Your guide to Marriott Bonvoy: loyalty status, benefits and rewards

From free room nights to upgrades and once-in-a-lifetime experiences, Marriott Bonvoy comes with some great built-in perks.

By Staff Writers, December 14 2023
Your guide to Marriott Bonvoy: loyalty status, benefits and rewards

Love getting rewarded for your travels? Joining Marriott Bonvoy loyalty program is a chance to do just that, with repeat guests climbing the status ladder and enjoying perks from late check-out to room upgrades and bonus points at over 30 hotel brands.

Given there are now more than 8,200 hotels spanning 138 countries within its ranks, there’s a high chance you’ll find a participating property just about anywhere you go.

Not only that, the program is also regularly evolving. Case in point is its newly-deepened ties with Singapore Airlines, which now includes a status match and fast-track to KrisFlyer elite status. So, it pays to stay up to date on the latest features. 

With that in mind, whether you’re a seasoned Marriott loyalist or just looking to dip your toes into the program, here’s how to make the most of Marriott Bonvoy membership.


Which hotels are part of the Marriott Bonvoy program?

Marriott’s portfolio of brands covers four diverse categories:

  • Luxury: St. Regis, JW Marriott, Ritz-Carlton Reserve, W Hotels, The Luxury Collection and Edition.
  • Premium: Marriott Hotels, Marriott Vacation Club, Le Méridien, Design Hotels, Autograph Collection, Renaissance Hotels, Sheraton, Delta Hotels, Westin and Gaylord Hotels
  • Select: Courtyard Hotels, Protea Hotels, Four Points, Fairfield Inn & Suites, SpringHill Suites, AC Hotels, Aloft Hotels and Moxy Hotels
  • Longer Stays: Marriott Executive Apartments, Residence Inn, TownePlace Suites, Element and Homes & Villas by Marriott International

While some of these are only available in the United States, there are currently 33 Marriott Bonvoy hotels scattered throughout Australia, with more on the way, making the program a reliable way to accumulate points down under.


How to join the Marriott Bonvoy program

The Marriott Bonvoy program is free to join: simply visit the Marriott Bonvoy website and submit the online form.

Once complete, you can start accruing elite night credits whenever you check-in at one of the brand’s properties, which in turn can be used to progress through the program's status ladder, unlocking new benefits along the way.

What are Marriott Bonvoy Elite Night Credits?

In the Marriott Bonvoy loyalty program, members can earn two types of rewards: Marriott Bonvoy Points and Elite Night Credits.

Marriott Bonvoy Points can be redeemed for a variety of rewards, such as free hotel stays, room upgrades (read our how-to guide here), and merchandise. These points have a monetary value and can also be transferred to airline partners or redeemed for experiences.

The Ritz-Carlton Melbourne is one of the newest additions to the group's stable.
The Ritz-Carlton Melbourne is one of the newest additions to the group's stable.

Elite Night Credits or ‘qualifying nights’, however, are a measure of a member’s progress towards elite status levels within the program: Silver Elite, Gold Elite, Platinum Elite, Titanium Elite, and Ambassador Elite.

You’ll typically receive one elite credit for each night you stay with Marriott. However, unlike points these credits cannot be spent. Instead, they’re used to qualify for higher Marriott Bonvoy elite status levels.

What are the Marriott Bonvoy membership tiers?

As travellers scale the ranks of the Marriott Bonvoy program, here’s how each tier is unlocked.

  • Member (entry-level): For guests who stay up to nine nights per year.
  • Silver Elite: Travellers who stay for 10-24 nights per year.
  • Gold Elite: Guests who accrue 25-49 hotel nights per year.
  • Platinum Elite: For those who amass 50-74 nights per year.
  • Titanium Elite: Patrons who accumulate 75-99 nights per year.
  • Ambassador Elite: Earned after booking 100 hotel nights per year, paired with an annual qualifying spend of US$23,000.

In addition to these standard elite status levels, members can also achieve lifetime elite status for Silver, Gold and Platinum based on the number of years they’ve earned that status and the total number of qualifying nights.

  • Lifetime Silver Elite: Five years of Silver Elite status and 250 qualifying nights.
  • Lifetime Gold Elite: Seven years of Gold Elite status and 400 qualifying nights.
  • Lifetime platinum Elite: Ten years of Platinum Elite status and 600 qualifying nights.

Notably, the perks between lifetime status and its yearly equivalent are almost the same. The only additional benefit of having Lifetime Elite Status is that your Marriot Bonvoy points will never expire.

