Last Chance to Apply for Marriott and Starwood Cards Under the ‘Old Rules’

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As part of the total revamp to the Marriott-Starwood loyalty program, co-brand credit cards have changed too.

  • Chase gets to issue the main personal card
  • American Express gets to issue the small business card and the premium personal card
  • Everyone keeps their current card, whether it’s a Chase Visa or an American Express

Note that the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express is still offered (this year) so you have a chance to get it. The card product itself will be going away for new applications once the programs all combine under new unified branding next year.

A New Card Approval Rule Starts Tomorrow

I wrote about new rules coming late in the month for who can get initial bonus offers when being approved for these card products. These rules go into effect August 26th which as I write this is tomorrow. That will make it a bit tougher to get new cardmember bonuses for Marriott family cards from both Chase and American Express.

You can get the Starwood Preferred Guest® American Express Luxury Card, Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express or the Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express under current eligibility rules until then.

The same goes for the Marriott Rewards® Premier Plus Credit Card.

Here are the eligibility rules going into effect at the start of the week for each of the American Express Marriott family credit cards:

  • To be eligible for a new Luxury Card initial bonus you cannot be a current Ritz-Carlton cardmember (or have had that card in the last 30 days), have signed up for a new Chase-issued Marriott card in the last 90 days, or received an initial bonus or upgrade offer for a Chase-issued Marriott card in the past 24 months. This includes Chase Marriott business cards which surprises me..

  • To be eligible for a new Starwood Amex card initial bonus (the personal card that will be available only until the programs rebrand next year), you cannot have (or have had in the last 30 days) a Chase-issued Marriott.

  • To be eligible for a Starwood business card initial bonus, you cannot have a Chase-issued Marriott business card (or have had one in the last 30 days), have signed up for one in the last 90 days, or have received a new cardmember bonus for one in the last 24 months.

And here are the eligibility rules for the Chase Marriott family credit cards that are going into effect August 26:

  • To be eligible for a new Chase Marriott personal card initial bonus you cannot be a current Starwood American Express cardholder (or have had that card in the last 30 days), have signed up for a Starwood American Express card in the last 90 days, or received a new cardmember bonus for a Starwood American Express card in the last 24 months. This includes Starwood business cards which surprises me..

  • To be eligible for a new Chase Marriott business card initial bonus you cannot be a current Starwood American Express cardholder (or have had that card in the last 30 days), have signed up for a Starwood American Express card in the last 90 days, or received a new cardmember bonus for a Starwood American Express card in the last 24 months. This includes Starwood personal cards which surprises me..


Credit: Marriott

New Marriott Card 75,000 Point Offer

The Marriott Rewards® Premier Plus Credit Card has an initial bonus to earn 75,000 Points after spending $3,000 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. In addition you receive a free night award that can be used at hotels which cost up to 35,000 points to redeem each year after account anniversary. (Offer expired)

Ongoing spend will earn 6 points for every $1 spent at over 6,500 participating Marriott Rewards and SPG hotels and 2 points everywhere else.

Cardholders receive silver elite status and beginning in 2019 fifteen elite nights each calendar year. The card has a $95 annual fee.


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Updated Starwood American Express Cards

Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express offers 75,000 Bonus Points after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months. It has a $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.

Earning in the new program is 6 points for each dollar of eligible purchases at participating Starwood Preferred Guest and Marriott Rewards hotels and 2 points on all other eligible purchases.

You’ll receive 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card account anniversary. Award can be used for one night at a participating hotel (at a redemption level at or under 35,000 points).

When the Marriott programs all combine into one officially, with new branding and a new name, Chase will have exclusivity over the standard consumer credit card and this American Express-issued one will no longer be available. So it’s essentially your last chance to get this card.

Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express offers 100,000 points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of cardmembership. This is a limited-time offer that ends October 31, 2018. It has a $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95. (Offer expired)

Earning is 6 points for each dollar of eligible purchases at over 6,500 participating SPG® and Marriott Rewards® hotels across 110 countries worldwide; 4 points at U.S. restaurants, U.S. gas stations, wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers, and on U.S. purchases for shipping; 2 points for all other eligible purchases.

A big new benefit is that the card comes with a Free Night Award every year after your Card account anniversary.

New Starwood Luxury Card

The new Starwood Preferred Guest® American Express Luxury Card launched this week with an initial offer on the card is 100,000 points after $5,000 in spend within 3 months of account opening. Some people have received bigger targeted offers than this.

