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If you book hotel rooms with any regularity, your first port of call should be a cashback website. Not every hotel chain offers cashback, but Marriott Bonvoy does. At the moment, you can get a 5-7% rebate from Topcashback. Occasionally, you can get an even more substantial rebate whenever the AA or United Airlines shopping portals offer an extra special rate, such as the one I wrote about here.
However, you need to be careful which rate you choose… Here’s a random hotel that you might want to book.
The “Prepay and Save” rate appears to be the same as the “Deals & Packages” rate, so let’s click on that and see what is on offer…
Free breakfast… for the same price as a standard Advance Purchase rate… bargain!
But hang on… there’s a tiny bit of fine print attached to this rate. “Non-commissionable rate”.
What Does Non Commissionable Rate Mean?
Well… in plain travel hacker English it means “we won’t pay cashback on this rate”.
Although I expected this to happen, I recently made a test of this policy, and indeed my cashback was declined.
The Bottom Line
For a two-night stay, one might think that breakfast is far more valuable than £5.15 of declined cashback. It is indeed… except one already receives free breakfast as a Platinum or Titanium member of Marriott Bonvoy! (of which I am one…)
So, instead of choosing free breakfast as my Titanium welcome gift, I included it in my room rate… and missed out on £5.15 of cashback.
For you Marriott elites out there, make sure you think twice before choosing a breakfast-included rate. You probably already receive breakfast for free, and your rate might have a little “non-commissionable” note attached. 🙁