While some people chase hotel status, we’re not those people. For years, I pledged the joys of being disloyal. It wasn’t until the first long business trip that I learned the perks of having hotel status (and the importance of having a free hotel breakfast.)
It wasn’t until the combination of a hotel merger, credit cards and a few stays that we’re able to sneak our way into Platinum status with Marriott Bonvoy. I enjoyed the perks of status for a year, including using my five night suite upgrades at the St. Pancras Renaissance.
I had no intention of maintaining that status past 2019 but I sure was going to milk it until it was gone. In January 2020 we stayed at Hotel Adagio in San Francisco. In February we visited New York and stayed at the Sheraton Times Square. Our status didn’t get us a better room but we did get lounge access.
At the end of the month, we dropped back to Gold status and then COVID-19 happened. Hotel chains decided that the best way to keep travelers invested in the programs was to make status easier to attain for the upcoming year.
Marriott rewarded members with 1/2 of the points needed to reach their previous status. Since we qualified for Gold status, we received 13-night credits (since Gold requires 25 nights.)
Marriott Bonvoy also decided to award 15 nights credit for both personal and business credit cards. That’s another 30 nights since we have both a Bonvoy Brillant and the Chase Marriott Bonvoy Business card.
So we were at 43 nights without ever spending a night at a Marriott hotel. We’d already spent 8 nights at Marriott properties with a combination of free nights and paid stays. That’s 51 nights. Hello, Platinum Status.
Add to the total us using a free night in Savannah and another credit from spending on the Marriott credit card.
So here we are with Platinum Marriott Bonvoy status for all of 2021 and the beginning of 2022. What will we do with it?
Honestly, it feels like our traveling will stay slow for the start of 2021. From Spring onward, all of our choices in 2020 were based on our risk assessment at the time. With cases down (at least in the Southeastern US), we felt it was OK to travel if we took appropriate precautions. We only ate outdoors or in our room (or cabin) and stuck to outdoor activities. That’s less of an option during the winter and with a vaccine right around the corner, it seems foolish to take unnecessary risks at the moment.
Hopefully, we’ll both be able to get a vaccine by the spring/summer and that will open up more travel options for us. We might even be willing to get back on an airplane. Wherever we go, we may be able to take advantage of our Marriott Bonvoy status, possibly even for our planned trip to Japan for the end of 2021. Hopefully, we’ll be able to return to New York for some shows and maybe a return to the Sheraton Times Square for some scrambled eggs and bacon for breakfast in the lounge.
How sad is it that I’m looking forward to the chance to eat a hotel lounge breakfast? Thanks 2020!
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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary.