Using Marriott Bonvoy points is the ultimate trick. But if you have to pay for a night's stay in cash, here are our tips for saving money.
It might happen that:
- We do not have enough points to book a room
- buying Marriott Bonvoy points is not the right option
- We have enough points, but their use is not optimized.
For more information on using Marriott Bonvoy points, please refer to milesopedia’s ultimate guide.
If you want to get inspired to find a Marriott Bonvoy hotel, here is the map of the chain’s hotels.
Example: Sub-optimal use of Marriott Bonvoy points
In this example, an overnight stay costs $236 including taxes, or 50,000 Marriott Bonvoy points.
According to Marriott’s Ultimate Guide calculator, 50,000 points is worth $450.
This means that the room must cost at least $450 including taxes for your points to be used to their full value.
Since the room costs $236 including taxes, it is better not to use the points. There would be a “loss” of $214.
Or by another calculation: $236 ÷ 50,000 points = 0.4 cents worth.
This is well below the 0.9 cent point value estimated by milesopedia. So? A big No to using points in this scenario.
It is important to do your calculations properly if you want to get the most out of your points.
If you choose to pay cash for overnight stays at Marriott Bonvoy hotels, here are some tips on how to make your stay cheaper.
Note: All room rates in these examples include taxes.
Save with a Marriott Bonvoy status
First of all, having a status saves you money. Even the lowest level does the trick.
Because as soon as you are a Marriott Bonvoy member, the price is a little lower for you.
Save with a Marriott Bonvoy Special Rate
When you book, you can enter a 3-letter code in the Special Rates section. This allows you to pull up rates or packages in a standard search.
Using a code is like a box of chocolates: you never know what you’ll get.
For example, the hotel may not accept it on certain dates, depending on the season and popular local events. The code may or may not work for certain hotels within the same region.
Marriott Bonvoy Special Rate Code: LTS
LTS: (Acronym of ”Long Time Stay”) Get exclusive rates for stays of more than 5 or 7 consecutive nights, at selected hotels of the chain.
For example, the standard room rate at Delta Hotels Ottawa City Centre is $190 per night. With the code LTS, the same room costs $39 less per night. This represents a total savings of $195 after 5 nights.
Marriott Bonvoy Special Rate Code: ZJL
ZJL: With this ”Vacation/Staycation” rate, you get additional discounts and benefits at select Marriott Bonvoy hotels.
In the example below at the Sheraton Vancouver Wall Centre, the standard rate for a basic room is $246. With the code ZJL, a special rate appears for $259.
This package costs $13 more than the basic rate but includes:
- $50 in hotel credit per stay
- A room upgrade
- parking included ($41 value).
It’s up to you to calculate whether this code is advantageous for your needs.
Marriott Bonvoy Special Rate Code: QRI
QRI : From Wednesday through Sunday of each week, Marriott Bonvoy Escapes offers discounts at select destinations in Canada, the United States, the Caribbean and Latin America.
This code offers a 25% discount on the standard room rate for members. Non-members can get a 20% discount on the standard room rate. This discount can be valid for the next 4 weekends.
You’ll need to browse the Marriott website as the hotels participating in these discounts vary each week. Usually, these are hotels that expect their occupancy to be low on these dates.
The cost of the room must be prepaid, but is cancelable and refundable according to certain criteria. It’s best to read the fine print before clicking to confirm your reservation.
For the beautiful Kananaskis Mountain Lodge, Autograph Collection, this code gets you a room for $490, instead of the standard rate of $614. A savings of $124.
Marriott Bonvoy Special Rate Code for your Company
Many major companies offer promotional codes to their employees. You have a special rate if you work for:
- Deloitte, General Motors, Lowes, ADP, Apple, Boeing, Disney, Ernst & Young, Fedex and many others
- the provincial or federal government
- or if you are a military member
The discount can be from a few dollars to a significant savings. This varies from time of year or day of the week.
Book with your employer’s code (check your employee benefits). At check-in, you will need to show proof of employment, a business card or an employee card.
Rate conditions vary by hotel and may seem opaque at times. Check with the hotel directly before booking to avoid unpleasant surprises.
If you are a Canadian provincial civil servant, for example, you will pay $164 per night instead of $246. This is a savings of $82 for this night at theHotel Pur Quebec, a Tribute Portfolio Hotel.
However, the rate directly below gives a price for a Canadian public servant. The terminology can be confusing, so please ask the institution.
Marriott Bonvoy Special Rate Code: CAA
If you are a member of the CAA (Canadian Automobile Association), you can get a 5% discount on regular rates at Marriott Bonvoy hotels.
In my experience, the discount can often be higher!
When searching, click on the special AAA/CAA rate.
Please note that sometimes some hotels or dates may not work.
In this example, a room costs $258 at Delta Hotels Toronto. The standard rate for a similar room is $289. That’s a savings of $31 or about 11%.
On the hotel’s reservation page, you must enter your membership number when making a reservation and/or show your CAA membership card at check-in. If you don’t have it at the counter, you will have to pay the daily rate.
