Today I'm at the Uh-St regis punta de mita, which is one of the top saint regis in the world. It's a top five saint restaurants hotel. I am in my one bedroom suite with an ocean view. This room costs $1,600 a night. It's one of the best rooms they have on this entire property. If you're interested in a room tour or what this overall experience is like, go ahead and check the links in the description below.
Marriott Bon Voyage
Today I'm talking marriott, and specifically I'm talking marriott bon voi. bon bonvoy is marriott terminology for their loyalty or rewards program, and there are five categories. okay, there are five levels of marriott bonvoy. They start with silver, gold, platinum, and titanium and ambassador. In order to be an ambassador, which i have been for five years now, you need to spend $100 nights a year with marriott.
So over three months of your life in marriott hotels out of the year, and you need to give them twenty thousand dollars in return. Marriott will give you ambassador status, and today I'm going to explain the five levels I'm going to talk about if I think ambassador status is worth it and, most importantly, I'm going to talk about where I think the best value is. I'm going to talk about which rewards Tier is the best. And, spoiler alert, it's not ambassador. But before I do that, I want to talk about the best benefit at each loyalty level and you can go online and take a look at it.
Silver, Gold, Platinum, and Ambassador - The Best Level
But quite frankly, a lot of them are fluff. So I'm going, I'm going cut through all that bs, all that fluff. I'm going give you the best benefit or two from each level, and then I'm going tell you again where I think the best level is. I'm going start with silver again. There's silver, gold, uh, platinum, and titanium and ambassador. So I'm going start with silver. And in order to gain silver status, you need to spend 10 nights a year with marriott and, quite frankly, the marriott, that's nothing much at all. This is just their entry level level.
Marriott just wants to get a feel for you and maybe you just want to get a feel for marriott. But you're not going to get anything, so you're not going to get a late check out. You are not going to get any upgrades. You're not going to get any free nights. The only thing you're going to get at silver status is a $10 bonus on points, so you will accumulate points $10 faster.
What Are the Benefits of Playing at Gold?
That's it. The next level is gold, and gold is 25 nights a year. It's about a month. So you are spending one month out of the year with marriott. It's respected. Martriott officially respects you at gold now. You're not valued but you are respected. uh, there are really two main benefits.
Um, that points bonus goes up to 25%, so you're going to accumulate points 25% faster and you're going to get a 2 2pm late checkout. That's it. So, for spending approximately a month out of the year with marriott, which seems like a lot, that's really the two only things you're going to get again. You're respected, but you're not valued. The third tier (three out of five) is platinum. It's 50 nights a year. You're officially a player at platinum status, and this is really where the benefits start. You get a 50% bonus in all your stays, which means you're going to accumulate points 50% faster.
You get a 4 pm late checkout. That's huge. You pretty much have the entire day. I consider it an official day, a business day, between 9:00 am and 5 pm. So you pretty much get a full day for free with that 4pm checkout. Also, you get lounge access for free, and to me this is a huge cost saver.
Suite Night Awards - What Are They and How Do They Work?
Take a look at my Uh-Sheridan video here in Puerto Vallarta. I leveraged that lounge for breakfast and for dinner. Every night I saved hundreds of dollars. If you like your snacks, your hors d'oeuvres, your food, your coffee, maybe just a reallyupscale place to just enjoy some solitude. uh, the lounge is where it's at, so the lounge access is absolutely imperative, and you also get suite night awards. I've made a video on suite night awards before. I have to probably make another one. I'll try to explain it as easily as possible. Sweet night awards are like a voucher and they allow you to get upgraded to phenomenal rooms.
All right, so let's use the saint regis puja, the hotel i'm at right now, as an example. Let's say you have your eye on this room, but you don't want to pay the $1.60 a night price tag. uh, but let's say you are okay with paying the $800 a night price tag for the base room. So you book that room, then you open the marble app or go online, and you click your sweet nights, and marblet will give you an a la carte of all the suites that are available at this property during your time of stay. could be the presidential suite, could be the governor's suite, could be an ocean view suite, could be a bungalow. There's probably going to be a list of five to ten suites.
You select a la carte, which ones you want. The more you select, the better of your opportunity of getting upgraded. and if those suites are available during your window of stay, marriott upgrades you for free. So basically, it allows you an opportunity to get life-changing, mindblowing suites for the price of a regular room. and if the suites are not available, marriott returns the vouchers back to you and you just get into your regular room. literally. The suite nights are worth thousands of dollars, and i use them to get amazing rooms all over the world. All right, the next level is titanium, and in order to gain titanium status, you need to spend 75 nights a year with marriott. That's two and a half months. In return for that, you get a 75-point bonus, so 25% more than platinum. You get the 4pm late checkout, you get lounge access and you get another five suite nights. So you get 10% sweet night vouchers,compared to the 5% at platinum.
