I’ve been corresponding with readers throughout most days about their frustrations with the Marriott-Starwood integration. It’s the number one subject of reader emails. So I’ve been staying in touch with Marriott for updates on their progress.
To be fair it’s possible to make reservations at hotels, to check into hotels, and more often than not to receive status recognition on property and even points for your stays.
However there are still plenty of issues relating to some points crediting, to points transfers to miles, some incorrect account balances, and cancelled Starwood award reservations crediting back properly to accounts — to name a few.
Logging into Marriott there’s an attempt to better communicate with members about the challenges that have been faced. Marriott’s integration status page was updated on Thursday acknowledging a limited number of issues. And I received this popup in my account assuring that any data not reflected in an account isn’t lost.
Logging into my account I see an ad for all of the exciting changes coming in August. I guess it’s good that they haven’t spent time updating that when there are more important IT priorities.
I had to cancel a legacy Starwood award reservation. I called the Marriott Platinum line and was told “this system still hasn’t updated, I need to put you through to SPG.” Instead of a warm handoff, after waiting on hold for a Marriott rep I got placed on hold again in the queue for another agent.
While holding the phone message promoted ‘elite status match and points transfers between the programs’ something that’s also so three weeks ago.
After cancelling the award the agent told me that points are already back in my account, just log out and log back in and I’d see them. Yeah, not so much.
I didn’t receive a cancellation email either, and my Marriott account now says,
Unfortunately there’s an issue displaying some of your reservations. Please check back later. We apologize for any inconvenience.
This can only refer to my cancelled booking, since everything else is there. All I need is for the hotel to bill me for the stay once I’m inside the cancellation deadline.
Meanwhile, did you know that you have to requalify for lifetime status every year under the new program? An industry insider sent me this screen shot from their account:
IT is hard. No IT project ever has come in early or under budget. Things take longer than you think they will even accounting fro the fact that you know they’ll take longer than you think they will. However Marriott chose the date. August 18th. It was self-imposed.
It’s now been two and a half weeks. It’s past Labor Day. People are back at work, business travelers are about to start getting back on the road. The reasonable amount of patience that members have given has pretty well been exhausted.