The card has a $450 annual fee offset by a $300 annual statement credit for purchases at Marriott properties. This includes charging your room rate to the card, it’s not an ‘incidentals’ credit. The card also comes with an annual free night at renewal good for hotels that would cost up to 50,000 points (category 6).

Earning is be 6 points per dollar at Marriott and Starwood properties, 3 points on US dining and on air travel, and 2 points on all other spend.

You get automatic Gold status and $75,000 spend in a calendar year earns Platinum status which is a big improvement. You also get 15 elite night credits each year starting in 2019, useful if you’re trying to qualify for status based on stay activity. (These elite nights do not stack with elite nights from other cards, the most elite nights you can earn from Marriott/Starwood cards is 15.)

The Luxury Card also will come with Priority Pass Select with unlimited visits and up to 2 guests is included, along with unlimited Boingo internet, premium in-room wifi on your Marriott stays, and no foreign exchange fees, and a statement credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck every four years.

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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Comments

  1. These cards don’t seem like anything to write home about. The new luxury card is essentially a 150 AF which comes with a free night that can likely be redeemed higher than that. The other benefits all overlap with other cards. I also don’t understand why the earning structure is the same for all cards. I wish Marriott would introduce a card for people who already have status (better points earning, on property benefits, etc)

  2. I’ve been planning to get an SPG credit card for a while in order to benefit from the elite nights credit as a boost to achieve the next tier, but waited to hear what came out in these recent announcements. Is there any card option that would give me elite nights credit in 2018? When I read the offers for the cards, it sounds like the 15 elite nights credit won’t appear until 2019.

    Thanks.

  3. Will I still be eligible for the bonus if I applied today but am not approved until after 8/26? I applied for the Marriott Business card today but got the 30 day message.

  4. I applied today and got a “non-eligibility” note. Puzzled, I called the customer service and I was told that it is because I had the Starwood Preferred card in the past. (I had it for 4 years and cancelled it 6 months ago). When I replied that it was a different product it didn’t seem to matter.
    So I ended up re-applying for the Starwood Preferred, even if I will not get the bonus.
    Three reasons: first reason because I now have one free night/yr, second reason because it will be hard to get through Chase, third reason the annual fee is waived first year.
    Looking back I wish I would have never cancelled it in the first place (now I would have upgraded to the Luxury card…), but who knew they were going to give one free night/yr?

  5. @Gary – I’m on the fence, though in five hours on 8/26 it will be a moot point. I already have the Ritz Carlton visa and plan on keeping the card so will be ineligible tomorrow for the SPG Luxury.

    Is there any reason to have both the RC and this SPG Luxury card? You say you are picking up this new card – I’m guessing you don’t already have the Ritz Carlton Visa, but I’m curious – do you have this or other MR cards thus you are in the “apply now” camp?. I do value the annual 50000 point (level 6) reward certificate though I will already get one with the RC Visa. I also have the MR Business card which will earn me the 35000 (level 5) certificate.

  6. FLN: I’m in the same situation. I’m leaning towards getting the Lux card because (i) the 100k pts, and (ii) as insurance in case Ritz card devalues. By devalue I think points earning will remain the same, but concerned if Ritz card will keep the 3 club upgrade certificates, $100 reservation credit (2+ nights), or $100 airfare discount over the next 6-12 months. Those are what make the Ritz card different from the Lux card.

  7. @Miami Traveler – I’m going to opt out on this card. I’m a Hyatt Globalist and don’t think I’ll spend $300 per year at Marriott properties on the card, so I won’t get the full benefit of the travel credit. The amex terms state that canceling after a year will claw back the bonus, so that’s two annual fees, or $900 to get a free Cat 6 night.

    The Ritz Carlton Visa, however, continues to be a good card, and with the new earnings on par with this card it will only increase in value. I especially like the primary rental insurance on the card.

  8. In the end, I did opt for the SPG Luxury card. After the $300, this is a $150 card. And, yes, benefits overlap with Amex Plat and Chase Sapphire Reserve, so no big gain there.

    I have (and will cancel at renewal) the Marriott Premier. That one is $95, some with Silver Elite and a free room up to (I believe) 35,000 points.

    With the new card (and $55 additional) I get Gold Elite and a room up to 50,000 points.

    Seems a good addition for a small additional spend.

    Cheers.

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