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If you’re looking for a hotel-brand card, the Marriott Rewards Premier is an attractive choice. It comes with a great signup bonus: 80,000 points if you spend $3,000 in the first three months. That’s enough for 10 free stays at Marriott, given free nights start at 7,500 apiece for Category 1 hotels. You’ll even have enough to book a night at a Category 9 hotel, which starts at 45,000 points.
You’ll find strong point earnings on the card if you stay at Marriott often: 5x points at Marriott rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest hotels. That’s in addition to the 10x points you’ll earn as a Marriott Rewards member at most Marriott properties. Needless to say, the Marriott Rewards Card is a powerful points machine if you’re a Marriott regular.
The card isn’t helpful if you don’t stay at Marriott often: You’ll earn 2x points on dining, airline tickets and car rentals and 1x points on all other purchases. Those are decent earnings if you just want to earn a few free Marriott nights each year.
Additionally, you’ll earn a free night at a Category 1–5 hotel each year you remain a cardholder. You’ll automatically earn enough Elite credits to attain Silver status in the Marriott Rewards program. Finally, you’ll get travel and purchase coverage, such as trip cancellation coverage and purchase protection. The perks do round out the annual fee of $95 p.a. per year.
- SIGNUP BONUS: Lots of points.
You’ll receive 80,000 points if you spend $3,000 in the first three months. And if you add an authorized user and make a purchase on your card within the first three months, you’ll earn 7,500 bonus points.
- POINTS: More points on travel.
Earn 5x points at Marriott Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest hotels. Earn 2x points on dining, airline tickets and car rental agencies. And earn 1x points on everything else you buy.
- A free night every year.
Every year after your cardmember anniversary, you’ll earn a free night at a Category 1–5 hotel in the Marriott collection.
- Marriott Rewards accelerators.
Each year you have your card, you’ll receive 15 Elite credits — that’s enough to qualify for Silver Elite status. You’ll also receive one credit for every $3,000 you spend with your card.
You’ll also like …
- No foreign transaction fees. Use your Marriott Rewards Premier card internationally without incurring transaction fees.
- Travel and purchase coverage. Enjoy benefits like baggage delay insurance, lost luggage reimbursement, trip cancellation insurance and trip delay reimbursement. Also, get purchase protection.
- Access to Visa Concierge. Use the Visa Signature Concierge to make plans in dining and entertainment.
What to watch out for
- It hurts to pay late. Making late or returned payments could result in fees as high as $37.
- Points expiration. Your points will expire if you don’t make a purchase on your card at least once every 24 months.
Consider other cards if …
- You want cash back. Look for excellent cash back cards like Citi Double Cash and Blue Cash Preferred.
- You don’t stay at Marriott. The Marriott Rewards Premier is a good value if you plan to stay at least one night at a Marriott property each year. But if you never stay at Marriott hotels, look for a different hotel-branded credit card — or go with a general travel card like the Chase Sapphire Preferred or the Barclaycard Arrival Plus.
What should I know before I apply?
To apply for the Marriott Rewards Premier Credit Card, you must be at least 18 years old (or 19 in Alabama and Nebraska).
Always consider your options and your financial situation before you apply for a credit card.
Information you’ll need
- Full name
- Address and residential status
- Annual income, source of income and employment information
- Contact information
- Social Security number and mother’s maiden name
What credit score do I need?
You’ll have a better chance of being approved for the Marriott Rewards Premier Credit Card if you apply with a good to excellent credit score of 680 or higher.
How to apply for the Marriott Rewards Premier Credit Card
1. Go to the Chase website and click Apply Now.
2. Complete the application form with your name, address, annual income and Social Security number. Then review your application and submit it.
How long will it take to be approved?
Because conditional approval is automated on the Chase website, you’ll often get a decision immediately. In some cases, you’ll need to wait a few days to a few weeks to receive a response.
I got the card. Now what?
- Making payments. You can pay your card bill online at the Chase website. You can also enroll in autopay.
- Avoiding interest payments. After the close of each billing cycle, you have a grace period of 21 days to pay your balance. If you do, you won’t pay interest on your purchases.
- Avoiding fees. Late and returned payments come with hefty fees of up to $37. Balance transfers and cash advances also come with fees.
- Customer service. If you have questions, you can contact Chase support by phone, email or even Twitter.
The Marriott Rewards Premier Credit Card is most attractive for Marriott regulars, but it can also be valuable for occasional visitors to the hotel.