Marriott and American Express recently rolled out a few new co-branded credit cards along with some big changes to the top-tier *bonvoy brilliant* – including a much bigger bonus. Right now, you can earn 95,000 points after spending $6,000 in the first six months.
Read on for everything you need to know about this offer and all of the benefits of the Bonvoy Brilliant American Express Card.
Full Benefits of the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant American Express Card
- Welcome Offer Bonus: bonus_miles_full
- Complimentary Marriott Bonvoy Platinum Elite status.
- Get up to $300 in annual credits to use at restaurants worldwide. These will be available in up to $25 monthly increments – you will lose any unused credits each month.
- Free Night Certificate: Receive a free night certificate each year on your cardmember anniversary for properties that cost up to 85,000 points. This benefit starts in your second year of card membership.
- 25 elite night credits towards Bonvoy elite status each year you hold the card.
- Priority Pass Lounge Access: Enjoy unlimited airport lounge visits when you enroll in a Priority Pass Select membership. This comes complimentary with the card, and enrollment is required.
- Earn 6x Points: For each dollar spent at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy Program.
- Earn 3x Points: at restaurants worldwide and on flights booked directly with airlines.
- Earn 2x Points: on all other eligible purchases.
- $650 Annual Fee (see rates & fees)
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Why the Bonvoy Brilliant May Be Worth It
If you are thinking about picking up a co-branded Marriott credit card, the Bonvoy Brilliant's bonus is really solid. Bonuses with Marriott cards don't get much bigger than this, and it should allow you to come out ahead on the card's admittedly lofty $650 annual fee.
But the value goes beyond the points. Bonvoy Brilliant cardholders will now get complimentary Marriott Bonvoy Platinum Elite status just for holding the card. Platinum status opens up hotel club lounges, space-available room upgrades, late checkout (when available), and free breakfast at most Marriott hotel brands. Free breakfast alone adds a lot of value.
Bonvoy Brilliant cardholders will get up to $300 in statement credits for restaurants around the globe. But rather than giving cardholders a lump $300 sum to use each year at restaurants, Amex doles these out in monthly credits of $25. Much like credits on other American Express cards like *amex platinum* and the *amex gold*, this $25 monthly restaurant credit is a use-it-or-lose-it benefit.
Next, the card offers an annual free night certificate you get when you renew your card each and every year. Previously, this certificate could be redeemed at properties costing 50,000 points or less each night. These certificates are now redeemable at properties costing 85,000 Bonvoy points (or less) each night.
Finally, every year you hold the card, you'll earn 25 elite night credits towards Bonvoy elite status. That's up from the 15 nights the card previously earned.
Marriott also offers a fifth night free on award bookings. That means if you book any award stay for five nights, you'll only pay for four. That can stretch the value of this welcome offer bonus even further.
And one of the biggest benefits of Marriott's Bonvoy rewards program is the ability to transfer your points to over 40 partner airlines. You will get 1 airline mile for every 3 Marriott Bonvoy points you transfer. That means 60,000 Marriott points = 20,000 airline miles.
Related reading: Earn Marriott Bonvoy Points on Uber Rides, Uber Eats
What to Consider Before Applying
Since Marriott has co-branded credit cards issued from both American Express and Chase, you'll need to understand the application rules for each of their cards.
With American Express, you are allowed to earn a welcome bonus on each card once per lifetime. That means if you have had the Bonvoy Brilliant card in the past, you likely will not be eligible to earn this new welcome bonus.
You also won't be eligible to apply if you have the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card from Chase, or have earned the bonus on that card in the past 24 months.
All that said, American Express has recently rolled out a new feature they call Apply with Confidence that allows you to know whether or not they can approve you for the card before submitting your application and having the bank pull your credit score.
This is a stellar offer on the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card.
Above and beyond the welcome offer bonus, you shouldn't have to work too hard to squeeze value out of the Marriott Brilliant Card. Whether you are using the annual $300 restaurant credits, transferring excess points to an airline partner, using the free anniversary night, or taking advantage of the fifth-night free option, the choice is yours.
It's also the only card in Marriott's co-branded credit card portfolio that will get you complimentary Platinum Elite status just for holding the card.
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