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We’re now less than 10 days away from the Marriott/SPG loyalty program merger. On August 18, the new combined award chart will go into effect, new elite status tiers and perks will apply, SPG balances will be multiplied by 3 and a whole lot more. Be sure to take Nick Ewen’s advice to heart, and check out 6 Tasks to Complete Before Marriott and SPG Combine on August 18.
One of those tasks is booking award stays at properties that will go up in price on the 18th — and there are quite a few. If you do plan to make those bookings, though, you have an even narrower window than we thought. Marriott reached out to clarify that some transitions have already begun, and as a result, accounts may be inaccessible during the overnight hours (US Eastern Time) even before August 18.
As Marriott explains:
“Starting tonight, leading up to August 18 members may experience temporary disruptions logging into their Marriott Rewards or The Ritz-Carlton accounts or when using points. These system transitions, scheduled during the overnight hours Eastern Time (ET) will impact members ability to access their accounts on Marriott.com and the Marriott and The Ritz-Carlton mobile apps. Associates at our call centers will also not be able to access member account information during these times. We don’t anticipate these outages will impact SPG.com or the SPG mobile app. In order to minimize disruption as you make your travel plans, we recommend North America customers book during normal business hours.”
So if you do plan to book a stay online or over the phone before August 18, your best bet is to do so during regular ET business hours. Additionally, as Marriott reps previously explained, multiple systems will go offline for extended periods on August 18, so I wouldn’t expect to be able to access your account next Saturday.
For more on what to expect from the program merger, see:
- Marriott Confirms Date for New Program and Award Chart Launch
- 6 Tasks to Complete Before Marriott and SPG Combine on August 18
- The Ins and Outs of Marriott’s New Elite Status Program
Featured image courtesy of the JW Marriott Venice Resort and Spa.
With some great bonus categories, the American Express Gold Card has a lot going for it. The card offers 4x points at US restaurants, at US supermarkets (up to $25,000; then 1x), and 3x points on flights booked directly with airlines or through amextravel.com. It is currently offering a welcome bonus of 35,000 bonus points after you spend $2,000 in the first three months.
- Earn 35,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $2,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 3 months.
- Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. restaurants. Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X).
- Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
- Earn up to $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with The Gold Card at Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Shake Shack, and Ruth's Chris Steak House. This is an annual savings of up to $120. Enrollment required.
- $100 Airline Fee Credit: up to $100 in statement credits per calendar year for incidental fees at one selected qualifying airline.
- Choose to carry a balance with interest on eligible charges of $100 or more.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- Annual Fee is $250.
- Terms apply.
- See Rates & Fees