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Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card from Chase – Review


Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card

Our rating

4.1/5

Pros

  • thumbs-upLots of ways to earn points (not just hotel stays)
  • thumbs-upStatus boost for heavy spenders
  • thumbs-upVery generous sign-up bonus

Cons

  • thumbs-downHigher status level isn't automatic
  • thumbs-downFewer redemption options than some competitors

Get a $350 Cash Bonus.

Open a BMO Harris Premier™ Account online and get a $350 cash bonus when you have a total of at least $7,500 in qualifying direct deposits within the first 90 days of account opening. Expires 5/12. Conditions Apply.

The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card from Chase is a popular hotel credit card with a $95 annual fee. It earns rewards that can be redeemed for stays at more than 7,000 Marriott-owned hotel and resort properties worldwide. Points accumulate fastest on purchases made at Marriott Bonvoy properties and partner hotels, but also grow nicely on airfare, car rental, and restaurant spending. Plus, this card has an attractive sign-up bonus that’s potentially worth more than $500.

The Boundless Card’s main competitors are other hotel-specific rewards credit cards, including the superficially similar Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card. It also competes less directly with general purpose travel credit cards, such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card and the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card, and airline rewards credit cards, some of which have reciprocal relationships and point transfer agreements with hotel cards.

Before applying for this card, confirm with Chase that you’re eligible. Some prior Marriott-family cardholders may be excluded from eligibility.


What Sets the Bonvoy Boundless Card Apart?

Why bother applying for the Bonvoy Boundless card? It has lots of advantages, as we’ll see, but three things really set it apart:

  • Automatic Silver Elite Status. You don’t have to do anything to get Silver Elite status with this card. As long as you’re a cardholder in good standing, it’s yours.
  • Up to 17x Points at Marriott Properties. For a card with a double-digit annual fee, Bonvoy Boundless has a very impressive rewards program. Especially if you stay at Marriott properties frequently.
  • Multiple Opportunities to Earn Higher Status. You’ll earn 15 Elite Night Credits toward higher status levels every year you remain a cardholder in good standing. Plus, every $5,000 in eligible spending is good for another credit.
Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Card 1

Key Features of the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card

Intrigued? Learn more about the most important features of the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless card.

Sign-up Bonus

Earn 3 Free Night Awards (each night valued up to 50,000 points) after qualifying purchases.

Earning Marriott Bonvoy Points

The Boundless Card earns up to 17x points per $1 spent at all participating Marriott Bonvoy properties and 2x points per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases.

Plus, earn 3x Bonvoy points per $1 spent on the first $6,000 spent in combined purchases each year on grocery stores, gas stations, and dining.

There’s no limit to the number of points you can earn.

Redeeming Marriott Bonvoy Points

Points can be redeemed for free nights at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels, starting at 7,500 points per night for budget-friendly Category 1 hotels and ranging up to 85,000 points for pricey Category 8 properties, subject to change at the company’s discretion.

If you don’t have enough points to redeem for a full free night, you can combine cash and points to reduce the cost of a night’s stay at participating properties.

Other redemption options include airfare and car rentals made with participating partners. Redemption ratios and other restrictions may vary at the discretion of Marriott and its partners.

Anniversary Free Night

Every year you remain a cardholder in good standing, you get one free hotel night at any participating Marriott Bonvoy that requires fewer than 35,000 points per night.

Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Elite Status

15 Elite Night Credits

As a Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card from Chase holder, you automatically receive 15 Elite Night credits each calendar year, accelerating your progress toward higher loyalty statuses. For reference, Gold Elite Status normally requires 25 qualifying nights to attain, while Platinum Elite Status requires 50 qualifying nights.

Elite Night Credits With Qualifying Spend

Earn 1 Elite Night Credit towards Elite Status for every $5,000 you spend.

Automatic Silver Elite Status

No matter how many nights you stay each calendar year, you automatically enjoy Marriott Silver Elite status as long as you remain a cardmember in good standing.

Silver Elite Status normally requires 10 qualifying nights per year. Benefits include:

  • A 10% bonus on all points earned for paid stays
  • Guaranteed reservations, with compensation when Marriott is unable to honor your reservation
  • Late check-out
  • Complimentary enhanced in-room Internet access
  • Special member pricing

Gold Elite Status With Qualifying Annual Spend

When you spend at least $35,000 in eligible purchases in a calendar year, you automatically qualify for Gold Elite Status, even if you don’t meet the nightly stay requirements. Gold Elite Status entitles you to:

  • A 25% bonus on all points earned for paid stays
  • Room upgrades where available (including suite upgrades)
  • A welcome gift at check-in, subject to availability
Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Status Comparison

Important Fees

The annual fee is $95. There is no foreign transaction fee. Balance transfers cost the greater of $5 or 5% and cash advances cost the greater of $10 or 5%.

Credit Required

This card requires good to excellent credit. Any notable credit blemishes are likely to be disqualifying.


