Here is what SPG says about platinum benefits:
Now that we get status matching with SPG, I am attempting to figure out what platinum with SPG actually means.
Seems that there is CL access unless the CL is on something called "Tower Level" in which case only tower level rooms get access? Is that true?
Also no free breakfast unless you choose that at check in as your "gift"? Or maybe there is free breakfast if you get CL access in which case you should choose points as your gift?
How can I tell if an SPG property has a CL? Seems maybe Sheratons are the only ones that do, along with an occasional Westin? Do the beach resorts have them, or are they like Marriott where resorts usually do not have a CL?
Any SPG gurus out there?
IAHFLYR, I hope that is true. I saw a discussion about this on one of the other chat rooms, and it seemed like a raw deal to get club access except when you don't get club access....made no sense to me. Maybe SPG has something like the Marriott Tradewinds Club in Aruba where you must pay extra to be admitted?
Thanks for posting clebert . Hopefully some SPG folks will shed some light on ways around their program.
Here's a worthwhile overview http://frequentmiler.boardingarea.com/2016/09/23/marriott-spg-complete-guide-sweet-opportunities/
Insiders, feel free to wade through and advise of any sweet spots for Marriott Loyalists (the credit card as highlighted by mycatdixie and etwhite seems to be the most significant one I found - if you're lifetime Plat and don't need points for eligibility) and some possible arbitrage in the airline weeds is about all I could see. But, please point out others if there in there (yeah, yeah, I know the optimists/apologists among you are saying, "there's so much manure, there must be a pony").
I'm still having trouble finding Starwood properties beating similar brand Marriott rates, so even tho being the 'big boy' in the deal, this is how I currently see the Marriott loyalist being handled - oh well, whatta ya gonna do?!
For extra credit kids, read the following about the $13+ billion deal with over $140 million in transaction costs and now with over 100 technology platforms in the system (and you thought IT struggled last month!); Bold faced items added by yours truly because I knew you would be excited to see our future ; to paraphrase our ol' pal Sy Syms, "an educated consumer is least likely to get hosed"
Speaking Friday morning at the International Society of Hospitality Consultants annual conference in Seattle, Lodging Advisors CEO Sean Hennessey said some Wall Street analysts expect Marriott’s annual savings to be as much as $350 million when the dust settles.
In addition to the cost savings, Hennessey pointed out several other opportunities for the new Marriott, including:
Hennessey also outlined some potential risks, including:
it looks like it maybe better to have the SPG Ax card vs the Marriott visa . I now have a Costco visa which covers international transactions. So I wonder is it would be better to cancel my Marriott Via and enroll in the SPG Amex. Seems ;like I would get the added initial points and get more points with usage
You should at least consider the SPG AmX for the first year (no fee - $95 from then on). I chose the 25k points (apparently they now have switched to two low Starwood Category nights - so be sure to pull a Jsucool76 and ask for the points). 1 Starpoint/3 Marriott points per dollar spend is a nice ratio (keep your Marriott card for Marriott stays)
The other good thing, they were very quick in approving (18 seconds on line, but you'll probably have to speak to someone in order to get the points). Good luck. Go man, go
I'm no authority, but will advise my experience with this program.
They seem to have a lot of opportunities to obtain extra points. About 2 to 3 times a year you are offered games to play. I've never failed to win either points or sometimes an Amazon gift card. They also offer a couple of surveys where I've received a couple hundred points. Once a year, for at least 3 years, they offer bonus points when you transfer into AA. They do this in July or August and if you transfer 20,000 points, you receive 30,000 AA points instead of the normal 25,000. Points take about 3 days to post.
I'm always surprised to see we've been upgraded to very nice large rooms with views or sometimes a junior suite. All our stays are for conventions or business, but not for personal travel in general. They also give you the option to take extra points instead of housekeeping, which we take advantage of. They also have a nice promotion for certain hotels where you pay full price for the 1st night and get your birth year as your rate for the balance of your stay, but don't remember the limit to the number of nights. In San Diego, for example, we paid about $200 for a club room and got the next two nights for $50. That was a great deal IMO.
I can't add much more from personal experience, but have read that their experience program, where you use your points to do things most people couldn't ever get the chance to do, is much better than the program Marriott offers.
I'd appreciate any advice anyone else can offer.
Here's a good description of the Marriott to SPG Platinum exchange as posted on FlyerTalk-Marriott by yeunganson
SPG Platinum has 4 Tiers. Platinum Lite (25+ stays and less than 50 nights) gives you best room upgrades without those upgrade certs. This is the tier Marriott Platinum got matched to.
Regular Platinum (25+ stays and 50 nights) gives you the 10 upgrade certs.
Platinum 75 (25+ stays and 75 nights) allows you to check in anytime of the day for 24 hour period.
Platinum 100 (25+ stays and 100+nights) gives you a personal ambassador and arrange and lobby for those extra upgrades and other special perks.
I can live with that (although pingreeman and I would both love those guaranteed suite upgrades for leisure travel, even if it were only two a year) but I can imagine the Marriott Platinum Premiers are understandably disappointed.
The other drawback in the exchange (other than the Golds getting hosed) is the pretty significant lack of lounges - mostly only in Sheratons (which so far cost more than my Marriott reservations and don't strike me as anything worth the difference) and a few lounges in Westins. They also only provide continental breakfast vs. our often buffet opportunity or at least hot meal.
I found my first Starwood beating Marriott - Rosslyn Le Meridien beating Key Bridge Marriott. I like the way Starwood allows you to print your reservation, similar to boarding passes - one page, without ads (yeah, yeah I know old school, but I like books and I like paper).