Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Card Review: 3 Free Hotel Nights (Up to 50k Points Each) Offer

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The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless credit card is one of the co-branded rewards card for Marriott hotels (including hotels from the merger of Starwood Preferred Guest and Marriott). Here are the highlights:

  • Earn 3 Free Nights (each night valued up to 50,000 points) after spending $3,000 on purchases in your first 3 months.
  • 3X Bonvoy points per $1 on the first $6,000 spent in combined purchases each year on grocery stores, gas stations, and dining.
  • 1 Elite Night Credit towards Elite Status for every $5,000 you spend.
  • Additional Free Night Award (valued up to 35,000 points) every year after account anniversary.
  • Up to 17X total Bonvoy points per $1 spent at over 7,000 hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy™.
  • 2X Bonvoy points per $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • Automatic Silver Elite Status each account anniversary year. Gold Status when you spend $35,000 on purchases each account year.
  • 15 Elite Night Credits each calendar year.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $95 annual fee.

Keep in mind the following:

The bonus is not available to you if you:

(1) are a current cardmember, or were a previous cardmember within the last 30 days, of Marriott BonvoyTM American Express® Card (also known as The Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express);

(2) are a current or previous cardmember of either Marriott Bonvoy BusinessTM American Express® Card (also known as The Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express) or Marriott Bonvoy BrilliantTM American Express® Card (also known as the Starwood Preferred Guest® American Express Luxury Card), and received a new cardmember bonus or upgrade bonus in the last 24 months; or

(3) applied and were approved for Marriott Bonvoy BusinessTM American Express® Card (also known as The Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express) or Marriott Bonvoy BrilliantTM American Express® Card (also known as the Starwood Preferred Guest® American Express Luxury Card) within the last 90 days.

That’s a lot of long card names, but note the different 30-day, 90-day, and 24-month waiting periods that may now include Marriott business cards. (See my Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card Review.) This is why you should be looking to get the best possible bonus (like a limited-time offer) if you do apply.

As of April 2022, Marriott no longer has a fixed hotel category chart for booking points. You can still use these points at either Marriott properties (Ritz-Carlton, Renaissance Hotels, Courtyard, Residence Inn, Springhill Suites, Fairfield Inn & Suites) or former Starwood Properties (Westin, Sheraton, The Luxury Collection, Four Points by Sheraton, W Hotels, St. Regis, Le Méridien, Aloft), but now it is “dynamic” awards where the points required are more linked to the actual cash cost than before.

For reference, 50,000 Bonvoy points used to get you a peak award at Courtyard Waikiki Beach in Hawaii, a standard or off-peak award at the Sheraton Kauai Resort or Residence Inn Maui Wailea, or an off-peak award night at the Westin Moana Surfrider in Waikiki, Honolulu or the Westin Princeville Ocean Resort Villas.

You can use the Marriott free night search tool to price out some sample hotels. In general, I’ve found that you can get most mid-tier hotels (Sheraton, Marriott, Residence Inn, Courtyard) but often not the higher tier (Westin, St. Regis, Ritz-Carlton) at most major US cities. Still, for 5 free nights times $200 a night value easily in my experience, that’s already $1,000+ in potential value.

50k Point Free Night Award. Here is an example from a search performed in June 2022 for a night in August 2022. I can get 5 nights at the Westin San Francisco at Union Square for 48,000 points a night, which otherwise would have cost $343 a night prepaid upfront + taxes. With taxes, the total was $400 a night ($399.56 to be exact). $400 x 5 nights = $2,000 value.

Find a hotel that costs 52,000 points a night or 60,000 points? For example, I recently booked the Westin Maui at 60k points a night. You can just pay the difference in points, as long as the difference is within 15,000 points. Here are details on the Free Night Award Top Off option.

Bonvoy Points can also be transferred to airline miles with a bonus. 60,000 Marriott points = 25,000 airline miles. Similar to the old Starwood bonus structure, they will add 15,000 points for every 60,000 points you transfer to airline miles.

Finally, Marriott points are also convertible to gift cards, but it takes 60,000 points to redeem for a $200 gift card for Marriott or retailers like Best Buy, Home Depot, or Nordstrom. That ratio isn’t all that great so you’ll definitely get the most value via hotel night redemptions or airline miles transfer.

Free Night Award with Card Renewal. At your card anniversary (when you pay the annual fee), you will receive a Free Night Award that is good for one night (redemption level at or under 35,000 Marriott Bonvoy points) at a participating hotel. This excludes the very top properties, but for regular travelers it will be very easy to get your $95 value. Here are some sample hotels that I have tried to book in the past that came in at or under 35,000 points for selected dates:

  • Sheraton Kona Resort (Big Island, Hawaii)
  • Westin Hapuna Beach Resort (Big Island, Hawaii)
  • Courtyard Waikiki Beach (Honolulu, Oahu)
  • Sheraton Kauai Resort (Kauai, Hawaii)
  • W Atlanta
  • New York Marriott at the Brooklyn Bridge
  • Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile
  • W Chicago
  • The Ritz-Carlton, Beijing, China
  • The S. Regis Bangkok, Thailand

No annual fee alternative. The Marriott Bonvoy Bold card is also offers bonus points and some (lesser) perks, but with no annual fee.

