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The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card has a higher than usual sign up bonus right now: Earn 125,000 Bonus Points and 1 Free Night Award (value up to 50,000 points) after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. Before this limited time offer came out, the bonus was 75,000 Marriott points.

Whether or not you patron Marriott, this is a good card to pick up for its large bonus. But just what will 100,000 Marriott Rewards get you? I personally value Marriott points around .075 cents a piece, or .0075 dollars. That would make a 100,000 point bonus worth $750. If you are a Marriott patron, and especially if you care about Marriott elite status, then the card is likely worth keeping beyond the first year for it’s annual Free Night Award and fast track to elite status.

Remember that beyond redeeming at Marriott hotels, Marriott points can also be transferred 3:1 to almost any frequent flyer program. I find Marriott Rewards valuable particularly for this reason, as they give you access to some foreign loyalty programs that are otherwise hard to earn miles in. Use them for an obscure sweet spot award, or top off an account for a big redemption.

Other Benefits of the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Card

  • After every account anniversary, a Free Night Award certificate good at any Marriott that costs 35,000 points a night or less
  • Category Bonuses: 6 points per dollar spent at Marriotts, 2 points per dollar spent on everything else
  • Silver Elite Status (Priority late checkout, 10% bonus points earned on Marriott stays)
  • 15 Elite Night Credits every calendar year
  • Spend $35,000 in a cardmember year (based on when you opened the card) and earn Gold Elite status through the following calendar year
  • No foreign transaction fees

There is a $95 annual fee that is not waived the first year of card membership.

Transferring Marriott Points to Airline Partners

Marriott Rewards transfer to all of the following frequent flyer programs. Most transfer at a rate of 3 Marriott points to 1 airline mile, with the exception of Air New Zealand Airpoints, JetBlue TrueBlue, and United MileagePlus. The transfer rates to Air New Zeleand and JetBlue are terrible; please do not transfer your Marriott Rewards to those programs. To United, however, the rate is a bit better than 3:1 due to Marriott’s special partnership with United. You’ll get 1.1 United miles for every 3 Marriott points.

AEGEAN Miles+Bonus 3:1
Aer Lingus AerClub 3:1
Aeroflot Bonus 3:1
Aeromexico ClubPremier 3:1
Air Canada Aeroplan 3:1
Air China PhoenixMiles 3:1
Air France-KLM Flying Blue 3:1
Air New Zealand Airpoints 200:1
Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan™ 3:1
Alitalia MilleMiglia 3:1
American Airlines AAdvantage® 3:1
ANA Mileage Club 3:1
Asiana Airlines Asiana Club 3:1
Avianca LifeMiles 3:1
British Airways Executive Club 3:1
Cathay Pacific Asia Miles 3:1
China Eastern Airlines Eastern Miles 3:1
China Southern Airlines Sky Pearl Club 3:1
Copa Airlines ConnectMiles 3:1
Delta SkyMiles® 3:1
Emirates Skywards® 3:1
Etihad Guest 3:1
FRONTIER Miles 3:1
Hainan Airlines Fortune Wings Club 3:1
Hawaiian Airlines HawaiianMiles® 3:1
Iberia Plus 3:1
InterMiles 3:1
Japan Airlines JAL Mileage Bank 3:1
JetBlue TrueBlue 6:1
Korean Air SKYPASS 3:1
LATAM Airlines LATAM Pass 3:1
Multiplus Fidelidade 3:1
Qantas Frequent Flyer 3:1
Qatar Airways Privilege Club 3:1
SAA Voyager 3:1
Saudia Alfursan 3:1
Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer® 3:1
Southwest Rapid Rewards® 3:1
TAP Air Portugal Miles&Go 3:1
Thai Airways Royal Orchid Plus 3:1
Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles 3:1
United MileagePlus® 3:1.1
Virgin Atlantic Flying Club 3:1
Virgin Australia Velocity Frequent Flyer 3:1
Vueling Club 3:1

Asiana Airlines is a good example of a foreign loyalty program with cheap award prices whose miles are not the easiest to earn. Asiana charges only 35,000 miles one way in Business Class to fly a Star Alliance carrier to Southern South America; 40,000 miles one way in Star Alliance business class to Europe; and 50,000 miles one way in Star Alliance first class to Europe. Asiana miles are hard to come by other than the one Asiana credit card issued by Bank of America which offers a 30k bonus. The bonus from the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card could be helpful for access to more Asiana miles.

