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How to earn Marriott Bonvoy points

Pick up a cobranded card to jump right into Silver Elite status.

In early February 2019, Marriott merged its partnered rewards programs into one program called Marriott Bonvoy. This change standardized the point system and made both programs accessible through one account.

Not much has changed in terms of how you can earn Marriott Bonvoy reward points. Booking stays at eligible hotels with cobranded Marriott Bonvoy cards is still the best way to accrue points. Here’s the nitty-gritty of how you can earn points and which ways are the most lucrative.

Seven ways to earn Marriott Bonvoy points

Compare credit cards that earn Marriott Bonvoy points

Making purchases with eligible credit cards is the most reliable way to earn points. In the case of Marriott Bonvoy cobranded cards, purchasing Marriott Bonvoy nights will be your largest earning category. Not only that, but the points earned on Marriott credit cards stack with the bonuses you earn for being a Marriott Bonvoy member. Of course, these cards also let your earn Marriott points on other purchases and often come with a large signup bonus worth up to a few nights stays depending on where you redeem them.

If you’re not interested in signing up for a Marriott Bonvoy cobranded card, other Chase and American Express cards can help you earn and transfer points to your Bonvoy account. These cards can be helpful if you only occasionally stay at Marriott branded hotels or if you prefer more diverse earning categories.

You can choose up to 4 cards to compare side-by-side.

Name Product Welcome Offer Rewards Annual fee Filter values
The Platinum Card® from American Express
100,000 points after spending $6,000 in your first 6 months
5x points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel, 5x points on directly-booked flights on up to $500,000 annually, then 1x points after that and on other eligible purchases
100,000 points after spending $6,000 in your first 6 months. Terms apply, see rates & fees
Chase Freedom Unlimited®
Earn an additional 1.5% cash back on everything you buy (on up to $20,000 spent in the first year) - worth up to $300 cash back
3% on dining at restaurants, including takeout and eligible delivery services, 3% on drugstore purchases, 5% on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, Unlimited 1.5% cash back on all other purchases
Now earning 5% on Chase Travel Portal purchases, this card has become a worthy travel card pick. Also get up to 5% on other everyday purchases.
Chase Freedom Flex℠
$200 after spending $500 in the first 3 months
5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate.
5%cash back on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
3% cash back on drugstore purchases and dining at restaurants, including takeout and eligible delivery service, 1% cash back on all other purchases.
Get 5% back on purchases made through the Chase Travel Portal, making this a strong travel card as well as a solid everyday rewards card.

Compare up to 4 providers

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Transfer rates

Chase Ultimate Rewards points and American Express Membership Rewards transfer to Marriott Bonvoy points at a 1:1 ratio. This is an excellent rate and particularly nice given the strength of several Chase and Amex travel cards.

The main downside here comes down to value. Both Chase’s and Amex’s programs have transfer partners that can offer much greater value than 1 cent per point. Moving your points over to those programs would be the best use of your points with those respective programs. We’d mainly recommend transferring points to the Marriott Bonvoy program if you need just a few more points to net that next free night.

A young businessman waiting at a lobby while drinking coffee

Stay and spend at eligible hotels

Staying and spending at Marriott Bonvoy qualifying hotels is your other primary method of earning points. As a Marriott Bonvoy member, you’ll earn a certain number of points per dollar spent depending on which hotel brand you’re staying with. Here are the most recent values according to the Marriott Bonvoy site.

business partners logos

earning points partner hotels
Data obtained February 2021. Values are subject to change and should be used only as a general guide.

Qualifying charges, in this case, include charges related to your stays, such as dining, beverages, spa services and any activities associated with the hotel such as golf.

Elite status levels

You can boost the number of points you earn on hotel stays when you become a Silver Elite member or higher. Here’s the point bonus you’ll earn and how to qualify.

MembershipQualifying stays neededPoints bonus
Silver Elite10–24 nights per year10% bonus
Gold Elite25–49 nights per year25% bonus
Platinum Elite50–74 nights per year50% bonus
Titanium Elite75–99 nights per year75% bonus
Ambassador Elite100+ nights per year and $20,000 in annual qualifying spending75% bonus

Data obtained February 2021. Values are subject to change and should be used only as a general guide.

Car rentals with Hertz

You’ll earn 2,000 points for Hertz rentals of two or more days, or 500 points for one day at participating locations. Hertz also offers discounts on base rental rates to Marriott Bonvoy members. You can book your rental directly through the Marriott Bonvoy site.

Book cruises with CruisesOnly

Get 3 points for every dollar spent booking a cruise with CruisesOnly. CruisesOnly also offers extra point promotions on certain destinations. You can view your options and book your cruise through the Marriott Bonvoy “Cruise With Points” site.

Host meetings and events

Marriott Bonvoy has a unique earning opportunity that lets you earn points on bookings made for meetings or other business events, even if you aren’t footing the whole bill. The maximum points you can earn depends on both the cost of the event and your Marriott Bonvoy member level.

Earning rate: 2 points per $1 USD or 1 mile per $1 USD spent per qualifying event

Points BonusMax Points Earning per EventsMax Miles Earning per Events
Silver Elite10%66,00020,000
Gold Elite25%75,00020,000
Platinum Elite50%90,00020,000
Titanium Elite75%105,00020,000
Ambassador Elite75%105,00020,000

Data obtained February 2021. Values are subject to change and should be used only as a general guide.

Participating brands

Residence Inn, TownePlace Suites and Marriott Executive Apartments don’t currently participate in this aspect of the Marriott Bonvoy program. You’ll need to choose another eligible hotel to earn points during your meetings and events.

Refer a friend

Certain credit cards offer bonus points for referring a friend to a card and having them sign up. Chase, for example, allows you to earn up to $500 in points each year — $50 for each friend who opens an account.

Marriott Activities

Marriott now offers a variety of outdoor experiences, tours and more that will earn you Marriott points for your purchase. You’ll earn roughly 5 Marriott points per dollar spent on these experiences. After making your purchase through Marriott’s activity portal, your points will automatically post to your account.

Purchase points

You can purchase up to 50,000 points per year in 1,000 point increments through the Marriott Bonvoy site if you need more points for an award. Each increment costs about $12.50 as of February 2021. From a pure mathematical standpoint, this isn’t the best deal – you’re paying more than the 1 cent each point is worth. However, Marriott occasionally offers deals on increments that can make purchasing them worth your cash.

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Bottom line

Marriott Bonvoy remains a fairly standard hotel rewards program. While the value of a single Marriott Bonvoy point isn’t the best out there, this can be made up for with the large variety of ways to earn points.

However, if you want the most earning value, you’ll need to commit to earning Marriott Bonvoy Elite status. In most cases, this will require some additional planning and effort to reach the highest tier levels. If you want to learn more, take a look at our guide on the Marriott Bonvoy program. And compare your redemption options to get the most value out of your hard-earned points.

Frequently asked questions

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