Dining under the stars at The Ritz-Carlton Ras Al Khaimah, Al Wadi Desert.
Dining under the stars at The Ritz-Carlton Ras Al Khaimah, Al Wadi Desert.

Marriott Bonvoy also has an invitation-only tier, ‘Cobalt’, for which the qualification criteria is not published.

As far as we know, the benefits are largely those of Marriott Ambassador Elite, but with additional touches such as meeting the General Manager and upgrades to the best available suites.

What are the benefits of Marriott Bonvoy status?

The moment you join Marriott Bonvoy you can start earning Bonvoy Points whenever you stay at one of the 35 brands under the Marriott umbrella, in addition to its extensive network of partners.

On top of that, Marriott Bonvoy offers elite members a suite of generous benefits, with even entry-level members enjoying a number of exclusive perks.

Marriott Bonvoy Member benefits

Right off the bat, base-level members of the Marriott Bonvoy program enjoy complimentary in-room Internet access across Marriott International hotel brands, including The Ritz-Carlton, Westin, St. Regis, Renaissance, Sheraton, Marriott – of course – and many more.

Being a member also facilitates your access to online check-in via the Marriott Bonvoy app, where you can file any special requests, share your arrival time and also check-out to save time on departure.

Included in the entry-level bundle is access to special members-only rates and the ability to earn 10 Marriott Bonvoy points per eligible US dollar spent.

The Terrace Suite at Edition, Shanghai.
The Terrace Suite at Edition, Shanghai.

Marriott Bonvoy Silver Elite benefits

Compared to regular members, Silver Elites earn 10% more Marriott Bonvoy points on hotel stays, and can request a complimentary late check-out at the discretion of the hotel.

Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite benefits

Building on the benefits of Silver, Gold Elites find their points bonus boosted from 10% to 25% on hotel stays, with a further ‘welcome gift’ of bonus points served on top. This typically ranges from 250 to 500 points, depending on the hotel brand.

Standard complimentary room upgrades are also possible subject to availability, as are late check-outs until 2pm. Gold Elites also receive ‘enhanced Internet’ allowing them to browse and download faster than regular members.

Marriott Bonvoy Platinum Elite benefits

The more you stay, the more status benefits you unlock. Platinum Elite is the sweet spot for the program. It introduces free daily breakfast or a local amenity in its place, with space-available room upgrades to standard suites (rather than only standard rooms at Gold Elite), and late check-out until 4pm. Again, the latter is subject to availability.

Holding a Platinum Elite card also opens the door to hotel Club Lounges, Executive Lounges or Concierge Lounges where available, regardless of the room type booked.

A Fabulous King Room at W Brisbane.
A Fabulous King Room at W Brisbane.

On top, Platinum members can choose one of the following Marriott Annual Choice Benefits as a reward for reaching 50 qualifying nights:

  • Five Nightly Upgrade Awards allowing you to confirm your upgrade to a suite before arrival (these were previously known as Suite Night Awards).
  • Complimentary Silver Elite status to gift a family member or friend.
  • 40% discount on a Marriott-branded bed or a US$100 charitable donation.

Finally, while Gold Elite members earn 25% more points on hotel stays compared to regular members, for Platinum Elites, that’s pushed to 50% more points – plus that handy welcome gift of bonus points on top.

Marriott Bonvoy Titanium Elite benefits

Marriott Bonvoy Titanium Elite cranks out points at even higher rates with a generous 75% bonus.

You’ll also get another Annual Gift Choice Benefit, which can be used to secure a choice of five Suite Night Awards, a $1,000 discount on a mattress from one of Marriott’s brands or a complimentary Gold Elite status for a family member or a friend, among others.

The famous pool at Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort, Port Douglas.
The famous pool at Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort, Port Douglas.

Marriott Bonvoy Ambassador Elite benefits

At the very top of the Marriott Bonvoy ladder, Ambassador Elite guests receive what’s known as ‘Ambassador Service’: that’s a dedicated contact at Marriott HQ who personally takes care of your bookings, enquiries and preferences.

Ambassador Elite members also enjoy access to Your24: an exclusive benefit that allows you to check into a hotel and depart 24 hours later while only paying for a single hotel night: particularly useful at airport hotels.

As an example, if you checked in at 9pm, your room would be yours until 9pm the following evening at no extra charge, rather than having to either vacate by 4pm via the regular late check-out privilege afforded to Platinum Elites and above, or purchasing another night to stay longer.

