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Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card – Review

At a Glance
American Express Marriott Bonvoy Business Card
4.3 / 5
Rating

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Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card

  • Welcome Offer: For a limited time, earn 100,000 bonus Marriott Bonvoy points after you use your new card to make $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of card membership (offer expires 4/24/19)
  • Rewards Rate: 6 points per dollar spent at participating Marriott hotels; 4 points per dollar spent at U.S. restaurants, gas stations, shipping providers, and on wireless telephone services made directly with U.S. providers; 2 points per dollar spent on all other eligible purchases
  • Benefits: Complimentary award night each year after your cardmember anniversary (redemption level 35,000 points or less); complimentary Silver Elite Status; upgrade to Gold Elite Status when you spend at least $35,000 in qualifying purchases in a calendar year; free in-room Internet access
  • APR: For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card, please visit this rates and fees page.
  • Fees: No foreign transaction fee
  • Annual Fee: $125 ($95, waived in the first year, for cardmembers who open their accounts before 3/28/19)
  • Credit Needed: Good/Excellent

Advertiser Disclosure: This post includes references to offers from our partners. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. However, the opinions expressed here are ours alone and at no time has the editorial content been provided, reviewed, or approved by any issuer.

The Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card is a hotel rewards card and business credit card with a $125 annual fee ($95, waived during the first year, for cardmembers who open their accounts before 3/28/19). For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card, please visit this rates and fees page.

Every Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card purchase earns Marriott Bonvoy points, Marriott’s loyalty program currency. Once you accumulate enough points, you can redeem for free nights and room upgrades at thousands of participating Marriott hotels worldwide.

The Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card directly competes with other popular business travel rewards cards, including the Gold Delta SkyMiles Business Credit Card and The Business Platinum Credit Card from American Express.

Key Features

Welcome Offer

For a limited time, earn 100,000 bonus Marriott Bonvoy points after you use your new card to make $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of card membership. This offer expires 4/24/19.

Earning Marriott Bonvoy Points

All eligible purchases made at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels earn 6 points per $1 spent.

All eligible purchases made at U.S. restaurants, gas stations, U.S. shipping providers, and on wireless telephone services purchases directly from U.S. service providers earn 4 points per $1 spent.

All other eligible purchases earn 2 points per $1 spent.

Redeeming Marriott Bonvoy Points

Marriott Bonvoy points are redeemable for free hotel nights and room upgrades at participating Marriott Bonvoy properties worldwide.

Free night redemption minimums start at 7,500 points for Category 1 hotels, which are budget-friendly and less luxurious, and rise to as much as 85,000 points for super high-end Category 8 hotels. Note, however, that exact point requirements vary based on season and demand.

If you don’t have enough points for a full night, you can combine cash and points to earn a free room.

Bonvoy point redemption values can vary based on season, demand, and the cash price of the room or upgrade. However, they frequently exceed $0.01 per point, and may go even higher in some cases.

Note that some Marriott hotels and resorts may have mandatory service charges.

Complimentary Silver Elite Status

As long as your account remains open and in good standing, you enjoy complimentary Silver Elite Status in the Marriott loyalty program.

Annual Spending Bonus

When you spend at least $35,000 in eligible purchases on your card in a calendar year, you earn an upgrade to Gold Elite Status through the end of the following calendar year.

Annual Free Award Night

Every year your account remains open and in good standing, you earn 1 complimentary award night at participating Marriott properties after your account anniversary. Some hotels have resort fees, and your award is limited to properties with redemption levels at or below 35,000 points.

Free WiFi

As long as your account remains open, you get free premium in-room WiFi at all participating properties.

