Marriott Partially Relents On Travel Package Usage And Downgrades; A Good Start But It’s Not Enough

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Marriott has announced that they will allow members who redeemed for an old category 6, category 8, or tier 1-3 certificate to downgrade them to an old category 5, 7, or 9 certificate and receive a refund of 30K points. They will still be valid at the new category 4, 5, and 6 respectively.

You’ll have until the expiration date of the certificate to do the exchange, so it will be advantageous to wait until near the expiration date to request that as the exchanged certificate will be valid for another year.

You can request the exchange by contacting Marriott here and selecting “Packages–Deals” topic.

Marriott is also removing the restriction of not being able to use travel package certificates until 9/18. You can use them starting now.

It’s a good start, but it’s not enough.

Marriott intentionally hid the conversion chart in order to sell more packages before the merger. They opted to lower the value on most packages by rounding down a category and using the peak travel date price as justification for lowering the value.

At a minimum they ought to allow people who purchased a top-tier 4-5 certificate that was valid at any hotel to continue to use those certificates at any hotel. It’s only fair that those certificates should remain valid systemwide.

Even if Marriott won’t round the certificates up a category rather than down a category as they should have, they should allow members to upgrade and downgrade their certificates now that they know exactly which category they will be valid for. Many people bought packages with the intention to book specific SPG hotels, but due to Marriott rounding down the categories find themselves with certificates that aren’t valid where they expected them to be valid.

Marriott has started to do the right thing. Let’s hope they can go all the way…or at least most of the way.

HT: Lucky

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75 Comments On "Marriott Partially Relents On Travel Package Usage And Downgrades; A Good Start But It’s Not Enough"

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Amen to that!


If people wanted certs for specific hotels, shouldn’t they have just attached them?


Some people were targeting properties for Fall 2019 and the Marriott system doesn’t allow you to book more than 1-year out. So, my CSR told me to redeem a cat 8 and it will be good for the cat 6 property that I wanted and there is no issue to extend the certificate past 1-year. That was obviously false. If the map was out I would have just redeemed for cat 9 knowing that it would be good for a cat 6 property after 8/18. And, I wouldn’t be disgusted with Marriott. I have a 3-day stay at a Marriott property this week too.

Captain Obvious

Glad to see the pitchforks and torches have been put away. Marriott was going to do this all along.


That “Marriott was going to do this all along” speaks to Marriott having adopted a sleazy PR way of dealing with its customers with the biggest point balances/redemption histories.

That’s why the proverbial “pitchforks and torches” are anything but undue and are still needed for use against the Marriott scam scheme that has burned so many
Marriott customers with travel package certificates bought with Marriott points.

Joe Kay

Here’s my story I called Marriott to buy a travel package (after I was told by a different agent that she was transferring my points 1-1 to United but never did it) for some reason the agent transferred my points to United but never gave me the hotel certificate so I called back on Friday 8/17/18 and spoke to a supervisor who told me he’s going to fix it and call me but as of now Monday afternoon 8/20/18 all he did was take my miles back from United and redeposited them in my Marriott account! Any ideas what I should do from here?


Mr kay imho its to late to do anythuing im sorry to be the bearer of bad news.


There was no doubt that they were going to give in a little bit. This was part of their strategy no doubt to make it appear like a “win” for the members.


I don’t see the points next to my travel package anymore. Are the points removed from the package now?


do you think they will let you upgrade to a category 9 from an 8 for 30k points?

Joe Kay

Is there anyway to buy a package now? If yes which one would you recommend? If no should I just transfer my points to miles or leave them as is?
Thank you


Thanks for fighting for us! You will win in the end!
I had attached my cat 8 certificate to an old cat 5 hotel that went up to a cat 6. So now my reservation is set and I want to keep it. Could I still request the 30,000 point refund?


