201 Marriott hotels changing award price in 2021 — Here’s the list

Feb 4, 2021

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It’s once again that time of year when it’s cold, damp … and to add insult to injury, this is when hotel programs introduce their annual category changes. Today, it’s Marriott Bonvoy‘s turn to share its line-up of hotels that are going up or down in award category for the coming year. But — before you shut that laptop in disgust at the thought of hotels going up in points price in the midst of a pandemic, settle back into your chair a bit. It’s really not that bad this time.

According to Marriott, approximately 3% of the portfolio of over 7,500 hotels is changing by one category. That represents a total of 201 hotels and resorts adjusting award rates. And of those 201 hotels changing category, three times as many are going down (150 properties) in category as opposed to going up (51 properties). For context, just prior to the pandemic really taking hold last year, Marriott changed the category of over 2,000 properties — mostly in the upward direction. This is nothing like that.

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The category changes being announced today don’t take effect until March 3, so even if a property you have your eye on is one of the 51 going up in points price, you still have a few weeks to lock in an award stay for the coming year at the current prices.

You can see the full list of changes here, but we’ll outline a few highlights to be aware of.

  • W Aspen increasing from a Category 7 to a Category 8 (this hotel has been an 8 before and is returning to that category)
  • Aloft and Residence Inn Ocean Beach, Maryland increasing from a Category 5 to a Category 6
  • Sheraton Kauai Coconut Beach Resort increasing from a Category 5 to a Category 6
  • SpringHill Suites Hilton Head Island increasing from a Category 4 to a Category 5
  • Courtyard Aruba Resort increasing from a Category 4 to a Category 5
  • Las Alcobas, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Mexico City increasing from a Category 6 to a Category 7
  • Curaçao Marriott Beach Resort decreasing from a Category 6 to Category 5
  • Marriott Puerto Vallarta Resort & Spa increasing from a Category 5 to Category 6
  • The Langley, a Luxury Collection Hotel increasing from a Category 6 to Category 7

Related: Marriott makes it easier to earn elite status in 2021

(Photo by Summer Hull / The Points Guy)
Sheraton Kauai Coconut Beach Resort (Photo by Summer Hull / The Points Guy)

Pay particular attention if one of the properties you are interested in is increasing out of range of a Marriott 35k or 50k certificate that are available with several of the Marriott credit cards, as you will want to lock those in before the March 3 increases, if possible.

Bottom line

On the whole, this is a very mild annual categorization of Marriott properties. If a property you have booked goes down in award cost on March 3, it may make sense to wait until then to book, or perhaps re-book your stay at a lower award price after that time. But if you have your heart set on somewhere like the W Aspen, then you’ll be best served by making your stay for the next year or so by March 3 before award prices increase.

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