Becoming a CAA Classic member (basic membership) is $8.52 per month or $102.33 per year, taxes included. Within minutes of joining, you can already benefit from the reduced rate with the CAA.
That $31 savings for the Delta Hotels Toronto room is almost the equivalent of 4 months of free membership.
In addition to helping you if you have a problem with your car, you have access to a host of other travel discounts. This can be for other hotel chains, car rentals, airport parking lots and restaurants.
Marriott Bonvoy Special Rate Code for employees, families and friends: MMF
If you or someone you know is a Marriott Bonvoy employee, you may be eligible for a discount.
When you make your reservation, you must enter your employee discount code or the one given by your loved one. Then at check-in, you must present a photo card and the Marriott Bonvoy form completed in your name by your friend or relative.
Depending on your situation, you can book up to 2 rooms per night, for personal travel only.
For example, staying as a Marriott employee at the Ritz-Carlton in Montreal for $461 less is a great benefit!
Marriott Bonvoy Special Rate Code for 62 years and over
If you are 62 years of age or older, you can choose the Senior Discount fare to receive a discount of approximately %. .
Marriott Bonvoy Special Rate Code: Other codes
Other codes you may find useful:
- LPR (Local Promotion Rate)
- HOL (Holiday)
- HL1 (Holiday promotion)
- HDK (stay with upgrade to suite or more luxurious)
- 53M (2,000 bonus points per day at Courtyard, with a higher rate. Do the math)
- ES7 ($25 gift card for groceries on bookings of 7 nights or more)
You can have fun on this page of Marriott promotions. Enter your destination and all offers for that region will appear.
Save by Booking Early with Marriott Bonvoy
As soon as you have a date in mind, book your room with the possibility of cancellation without charge. Then, in the following days or weeks, check to see if your room price has dropped.
If the price is lower for the same room and date, book and then cancel your old reservation.
Repeat until the cancellation conditions no longer allow you to do so.
Save with Advance Payment on Marriott Bonvoy
If you are absolutely sure that you will be at the hotel, the “Advance Payment” option can save you money.
In this example, you will save $37 USD per night. However, the cost must be prepaid now and you have no flexibility. Moreover, this rate is non-refundable if you cancel it more than 24 hours after the reservation.
Save with the Marriott Bonvoy Best Rate Guarantee
To encourage its customers to book directly on its website, Marriott Bonvoy offers a best price guarantee.
If 24 hours after making a reservation on their site, you find a cheaper standard rate for the same room on another third party site (Expedia, Booking, Hotels, etc), you can submit a claim form.
The tariff must be the same in all respects for:
- the same type of room with the same number of people
- services (meals, internet, view and other inclusions or not)
- the reservation conditions (free cancellation or not)
If the application meets all the requirements, the lower rate found elsewhere will be applied.
You will have the choice of one of the following options:
- the cheaper rate applied with an additional 25% discount
- 5,000 Marriott Bonvoy points ($45 value)
You must be quick and accurate in your request. If there is any difference, your application will be rejected.
Since there is no possibility to include files with the form, keep your screenshots as proof.
Save money by taking advantage of points and cash redemption
Sometimes you may not have enough points to pay for your entire stay.
We saw in the Ultimate Guide to Marriott Bonvoy that when you use points for a 5-night stay, you only pay 4. The cheapest of the 5 nights will be free.
If you are staying 6 nights or more, there is a way to maximize this benefit by making points and money combinations.
For example, 6 nights at The Westin Calgary with points costs 150,000 points.
When you click on the “+ Customize payments“, the page expands and you can create your combination.
You choose the night you want to pay in cash and the rest in points. However, to enjoy the free night, you must keep in mind to pay at least 5 nights in points.
Then click on “Combination preview“.
The site then calculates your new selection. If you don’t choose the most advantageous one, the Marriott Bonvoy website will tell you so.
In the screen above, you have chosen to pay $352 and 120,000 points. But the site warns that you could take the $218 option instead, for the same number of points.
When you click on this option, your new rate appears.
Click on Select and you will be redirected to the payment page.
Thus, for 6 nights you will have:
- A free night
- a cash payment of $244.75 including taxes for the least expensive night
- a spend of 120,000 points instead of 150,000 Marriott Bonvoy points
According to Marriott’s Ultimate Guide calculator, that 30,000 point difference has a valuation of $270. This means that the room must cost at least $270 including taxes for your points to be used to their full value.
You paid $244 for the room. That is less than $270. Payment in cash is justified.
If you had paid for those 6 nights in cash, you would have had a total bill of $1,674.17.
To make those 120,000 points worthwhile, you had to book nights worth $1,080 or more.
|Cash value of the nights||$1,624|
|Subtracting the payment||– $244.75|
|Value per point||1.2 cent|
Your value is 1.2 cent per point using the following formula: $1,429.25 ÷ 120,000 Marriott Bonvoy points
This is higher than the estimated value of 0.9 cents so you’re a winner!
There are several ways to save on cash stays for Marriott Bonvoy hotels.
With a bit of luck and research, you can sometimes make good deals. It’s up to you to find them!