Marriott Rewards is testing offering rewards for food and beverage spend while not staying on-property as a guest. This is as much about generating useful data about you as it is about rewards.
The pilot will last through the end of June at 21 hotels in the Washington, D.C., and Baltimore area.
…For now, customers will get receipts with codes on them. They will then have to go to a Marriott Rewards’ website to redeem the points. If they are not already members of the Rewards program, they will have to join.
Marriott Seattle Airport Atrium
Here are the hotels participating in the test:
- The Mayflower Hotel, Autograph Collection
- Baltimore Marriott Inner Harbor at Camden Yards
- Baltimore Marriott Waterfront
- Bethesda Marriott
- Bethesda Marriott Suites
- Bethesda North Marriott Hotel & Conference Center
- Crystal City Marriott at Reagan National Airport
- Crystal Gateway Marriott
- Falls Church Marriott Fairview Park
- Gaithersburg Marriott Washingtonian Center
- Greenbelt Marriott
- JW Marriott Washington, DC
- Key Bridge Marriott
- Marriott Marquis Washington, DC
- Tysons Corner Marriott
- Washington Marriott Georgetown
- Washington Marriott Wardman Park
- Renaissance Arlington Capital View Hotel
- Renaissance Baltimore Harborplace Hotel
- Renaissance Washington, DC Downtown Hotel
- Renaissance Washington, DC Dupont Circle Hotel
Whenever I’ve spoken to or heard Marriott’s Vice President of Loyalty Thom Kozik speak, he’s talked about the importance of earning points for hotel spend even when you aren’t a guest.
He sees the linkage of a member’s spend to a hotel room night as being a legacy technology issue rather than as something fundamental and it comes from his own experience prior to joining Starwood. He frequently talks about using the Ritz-Carltons in Marina del Rey and in Laguna Niguel as a place that he’d take meetings and that he’s spent over $10,000 in food and beverage at those properties but didn’t earn anything because he wasn’t a guest and Marriott hadn’t tracked his behavior for that very same reason.
Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel, via RitzCarlton.com. One of the most amazing spots for a glass of wine at sunset..
This is hardly revolutionary but it would be an improvement for Marriott Rewards, like most of the other things they’ve done in recent months.
- Starwood has offered points-earning at their restaurants whether you’re a guest or not for as long as I can remember. They’ve even offered bonuses for hotel restaurant spend while not staying on-property.
- Hyatt rolled out restaurant and spa earning and burning while not a guest at the end of 2011.
Incidentally Kozik told me in mid-March that guests should haven’t to deal with the front desk to get benefits like late check-out, so perhaps I shouldn’t have been so surprised when Marriott added a substantive late check-out benefit for elites.