Asiana’s award chart flying Star Alliance partners, origin North America

Avoid Transfers to these Programs

I do not recommend transferring Marriott Rewards to the Etihad Guest program. I attempted to do so and my points were in limbo for over three months before showing up in my Etihad Guest account. It could have been a fluke accident, as I haven’t seen any other reports of Etihad transfers taking so long, but I cannot in good faith tell you to do so after my horrendous experience. I have also seen reports of transfers gone awry to Frontier, China Eastern, China Southern, LATAM, and TAP Portugal.

Redeeming Marriott Points at Hotels

There are eight pricing categories for Marriott hotels, and within each category are separate prices for Off Peak, Standard, and Peak travel dates. With the 100k bonus from the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card, plus the (at least) 10,000 points you’d earn from everyday spending on that $5,000 minimum spending requirement, you could cover three nights at a Category 5 level hotel during Standard travel dates, or at least four nights at a Category 4 hotel during Standard travel dates.

The Marriott Puerto Vallarta Resort & Spa is a Category 5 property. With your 110,000+ Marriott points, you could cover the cost of three nights, and use the Free Night Award account anniversary certificate to cover a fourth night.

Marriott Puerto Vallarta Resort & Spa

I recently visited Puerto Vallarta for a bachelorette party. While I expected a tacky tourist trap, I was pleasantly surprised at the natural beauty of the surrounding area. And the pastor tacos and pozole were hard to beat.

Tacos al pastor at Pepe’s in Puerto Vallarta

Marriott Devaluation Happening Tomorrow

Marriott is changing the price of many of their hotels tomorrow. Out of those that are changing price (around 1,500 properties), some are getting cheaper, but the majority will cost more points. Check out the searchable list of affected properties and book before tomorrow if you were planning a stay in one.

All airline miles and hotel points devalue over time, it’s just the nature of the beast. That’s why I recommend spending your rewards instead of hoarding them, “earn and burn”, and switching your focus to earning cash back if you have more miles and points then you know what to do with.

Eligibility Considerations

The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Card is subject to Chase’s 5/24 rule. That means that if you’ve opened five or more personal credit cards in the last 24 months, you are not eligible. Most business credit cards do not count in your 5/24 total, unless they are issued by Capital One, Discover, or TD Bank.

Your eligibility may also be affected by holding (or having held recently) another Marriott card. The following is copy and pasted from the offer terms:

The product is not available to either:

  • current cardmembers of the Marriott BonvoyTM Premier credit card (also known as Marriott Rewards® Premier), Marriott Bonvoy BoundlessTM credit card (also known as Marriott Rewards® Premier Plus), Marriott Bonvoy BoldTM credit card, or
  • previous cardmembers of the Marriott BonvoyTM Premier credit card (also known as Marriott Rewards® Premier), Marriott Bonvoy BoundlessTM credit card (also known as Marriott Rewards® Premier Plus), or Marriott Bonvoy BoldTM credit card, who received a new cardmember bonus within the last 24 months.

The bonus is not available to you if you:

  • are a current cardmember, or were a previous cardmember within the last 30 days, of Marriott BonvoyTM American Express® Card (also known as The Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express);
  • are a current or previous cardmember of either Marriott Bonvoy BusinessTM American Express® Card (also known as The Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express) or Marriott Bonvoy BrilliantTM American Express® Card (also known as the Starwood Preferred Guest® American Express Luxury Card), and received a new cardmember bonus or upgrade bonus in the last 24 months; or
  • applied and were approved for Marriott Bonvoy BusinessTM American Express® Card (also known as The Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express) or Marriott Bonvoy BrilliantTM American Express® Card (also known as the Starwood Preferred Guest® American Express Luxury Card) within the last 90 days.

Not sure if you’re eligible, or if this card is the right choice for you? Fill out this form for a credit card consultation and I can help.