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Marriott quietly made a change to the point earning and elite night credit for one of its brands. I hope it’s not a sign of things to come as it would represent a significant devaluation to those who requalify with stays at limited service brands (if it spreads).
Marriott Reduces Point Earning and Elite Qualifying Credit at Protea Hotels
Marriott has a portfolio of 30 brands that represent over 8,000 hotels globally. These range from high-end, luxury hotels like the St. Regis and Ritz-Carlton brands to limited service brands like Four Points by Sheraton and Fairfield. One of the brands that many might not be familiar with in the US is called Protea. These hotels are found across 10 countries in Africa.
For stays at Protea Hotels with check-out dates on or after March 1, 2023:
- You’ll earn 5x points per dollar spent, half of the previous 10x points
- You’ll earn one elite night credit for every two qualifying nights, which is also half of what is currently earned where each night counts as one stay
I Don’t Travel to Africa, Why Should I Care?
If you’ve never stayed at a Protea Hotel and don’t plan to, you might be asking why you should care. For this specific brand in the portfolio, you shouldn’t. But, the implications of this creeping to other Marriott brands is a bit troubling. This is almost like Marriott is saying that staying at these hotels is like buying a basic economy airline ticket where earnings are reduced or eliminated. I’ll be closely watching to see if future changes for other brands follow this one or if there is something else going on behind the scenes that is motivating this change.
Anthony’s Take: While this change might only effect one brand in one market, it sets a precedent that could easily spread to others in the Marriott portfolio. Let’s see what unfolds.
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