With the Marriott devaluation coming on May 16, I decided to cash out all of my husband’s and my Marriott Rewards points for a Category 1-5 vacation package. Here is the link to the Marriott Rewards vacations packages. We used a total of 270,000 Marriott Rewards points and received 120,000 Southwest Rapid Rewards points and a week free next winter at the Residence Inn Delray Beach, Florida review post. This hotel is a category 5 and its category will not be changed with the devaluation.
More important to us is the Southwest Companion Pass. To get a Southwest Companion Pass you need 110,000 Southwest Rapid Rewards qualifying points in a calendar year. As of last week when I ordered my vacation package, points transferred from the Marriott Rewards vacation packages are still qualifying for the Southwest Companion Pass.
There were a number of steps and time delays that I thought you would want to be aware of before you begin the process of ordering your Marriott vacation package and earning a Southwest Companion Pass.
Make a seven night reservation with Marriott Rewards points, but make sure you tell the agent that you do not want to order the rewards certs at this time. This requires you to call Marriott reservations 1-800-228-2100.
Marriott Rewards allows you to transfer your points to your legal spouse or domestic partner at time of reward redemption provided he or she is also a Marriott Rewards member. This again requires a telephone call. I prefer to use The Ritz-Carlton agents at 866-922-6882. Provide both your and your spouse’s or partners’ Marriott Rewards numbers, the number of points to be transferred and the account they will be transferred to. I received a form by fax that my husband needed to sign and fax back, since he was transferring his points to me. Only the Marriott Rewards points needed to redeem the specified reward, rounded to the nearest 1,000 points, may be transferred.
3-Buying and Transferring Points
We were short 32,000 Marriott Rewards points for our vacation package, so I decided to transfer that amount of points from Chase Ultimate Rewards. The transfer took almost two days before the points appeared in my Marriott Rewards account.
Another option is to buy Marriott Rewards points. Each Marriott Rewards member may purchase a maximum of 50,000 points per calendar year. Points may be purchased in increments of 1,000 and points cost $12.50 (USD) per 1,000 points to buy.
4-Ordering the Marriott Rewards Vacation Package
Again I called The Ritz-Carlton agent at 866-922-6882. I gave the agent my reservation confirmation number from step one. The points in our two Marriott Rewards accounts were combined and the agent ordered my vacation package for 270,000 Marriott Rewards points.
5-Southwest Compassion Pass
It took almost another 2 days and I received 120,000 Southwest points in my Rapid Rewards account. When I signed into my account, I was directed to designate my companion. After naming my husband as my companion, I added him to each of my twelve flight reservations with Southwest for a total cost of $30 ($2.50 per flight). Our companion pass is good through December 2014.
Why did I wait until last week to order this package? The seven night free hotel stay is good for one year. I wanted to make sure that it would be valid through the end of March 2014. Since my husband is my companion and we do very little travel together on Southwest during the first quarter of the year, it was better for us to wait to be able to use our free Marriott week.