Elite Status I Did Not Earn.. And Would Rather Not Have

I didn’t notice my account get its status upgraded, though it appears on Award Wallet (and now that I log in) as though it already has been.

I received a direct mail piece from Marriott Rewards giving me Gold elite status:

I was already a Marriott Rewards silver elite member, the lowest status I hold with any of the major chains. I’m currently:

  • Hyatt Diamond. This was earned on both stays and nights.
  • Starwood Platinum. This was earned based on 50 nights.
  • Hilton HHonors Diamond. This was given as a targeted offer to American AAdvantage Executive Platinum members
  • IHG Rewards Club Platinum. This is complimentary based on my non-renewing Intercontinental Ambassador status (which was itself complimentary based on my non-renewing Royal Ambassador status).

Don’t get me wrong, Marriott Gold means lounge access or breakfast (but not at Courtyard properties, and not at resorts) and that’s appreciated.

But here’s why I don’t want it:

  • The status is only for three months and I have no specific plans to stay with Marriott.

  • In the past you could only have one status challenge every 18 months.

Since this status challenge wasn’t requested it might not preclude me from taking another one. But I’d rather not have it on my record.

I don’t want a status challenge at a random time when the chain chooses to offer it. I want a status challenge when it is convenient to me and I can make use of it and even stay enough to retain status.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. I always look for a Hyatt or a Hilton property over Marriott anyways. As far as I’m concerned, they offer very little to their members.

  2. I recently received this offer as well. I barely made silver last year @Marriott, but am Plat @Starwood. I wonder what triggered it? @Marriott is my last choice.

  3. Last year I was a Marriott Gold and a Hyatt Diamond, somehow I still have both of those statuses even though I was NOWHERE close to keeping those elite levels for 2015. At first I thought it was a glitch on March 1st; but after checking Hyatt more closely I saw the 4 suite upgrades deposited. For two weeks it remained Diamond but with an expired expiration date; but two weeks ago it changed to 2016. Maybe the greatest glitch ever? Obv I’m more excited about Hyatts than Marriott but both still pretty cool.

  4. My biggest gripe about Marriott is their definition of a resort property, some properties are legitimate resorts, but other properties are essentially hotels with pool chairs by the pool, thus disqualifying you from complimentary breakfast.

    I did manage to get a few free breakfasts from the latter type of “resort” properties because I raised the issue.

  5. @stvr – Best Western has status?

    Platinum elites status requires 75 hours.
    You get a free hour upon getting platinum status.
    Welcome gift: Choice of free bag o’ Doritos or rubbers.

  6. Gary you are clearly a lawyer wannabe. I think you are wrong on your conclusion. But you should get a law degree. It will fulfill that lawyer need. And if you are any good, lead to a pay raise. A win win situation.

  7. I too received the complimentary 90 day Gold upgrade. It was scheduled to begin on April 1.

    Minor travel scheduled for Q2 but serious travel anticipated during Q3.

    Called Rewards customer service and asked them to delay my match period until Q3. No joy but the CSR suggested that I call promotions at HQ in Bethesda and ask them to do the adjustment. I also pointed out that, given my travel schedule, allowing me to delay the start of my match would bring additional revenue to Marriott.

    Promotions was very helpful and was more than willing to accommodate my request.

    No complaints

  8. @Mike I have already heard about it (Hyatt Diamond extended for another year just as you described it) from more than one person. Gary, any idea why?

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