Is a stay at The St. Regis Maldives Vommuli Resort calling your name?
Is a stay at The St. Regis Maldives Vommuli Resort calling your name?

Reciprocal benefits with MGM Resorts

Bonvoy members can live like a high roller at MGM Resorts, with a long-term deal between the hotel giants not only seeing MGM Resorts bookable via Marriott channels but the creation of an entirely new brand: ‘MGM Collection with Marriott Bonvoy’.

Also on the table is the ability to exchange MGM Rewards points for Marriott Bonvoy points and vice versa, as well as select perks related to a member’s respective loyalty tier. Members simply need to link their Bonvoy and MGM Rewards accounts.

Bellagio Resort is part of the MGM Collection, as well as Marriott's The Luxury Collection.
Bellagio Resort is part of the MGM Collection, as well as Marriott's The Luxury Collection.

Detailed info about linking loyalty accounts, new experiences and other loyalty program benefits will be provided to members of both programs in the coming months.

Within MGM’s 17-strong stable are well-known Las Vegas icons such as The Bellagio, Aria Resort & Casino and NoMad Las Vegas, in addition to New York-New York Hotel & Casino, Luxor Hotel and Casino, and Excalibur Hotel & Casino.

How do I earn Marriott Bonvoy Points?

A key highlight of the Marriott Bonvoy program is the ability to earn points in a variety of different ways, and while some of them are limited to the American market, there are plenty of opportunities for Australia-based travellers to grow their points balance.

Earn Marriott Bonvoy points on hotels

As you’d expect, the primary way of earning Marriott Bonvoy points is through hotel stays, and given there’s a whooping 8,200+ properties to choose from, there’s a good chance you’ll find yourself staying at a Marriott property at some point during your travels.

On most hotel stays, members will earn 10 Marriott Bonvoy points per eligible US dollar spent. However, some budget brands offer lower base earning rates.

For example, you’ll earn five Marriott points per dollar spent at Residence Inn and TownePlace Suites by Marriott, or an even lower 2.5 Marriott points per dollar spent on qualifying room rates at Marriott Executive Apartments.

A lounge with a view at Edition, Barcelona.
A lounge with a view at Edition, Barcelona.

Earn Marriott Bonvoy points on activities

More than just hotel-related spending, Marriott Bonvoy members can also earn miles on hundreds of experiences around the world.

Whether that’s taking a hot air balloon ride over the Serengeti, indulging in a culinary adventure in Bangkok, or enjoying a cruise across the Greek Islands, purchasing through Marriott Bonvoy will enable you to boost your points balance along the way.

Need a car to move around? Marriott Bonvoy points are also up for grabs on eligible bookings with Hertz: that’s 500 points when you rent a car for one day or 2,000 points when renting a car for two days or more.

Earn Marriott Bonvoy points on credit cards

Credit cards are another popular way to earn Marriott Bonvoy points, and while Marriott Bonvoy does not offer co-branded credit cards with any Australian-based bank, some Australian bank-operated loyalty programs offer the option to convert earned points into Bonvoy points.

With American Express, for instance, you may transfer reward points earned with your AMEX Platinum card to Marriott bonvoy at a 3:2 rate. Likewise, you'll receive one Marriott Bonvoy point for every three Awards Points transferred from your CommBank account.

Iconic luxury at The St. Regis New York.
Iconic luxury at The St. Regis New York.

Buy Marriott Bonvoy points

You can also purchase Marriott Bonvoy points online at a cost of $12.50 per 1,000 points – up to a total of 100,000 points per year.

As savvy travellers would know though, purchasing points isn't usually the smartest move unless you have a specific redemption in mind and you're just a few points shy of claiming it.

In any case, Marriott often dishes out special promotions where you can earn a bonus when buying Bonvoy points, so it's worth keeping an eye on their website every now and then.

How do I spend and redeem Marriott Bonvoy Points?

Marriott Bonvoy points are made to be redeemed – and many of the methods used to earn those Marriott Bonvoy points are also ways to use them.

Refined luxury at The Ritz-Carlton Melbourne.
Refined luxury at The Ritz-Carlton Melbourne.

Book complimentary stays with Bonvoy Free Night Awards

Again, the best use of Marriott Bonvoy points is to stay at Marriott properties, and Bonvoy Free Night Awards is your key to booking free hotel stays.

However, Marriott operates a dynamic pricing structure for reward nights, meaning it’s difficult to predict the exact number of points required for a reservation as the rates may vary based on the hotel's demand and availability.