This made a few people happy, but ultimately they need to allow people to pay (with points) for a 1 cat upgrade. In my case I purchased a cat 6 thinking it’ll be good for the new cat 5 or at least I’d be able to upgrade. To my dismay I can o my use it at a cat 1-4. I’m willing to pay the extra 20,000 points to upgrade with the legacy prices, but don’t leave me hanging with a cat 1-4


make noise on social media and complain.


So- if I purchased a Cat 8 and attached a hotel, is this an option to downgrade and keep the reservation and receive 30k back?


Dan, if I booked a regular reward on the Marriott website last week at a Marriot hotel in London for tomorrow for 35,000 points, am I affected by all this? First time for Marriott for me as my 100K point Chase bonus just hit.


can the 7 night cat 7 vouchers be used for the maldives or bora bora?


What about the certs that we already attached to hotels? What happens to those when we remove them? For example: Old Cat 9 attached to Domes, and Old Cat 5 attached to Calgary Airport? Do they become the new category?


I wanna ask the same question


RT…I cant imagine being able to book any current 60k point hotels…will likely only be Cat 6


@Dan ?? have you tried yet?


Dan, if I have an attached category 6 which is now a category 4 they won’t give me the 30k refund?


I can’t even log in to my account. Anyone else having an issue logging in?


Here is another issue –

I completed Platinum challenge to become Marriott Platinum & according to new Status chart – I should be Platinum Premier. I did HUCA and I’m hearing multiple answers from Rep – one said I won’t qualify for Platinum Premier because my plat status was based on challenge / promo; another supervisor said I should qualify for Platinum Premier. But then they upgraded SPG Gold to Platinum which was not even part of their new chart. They need to do right thing and issue Platinum Premier whoever completed qualified via challenge.


Anyone know what number to call to get them on the phone? Every time I call I get reservations and they don’t know anything about anything.


If we have a Cat 9 certificate attached to Domes of Elounda, can we use cancel the reservation and use at any category 6 SPG?


@Dan-Are they also allowing cancelling the certificate and getting reduced points back? Thanks!


Hey Dan,

Any idea what might happen with the Domes of Elounda strategy??? I have a cat. 8 attached to a current cat. 7.


Dan – I upgraded a Cat 5 to a Cat 7 (paid difference in points) a few weeks ago, then assigned it to a Cat 7 – Springhill Suites Zion three weeks ago. This property is now Cat 6. Will Marriott refund me some points for the Category downgrade or am I SOL? Thanks for all the great info you’ve provided.

Flying Jew

Hi Dan…great info as usual…am sure you helped Marriott come to their senses….

Will the 30k be refunded to those that bought a Tier 1-3 that was attached to a hotel that now became a Cat ,….which should have been good for the old Cat9?


a speculative question, if someone has an old category 1-5 attached to Calgary airport and marriott decided to allow upgrades how many 30k categories would one need to move up to in order to get the top tier ?


No way to answer this question, it is total hypothetical. They aren’t allowing upgrades, and if they decide to one day, theres no way to know what they’ll charge to upgrade.


hi, I checked my marriott rewards points and it currently says 0 (I had over 140,000). Has anyone has this problem recently ?

princess buttercup

are you absolutely sure that they are also removing the restriction of not being able to use travel package certificates until 9/18? Marriott associates seem to be unaware of this change?


I just spent an hour on the phone with the same issue…tried to downgrade and they said Dan was right and we can (Cat 6 to 4) but couldnt do until the 18th of Sep.


I just spent an hour on the phone with Marriott taking to supervisor after supervisor, they even looked at ur website and saw what you wrote here, and they strongly are saying it’s wrong and that we still have to wait until September 18th to make any changes to a certificate attached to a hotel already….I’m super confused now.


By the way, one more thing on this merger, I recently changed my Samsung (Android) phone, when I tried to download the Marriott App it doesn’t show on the Play Store and tried with the Marriott website, a message shows the App is not compatible with the operating system of the new phone. Not that the App was working before, it had a lot of issues.

