Maybe this will turn out well for MR members:
Still, Marriott Rewards members make out well since they get nice properties to redeem their points at and a chance that Marriott will improve elite benefits. And there are more Marriott Rewards members than there are Starwood members. So on a purely utilitarian basis travelers ought to like the deal.
Starwood people are so angry... While I do love Marriott, I don't hate or dislike other major hotels...except maybe Motel 6.
"Marriott executives were genuinely shocked at the negative reaction of Starwood customers when the deal was originally announced "
Marriott really might lose a lot of Starwood people. But if they are anything like this guy: I don't mind!
This has basically been the reaction of Starwood people. I see so many comments like this, just not always directed at me.
Before they go dissing Marriott and whatever MIGHT happen to the SPG Program... they should wait. While it is inevitable that someone "loses" (or at least FEELS like they have), it just might not be as bad of a loss as people are making it out to be.
shareholders always love it since they got paid a premium . Employees usually are fearful that they will get "synergized" out. Customers fear the worse but in the end if they have loyalty points with Starwood they can continue with Marriott or go somewhere else. I suspect once the dust settles and since any change is at least a year away most will stay put
Not a whole lot SPG members will be able to do about it once the deal goes through. If they really hate Marriott that much, I'm sure Hyatt or Hilton will be glad to have them.
It just seems somewhat shortsighted to assume the worst beforehand. There will be change. Once we know the details it will be easy to determine whether they are for the better or not. If SPG folks don't like the changes, use up the points and go elsewhere. For that matter, Marriott elites could do the same. Griping about it doesn't accomplish much. Raise valid complaints or issues. Discuss like adults. That's what should happen. Instead we get Twits who tweet. Do us all a favor and save your 140 characters.
For what it's worth, I thought your reply was perfect, SeaTexan.
I have been keeping up with this. I just hate to see China or any foreign nation/state take over USA properties. It also pleases me that President Obama has finally found a way, be it maybe temporary, to keep large corporation from taking their tax dollars overseas.. As it nears Tax day for me, I get more and more angry, because there has not been a year in the last 20 that I have not had to send in more to pay my taxes.
I will just wait and see what happens. There will be winners; there will be losers. But nothing may happen for a long time. Who knows? The one thing I am sure of is that the reason I joined Marriott Rewards in the first place, was that I was very happy with the service ethos of the hotels I visit, and how they have since recognised me as a returning guest. So Marriott came first, Rewards came second, as a bonus I would have been stupid not to subscribe to, and which has saved me money over the years. It will take diminished standards to make me leave Marriott, not a change in Rewards. But don't tell anyone I said so.
I am very happy the deal is Marriotts and it will be great to earn points at those SPG properties.
First thing on our agenda, how and to what level will SPG/Marriott status match the 2 programs pending full integration which judging by the time taken to assimilate the much smaller Delta group wont happen till 2018 at the earliest.
I suspect a status matching program will be brought into place within a few weeks of the merger finalising and would hope that itll be a night match (Marr Gold=SPG Plat50 and Marr Plat=SPG Plat75) but suspect this will worry SPG franchisees who'll be concerned at huge numbers of Marriott elites claiming platinum benefits and the attendant costs, not to mention the screams from SPG members who'll see the reverse of this arrangement (SPG Gold=Marriott Silver, SPG Plat50=Marriott Gold) as confirmation of their worst suspicions so a "metal match" Marriott Gold=SPG Gold and Marriott Plat=SPG Plat (50) is more likely. However that policy could prove troublesome the other way around meaning much-easier-to-obtain SPG Gold would match to the far better Marriott Gold which would no doubt cause concern to Marriotts franchisees.
Marriott does need to be careful here though. The SPG membership is a massive asset of the company they've just purchased and theyll not want to see that asset evaporate so Marriott will want to start the relationship with the (mostly) crestfallen SPG elites on a good footing to try and win them over. Get ready for a UA style deal folks...
That is a very good point I hadn't thought of jerryl. Whilst we have very few Starwood hotels here in the UK, your point is very relevant in the US where there are a huge number of Marriott and Starwood properties.
It will be very interesting for us Brits to see the comments of our US Insiders on this topic.
