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Marriott’s MegaMiles and MegaBonus Offers Are Back

Marriott’s MegaMiles and MegaBonus Offers Are Back

No hotel promotions period is fully defined until Marriott weighs in with their perennially recurring MegaBonus.

We received Marriott’s press release last month, but held off on reviewing the offer because the promotion didn’t take effect until February 1.

With the start date fast approaching, the time is right to add this promotion to the list of hotel bonus options for travel in the new year.

Offer Details

Between February 1 and April 30, Marriott Rewards members can choose to earn a free night after two paid stays, up to two free nights (the MegaBonus offer), or triple airline miles for the second and subsequent stays (the MegaMiles offer).

The free night earned with the MegaBonus offer is at a Category 1 – 4 hotel, and must be taken by September 30.

Registration is required for both offers, by March 31, and members’ earning preferences must be set to points for the MegaBonus offer and miles for the MegaMiles offer.

Deal or No Deal

The choice of two bonuses will be welcomed by those with a strong preference for one of the two options, miles or free nights. But for those who are bonus-agnostic, the choice may be more irritating than empowering, requiring as it does some compare-and-contrast calculations.

For perspective, Rewards members normally earn two miles per $1 spent at higher-priced hotels (Marriott, Renaissance, Ritz-Carlton, JW Marriott, Autograph Collection), and one mile per $1 at Courtyard, Fairfield Inn, Residence Inn, SpringHill Suites and TownePlace Suites. With the bonus, then, the earning rates will be six miles per $1 and three miles $1, respectively. So the second and subsequent $400 stays at more expensive properties would earn a solid 2,400 miles each, while a $200 stay at a cheaper hotel would net a less compelling 600 miles.

The free night, on the other hand, if earned after two stays at lower-priced properties, potentially represents a significant discount. But a free night at a Category 1 – 4 hotel after two longer stays at a JW Marriott is a much less generous proposition.

So if you plan stays at both higher- and lower-end hotels during the promotion period, it might behoove you to choose the MegaMiles for the former and the MegaBonus for the latter stays.

Of course, if you’re a frequent traveler who earns the maximum of two free nights after four stays, you might want to change your earning preference to miles to earn the MegaMiles bonus for subsequent stays.

Reader Reality Check

Will one of the Marriott offers be your promotion of choice for winter hotel stays?

Which one?

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  • Janice Plourde

    Very disappointed in Marriott’s last 2 MegaBonus offerings. I rountinely stay in category 5 or above hotels, free stay in a catagory 1-4 Hotel is no Bonus to me. In the past they offered Bonus Marriott reward points. I won’t be making any extra stays at Marriott this winter, I’ll stay elsewhere.

  • Easydom

    I got Mega Bonus points last round and will again for this one.

    The bonus you qualify for seems to be driven by you overall status. I am Platinum Elite and will have lifetime status in July. I have over five years now of sleeping with Bill if you put them altogether.

    I like Bill……..

  • Richard Lidbom

    Marriott has LONG been a favorite of mine. I have had Platinum For Life for several years, am retired, and would not dream of staying elsewhere – even with my wife. Many hotels give us both free breakfasts if the Concierge Level is not available, especially on weekends. BTW – their new alliance with the Autograph Series (Richard Kessler’s properties) is a wonderful new addition if you like boutique hotels, and I do.

  • Dawn

    Am I the only person, when, every time I follow the link, or go to https://www.marriott.com/rewards/rewards-program.mi – get a “Promotion Page Unavailable”? I have tried this since the bonus was first announced and still cannot register??

  • Tim Winship

    Dawn – If you’re unable to register online, you can call Marriott at 1-888-MARRIOTT and do it by phone.

  • lois

    how does one request the free night once earned
    I wonder if people realize that with black Marriott card a free night certificate is available…many don’t know and never use it.
    I used it at the Seattle airport; great to walk out and have nothing due

  • Alyse

    What is a Marriott black card?

  • Steve

    I called to register, and they registered me for the 25k points @ 15 nights, but not the free night for 2 stays. Nothing ever showed up on my ‘promotion central’ page. What gives? Are only certain people eligible for certain offers? I am Platinum currently.

  • Tim Winship

    Steve – You should have been able to register for either promo, but not for both.