Additional Travel Benefits

This card has a host of travel benefits that apply regardless of whether the cardholder is staying at a participating Marriott property:

  • 24/7 global assistance for any traveler more than 100 miles from home
  • Roadside assistance for all travelers, no matter the location
  • Accidental death and dismemberment insurance for traveling cardholders
  • Complimentary loss and damage insurance on rental cars paid for with the card

General Benefits

This card has a number of non-travel benefits for purchases made with the card:

  • Purchase protection for items damaged or stolen within 90 days of purchase
  • 12-month extended warranties on any items with original warranties of five years or less
  • Return protection (up to $300 per item) for returns rejected by the original merchant within 90 days of purchase

Additional Business Benefits

This card has some additional benefits for business owners:

  • Digital receipt storage
  • The option to designate an employee or associate as your account manager
  • Expense tagging and tracking

Important Fees

This card has a $125 annual fee. Cardholders who open their accounts before 3/28/19 enjoy a $95 annual fee, waived the first year.

Purchases made with this card never incur foreign transaction fees. Late and returned payments both cost up to $38. Cash advances cost the greater of $5 or 3%. There are no fees for additional employee cards.

For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card, please visit this rates and fees page.

Credit Required

This card requires good to excellent credit.

Advantages

  1. Very Good Welcome Offer. For a limited time, this card’s welcome offer is worth 100,000 points on $5,000 in qualifying purchases within the first 3 months. That’s a great deal more than popular Amex business cards such as the Business Green Rewards Card from American Express.
  2. Nice Fringe Benefits. This card has a host of great benefits for travelers and non-travelers, including extended warranty protection, and free WiFi at participating hotels. Many business credit cards, including U.S. Bank Business Edge Platinum and Capital One Spark Miles Select for Business, don’t invest in such luxuries.
  3. No Foreign Transaction Fee. This card doesn’t charge a foreign transaction fee, which is great news for business travelers who frequently venture outside U.S. borders and prefer Marriott-family hotels. Other popular business rewards cards, such as the Blue Business Plus Credit Card from American Express and Ink Cash from Chase, charge foreign transaction fees of 2% to 3%.
  4. Points Can Be Valuable at Redemption. The Marriott Bonvoy Business American Express Card’s loyalty currency can be quite valuable at redemption. However, redemption rates are subject to change according to factors such as underlying room rates, hotel properties’ redemption rates, and other factors.

Disadvantages

  1. Charges an Annual Fee. This card carries a $125 annual fee ($95, waived the first year, for accounts opened before 3/28/19). Chase Ink Business Cash and similar general-purpose business rewards cards without annual fees are better choices for business owners who don’t travel often or don’t prefer Marriott properties when they do.
  2. Can’t Redeem for Non-Travel Items. This card doesn’t allow you to redeem accumulated rewards for cash back or general merchandise, which is disappointing if you prefer such things to airfare or hotel nights. If you prefer more versatile rewards, opt for American Express’s Blue Business Plus  or SimplyCash Plus Business Credit Cards instead.

Final Word

The Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card is a very solid business travel rewards card. Its points offer high value at redemption, it offers a competitive welcome offer, and it matches up nicely with more than 100 frequent flyer programs.

However, it’s not for everyone – even those who travel often. If you don’t routinely visit vacation destinations or business hubs with Marriott Bonvoy hotels, you simply won’t rack up the points fast enough to make this card worth it. Before you apply for a hotel- or airline-specific travel rewards card of any sort, make sure you can get good use out of it without literally going out of your way.

For rates and fees of the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card, please visit this rates and fees page.

Verdict
American Express Marriott Bonvoy Business Card
4.3 / 5
Rating

Apply Now

Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card

The Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card is a very good fit for business owners who routinely stay at Marriott-branded properties, accumulating rewards quickly enough to offset the card’s $125 annual fee.

This card is not optimal for business owners who prefer more versatile rewards programs, nor for business owners who don’t need to travel much.

Very good fringe benefits, strong welcome offer, and great earning rate are all beneficial. The annual fee is a significant drawback. Overall, this is a great card for business travelers who frequent Marriott properties.

Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided by any bank, credit card issuer, airline, or hotel chain, and has not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, not those of the bank, credit card issuer, airline, or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Brian Martucci
Brian Martucci writes about frugal living, entrepreneurship, and innovative ideas. When he’s not interviewing small business owners or investigating time- and money-saving strategies for Money Crashers readers, he’s probably out exploring a new trail or sampling a novel cuisine. Find him on Twitter @Brian_Martucci.

Comments Disclosure: The below responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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