I think (after looking at both programs) SPG Gold IS Marriott Silver and SPG Plat IS Marriott Gold. When you look at the benefits. Maybe people are caught up in the names given, silver, gold, plat...
SPG members should sit down and compare the two. Points however... yeah... huge difference.
It looks like its more for every 1 MR point, it is 2.5 SPG...or even 3 in some cases! Then again, Starwood has 2 less categories... their 7 is our 9.
MR 7,500 (saver) 6,000
MR 10,000 (saver) 7,500
MR 15,000 (saver) 10,000
MR 20,000 (saver) 15,000
MR 25,000 (saver) 20,000
MR 30,000 (saver) 25,000
MR 35,000 (saver) 30,000
SPG No Cat
MR 40,000 (saver) 35,000
SPG No Cat
MR 45,000 (saver) 40,000
They will have to recategorize the hotels from Starwood...maybe even sell some off?
I am going to use Nola as an example. NY might be another good one...
Right now Marriott has 15 hotels around the New Orleans French Quarter. 10 are an easy! walk or IN the FQ. 5 of them are still very walkable.
Starwood has 6, 5 in the FQ and 1 with an easy walk.
21 hotel's all in a 1 mile radius (I checked) from one another is CRAZY! I can throw a rock from the Marriott and hit the Sheraton.
The Sheraton seems kind of redundant...but Marriott might keep the brand to keep SPG members happy.
Isn't Sheraton the one that people care less for? or is it the Four Points by Sheraton?
Sea Texan yes I suspect there will be some sorting out of the brands over time. I think starwood has done a more direct attempt at Millennials . Would agree that sheraton is the most redundant brand. Regarding overlap in any geographic area I would not be surprised that they will sell off some properties or not renew management agreements for some properties when the agreements are due
I have a good example for points use. We are going to Paris next May. I had been looking at several Starwood and Marriott hotels near the Opera area. At the Westin Vendome, it would be 40,000 points for 2 nights. I took those same 40,000 SPG points and coverted them to 120,000 MR points for 3 nights at the Opera Ambassador where we have stayed before. As MR Lifetime Gold, we get an upgrade, lounge access, and a great buffet breakfast in the restaurant. I'd get maybe only an upgrade at the Westin even as an SPG Gold. So, for this situation, Marriott is far superior.
NerdWallet values MR points at 0.01USD and SPG points at 0.023USD (link here). Curious what seasoned MR Elites think.
I don't know what dollar value is of the respective points, but I think the ratio is more like 1:3. For example, we went to a wedding reception at the Sheraton in Minnetonka, MN. 7000 Starpoints per night. The FS Marriott across the highway was 20,000 MR points per night. We have stayed at both hotels, and they are very comparable properties when it comes to quality, amenities, size, location, style, etc., although the Sheraton is in a slightly better location and is more up-to-date in its décor. We are also looking for beach resorts in certain areas, and Sheraton wants 10,000 points for most of those, whereas Marriott wants 30,000.
I did a post on this a while ago calculating earns and burns on my 8-destination North-East US/Canada Roadtrip. I felt it was a good way to compare as it included both small town and big city destinations:
Comparing MR, HH, SPG and IHG earn/burn and worked out that SPG accumulated at roughly one-third the rate of Marriott and on overall spend redeemed at about five-sixths of Marriotts value - spend $1,000 at Marriott, get enough points for $240 of stays, SPG was $200.
On that basis 2.5SPG:1MR would seem mathematically reasonable.
As someone who has gone through 8 mergers, I am always skeptical about them. Typically, only lawyers, investment bankers, and senior executives benefit. Customers, employees, and shareholders (long-term) usually suffer. The airline mergers are good examples regarding what will likely occur with this merger. Since I no longer travel internationally, I seldom stay in a Starwood property and don't like the Aloft brand. I expect that there will be more platinum members competing for upgrades and redemptions at popular locations and category levels will continue to increase rapidly.
I hope I am wrong, but I predict most gold and platinum members (of both) won't be happy with the combined program.
I have also been thru many mergers and I don't find many of the acquiring companies getting the benefits they expect . the best winners are the shareholders of the company being acquired . they usually get a high premier much higher than they would get as a continuing operation.