Marriott Rewards Announces Another “Megabonus” Promotion (That Isn’t All That “Mega”)

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Although recently we have been enjoying earning 1,000 free points each Sunday evening, most people still earn Marriott Rewards points from actually staying at Marriott hotels. But one thing that really drives me crazy about Marriott Rewards is their use of “Megabonus” for most, if not every, promotion. Sometimes Megabonus means free night certificates, but sometimes Marriott just offers bonus points. The first promotion of 2018 entails the latter…

Megabonus 2018 is quite straightforward and will run from 16 January until 15 April, 2018. Starting with your second stay, you can earn:

  • 2,000 bonus points per stay
  • An additional 1,000 bonus points when your stay includes a weekend night (Friday / Saturday)
  • A maximum of 50,000 bonus points per account

Registration is required, so make sure to register by clicking here. (before you forget)

How Does Megabonus Compare to SPG’s Promotion?

Since you can always convert Marriott Rewards points to/from SPG Starpoints on a 3:1 basis, Megabonus looks like this on an SPG-equivalent basis:

  • 667 Starpoints per stay
  • 333 Starpoints for a weekend stay

So, broadly speaking, you should stay with Starwood Preferred Guest when your stays:

  • Will cost more than $333 – once you spend more than that, the 2 Starpoints per $ bonus will provide a higher bonus – and include a weekend night (500 Starpoints is obviously higher than 333)

But you should stay at a Marriott hotel when your stay:

  • Is of the short, inexpensive variety (weekend or otherwise), as the flat 2,000/3,000 bonus will be higher than the SPG double points

That said, we have yet to hear whether Marriott intends to allow members to qualify for 2019 elite status by combining nights across Marriott Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest. So, for now, you probably still prefer Starwood Preferred Guest due to the ability to hit Platinum status with just 25 stays.

What do you think of these two promotions? Have I missed some “travel hacking” nuance?


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