR points for MVC properties because very few MVC owners exchange their weeks for MR points.
One thought of mine, you guys can (and certainly will lol) correct me if I am wrong. If MVC owners are not inclined to switch their weeks for points and have not been for a while now, and more and more MVC owners are taking that path and not redeeming them for MR points, does that in turn mean that fewer MR points are being used for award stays overall? It's my understanding that category changes are driven by the free nights people redeem at all Marriott properties. Lots of MR points being redeemed for nights at a particular property makes that property go up in category. At least that is my understanding. So what I am getting at is, if MVC owners were to have a good redemption rate/value to convert to MR points, that might lead to more weeks being converted (a larger MR pool of outstanding points worldwide), more points being used for award stays, and the more award stays there are the higher categories properties will go. Therefore, when we see properties go down or stay the same, maybe this is a small reason why. Again, I may be wrong, it was just something I thought of.
You make an interesting point. I would expect that MVC owners aren't saving for and using MR rewards nearly as much as in the past, therefore their total contributions to award redemptions are likely declining. However, I'd expect that the new members and the expansion into other brands for point earning has generated significantly more total MR point redeemers, so the impact of fewer stays by MVC owner is relatively small. The Marriott family also doesn't have a whole lot of properties located near beaches or other vacation areas, so those vacation oriented location take a greater hit for MR redemptions.
There were very few significant changes to the MR program for the first 20 years I was a member. Therefore I banked a lot of points over the years (over 1 million) that I had planned to save for when I had more time to travel. I never anticipated that the point level increases in the last five have exceeded those in the previous twenty years.
All of the posts here are so, so sad. I too yearn for the Rewards program of yesteryear, especially the original Honored Guest Awards of the 80's and 90's, where the customer was treated like royalty (sometimes even better!). I too took advantage of the Euro-Hopper and as a Vacation Club owner since the early 90's, took the 110k points every other year because they were worth so much. I guess that's what upsets me the most, that the 110k points were never increased at a time when the program was devalued.
And lets not lose sight of two things my friends, back when Marriott announced the changes around this time in 2009, they hailed it as "an enhancement" and that the program was changed "based on member requests and survey results of what our members want in the program".
Now I don't know about you, nowhere did I ask for a 40% devaluation and two new hotel categories.
I was in the Honored Guest program starting around 1990/91 as well as the Courtyard Club. I became Silver Elite in the late 90s, and Platinum around 2009. I really don't see a significant devaluation over the years. Some things have become better and others have become worse. I do feel like a valued guest at Marriott. I am almost always treated very well and often like an honored guest, with upgrades and special treatment.