Marriott Announces Strategy for Marriott Rewards and SPG Guest Loyalty Programs

Members Can Link Accounts, Match Elite Status, and Transfer Points

By Jeremy Del Nero on 23 September 2016
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With Starwood Hotels and Resorts now part of Marriott International, members of both hoteliers’ guest loyalty programs have been wondering what will happen to their respective programs and – perhaps as importantly – to their points.

On Friday, Marriott said it plans to continue to operate both programs – Starwood Preferred Guest, or SPG, and Marriott Rewards – for at least the next two years before it eventually phases out SPG. It also announced plans for what it calls “Global Travel Day,” to be held October 14.

Effective immediately, travelers will be able to link their Marriot Rewards and SPG accounts, match their elite status in either direction, and transfer points. Points can then be used to pay for stays at any of the hotelier’s 5,700 properties. This means that, regardless of where points were earned, a member can book a stay at any brand under the Marriott umbrella including St. Regis, Ritz-Carlton, Bulgari, W, Westin, Renaissance, and Edition.

When transferring points, three Marriott Reward points will equal one SPG Starpoint. In addition to stays, points can be used to purchase merchandise and obtain tickets to entertainment and sports events. The points may also be used for access to what the company refers to as “money-can’t-buy events and experiences.”

Marriott said it plans to continue to partner with JP Morgan Chase for its Marriott Rewards credit card program and SPG will continue with American Express.

The hotelier also announced Global Travel Day as a day to commemorate the merger of the two companies and the combined portfolio of hotels and experiences. To celebrate, Marriott will showcase a 4,140-square-foot interactive map at Rockefeller Center in New York City that displays all of its 5,700 hotels across the globe. Members of both frequent guest programs will have a chance to win one of 30 trips that also starts October 14. Entrants will share a “dream destination” via Twitter and Instagram incorporating @MarriottRewards and @SPG along with the push pin emoji and #YouAreHere #Sweepstakes.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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