Marriott Bonvoy™ American Express® Card

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Marriott Bonvoy™ American Express® Card

Card Type: Amex Credit Card

Base
Brand

Earning rate: 6X Marriott ⚬ 2X on all other eligible purchases

Big spend bonus: Marriott Gold Elite with $30K annual spend (note this threshold will increase to $35K on January 1, 2019)

Noteworthy perks: 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card account anniversary up to 35K points (subject to resort fees) ⚬ Receive free premium internet at Marriott properties.

See also: Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide

Rewards

Marriott points can be redeemed for free night awards, travel packages, airline miles, or experiences. 5th Night Free Awards: When redeeming points for free nights, the 5th night within a single reservation is free. Airline miles: Points can be converted to airline miles at a rate of 3 points to 1 mile. A bonus is added on when you transfer 60,000 points at a time, such that 60,000 points transfers to 25,000 miles. Also, you'll get a 10% bonus when transferring points to United Airlines.

Everything you need to know about Marriott's rewards program, Bonvoy, can be found here: Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide

Perks

  • Annual free night award: Each year, after renewal, you will receive one Free Night Award. The Free Night Award can be redeemed for a one-night stay at Marriott hotels with a redemption level at or under 35,000 points.
  • Automatic Silver Elite status: Offers a 10% point bonus on points earned from hotel stays.
  • Gold Elite status with $35K spend: Spend $35K within a calendar year to get Gold Elite status good for the rest of that year and all of the next year. Gold elite status offers 2pm late checkout, 25% point bonus on points earned from hotel stays, points-only welcome gift, chance of a room upgrade, and complimentary enhanced internet.
  • 15 Elite Night Credits: This is now a standard perk with all currently available Marriott cards. These elite nights count towards your total towards elite status each year. For example, if you stay 35 nights in Marriott properties, you will earn 50 night Platinum status thanks to these 15 elite nights adding to your actual stays. Unfortunately the 15 elite nights do not stack across cards.

How to Meet Spend Requirements

In order to meet minimum spend requirements, people often look for options to increase spend in ways that result in getting their money back. These techniques are referred to as "manufacturing spend". American Express has terms in their welcome offers that exclude some manufactured spend techniques from counting towards the minimum spend requirements for the welcome bonus. For example, most new cardmember bonuses have terms like this:
Eligible purchases to meet the Threshold Amount do NOT include fees or interest charges, purchases of travelers checks, purchases or reloading of prepaid cards, purchases of gift cards, person-to-person payments, or purchases of other cash equivalents.
That said, many techniques for meeting minimum spend are perfectly fine. Here are some techniques that are safe for meeting Amex minimum spend requirements (click each link for more information):

Keep or Cancel?

This card is not particularly rewarding for spend. In my opinion, the decision as to whether to keep the card past the first year should be based on how much you value the annual free night. If you value the free night significantly higher than this card's annual fee, then keep the card. Otherwise, cancel when the annual fee comes due.

Related Cards (Marriott Bonvoy)

Marriott Bonvoy Boundless™ Credit Card
5 Free Nights
Earn 5 50K free night certificates after $5K spend in 3 months
(Offer Expires 10/28/2020)

$95 Annual Fee

Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card
100K Points + Platinum Status + up to $150 statement credit
100K points after $5K spend in the first 3 months + Complimentary Platinum Status for 2021 membership year (2/1/21 to 1-31-22) + up to $150 in statement credits for eligible purchases on U.S. Advertising in select media in first 6 months. Terms apply. (Rates & Fees)
(Offer Expires 1/13/2021)

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Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card
125K points + Platinum Status
125K points + Platinum Status: 100K points after $5K spend in the first 3 months + Platinum status for 2021 membership year (2/1/21 to 1-31-22) + 25K points after first anniversary. Terms apply.
(Offer Expires 1/13/2021)

$450 Annual Fee

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