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It is this time of year again where every hotel changes re-looks at their hotel categories and makes some sort of change. Marriott is no different than the rest and while the redemption chart is not changing, there are MANY hotel moving up or down a category. Unfortunately, more hotels are moving up than down. This change takes place on March 20, 2015, so as long as you make your reservation prior to that date you are good to go.
There is a 35 page list of all the hotels changing and they are alphabetized by hotel name so there is no real way to see a list of hotels moving per region. But they do have it sectioned off my hotels moving down (pages 1-9) vs. hotels moving up (pages 10-35).
After a quick glance at the list, it seems as though there are little “aspirational” hotels moving categories. Many of them are your Residence Inn, TownePlace Suites, Courtyard, etc., and while those hotels can be great for redeeming points, chances are if the desired hotel you are looking to stay at went up a category there might be another non-affected Marriott hotel nearby.
Of course any change that is not in the consumers favor is a devaluation of points in my book. And remember, this can affect the free night category 1-5 certificates you earn from the Marriott credit card and the MegaBonus certificates available at a category 1-4 hotel.