Chase and Marriott have released the new Marriott Rewards Premier Plus. This card has $95 annual that is not waived the first year. Does it make the grade? Here’s our Marriott Rewards Premier Plus review.
Sign Up Bonus (Grade: A-)
You’ll earn 100,000 Marriott points after spending $5,000 in the first three months. That’s not a small amount of money to spend for a sign up bonus. But, it’s worth about $800. We would rate this a little bit higher, but your annual fee isn’t waived.
|Sign Up Bonus||100,000 Marriott Points|
|Value Per Point||0.8 cents|
|Value of Sign Up Bonus||$800|
Daily Spending (Grade: C+)
You’ll earn 6x at Marriott hotels, including Starwood, and 2x on everything else. Since each point is worth 0.8 each, you’re earning 1.6 cents per dollar on your daily purchases and 4.8 cents when you stay a Marriott hotels.
Compare this to a card like the Citi DoubleCash. It has no annual fee and earn 2% back on all purchases. It’s hard to give the Marriott a strong score when it comes with an annual fee and earns less than 2% on most of your purchases.
|Category||Points Per Dollar|
Additional Perks (Grade: A+)
Annual Free Night – Starting on your first anniversary, you’ll get a free night in a hotel that costs 35,000 points or less. This is worth up to somewhere around $280, which is a great trade off for your $95 annual fee.
Automatic Silver Status – Starting in 2019, you’ll automatically get credit for 15 nights. This is good enough for silver status in the Marriott program, which isn’t useful for much more than late checkout. However, if you stay at Marriott hotels regularly, it gets you that much closer to gold or platinum.
Buy Gold Status – If you spend $35,000 in one year on the card, you’ll be granted Gold status. That will get you an enhanced room (typically a better view) at check-in based on availability.
Redeeming Points (Grade: A-)
It’s not as flexible as cash, so it’s not getting an A+. But, as hotel or airline points go, it’s as flexible as you’ll find.
Transfer to Airlines – Starting August 1st, the new Marriott program will have 40 airline transfer partners. For every 60,000 Marriott points you transfer, you’ll get 25,000 airline miles in the carrier of your choice. In most cases, you’ll be better keeping the Marriott points, but there will be some sweet spots where you’ll get great value.
Upgrade Rooms – Like the current Starwood program, you’ll be able to use points to upgrade yourself into an enhanced room or suite.
Cash & Points – Don’t have enough points for your full stay? You can pick which nights you want to pay with points, using them on the most expensive nights.
5th Night Free – A great perk for most vacations, getting a 5th night free on points can really save you.
Overall Grade: A-
So, is the Marriott Rewards Premier Plus worth a spot in your wallet? We would get this card for the sign up bonus and keep it for the annual “free” night. But, we would use a different card for our daily spending. At 1.6 cents on the dollar, it doesn’t stack up to other cards that earn more, even cards without an annual fee.