Curious: Are we all offered the same (seasonal) bonus and incentive programs or are they customized based upon our travel/use habits? I'm specifically interested in knowing whether the bonus thresholds go up, incrementally, the next time after you reach a threshold. If we fail to reach a higher threshold, are we offered a more achieveable threshold the next time? (Apologies if this has been answered elsewhere, and I haven't found it.)
For example, the last "big" promotion gained me 30,000 points (20,000, then another 10,000) for staying 20 (15+5) nights during June-August. The next promotion offers me the potential to earn a 50,000 point megabonus for 25 nights (20+5) by mid-January. (Alas, that's out of my reach.) Is that what all Platinums are offered, or do the super-Platinums face higher thresholds and enjoy more lucrative rewards?
Good question. I know that in talking with the Platinum Premier desk the other day about a soon-to-expire promotion they mentioned that I'd been signed up by "marketing" for another promotion. I assume that refers to the scan of accounts for eligibility but am not sure.
Perhapa Marriott or one of the current Ambassadors can answer this one?
I assume the promotions are varied to motivate us to stay more than our normal number of nights. I have never exceeded even the lower threshold. This seems a normal incentive program. Why reward us for typical behavior?
My summer promo was 25k pts/ 20 ni or 40k pts/ 25 ni. The fall promo (starts in Sept) is 35k pts/ 20 ni or 50k pts / 25 ni.
-- Edited by RainbowWill at Aug 26, 2011 1:08 PM PDT
I am getting and got the same bonus programs you mentioned so it seems they are not customized, at least not within the caste of regular platinums (or, all elite members, for when this promotion started I was a silver member). The 30,000 promotion came right on time for me, I got the full 30,000.
If they are customized, they certainly aren't doing it based on my travel behavior. I have been unable to use any of the recent promotions, either because I cannot hold a large event at a Marriott (!) or cannot stay a huge number of nights during a short period of time. I was told my last promotion -- which was made for me without my knowledge and contrary to my wishes -- would be changed, but it wasn't.
Two more, alas, conflicting, data points (emphasis added):
Hi SS in DC,
Great points, but I think the key is that Marriott decides what your own exclusive Megabonus is and does the personalizing for you (without your input).
Professor - you are correct. As I am winding down my working career, I also am staying fewer nights in blocks required by the megabonus program. So, even though I am registered for mega points by MR, I call and ask to be reassigned to 2 stays = 1 free night, max of 2 free nights. Both times, so far, it's worked. On Sep 1st, I'll find out if it's worked this time when the current megabonus promo ends.
Nuhusker, you are right,
I know this may seem dated on the subject, but I was told on the phone, and have had it reaffirmed as well as done it, that you can change instantly from stays to nights or vice/versa anytime during the promotion. It will not show that when you log in, but they make notations at rewards and will go in and manually reward you what you are do based on preference at anytime. I have done it several times. 2 different reps also told me that on their database calender, they have notations which pop-up and ask them to manually approve desires on a given date (like end of promotion) so they then go in and essentially "follow" your account, so you do not even have to call back to make sure you get the bonus you want. If it does not appear, then call back and they will correct, however the 2 times I made changes in the last year, they were automatica;;y put in based on my preference.
I think this is a great example of customer service at work!!! -
The only real condolence is that hopefully you will have some credit towards your next megabonus. Curious when that starts, as I will be at a property in Florida (Sanibell) from April 27 to May 2nd, so I will be cut short and have some overlaps. I have to look at this closer to make it to my benefit.
I have had no luck in customizing my preferences. As a professor who must teach at certain times and cannot stay for long periods at a hotel during them, what Marriott 'picks' for me is useless. I responded to this in an earlier forum, but I almost never am able to take advantage of such promotions.
Other promotions -- such as (I think MR11) which are advertised for discounts or free nights in Europe -- rarely turn up when I actually fill a place and date so I have had no luck there either.
I find this extremely restrictive since BECAUSE of my schedule I am usually very flexible -- certainly with flying. I'm a Delta Plat Medallion Plus and I have never had trouble booking low mileage seats in business or coach class to Europe at almost any time of the year. Of course I have some issues with Delta like I do with Marriott's Cat 8 opt-out of rewards redemption, but on the whole I am much happier with my FF program.
