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One aspect of loyalty programs that often gets overlooked is the reciprocal relationships many programs have with others. Comprehensive guides to a particular are far more likely to focus on how to earn and redeem points, only touching lightly on benefits that you may receive with other programs. It's good to know when these can provide some extra benefit to you. Not all will. But many could, including two key Marriott Bonvoy airline partners.
Marriott Bonvoy Airline Partners — Two Reciprocal Airline Agreements
Marriott offers the ability to transfer Bonvoy points to numerous airline partners — something you should understand in case you ever need to use it. This is available to all Marriott Bonvoy members, yet this isn't a reciprocal agreement. Most of these airlines don't offer the ability to move your airline miles over to Marriott Bonvoy.
However, there are two airlines where Marriott's partnership goes much further. These are:
Both of these Marriott Bonvoy airline partners offer reciprocal elite status or benefits to their program members, depending on their status tier. You also can earn airline miles for Marriott stays, plus Marriott points for flights. Let's jump into the details of each partnership.
RewardsPlus With Marriott Bonvoy and United MileagePlus
Marriott's partnership with United has been a longstanding feature of the two loyalty programs, undergoing some tweaks over the years. RewardsPlus offers enhanced benefits for elite members of both programs and the chance to double up on rewards for all members who enroll. The program encourages members to take advantage of Marriott's large global footprint and provides an incentive to members of Marriott Bonvoy and MileagePlus to stick within the brands.
United MileagePlus Premier members receive:
- Complimentary Gold Elite status in Marriott Bonvoy: This is open to MileagePlus Premier Gold members and higher. Registration is required. Higher Marriott Bonvoy status is not offered, unfortunately.
- Conversion of MileagePlus award miles into Marriott Bonvoy points at a 1:1 ratio: Open to Premier Silver members and above, registration isn't required. You can convert up to 100,000 miles at this rate each calendar year.
- Access to unique experiences and offers: Open to all members.
Marriott elite members receive:
- Complimentary Premier Silver status in MileagePlus: Open to Titanium Elite members and above. Registration is required.
- 10% more miles when converting Marriott Bonvoy points into MileagePlus miles: Open to all members. Rather than 5,000 bonus miles when you transfer 60,000 Bonvoy points (which is offered for many airlines), you receive 10,000 bonus miles. Miles transfer at a 3:1 ratio, so you'd receive 30,000 United miles for every 60,000 Bonvoy points.
Your World Rewards With Marriott Bonvoy and Emirates Skywards
Similar to the partnership between Marriott and United, Marriott and Emirates program members enjoy some reciprocal benefits through Your World Rewards. Marriott Bonvoy members flying with Emirates receive:
- 3 Bonvoy points per $1 spent on all eligible Emirates flights: This is on top of Skywards miles you already earn, open to Marriott Gold and higher elites
- Elite in-airport benefits, including priority check-in and priority boarding: Open to Marriott Bonvoy Platinum and higher elites
As an EmirateseElite staying at a Marriott property:
- Earn 1 Skywards mile per $1 spent on all eligible stays at Marriott Bonvoy hotels and resorts worldwide: Offered to Emirates Skywards Silver, Gold, and Platinum members.
- Enjoy additional benefits at Marriott Bonvoy hotels and resorts: These include 4 p.m. late checkout, access to elite check-in, and complimentary in-room Wi-Fi, available to Emirates Skywards Gold and Platinum members.
The reciprocal agreements between Marriott Bonvoy and two airline partners are worth understanding. There may be some low-hanging fruit — benefits you didn't even know you could be enjoying already.
Some of these benefits are really easy to obtain. Considering that you can earn automatic Gold Elite status with the Marriott Bonvoy Bevy™ American Express® Card or even automatic Platinum Elite status through the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card, there are some benefits you could easily enjoy with either of these cards.
Of all the benefits, the one most program members should note is the additional bonus miles offered when you transfer Marriott Bonvoy points to United MileagePlus miles. This makes the effective transfer ratio ratio 60,000 Bonvoy points to 30,000 United miles. This is one transfer where you'll actually come out ahead — at least based on the average value AwardWallet members get from their United and Marriott redemptions.
Reciprocal agreements can be a fantastic way of “double-dipping” on points and miles, allowing you to reach that next travel goal faster.
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