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Weekly Digest: New Marriott Loyalty Program and Shortcut to Hyatt Globalist

Every week we pick the essential award travel news from the industry to keep you stay informed. This week, we are bringing you – new Marriott loyalty program and shortcut to Hyatt Globalist; 5 Other award travel news this week.

AwardTravel Bits

As expected, Marriott got all the attention among award travel communities today and announced details regarding the new and combined Marriott loyalty program. The new loyalty program will launch on Sep 1st, 2018, and will only have one currency, basically matching the current Marriott Rewards points. Members who currently have Starpoints will have their points automatically converted to Marriott at a 1 to 3 ratio, something members have been able to do voluntarily since the merger began in 2016. SPG’s most beloved feature of 20,000 to 25,000 airline transfer ratio is here to stay, with the new form of 60,000 points to 25,000 airline miles (given the 1 to 3 ratio, it is essentially the same as the current rate). The new program consists of five elite tiers: Silver, Gold, Platinum, Platinum Premier (75 nights) and Platinum Premier 100 nights. Current SPG Gold and Platinum members will be matched to Gold and Platinum, and interestingly, current Marriott Gold will be matched to Platinum and Marriott Platinum to Platinum Premier. This signals a very important required action as a current SPG Gold member, if you haven’t, match your SPG Gold to Marriott Gold by August, so that you will be matched to the new Platinum tier in August instead of Gold. Their co-brand credit cards will soon get a refresh as well, with at least one new ($99 annual fee) credit card by Chase and one new high-end ($450 annual fee) credit card by American Express. There are plenty more details, and I recommend that you read more about the new Marriott loyalty program on One Mile at A Time, The Points Guy, Doctor of Credit, and many other sources for different opinions.

In better news, contrary to some rumors, the Amex SPG personal credit will continue to accept new applications after August 1st. If you missed out on the 25,000 Starpoints sign-up bonus, it’s a good idea to hold out until later because Amex might start offering Marriott Rewards points in the future when the new program kicks in. On the other hand, SPG started another, possibly the last ever, point sale of 35% off now. Each account can purchase up to 30,000 points for $682.50. The sale will end on May 31st, giving award travelers plenty of time to consider. It’s important to know that an SPG account needs to be at least 14 days old in order to be eligible for point purchase and receiving point gift. Enrolling in SPG program is simple and takes less than 3 minutes to complete, and we recommend you to enroll now if you are considering purchasing Starpoints during this sale.

With all the Marriot’s news going on, Hyatt decided to remind award traveler of their existence by once again offering a fast track to Hyatt Globalist status. This is a targeted offer and is usually only available for those working for certain companies. For those eligible, you can acquire Hyatt Globalist status by staying 20 nights within 90 days and Explorist status by staying 10 nights. Check FrequentMiler’s post for more details.

Johnny Jet shared a useful tip about air travel that’s worth you keeping in mind. As one of their readers recommends, if your reservation is more than a month in advance, you should check your seat assignment on the first of each month. Airlines sometimes change the aircraft type, which typically happens on the first of the month, and your selected seat can possibly be affected in such case.

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