I guess all good things must come to an end.
This morning, I was checking the points & miles blogs like I always do. Then, out of nowhere, comes the headline “Minor Changes Coming to Marriott Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest in 2018” from The Points Guy.
As a Marriott Platinum (since 2014) I clicked on it, and saw some of what I’d expect. Starpoints will never expire, there’s a new partnership with Hertz, but then, in big bold letters, came the crushing blow.
- Marriott Rewards status buy back will be discontinued in 2018.
NooOOO! I cried. But first, here’s some backstory.
I signed up for a Platinum Challenge from a competing program back in 2014, with a February 2016 expiry. I had to stay at nine properties in three months (not too bad) and I’d instantly get Platinum status.
I succeed in the challenge, and have been a Marriott Platinum, (and reciprocally and perhaps more importantly a United Silver) ever since.
I fly around 40,000 to 50,000 miles on United per year, so dis-regarding the spending requirement, and you’d be looking at a mid-tier United member. Unfortunately, since I’m only 18 and don’t have a co-branded credit card, I’m limited to about 2,000-2,500 Premier Qualifying Dollars (PQD’s), so I’m really in trouble here.
I fully understand that this is my fault. I should never have had all of my eggs in one basket, and Rewards members were never entitled to a Buy Back, it was just part of my game plan, one that I’m going to have to reinvent.