Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card Adds Restaurant Credit, Cuts Hotel Credit

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A major change is coming to the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card (review), and it’s a mixed bag.

Changes to Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card $300 credit

The Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card has a $450 annual fee (Rates & Fees), and that’s easy enough to justify between the 15 elite nights toward status annually, anniversary free night award, and $300 annual hotel credit. It’s a card that I have, and that I find to be worthwhile.

Some changes are coming to the card, though. As of September 22, 2022:

The card will no longer off a $300 annual Marriott travel credit; historically this credit could be redeemed toward virtually any purchase at a Marriott property worldwideThis credit will be replaced by up to $300 in statement credits per calendar year (up to $25 per month) for eligible purchases at restaurants worldwide; this credit can be used toward virtually any purchase coded as being from a restaurantThe Bonvoy Brilliant Card is cutting its hotel credit

My take on these Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card changes

On the surface this change shouldn’t be a major deal, in the sense that one $300 credit is being replaced by another credit of up to $300. Presumably most people with the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card both spend at least $300 per year at Marriott properties, and spend at least $25 per month at restaurants.

So it shouldn’t be too hard to actually use this credit. However, personally I’m not a fan of this change:

It’s much easier to be able to use the entire $300 annual credit toward a single purchase, rather than having to use the card for 12 straight months to maximize this benefitThere are other credit cards I’d rather use for my restaurant spending to maximize points, so there’s some opportunity cost to putting dining spending on this card; I have enough credits I’m trying to keep track of as isI imagine the motivation for this change is to increase breakage on people using the credit, and/or to increase wallet share, by ensuring that people remember to use this card every month; I imagine virtually everyone with the card uses the $300 annual Marriott credit, while I would imagine many cardmembers wouldn’t use this card for at least $25 worth of restaurant spending each monthThe Bonvoy Brilliant Card has a new restaurant credit

Bottom line

Changes are coming to the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card as of September 22, 2022. The card will no longer offer a $300 annual Marriott credit, but will instead offer up to $300 in restaurant credits per year, in the form of a $25 monthly restaurant credit.

While you can ultimately get the same value from this new credit, this does take a lot more effort, and will require many people to switch around their spending to maximize this perk.

What do you make of this Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card credit change?

(Tip of the hat to Doctor Of Credit)

The following links will direct you to the rates and fees for mentioned American Express Cards. These include: Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card (Rates & Fees).

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