One positive new feature has just gone live for Marriott Bonvoy members, which I know a lot of people were waiting for.
In this post:
Marriott’s free night award top off feature live
In late 2021, it was announced that Marriott Bonvoy free night awards (FNAs) could be topped off with up to 15,000 Bonvoy points to stay at a more expensive property. In other words, if you have a free night certificate valid at a property costing up to 50,000 points, you could redeem the certificate plus 15,000 points for a stay at a property costing 65,000 points.
Previously you were limited to staying at properties within the points price range of the certificate, with no option to pay the points difference to stay at a more expensive property.
This feature is live as of today:
- This is valid for all free night awards, including those issues through co-brand credit cards, promotions, and program benefits, such as Choice Benefits
- Members have the flexibility to add points to each eligible free night award, including those used to book a multi-night stay
- Members can still apply suite night awards on these reservations
- Should a member choose to modify a reservation in any way, it may impact the points needed to redeem for the stay
How do you top off Marriott free night awards?
The process of redeeming Marriott free night awards is easy. First of all, if you log into your account summary page you should see how many free night award certificates you have, along with the expiration dates.
To redeem a free night award, just go through the process of booking a hotel in the same way you usually would when redeeming points. For example, I looked up a one-night stay in Tampa from May 4 through May 5.
The Le Meridien Tampa is a great example, because it requires 37,000 Bonvoy points per night.
If you have an account with a free night certificate worth up to 35,000 points, you’ll see the option to redeem that certificate plus 2,000 Bonvoy points for your stay. Awesome!
Which credit cards offer Marriott free night awards?
There are three Marriott credit cards that offer anniversary free night certificates:
- The $95 annual fee Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card (review) offers an anniversary free night certificate valid at a property costing up to 35,000 Bonvoy points per night
- The $125 annual fee (Rates & Fees) Marriott Bonvoy Business® American Express® Card (review) offers an anniversary free night certificate valid at a property costing up to 35,000 Bonvoy points per night
- The $650 annual fee (Rates & Fees) Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card (review) offers an anniversary free night certificate valid at a property costing up to 85,000 Bonvoy points per night
It’s now possible to top off Marriott Bonvoy free night awards with up to 15,000 Bonvoy points to redeem at more expensive properties. This means certificates worth 35,000 points can now be redeemed at properties costing up to 50,000 points, while certificates worth 50,000 points can now be redeemed at properties costing up to 65,000 points, and 85,000 point certificates can be redeemed at properties pricing up to 100,000 points.
It’s great to see this feature live.
Will you get value out of Marriott Bonvoy’s new free night award top off feature?
The following links will direct you to the rates and fees for mentioned American Express Cards. These include: Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card (Rates & Fees), and Marriott Bonvoy Business® American Express® Card (Rates & Fees).