Marriott Hotel Figures Out How To Deny Breakfasts To Guests Staying On Points

Marriott’s Edition brand doesn’t have to provide elite members with breakfast. However all Marriott hotels have to provide guests staying on points the same benefits as guests on paid rates.

The Edition in Bodrum, Turkey is a Bonvoy member favorite. It’s also one of the hotels where awards were devalued the most when Marriott went to dynamic pricing.

Shane N. read that the devaluation was coming and decided to book an award while the property was still affordable. However he found that while breakfast is offered on all paid rates it isn’t included in award stays. This apparently is a change of policy that went into effect last month (after he made the booking, but before his stay).

  • All published rates appear to include breakfast. If you are paying for a room, breakfast is included.
  • If you are paying for your room in points, breakfast is not included.

For some time every guest at the Bodrum Edition received breakfast. Every paid rate I can find, from restricted prepaid rates to discounted ‘deal’ rates, still does. One person however claims that rates now exist (that I’ve been unable to find) without breakfast included, so that ‘not every paid rate does’ and therefore the hotel can exclude points redemptions from free breakfast. It’s a way of sticking it to award guests. At the Bodrum Edition, Bonvoy members using their points are now second class guest.

In 2019 Marriott told me that hotels had to provide the same benefits to customers on award stays that they do on paid stays. When Al Maha outside Dubai started charging customers staying on points a cash supplement for meals (when meals are included for paid rate guests) Marriott solved this and Al Maha ended the practice.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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Comments

  1. Edition properties are managed by Ritz-Carlton. Ritz-Carlton has always hated guests who pay with points for their faux luxury. It never ceases to amaze me that one or two divisions of a hotel company (hotel management or development) actively work to screw the best customers of another division (loyalty).

  2. More hatred of loyal customers by the Marriott posse. You gotta give them props for consistency.

  3. I stayed there last year summer on points as a Gold member. Also no free breakfast for me at that time.

  4. OMG, this is like saying AMEX is horrible because you don’t get Chase rewards points. You know going in that the brand only offers 1,000 bonus points. If you don’t like it, stay at another brand. Who cares what is offered on paid rates? If you want breakfast, either pay for it or don’t redeem there.

    If a published benefit is not offered, there is something to complain about but you are really grasping at straws here.

    Next time I fly United, I will throw a tantrum because they won’t give me JetBlue points.

  5. Every time I read this, I think the title says “Marriott Hotel Figures Out How To Get Denny’s Breakfast For Guests Staying On Points.”

  6. If an award stay at the time of booking included breakfast then it’s a breach of contract if the hotel doesn’t do so. This is a separate issue from whether they have to provide breakfast for new bookings but it’s the deciding factor for this guest.

    Once the reservation has been accepted the hotel doesn’t have the right to unilaterally change the terms of the agreement. Shane can sue Marriott in small claims court. They are on the hook if the hotel doesn’t fulfill their obligations under the agreement.

  7. This happened to me last month at the Sheraton Dubrovnik Riviera in Croatia. I’m a gold elite who paid with points (all cash rates included breakfast, and the check in agent confirmed this when I arrived), but was told I had to pay for it if I wanted it. As a gold I never expect the breakfast most of the time, but assumed we would get it given all those paying cash got it regardless of status and room booked. Was upset to say the least. May be time to dump Marriott for Hilton with the inconsistent and confusing policies

  8. (Gary, you know who loves ya baby.) Why is this even a story? This is not new news. This has long been par for the course with property owners within the hotel loyalty program networks. They so much as tell you to your face that they won’t even use K-Y. Who is it that regularly reads the travel blogs that doesn’t know this already? And, if one already knows it, why the (heck) does anyone still patronize Marriott? Ask a Hilton Lifetime Diamond what the value of that status is. Are you masochists? Continue the abuse or patronize hotels that truly appreciate your business . . . but stop complaining about it.

  9. @Dom

    Since it’s in Bodrum, where they speak Turkish, it’s actually spelled EDiTiON 🙂

  10. In Turkish, an “i” with a dot above it is pronounced “ee” and an “i” without a dot above it is pronounced “uh”. (I used to live there.)

  11. @Reno Joe and everyone else saying “nothing new/OF COURSE they want to screw award stays/etc.”: There are always new readers here, who will experience word of these practices (and things like 5/24, cabotage, and so on) for the first time. You and I were new to this, too, back in prehistoric times. Let’s not poke Gary when he posts something related to stuff he’s already posted about, or that we’ve known forevah.

  12. This practice of not offering free breakfast on award stays is not new outside the USA. I did encounter that before so this Turkish hotel is not very creative in this respect.

  13. Between my wife and I, we used to have five Marriott credit cards, issued by Chase and AMEX. We are now down to one. Will probably also drop that one soon. Been busy using up my Marriott points because I’m tired of the games Marriott plays. I recently watched the video Arne made when Marriott bought Starwood. He stressed that the resulting program would be the best in the industry, taking the best features from both programs. Sadly, Marriott has given in to the franchise owner groups who are really running the show. This is especially sad as a lifetime Titanium with over 1,400 paid nights. We recently spent five nights at Al Maha, all on points (booked before the latest devaluation). The property, the people, the service and the food/beverage, were all outstanding. Full board plus two included “activities” per day, per person included. Spent one night at the JW Marriott Marquis in Dubai, also on points. Again, fantastic service and a fantastic stay (our suite upgrade even came through).

  14. We are best situated to help learners learn as we are reflective in design, practice, assessment and evaluation. We are never fossilized in methods because of our continuous engagement with new approaches. Our team expresses a fundamental principle of popular qualification: best teachers are always keen to learn; thus we are always in tune with new ideas to enliven our pedagogical prowess.

  15. Does it state in the T&C that benefits offered to all cash rates must be inclusive to those made with points? I can’t see to find that verbiage but do know that the Al Maha tried to pull a fast one a few years back charging for breakfast w/ points and including it on all cash.

  16. @Kyle Christiansen – it’s not in the program terms, it is in rules for hotels if I recall correctly, and I flagged the Al Maha issue for Marriott and got that fixed because Al Maha can’t do that.

  17. Are the hotel rules accessible? I have an upcoming stay at this Edition & was also under the presumption at time of booking that points stays included breakfast.

  18. There is a data point over on the Marriott FB group of a very recent stay by Platinum guest who was offered free breakfast. Perhaps they have reversed course?

  19. Just returned from Croatia. Denied breakfast at Sheraton Zagreb and at le Meridian Split. They specifically said no breakfast for booking with points.

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