Split the payment with Points + Cash

Running short on points? With Marriott’s Points + Cash option you can choose how many points you’d like to use and top up the rest of the room rate with cash.

You can currently find Cash + Points redemptions for as little as $55 and 3,500 points for a standard property.

Redeem Marriott Bonvoy points for free flights

Marriott Bonvoy partners with 38 airline loyalty programs, to which you can transfer your points and earn complimentary travel rewards.

Many popular frequent flyer programs are included, such as Qantas Frequent Flyer, Virgin Australia’s Velocity, Singapore Airlines’ Krisflyer, Emirates’ Skywards, and United Airlines Mileageplus.

You can see the full list here.

With a Marriott Points to Airline miles transfer ratio of 3:1 – except to Air New Zealand Airpoints (200:1) – Marriott adds 5,000 bonus miles for every 60,000 points you transfer. That’s 25,000 Qantas Points for every 60,000 Marriott Points transferred to your Qantas Frequent Flyer account, for instance.

Redeem Marriott Bonvoy points on the ground

Not planning on travelling any time soon? Bonvoy members can also redeem points for car hire, dining, and online shopping at a range of tech, fashion, and homeware brands.

Redeem points on Marriott Bonvoy Moments

In addition to your typical points spending options, Marriott also allows members to redeem points on exclusive and often one-of-a-kind experiences, known as Bonvoy Moments, either by bidding on an auction or selecting a fixed-price option.

There’s a vast pool of experiences on offer, ranging from cruising through downtown LA in a convertible, nabbing tickets to a football match or dining with a celebrity chef, right to enjoying a behind-the-scenes experience at the Formula 1. Moments are booked through a dedicated website

'Exclusive' is the name of the game with Bonvoy Moments.
'Exclusive' is the name of the game with Bonvoy Moments.

Expanded: Marriott Bonvoy’s Singapore Airlines partnership

Marriott Bonvoy’s Singapore Airlines partnership now goes beyond the ability to earn and transfer points to now include a status match to elite KrisFlyer status. Members will be able to enjoy a match according to the elite tiers of both programmes.

Solitaire PPS Club, PPS Club, and KrisFlyer Elite Gold members will receive a status match to Marriott Bonvoy Gold, while Marriott Bonvoy Platinum, Titanium, and Ambassador members will receive a status match to the KrisFlyer Elite Silver tier.

You could soon be winging your way to higher KrisFlyer status.
You could soon be winging your way to higher KrisFlyer status.

In addition, members of both programs can also receive a fast-track to a higher membership tier, with the requirements as follows:

  • Marriott Bonvoy members can reach higher KrisFlyer tiers by completing as few as two to four flights with SIA within a six-month period.
  • KrisFlyer members can achieve a higher status at Marriott Bonvoy by staying three to 10 nights at any participating Marriott Bonvoy portfolio of hotels, within a span of six months.

More info can be found at

What’s the best way to spend Marriott Bonvoy points?

Marriott Bonvoy points offer great value when used towards things like hotel bookings and airline transfers, but only average value towards other uses such as for car hires and shopping.

With this in mind, some of the best ways to redeem Marriott Bonvoy points include booking high-end rooms at top-tier hotel brands like The Ritz-Carlton or St. Regis.

Additionally, Marriott is of the opinion its website will consistently offer the most competitive prices, and it backs this up with its Best Rate Guarantee, providing another points savings opportunity for those who know the ins and outs of third-party hotel booking sites.

The Living Room at W Toronto.
The Living Room at W Toronto.

If you book a stay via the Marriott website and find a lower rate within 24 hours of booking your initial reservation, Marriott will match the lower rate and give you an additional 25% discount on the room (20% for Design Hotels) or 5,000 Bonvoy points.

Finally, Marriott Bonvoy runs a permanent Stay for 5, Pay for 4 promotion for award reservations of five consecutive nights or more, providing a great way to save points when booking longer stays.

Do Marriott Bonvoy points expire?

Just like a can of beans sitting in your pantry, Marriott Bonvoy points also come with a limited lifespan – unless you hold Lifetime Elite Status, of course.

For the rest of us mortals, Marriott Points will expire if there has been no eligible activity on the account for a 24-month period.

However, to keep your points valid, all you need to do is earn or spend at least one point every 24 months (or 23 months, to be safe). This can be easily done by staying at a hotel, through a Marriott Bonvoy partner or by transferring points from an eligible credit card program.

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