Our family is headed to Miami, Florida. We are staying at the gorgeous, Cadillac Hotel & Beach Club. We booked a basic 2-queen room for 60,000 points +$34.20 taxes/fees, then requested to use a suite night award. Our wish was granted and now for no additional dollars spent, we’ll enjoy a luxury suite. 1 Bedroom, 2 Room Suite, 1 King, Sofa Bed, Oceanfront. Pinch, me…yes, please!
Photo courtesy of the hotel.
You’ve been upgraded! Your Suite Night Award request has been confirmed. Music to my ears!
Upon hotel availability, most hotel loyalty programs offer elite members a complimentary upgrade to rooms during check-in. However, the room upgrade typically consists of just one room-grade higher. For example, if you booked a king garden view, you might receive a complimentary king ocean view, but definitely not a suite. The “suite night award” perk with Marriott Bonvoy is one of the few hotel loyalty programs that allows you to request a suite prior to your hotel stay. When we travel with our children, this perk is highly desirable. The typical 1000 sq. ft. suites allow us to spread out and our teen boy & girl sleep in their own beds. Most suites include a separate bedroom and a pull-out couch. We typically request a rollaway bed as well.
Photos above courtesy of the hotel.
Marriott Platinum and Titanium members (those that have stayed 50 and 75 nights a year) are eligible for suite night awards. No, we did not stay the full 75 nights to earn our Titanium status. Some nights were rewarded by Marriott, and we also used several tips & tricks to earn extra nights needed to reach Titanium status. We plan out a year in advance all of the necessary ways to hit Titanium status because the perks are just that good!
Marriott Platinum members (50 nights) are eligible for select choice benefit-5 suite night awards, while Titanium (75 nights) are eligible for 10 suite night awards.
Suite night awards can be used on both cash and award stays. Marriott does require you to use one suite night award for each night of your stay. So, this is where you’ll need to plan accordingly. If you are staying 3 nights at a resort and want the suite upgrade, you’ll have to use 3 of your suite night awards. Suite upgrades are requested online or through the Marriott app. If the suites are sold out, Marriott will return your suite night awards and most likely still upgrade you to a nicer room than your reservation, but it may not be a suite.
To maximize your suite night awards, you’ll want to know when to use them. Marriott members receive basic complimentary hotel room upgrades (when available), so if you are staying at a Marriott for your son’s soccer game, we would suggest skipping the suite night award for that stay. However, if it’s a special trip for your birthday, anniversary, etc. or like us when we vacation with our children, requesting a suite beforehand just might make you’re your vacation that much sweeter!
Not all Marriott hotels are created equal, right? We wouldn’t waste our suite up-grades on limited-service properties. We save them for the splurge vacations, like our trip to Maui last year or when we stayed on points at The St. Regis in Toronto. The fancier the property, the nicer the suite and amenities are. So save your hotel points, book the basic room at your favorite Marriott properties and then use your suite upgrades!
Peak season is another time to strategize using your suite upgrade perks. Over spring break, the likelihood of receiving a complimentary upgrade to a larger room would be slimmer based on availability, therefore spring break (peak season) is a great week to use the suite upgrade award.
Let’s say you have 5 suite nights left this year. You want to stay at a St. Regis for 7 nights. Based on Marriott’s ruling, you would need 7 suite nights for your stay. To work around this, we would book 5 nights on suite-night awards, then book a second reservation for 2 nights in a basic room. If Marriott has availability, they will combine your reservation at check-in and allow you to continue to stay in the suite without the use of additional suite night awards. Of course, there are no guarantees and there may not be available rooms, but we’ve had the suite use extended on multiple stays. Sometimes, you just have to ask…the Marriott brand has always treated us very well!
Photo courtesy of the hotel.
Now of course, none of this is possible without the Marriott Bonvoy credit cards. My husband and I both use Marriott Bonvoy credit cards. When we travel hack with either Marriott credit cards or other credit cards to earn free travel, we play by the 2 player rule. Want to learn how this all works? Want to plan a vacation and earn free stays, airlines, etc. Get on the travel hacking train and book a consultation with Tiffany. She has so many tips, tricks, when to take out certain credit cards, how to hit minimums and how to maximize points while still working around the 5/24 Chase credit card rule.
Tiffany is truly a credit card point guru. She was very patient and helped my husband and I navigate our credit card point game.
WE’VE SAT ON THOUSANDS OF POINTS FOR YEARS WITH NO CLUE HOW TO REALLY USE THEM. TIFFANY COACHED US HOW TO COMBINE OUR POINTS, TRANSFER POINTS AND ADD MORE POINTS THROUGH CREDIT CARD SIGN-ON BONUSES. AWESOME SERVICE.
WE OWN A SMALL BUSINESS AND HAVE ALWAYS WRITTEN CHECKS OR USED OUR DEBIT CARD EARNING ZERO TRAVEL REWARDS. WE’VE CHANGED OUR WHOLE WAY OF MANAGING MONEY AND ARE ON OUR WAY TO A FREE LUXURY VACATION THANKS TO TIFFANY.
TIFFANY HELPED MY HUSBAND AND I EARN A VACATION TO CROATIA BY USING SPECIFIC TRAVEL CREDIT CARDS ON OUR DAUGHTER’S WEDDING. WE HAD PLANNED TO WRITE CHECKS TO ALL OF THE VENDORS, SO GLAD WE MADE A 1:1 COACHING CALL.
WITH TIFFANY’S GUIDANCE, we EARNED 400,000 CREDIT CARD POINTS BUT WE DIDN’T KNOW HOW BEST TO USE THEM. WE HIRED HER TO PLAN OUR TRIP USING A COMBINATION OF POINTS, MILES AND CASH (CREDIT CARD). HIRING HER WAS THE BEST MONEY I’VE EVER SPENT. SHE WENT WAY ABOVE AND BEYOND. PARIS HERE WE COME.