Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Chase Marriott Card Review

To be complete, I figured I should write about the lower fee Chase Marriott card as well, the lower priced sibling of the Chase Marriott Premier card I had applied for and was approved for previously. At the time I had also glanced at this Chase Marriott card and concluded quite easily that this card was not as valuable as its more feature-rich albeit pricier sibling.

To keep this short and sweet, I will refer to some of the stuff I had previously written about regarding the value of Marriott Points and redemptions here and in my post about the Premier card here, since some of the information applies to both of these cards.

There are quite a number of differences in benefits between the cards for just a $40 difference. The initial 50k bonus on the Premier card is dropped down to 30k although you do get one extra Category 1-4 free night upon account approval to make up for that difference. However, the annual Category 1-5 free night on account anniversary is removed and as is the no foreign transaction fee benefit. Additionally the 5/2/1 points earning structure is downgraded to a 3/1 earning structure which really make very little sense considering MR points are worth about half as much as Hyatt or Starwood points already, making the Sapphire or Starwood cards a much better proposition.

This credit card offer comes with:
  • Free 30k points after first purchase
  • Two free nights at a Category 1-4 upon account approval
  • 3 points per $1 spend at Marriott hotels
  • 1 point per $1 spend on everything else
  • Waived $45 annual fee for first year
Since the difference between this card and its Premier sibling is just $40, I don't see why anyone would choose this card given that the free annual Category 1-4 hotel night can be valued at up to $200 in value alone, notwithstanding the foreign exchange fee or the points earning structure. If you are considering this card, I would highly encourage you to look into the Premier card as a more cost-effective alternative.

Disclaimer: This card is only available to US residents.  Also, I am not paid by Chase to endorse their products.

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