Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card review

Published: April 25, 2019

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Published: April 25, 2019

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Ratings Policy
Business Rating:
4.3 rating
4.3 rating
4.3 / 5
Rewards Value 4.5
Annual Percentage Rate 0.1
Rewards Flexibility 3.9
Features 3.8
Customer Experience 4.6

In a Nutshell:

Loyalists of Marriott Bonvoy brands can rack up points easily with generous bonuses on spending categories on the Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card.

Learn more about this card

Rewards Rate

  • 6 points per dollar at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels
  • 4 points per dollar on U.S. restaurants, U.S. gas stations, wireless phone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and U.S. shipping purchases
  • 2 points per dollar on other purchases
  • Terms apply

Introductory Bonus

  • 75,000 points if you spend $3,000 in first 3 months
  • Terms apply

Annual Fee
$125 (See rates and fees)

Average Yearly Rewards Value ($4,000 monthly spend)
$1,402

APR
17.99-26.99% (variable) (See rates and fees)

Rewards Redemption
Pros

  • Points don’t expire
  • No blackout dates
  • No point limits
  • 1:1 point transfer to most frequent-flier partners
  • High redemption value for hotel and airline purchases
  • Earn bonus points when you convert 20,000 points into miles
  • Redeem points on gift cards, travel, entertainment packages, donations and more

Cons

  • Lower points value on less expensive hotels
  • A lot of points are needed to redeem for weekday travel

Customer Experience

Other Notable Features: Free silver elite status, annual free night on your account anniversary, additional annual free night when you spend $60,000 in a calendar year, upgrade to gold status when you spend more than $35,000 in a calendar year, no foreign transaction fees (See rates and fees), free hotel Internet and Boingo Wi-Fi access, no fee for employee cards (See rates and fees), tools to manage business receipts and expenses, designate an account manager, set individual limits on employee cards

To unify the recently merged SPG, Ritz-Carlton and Marriott Rewards programs, Marriott recently unveiled a revamped loyalty program – Marriott Bonvoy. Marriott Bonvoy comes with a huge network of hotels and a competitive rewards rate, as well as luxurious benefits for elite status members.

Along with rewards program updates, Marriott co-branded credit cards have gotten a facelift. The Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card (previously the Starwood Preferred Guest Business Credit Card from American Express) comes with a generous welcome bonus – 75,000 points if you spend $3,000 in the first three months.

A generous introductory bonus combined with flexible rewards make the updated Marriott Bonvoy Business card a great choice for loyalists of the brand.

Great earning rate

The card offers an incredibly generous earning rate. You get six points per dollar on Marriott Bonvoy purchases and four points per dollar on U.S. restaurant, U.S. gas station, wireless phone services (purchased directly from a U.S. provider) and U.S. shipping purchases. The remainder of your purchases earn two points per dollar.

Even when you account for the lower-than-average value of Marriott points, the Marriott Bonvoy Business card offers one of the highest earning rates for a travel card. And, with the added bonus categories, you have even more opportunities to maximize the points on your spending.

Great introductory bonus

The Marriott Bonvoy Business Amex is currently offering a 75,000-point welcome bonus if you spend $3,000 in first three months. Even when you consider the inflated value of Marriott points – worth about 0.8 cents on average by our estimates – the bonus can score you a fair number of free hotel nights. Moreover, with the Marriott program’s fifth-night free benefit, which offers a free fifth night on any rewards stay, you can stretch your bonus even further.

Free annual night award

Adding significantly to its ongoing value, the Marriott Bonvoy Business card offers a free night award certificate each year on your card anniversary. The certificate is very valuable – worth up to 35,000 points – but it comes with a couple limitations. It’s only valid for category 5 hotels and lower – which means category 6 and 7 hotels are off limits. Also, you’ll need to make sure to redeem it in a timely manner, since it expires in 12 months.

In addition, cardholders who spend at least $60,000 in a calendar year can receive an extra free night award at the same value. While we estimate this is more than the average spender will put on the card in a year, it is a valuable benefit for heavy spenders.

Flexible redemption options

The updated Marriott Bonvoy program is very flexible – your points don’t expire and there are no restrictions or blackout dates. If a room is available, you can book it with points.

Plus, you can transfer points to several airline partners at a 3:1 ratio with a 15,000-point bonus when you transfer points in increments of 60,000. This is a great deal, because it gives you many travel options for your points and allows you to get an even better redemption value than 0.8 cent per point by searching for deals within each airline program.

Free Silver Elite status

As a Marriott Bonvoy Business cardholder, you automatically qualify for Silver Elite status in the Marriott Bonvoy rewards program – which grants you a 20-percent increase on the base points that you earn for eligible hotel stays. Also, the card gives you a boost to higher status: If you spend $35,000 in a year, you’ll get an automatic upgrade to Gold status, which entitles you to some great hotel perks, including free in-room internet, complimentary room upgrades, lounge access and more.

Valuable travel perks

The Marriott Bonvoy Business card comes with some very nice perks for business travelers. The card gets you free in-room internet access at any Marriott Bonvoy hotel and free Boingo Wi-Fi access, which gives you good internet coverage in airports throughout the U.S. and Europe.

Added business benefits for cardholders

Another feature unique to the business version of this card is a suite of tools that help business owners manage their accounts. For example, you can add employee cards at no fee and set individual limits for each of those cards. You also can appoint an account manager to oversee your account, and ReceiptMatch makes it easy to add and tag receipts from a mobile device while you are on the go.

Why get the Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card?

  • You frequently travel and stay at Starwood, Ritz-Carlton and Marriott hotels.
  • You’re trying to earn elite status in the Marriott Bonvoy rewards program.
  • You want to leverage your business spending to earn free travel and hotel stays.
  • You want a flexible travel rewards card with hotel and airline rewards.
  • You would benefit from the card’s tools to manage your business spending.
  • You want to add multiple employees to your account for no extra fee.
  • You plan to designate another person to manage your account.
  • You spend more than $60,000 each calendar year and can qualify for an additional free night award and gold elite status.

How to use the Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card:

  • Use your card for most purchases in the first three months in order to earn the card’s introductory bonus.
  • Stay at Marriott Bonvoy hotels when you travel – you can earn up to six bonus points through your card.
  • Book stays of five nights or longer to take advantage of the fifth night free perk.

For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Business Card, please click here.

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