I agree with much of what you said. Of course, we all understand the 'discount/free nights' promo is offered, not as a reward to us loyal customers, but an effort to fill rooms in a normally low occupancy period either for the region or for the specific properties. that said, I understand your frustration in receiving an offer that is invalid due to your specific travel patterns.
Regarding your comment on frequent flyer programs, I totally agree that they seem to be more valuable more of the time than hotel programs. American Airlines started the whole Frequent Flyer program idea. I have been a member since the inception and have been mostly pleased the entire time.
shoeman, for me the marriott rewards program is the more valuable of the two since I don't fly very much at all. It takes me years to fly enough for enough points/miles to get a "free" ticket. And that "free" ticket that used to be fairly available for 25k points/miles, now cost 40k or more. Just depends on a persons travel habits.
totally. I was coming from a perspective where all things were equal. I fly every week and stay in hotels every week. I feel I get more bang for my buck in the airline loyalty program dollar for dollar than I do in hotel loyalty program. If, for not other reason, the amount of upgrades I receive as a top level ff is about 90% of the time and it isn't an upgrade to a larger seat or a better view or a higher floor, it is an upgrade to a first class seat.
What are these frequent flier programs anyway? Actually like NU Husker I fly infrequently and have little miles invested in them. Aadvantage was the first if you don't count Pan Am's smaller FT (Frequent Traveler) program from the 1970's.
Agreed also that NUHusker makes a great point -- we infrequent fliers have almost no incentive to accumulate points since we are not at the elite level, get almost no bennies, and watch as the elite fliers get them! Reminds me of the time when I was a FF and haughtily watched the folks pass me in First on their way back to steerage! Now I am the one heading back there.
But the airlines, if there is a consolation, are not what they once were, and for my money, are bus-like in their transit policies and services. Can you tell I miss the special attention of being a uber flier?
After reading all the reply's when the summer promo began we decided that we would change to the free 2 nights stay. It worked out quit well and have already used them. I didn't think I would meet all the nights but as it turns out I did. Marriott had no problem changing our plan for that particular promo and had no problem giving us the nights when I earned them either. All I had to so was ask to be changed. They also quickly took the points away when they mistakenly put them in my account from the promo I was originally signed up for....LOL! The customer reps were on top of things!
I have an older e-mail from Marriott when I questioned seeing two different offers overlapping here on the MRI and here is the summary of the reply:
MR usually runs two bonus programs concurrently - most members are automatically registered according to profile.
My take: when I log into my account, I 100% of the time see that I am "already registered" to a program (this time the 50K). Nowhere in my bonus promotions did I see the stay 2 get 1. So if it weren't for the MRI, I would not have known that 2:1 option were available.
Probably not if I stopped flying (but then it wouldn't matter), but since I'm very close to a Million Miles, you're guaranteed at least Silver Medallion after that. My main point is that how Delta has treated me has consistently improved and I actually love flying. What I don't love are the security lines, etc. though Delta is part of an experiment to allow frequent flyers to bypass scanner machines and leave shoes on and computers in. While I haven't yet experienced the last two (it's only at certain airports for now), I have not had to go through the scanner machines several times.
You can pay uncle Sam a hundred bucks and have an interviee to be in the new program being rolled out for trusted travelers. It allows you to bare your soul to them, as if they didn;t already know all this stuff anyway) and then become a trusted person.
What I was referring to is the outside chance that an airline goes under (it has happened in the past) and the FF program gets altered or heaven forbid, eliminated. I think they all say in the fine print (as does MR) that the program can be discointinued at any time, that miles have no cash value, etc.
Actually, Delta is making that available free in the near future to its top flyers.
I don't think Delta is in any danger of going under since the restructuring and the acquisition of NW. Of course they can change the fine print at any time, but as Randy Petersen of InsideFlyer magazine has suggested, it would be virtual suicide for an airline to eliminate its FF program.
Never say never dear Professor, remember that SS benefits will never be taxed (FDR), and on and on. Airlines are being squeezed by fuel costs, and will find it harder and harder to meet their payrolls--last time this happened only Southwest came through it all unscathed and only because they bought fuel on the cheap with long term contracts. Delta and others rely on the cheaper seats to fill planes and there is a demand curve for these fliers, just as there is for drivers of gas guzzlers. I hope you are right, but only the road to happiness is not paved with promises kept