Bottom line. The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card (formerly the Marriott Rewards Premier Plus Credit Card) is currently offering a special offer for new cardholders. As with all hotel cards, the value is dependent on your unique travel preferences. If you stay at Marriott/Starwood properties regularly, the free night award every year should easily cover the annual fee.

Also see: Top 10 Best Credit Card Bonus Offers.

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Comments

  1. I must recommend against Marriott cards in all forms. They have far, far, far too many restrictions on redemptions. “Have a free room, off-season, away from where you want to be, and in a moldy underused room.”

    That scenario literally happened three times, so I canceled my card. In each case it would have been far better to shop for rooms on the open market. [Hilton also has devalued their points, which were around half of their prior values at last check.]

    Choose cards with cash back or points-equivalent rewards (e.g., Amazon, Target, Wal-Mart). Travel cards are very often a scam.

    • Shrug, I’ve had many pleasant stays at hotels varying from Westins in Europe to Westins in Hawaii to Residence Inn at many US cities. They didn’t upgrade me to the Presidential Suite but they were all very nice rooms and usually much nicer than the more basic hotel I would have booked if I was paying cash. I just made another booking at a Residence Inn a few weeks ago, which is one of my preferred chains for the value and space.

  2. If this is a chase card why does it mention you cant be Marriott BonvoyTM American Express® Card last x days?

  3. 🤷

  4. It’s worth pointing out that the free night certificates expire after 12 months per the offer terms. I’m noticing more and more sign-up bonuses related to hotel and airline loyalty programs are moving to this model instead of giving you the equivalent in actual points (which would not expire). So this is a great deal if you plant to travel in the next year and stay in a Marriott, not so great if your timeline is further out:

    New cardmember bonus: To qualify and receive 5 Free Night Award E-Certificates you must make purchases totaling $5,000 or more during the first 3 months from account opening. Each Free Night Award E-Certificate is valid for a one night hotel stay at a property with a redemption level up to 50,000 points. You are responsible for all incidental charges such as parking fees, and payment of mandatory resort fees at properties where resort fees are charged. Purchases are when you, or an authorized user, use a Marriott Bonvoy® credit card to make purchases of products and services, minus returns or refunds. Buying products and services with your card, in most cases, will count as a purchase; however, the following types of transactions won’t count and won’t earn points: balance transfers, cash advances, travelers checks, foreign currency, money orders, wire transfers or similar cash-like transactions, lottery tickets, casino gaming chips, race track wagers or similar betting transactions, any checks that access your account, interest, unauthorized or fraudulent charges, and fees of any kind, including an annual fee, if applicable. After qualifying, please allow up to 8 weeks for your 5 Free Night Award E-Certificates to be deposited into your Marriott Bonvoy account. Your e-certificate may not be combined with cash or other Marriott Bonvoy points when redeeming for your free night, and may not be transferred, extended beyond expiration date, or re-credited for points. Each Free Night Award issued will have an expiration of 12 months.

    • Some more fine print in the above word blob making these E-certificates less useful than the normal Free Night Award certificates:

      “Your e-certificate may not be combined with cash or other Marriott Bonvoy points when redeeming for your free night”

      So you can’t even top these up to redeem rooms at a higher point value.

      • I do not believe that verbiage means that you can’t use the “Top Off Award” feature. That simply means you can’t mix and match points and cash during any given redemption. The FAQ seems pretty clear that the Top Off option is a special case that applies to all Free Night Awards, both the 35k and 50k ones earned through various means:

        “Free Night Awards are certificates that are earned through Marriott Bonvoy® partner programs (e.g., Co-brand Credit Cards), promotions or Elite Benefits (e.g., Annual Choice Benefit) and carry a specific Marriott Bonvoy® Points value that can be applied to a Night during an Eligible Stay.”

        I think the Top Off feature is great because otherwise I’d get annoyed at every award night that cost 52k, 55k points, 60k points etc. Lots more choice in the 60k zone.

        It’s true that I’d rather have 250,000 Bonvoy points instead of 5 x 50k award that expire in a year. However, that really isn’t a choice that exists. They’ve never offered 250,000 Bonvoy points flat bonus, and the usual “limited-time offer” has been 100k in the past.

  5. I would like to sign up for this but had a question: if I closed my Bonvoy business card in September 2020 (less than 2 years ago), but received the new card member bonus associated with that account greater than 2 years ago, am I still eligible for this bonus?

    • Based on the information you provided that you received the bonus more than 24 months ago and the card is closed now, you should be eligible for this bonus according to their terms.

  6. I’m have a Marriott Amex card as an authorized user. Can I still get the free night bonus?

  7. David Ma says

    oh, so even if the bonus is for a new marriott chase card, just by being a current marriott amex card authorized user, I cannot get the bonus for the new card?

    • I’m sorry, I was confused by your initial question. No, being an authorized user on another card does not prevent you from getting the bonus for the new card. Credit cards are only issued to individuals, so your authorized user status doesn’t matter.

  8. I’m worried about fine print and new to Travel cards. This isn’t like stay 3 nights and get free 4th night is it? Can I spend just one night and have it count against a free night?

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