This article is a recap of the application process, results, and reasoning for the Marriott Rewards Premier credit card. I actually submitted the application for the card on episode 18 of the Pursuing Points podcast. If you’ve not yet listened to the episode I suggest starting there and then coming back to read the recap.
As mentioned on episode 17, I had the experience of a lifetime after redeeming 55k SPG Starpoints for a luxury suite at Madison Square Garden to see Phish on December 28th. Such a good time in fact that I now want to rebuild my Starpoints balance (11k after recent redemption) so that I can do something similar in the future. I wasn’t sure which card I would signup for in order to achieve the goal, that is until I saw an advertisement for the Marriott Reward Premier card on Instagram. The ad said that the signup bonus was worth up to 120,000 Marriott Rewards points. Since the SPG and Marriott merger last year, you can now transfer your Marriott points to SPG at a rate of 3-1. Meaning that if I were to get the full 120,000 points out of the signup bonus, I would end up with 40,000 Starpoints! In order to get the full 120,000 I would have to spend $12,000 in the first year of my account membership (10 points per $1 on the first $12k spent in 12 months after signing up). I felt confident I could meet that minimum spending requirement. The card also waived the annual fee for the first year ($85/yr after that), and awards you 7,500 points when you add an authorized user and they make a purchase within 3 months of the account opening. The publicly available Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card only offered 25,000 points as a signup bonus. While the publicly available Marriott Rewards Premier offer was for 80,000. With all that in mind, this card was quickly becoming a no brainer. After adding the authorized user, and spending the $12k I will end up with 127,500 Marriott points which translates to 42,500 SPG Starpoints!
The application process was smooth and simple, I was able to submit it in less than five minutes. Submitting the application was the easy part however as I was given a pending decision rather than an instant approval. No worries, as I wrote about previously the reconsideration line can be your best friend. After receiving my pending decision I searched for the Chase reconsideration line, which I found on DoctorOfCredit.com, and called them up. The process here is simple; be nice, be succinct, be honest. I was connected with a representative right away and I said “Hello – I recently applied for the Marriott Rewards Premier card and was given a pending decision. I was wondering if there was any more information you needed from me in order to process the application?”. The agent verified my identity and told me that she’d have to transfer me to the verification department. No problem, remember rule #1. I sat on hold until the verification agent came on the line. Long story short, I recently moved and updated my address on my Chase account. My hunch is that they wanted to make sure it was really me signing up for the new card. The agent send me a text verification code which I read back to her over the phone and was then able to process my application.
Approved! Almost immediately after the verification agent told me she was processing the application, she told me it was approved. This is exciting as it means I’ve got my new main card for 2018, and after getting all of the signup bonus points I should have almost 60,000 SPG Starpoints! Hello luxury suite!
Other Card Benefits
In addition to the signup bonus, this card also offers the following benefits:
- Free night stay every year
- With this perk ill receive a night in a category 1-5 hotel each year after my account anniversary. This should more than makeup for the annual fee and is a perk that may allow me to keep the card for a while.
- No foreign transaction fees
- 5 points for every $1 spent at Marriott Rewards and SPG hotels
- 2 points for every $1 spent on airline tickets purchased directly with the airline, and at car rental agencies and restaurants.
- I won’t make much use of this since my Sapphire Reserve gets me 3 points per $1 on travel and dining.
- 1 point on all other purchases
- 15 elite credits after account opening and every year after account anniversary
- This guarantees me Silver Elite status every year
- Every $3,000 in purchases earns 1 additional credit towards elite status
- I don’t plan on putting that much spend on this card after the signup bonus so this may never come into play.
So thats my story and im sticking to it. What do you think, did I make the right decision in signing up for this card? Do you think its a good signup bonus? Will you also signup for the card? Let me know on Twitter or in the comment section below.