Hope someone at the IT Department at Marriott noticed and can fix it soon.


Any idea what reimbursement a cat 6 “five night” certificate will get back in points ? I’m assuming 15,000 points, am I correct?

Hakaras Hatov

This is a wonderful gesture. Good to see Marriott going above and beyond for their customers.


Marriott’s not going above and beyond for their customers unless you mean to say that Marriott has gone above and beyond sleazy for this travel package boondoggle of Marriott’s own making, a boondoggle designed to fleece its customers.

Hakaras Hatov

Marriott has no obligation here so what they’ve already done is nice. What else do you want them to do? Complaining about this is like demanding a refund from a casino when you don’t win a poker game. There’s always risks when you bet.


Only fair solution is to allow people with unattached certificates to downgrade or upgrade (@ 30K so you would pay what you would have if the map was published). Not sure if they are going to allow the upgrade. We need to put more pressure on them.


Marriott knew all along that there will be a cry and so they already had this in the plan of making “whole” of some people and then people will praise them for that. It is classic ploy of “instead of raping/torture you and then kill you, I will just kill you and spare you the agony” so that you feel better about the situation vs. what could have been.

Marriott you may fool some people ALL the time (similarly Trump to his supporters) or ALL the people some of the time but you can’t fool ALL the people ALL the time!


Is there really a need to mention Trump in a post about Marriott travel certificates? Seems a little forced…


“instead of raping/torture you and then kill you, I will just kill you and spare you the agony”

“(similarly Trump to his supporters)”

What do either of these statements have to with Marriott? Forget Trump Derangement Syndrome, you just sound deranged.


A slightly unrelated question. Can I combine a 7 night certificate with regular points to book a 10 night stay and get thee 10th night free?


@Dan I attached: A category 9 certificate to “Domes of Elounda, Autograph Collection”, Tier 1-3 certificate to the Ritz-Carlton in Toronto, and Tier 4-5 certificate to the Ritz Carlton Bal Harbour as you did for yourself. – Should I leave as is for now or detach certificates?


Is there a reason my points didn’t merge? I want to book a hotel today and I don’t see the points in my Marriott account and can’t access my SPG account. Any ideas?


I copied your strategy and attached a Cat 9 certificate to the “Domes of Elounda, Autograph Collection”. A tier 1-3 certificate to the “Ritz-Carlton Toronto”, and a tier 4-5 certificate to the “Ritz Carlton Bal Harbour”.

Should I detach them or leave them as is for now?


I tried 2 different ways to do it online and in each case ANY change the package reservation caused the certificate to fall off the reservation. Even simply changing the dates. I have not tried calling in to that though.


Just found out winter dates, I have my cat 8 voucher linked for the week before in a new cat 6 hotel, I saw that you posted we won’t know till 09/18 if will be able to change linked vouchers, but now that I know my dates should I try calling?


Dan – any updates about how travel certificates that attached to Marriott/Ritz hotels in different categories will work? I think there was lack of clarity whether Marriott will allow upgrades, change of dates etc?
I bought Ritz Category 1-3 Certificate and attached it to Ritz Carlton Toronto, hoping to get Le Meridien or St Regis Bora Bora after the merger – are there any news on that front?



Yitz Weiss

Dan, just wanted to express my appreciation! You beating the drum on cashing in for the certificates, attaching to a hotel, etc. worked out great for us! We attached a certificate to the Koloa Landing Resort at Poipu, Autograph Collection & assigned a random date as your suggested. I called back a few days ago to see if I could switch to another hotel (Westin Princeville) – they allowed me to change the date but not the hotel. Either way, we wound up with an amazing resort (I’m paying to upgrade the room to a one bedroom Villa) and first class, lie flat seats on our return flights (not enough miles for RT in first class!). That’s a heck of a way to celebrate a thirty year wedding anniversary! Thanks for all the good info!