The Oncoming Storm: Marriott/SPG Merger Information

As much as I was upset by the news of the merging of Starwood with Marriott, and I’m still not thrilled by the prospect, the recent news really is the best case for what we could hope for from an SPG member perspective. There are definitely some frustrating points involved, particularly for partner members (Delta and United alike), those that receive status from credit cards (American Express Platinum, for example), and those that focus on stays over nights to attain status.

Adding a spend “qualification” to receive Ambassador service does make sense given the property footprints of Starwood versus Marriott, but putting the price in USD is questionable as Gary points out. For those that spend a lot of time in countries with drastic currency conversion rates, it might require a ridiculous number of days to attain this tier of status. Bundling Your24 with this tier is also a little frustrating, but again with the substantially increased footprint, I can understand wanting to make this more exclusive.

Given Marriott’s relationship with United, the announcement that the relationship with Delta will be ending soon isn’t really a surprise. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed earning points with both at the same time, so this will be missed. With old Platinum Premier Elites, when this tier was invitation-only, receiving Untied Gold, it’s unclear if there will be a new influx of United Gold members as well.

I appreciate that the new Lifetime Status qualifications are based on nights and years, not on points/spend. Plus: breakfast at more properties which can save a decent chunk of change. All things considered, it could be much worse!

Author: Hari

Hey there! I’m a Clemson grad that travels quite a lot for work, and am the help of my lady working on traveling more for pleasure both solo as well as with my lady. This is a place for me to jot my thoughts… adventures… misadventures… fun products and the such. Before we get started, just a brief disclaimer: all thoughts and opinions expressed in this blog are my own and not those of my employer. I will clearly identify all affiliate links as well. You don't have to use them, of course, but I certainly won't object if you do! :) If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to me by email at... hari [at] traveling-tiger.com Thanks for visiting!

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