Advantages of the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card

We rate the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card as one of the best hotel credit cards for a reason. Or, well, multiple reasons. These are the most important.

  • Lots of Ways to Earn Points. The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card from Chase offers plenty of ways to earn rewards points. Earning up to 17x points per $1 spent at Marriott and partner properties is par for the course, but the 2x points per $1 spent on all other purchases is a big deal that sets this card apart from most competitors.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fee. This card doesn’t come with a foreign transaction fee. That’s a nice perk for international travelers, especially in light of Marriott’s extensive overseas presence.
  • Can Combine Points and Cash at Redemption. If you don’t have enough points to qualify for a free night, you can combine cash and points to subsidize your nightly rates. That may mean upgrading to a nicer hotel faster, and with less expense than would otherwise be required.
  • Strong Sign-up Bonus. This card has a fantastic sign-up bonus. It’s one of the best in the hotel rewards category, in fact.
  • Free Award Night Every Year. As long as you remain a cardholder in good standing, you’ll enjoy a free award night every year at any property requiring 35,000 points or less to redeem for a free night. If you’re looking to splurge on a luxury night that you’d otherwise want to avoid, this is your ticket.
  • Additional Elite Night Credit With Eligible Spend. You can earn 1 Elite Night Credit for every $5,000 in eligible spend on your card. For heavy spenders, that’s a nice tailwind toward higher statuses.
  • Automatic Silver Elite Status. This card comes with automatic Silver Elite Status, benefits of which include a 10% boost on base point earnings and guaranteed reservations. That’s not bad for less than $100 per year.

Disadvantages of the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card

The Boundless card doesn’t have many downsides, but it’s not quite perfect. Consider these drawbacks before you apply.

  • Fewer Redemption Options Than Some Competitors. The Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card’s redemption options are great for cardholders who like to stay at Marriott hotels, but not great for those who wish to redeem elsewhere. If you prefer a credit card that lets you redeem for virtually any travel purchases, or even general merchandise and cash equivalents that have nothing to do with travel, opt for the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card instead.
  • Costly to Attain Higher Elite Status Levels. Though this card automatically confers Marriott Silver Elite status, you have to work hard (and spend a lot) to achieve Gold ($35,000 spend). That’s not always the case with comparable hotel rewards credit cards.

How the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Card Stacks Up

Bonvoy Boundless is one of the best hotel credit cards around, but it doesn’t have the category to itself. 

One of its best-known competitors is the even-more-generous Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card. See how the two compare and decide which makes more sense for you.

Bonvoy BoundlessBonvoy Brilliant
Welcome OfferEarn 3 Free Night Awards (each night valued up to 50,000 points) after qualifying purchases.Earn 95,000 Marriott Bonvoy bonus points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases on the Card within the first 3 months. Terms apply.
Marriott Rewards Earn RateUp to up to 17x points at participating Marriott properties, depending on status6x points at participating properties, not including bonus points earned through status
Other Rewards3x points on the first $6,000 spent in combined purchases each year on grocery stores, gas stations, and dining; 2x points on other eligible purchases3x points on purchases made at restaurants worldwide and on flights booked directly with airlines; 2x points on other eligible purchases
Status BenefitsComplimentary Silver Elite status; Gold Elite status with $35,000 in eligible annual spendComplimentary Platinum Elite status
Other BenefitsFree night after your cardmember anniversary (maximum 35,000 points per night)Complimentary Priority Pass Select membership (airport lounge access — enrollment required)
Annual Fee$95$650 (see rates & fees)

Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Tap To Pay

Final Word

Hotel- and airline-specific credit cards often accelerate users toward coveted elite or preferred statuses, which typically offer financial benefits, exclusive conveniences, and creature comforts at hotels, in airports, and in the air. If you regularly stay at Marriott or partner properties, you’re likely to appreciate the fact that your Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card from Chase automatically qualifies you for Silver Elite status.

If you don’t often stay at Marriott hotels, or any hotels at all, this benefit isn’t likely to excite you. Budget-conscious or hotel-agnostic travelers often do better with general-purpose travel cards, such as Chase Sapphire Preferred, than cards that fit them into a particular brand’s box. Make sure you know where you fall before applying for this or any other travel rewards credit card.

Marriott Bonvoy Boundless Credit Card

Our rating

4.1/5

Pros

  • thumbs-upLots of ways to earn points (not just hotel stays)
  • thumbs-upStatus boost for heavy spenders
  • thumbs-upVery generous sign-up bonus

Cons

  • thumbs-downHigher status level isn't automatic
  • thumbs-downFewer redemption options than some competitors
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 writes about credit cards, banking, insurance, travel, and more. When he's not investigating time- and money-saving strategies for Money Crashers readers, you can find him exploring his favorite trails or sampling a new cuisine. Reach him on Twitter @Brian_Martucci.