I’ve seen quite a bit of teeth-gnashing out there in the miles and points world about the Marriott travel packages. I received an update earlier this evening. I was tied up with some personal business and wanted to get a quick update out. I’ll share my thoughts a bit more tomorrow morning. As many of you know, Marriott was completing the next big step of the SPG acquisition this weekend. We can expect muddy waters for a bit. SPG members will be getting new loyalty numbers. I’m sure we’ll have bugs for a while. But, the current big concern seems to involve travel packages.
Marriott Giving Folks A “Do-Over” On Travel Packages
Marriott has been up front over the past few months that they didn’t have a great answer for how they were going to handle travel packages in the new programs. These were/are pre-packaged awards where you received a certificate to redeem for properties in a certain category along with some airline miles. The problem was that nobody was quite sure what the value would look like in the new program.
Marriott made that announcement over the weekend. People weren’t happy. Marriott announced a change earlier this evening that would appear to give folks a chance at a better value redemption. Here’s what Marriott sent me earlier:
…this past Saturday, new Travel Packages became available for purchase. At the same time, due to system capabilities, we had to place a month-long blackout on cancelations and modifications to existing Travel Package certificates. After pressure testing our new system over the weekend, we’re happy to relay that starting today, the blackout period is over. In addition, members who purchased a Category 6, Category 8 or Tier 1-3 certificate prior to 8/18 are able to request a one-time exchange for a package one category lower. To submit a request, contact us athttps://www.marriott.com/
marriott/contact.miSelect “packages – deals” from the drop down menu.
In these specific cases, value-seekers felt like these certificate levels were specifically hurt more than others in the new system. Marriott is now saying that you can change your mind.
And, Maybe Get A Refund?
Now, I haven’t verified this piece with Marriott. But, View From The Wing is one of the most reliable sources of information. Here’s what he had to say earlier this evening:
You can also request a refund for your travel package. You don’t get all of your points back.
Hmm, okay. He goes on to say:
You get 45,000 points for a category 1-5 certificate that would have cost 200,000 points with several airlines and yielded 50,000 miles. You get the incremental points for each level above category 1-5. So a category 9 certificate gets 165,000 points back (45,000 points plus the additional 120,000 points that a category 9 certificate costs over a category 1-5 certificate).
The Final Two Pennies
I’ll dig a bit deeper into this tomorrow. But, I wanted to share this information with you now in case you want to start thinking about an existing package you redeemed. It’s a fluid situation. Given some of the changes Marriott has announced (and adjusted afterwards) I wouldn’t be surprised if there are more incremental changes to come.
The post Marriott Rewards Makes A Positive Change To Travel Packages was published first on Pizza in Motion