New welcome offer worth up to 225,000 bonus points: Marriott Bonvoy Business Amex Credit Card review
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Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card overview
The Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card is a solid small-business card for Marriott Bonvoy fans. It comes with useful perks such as an annual free night at hotels costing up to 35,000 points and helps to expedite your Marriott elite status by offering 15 elite night credits every year. Card Rating*: ⭐⭐⭐½
*Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG’s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
This Marriott Bonvoy Business Card comes with most of the same features and benefits as the Marriott Bonvoy consumer cards, but it happens to include generous bonus reward categories that are well suited to small-business owners.
Currently, there’s the best-ever welcome offer on the card with up to 225,000 bonus points, worth $1,800 according to TPG’s valuations. This offer ends Nov. 3, 2021, so you’ll want to act fast. With a reasonable annual fee of $125 (see rates and fees), this card also comes with plenty of extra benefits that make this a solid hotel business card option.
Who is this card for?
This card is ideal for business owners who are loyal to the Marriott Bonvoy program. Remember, that a business of virtually any size can qualify for small business credit cards. You can use your Social Security number on your application if you haven’t obtained an Employer Identification Number (EIN). Plus, it’s good for those with side hustles such as freelancing or running an eBay store.
This card would also complement an airline card or one that earns transferable rewards that can be transferred to airline miles. It even could make sense to hold the consumer version of the Marriott Bonvoy cards from American Express since the elite night credits can be stacked together. Anyone who has a Marriott Bonvoy small business credit card and a Marriott Bonvoy consumer credit card is eligible to receive a maximum of 30 elite night credits per year.
Best-ever welcome offer worth $1,800
You can currently earn 125,000 bonus points and two free night awards (worth up to 50,000 points each) after you spend $5,000 in eligible purchases in the first three months of card membership. We value Marriott points at 0.8 cents each, making this full offer worth $1,800.
American Express only allows you to earn the introductory bonus on a card once per lifetime, so if you’ve been waiting to apply for this card, now is the ideal time since the welcome offer has never been better.
Main benefits and perks
One of the primary reasons to consider this card is for all of the extra benefits. First, it offers you automatic Marriott Silver elite status, and the chance to earn Bonvoy Gold when you spend $35,000 on purchases in a calendar year. Silver offers you a 10% points bonus on paid stays, priority late checkout, and a dedicated reservation line.
You also receive 15 nights credit toward the next level of elite status (which can be stacked with a Marriott Bonvoy consumer card) and a free-night award each card anniversary year. The free night can be spent at properties at or under 35,000 points per night. You can even earn a second free-night award (at or under 35,000 points per night) after you spend $60,000 in a calendar year. Also, keep in mind that Marriott is making it easier to earn elite status this year.
Other benefits include premium on-property internet access, access to Amex Offers, Amex’s baggage insurance plan, extended warranty, purchase protection, and no foreign transaction fees (see rates and fees).
How to earn points
This card offers 6 points per dollar spent at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy program. You also receive 4 points per dollar spent at U.S. restaurants and U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and on purchases made from merchants in the U.S. for shipping. You earn 2x on all other eligible purchases.
All Bonvoy Business Amex card members receive Silver elite status, meaning that you’ll earn a total of 17 points per dollar spent at Marriott Bonvoy hotels. This includes 6x from the card, 10x base points, and 1 bonus point for elite status. So, at a minimum, you’ll get a 13.6% return when factoring in TPG’s valuation of Marriott Bonvoy points at 0.8 cents each.
But, your return may be even greater depending on your level of elite status. Gold members will earn a total of 18.5 points per dollar spent and Platinum members will earn 21 points. Finally, top-tier Platinum Premier elites will earn a total of 23.5 points per dollar spent, which equates to a phenomenal 18.8% return.
How to redeem points
The Marriott Bonvoy program has eight award tiers, with peak and off-peak prices, ranging from 5,000 points per night to 100,000. Dates for the peak and off-peak periods will vary by property.
Marriott Bonvoy also has some underrated perks that can be extremely valuable. For instance, thanks to Marriott’s “Stay for 5, Pay for 4” you’ll get a complimentary night when you redeem for five consecutive nights. Also, Marriott offers a ‘Points Advance’ feature, which allows you to book awards in advance even if you don’t have all the points you need yet. So, if you’re eyeing a specific redemption, you can book immediately, and earn the points you need up until 14 days before check-in.