Marriott Ambassador - You Are a Whale With Marriott
last but certainly not least, ambassador, 100 nights a year with marriott, that's over three months, over a quarter of the year, a quarter of your life with marriott. and, addition to that, marriott also stipulates that you have to spend twenty thousand dollars a year with them. Your spend with marriott must accrue to 20,000. And basically what that does? It negates you just buying cheap hotel rooms, staying at like a rural courtyard or like a rural um spring hill suites at 50% a night. uh, for a hundred nights a year. Marriott stipulates in order to get ambassador, you need to spend at least 20 grand a year. So 20 grand a year plus 100 nights you get ambassador status. You are a whale with marriott.
You are the best, the best. You are the most elite. You are the apex predator in the marriott ecosystem. Um, you pretty much get the same thing as titanium, except you get a $100 bonus on your points. So you're basically accruing points twice as fast. That is really cool. And then you also get ambassador service, and Marriott says that they assign someone to you. But it's not like you get George Castillo or Mike Jackson, and you have his personal cell phone and he's returning your calls or text on nights and weekends or holidays, or whatever. basically, it's just a group email, and I've never really had the same ambassador for more than a week.
It just seems like they cycle in and cycle out, and basically it's really not even that worth it. To be Frank with you, because by the time I email my ambassador, by the time it takes time to get back to me, too much time has passed--it's almost easier to go right to the hotel. So if I need myfolio, uh, i could get it by calling the hotel like four times as fast. If there's a lost and found item, it's so much easier to call the hotel yourself.
Where the ambassador service does provide value is if you are roadlocked in the marriott ecosystem, if marriott is kind of giving you a hard time about a cancellation, or if they won't honor a price, or maybe you have to change your reservation, but the price went up and he didn't want to pay the difference. The ambassador is really good with helping you on the back end. So if you get roadlocked working in the marriott ecosystem, the ambassador really can help you out there. That's really the only benefit, and i probably use it in that regard. Maybe once or twice a year.
Staying in a Hotel Room for 24 Hours
You also get your 24-hour, and what that is is that it allows you to stay in a hotel room for 24 hours. So if you want to check in at 6:00 am and then leave the following morning at 6:00 am, you can do that. If you want to check in at 9:00 pm and stay until 9:00 pm the next day, you can do that now. The only problem with this in my experience, you have to prearrange it like you have to call ahead and give them a day or two and let them know.
The problem with that is when you're traveling and you really need to get into a hotel at 6 o'clock in the morning. or if you're getting late at 9 pm and need to stay until 9 pm, typically that's last minute. Typically, it's because you missed the flight, a meeting was delayed, or now there's a follow-up meeting that you weren't expecting, so you need to stay a little longer, or you're working on a deadline or whatever. typically it's last minute stuff that gets you into hotel rooms at 6:00 a.m. or at 9:00 a.m.
Is Ambassador Worth It?
And because marriott doesn't do well at accommodating last minute stuff, even with ambassadors, to me it just really isn't that worth it. So to summarize, Ambassador, 100 nights a year gets you a $100 points bonus ambassador service, and you're 24. So is ambassador worth it? I'm going to answer that question right now and then, after that, i'm going to talk about the best-tier in the marriott system. Which Tier provides the most value?
It's not. It's worth spending over a quarter of your year or quarter of your life with marriott sleeping in different hotels and strange beds and giving them 20% of your money. uh, there's not that much of a difference between ambassador and titanium. So for that reason, I just don't think it's worth it. and i do get upgraded all the time. In fact, it's rare for me not to get upgraded. If I go to a hotel and don't get upgraded, that is a very weird and rare event for me. But the upgrades aren't as extravagant and they aren't as profound as you may think. internationally they usually are, but domestically, they're not. There's just not that much separation or differentiation between ambassador and titanium. So for that reason I'm going to say, ambassador is not worth it.
If you are titanium right now and you're wondering what life is like on the top, you're pretty much there. The best part of the ambassador is these 10 sweet nights which you already get at Titan and you're only getting an extra 25% bonus points. So for me, titanium and ambassador, it's titanium all the way, all right. So what is the best-tier overall? It's platinum. With platinum, you almost get all the benefits of titanium.
4 pm late, check out, lounge access, sweet nights. Now with platinum, you get five sweet night vouchers (as opposed to titanium), but at least you still get five, and you get a $50-point bonus as a pair to titanium (75 percent). So you're right there. You're not missing on much and with platinum, you're going to get upgraded. You're going, you're going to get the red carpetrolled out. for you. You are in the upper echelon of all the people staying at Marriott's. I think it's absolutely the best place to be.
Marriott offers five levels of loyalty and ambassador status. The ambassador level is the highest level of loyalty. The best benefit is not ambassador. The ambassador level is worth it. The gold level is the best. It costs $1,600 a night. It includes a one bedroom suite with an ocean view. It also includes a free night's stay at the hotel's spa. It comes with a free breakfast. It has a free Wi-Fi. It doesn't come with a complimentary room. It does not come with an unlimited Wi-Fi. It will not come free with a $1k bill. It can only be used for one night.