Have top-tier Marriott status? You may be able to gift Platinum status
Marriott Bonvoy made a slew of announcements this week. In addition to removing award charts in favor of dynamic pricing, it shared that it would extend all current elite status levels by another year. However, it still wants to reward those who requalified for top-tier elite status the "hard way" this year.
One way it's doing this is by giving some top-tier Ambassador Elites elites the opportunity to gift free elite status to a loved one.
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Gifting Marriott elite status
Qualifying for Marriott Bonvoy Ambassador Elite status is no easy feat.
It normally requires a whopping 100 elite-qualifying nights and $20,000 in qualifying spending, though that's been reduced to $14,000 for 2021. If you're able to accomplish this before the end of the year, you'll be invited to gift Platinum status to a family member in January 2022.
Marriott Platinum isn't something to shake a stick at, it's one of the more valuable status levels in Marriott's program. It normally requires 50 nights and unlocks perks like free breakfast at many brands, lounge access and potential suite upgrades. Altogether, TPG values Platinum status at over $2,600, assuming you travel enough to actually make use of it.
Related: Don’t be surprised if emails to your Ambassador go unanswered
This offer is separate from Marriott's annual choice benefits, which allows eligible elites to gift Silver or Gold elite status to someone else. Marriott's latest email to Ambassador elites specifically teased at gifting status to a family member. But if past years' status gifting offers are any indication, you'll likely be able to choose a friend or colleague instead with no specific family relationship required. Any gifted status will be valid through February 2023.
This isn't the first time we've seen Marriott let Ambassador Elites gift Platinum Elite status to another member. Marriott ran the same promotion in 2020, so it's great to see them bring it back.
Additionally, Marriott confirmed that Ambassador Elite status will again require $20,000 in qualified spending next year.
Related: Airline and hotel loyalty programs that let you give the gift of elite status
While Ambassador status might not be as valuable as it once was, having the opportunity to gift Platinum status to someone is a nice gesture for sure — assuming you have requalified the hard way and are eligible. Platinum status can make your relative's hotel stays far more comfortable when you're not traveling with them.
Around this time last year, Hilton offered a similar status gifting opportunity for all of its top-tier elites — regardless of whether they requalified the "hard way." We'll have to wait and see if it brings back a similar offer this holiday season.