Finally, you can also transfer your Marriott Bonvoy points to airline miles at a 3:1 ratio. Even better, you receive a 5,000-mile bonus for every 60,000 points you transfer. Marriott points can be especially useful for award flights because they transfer to airlines that don’t partner with other transferrable-points programs, such as Alaska Airlines, Japan Airlines, Asiana and Korean Air. This opens up all sorts of options for booking sweet spots with difficult-to-earn miles.
For example, you can use Alaska Airlines miles to book a one-way business-class award with Cathay Pacific from the U.S. to Asia with a free stopover in Hong Kong. If you’ve been dreaming of booking an Emirates award with credit card points, then Japan Airlines is a great transfer option. You could even transfer Marriott points to top off your American Airlines account if you’re just shy of enough to book an award flight.
Marriott Bonvoy Business card alternatives
While this is Marriott’s only small-business card available to new applicants, there are personal Marriott Bonvoy cards that offer similar (or better) perks.
For example, the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card comes with automatic Gold status, an annual free night at Marriott hotels costing up to 50,000 points per night and up to $300 in statement credits every cardmember year for eligible purchases at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy program. Those benefits can easily make the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant worth the annual fee, even though it’s $450 (see rates and fees).
Outside of the Marriott Bonvoy family, there aren’t many small-business cards cobranded with hotels. Among the few is The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card. It offers new applicants a welcome offer of up to 180,000 Hilton Honors bonus points: Earn 130,000 bonus points after you spend $2,000 in purchases in the first three months of card membership. Plus, you can earn an additional 50,000 Hilton Honors bonus points after you spend a total of $10,000 in purchases on the card in the first six months.
These points are worth up to $1,080 according to TPG valuations. It offers you Gold status, plus 12x at eligible Hilton portfolio properties.
It also offers 6x at U.S. gas stations and restaurants, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers, U.S. purchases for shipping, flights booked directly with airlines or with Amex Travel and car rentals booked directly from select car rental companies. You earn 3x on all other eligible purchases. This card has a $95 annual fee (see rates and fees) and offers a free-weekend-night award each calendar year after spending $15,000.
Another option is The Business Platinum Card® from American Express. It offers you 5 bonus points per dollar on flights and prepaid hotels booked on Amex Travel. Among its numerous other benefits and fee credits, you also receive Gold status with both Marriott and Hilton hotels (enrollment required). To learn more about the card’s benefits take a look at our Amex Business Platinum card review for all the details on what can make it worth the $595 annual fee($695 if application is received on or after 1/13/2022) (see rates and fees).
The Marriott Bonvoy Business Card is a solid small-business card that offers the most possible benefits at more than 7,000 Marriott Bonvoy properties around the world. With a phenomenal welcome offer and decent earning categories and perks, it’s one of the better hotel credit cards suited for small-business owners. It’s also a great option for anyone who’s also interested in opening valuable Chase credit cards because as an Amex business card, it won’t add to your Chase 5/24 count.
Additional reporting by Stella Shon, Jason Stauffer and Chris Dong.
Featured image by Wyatt Smith for The Points Guy.
For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Business Card, click here.
For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Amex, click here.
For rates and fees of the Hilton Honors Business Card, click here.
For rates and fees of the Amex Business Platinum Card, click here.
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Receive 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card account anniversary. Plus, earn an additional Free Night Award after you spend $60K in purchases on your Card in a calendar year. Awards can be used for one night (redemption level at or under 35,000 Marriott Bonvoy points) at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy program.
- Limited Time Offer: Earn 125,000 Marriott Bonvoy bonus points & 2 bonus Free Night Awards after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in eligible purchases within the first 3 months. Each bonus Free Night Award has a redemption level up to 50K points. Certain hotels have resort fees. Offer ends 11/3/2021.
- 6x points at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy™ program.
- 4x points at U.S. restaurants, at U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and on U.S. purchases for shipping. 2x points on all other eligible purchases.
- Receive 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card account anniversary. Plus, earn an additional Free Night Award after you spend $60K in purchases on your Card in a calendar year. Awards can be used for one night (redemption level at or under 35,000 Marriott Bonvoy points) at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy™ program. Certain hotels have resort fees.
- Enjoy complimentary Marriott Bonvoy Silver Elite status with your Card. Plus, earn Gold Elite status after making $35,000 in eligible purchases on your Card in a calendar year.
- Terms apply.
- See Rates & Fees